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What Do I Need to Know About Keys?


As soon as the purchase transaction has been completed (usually by registration in the LAND TITLES SYSTEM on the closing day) the keys are typically released at the applicable construction trailer or sales office, if the property is not a condominium. If the property is a new condominium, keys are usually released through the site management office or concierge (if any) in the afternoon on the day of interim occupancy (or on the day of final closing if there is no interim occupancy).

Although a key might be available earlier on the closing day when a purchaser is buying from a builder, keys are usually not available for release to buyers until about 3:30 p.m. on the closing day.


Since the completion of most resale purchases (by the lawyers involved) occurs by registration in the Land Registry or Land Titles System in the afternoon on the day of closing (after which time the key is released), it is suggested that (if a purchaser is moving on the closing date) movers should be arranged so that their arrival at the property being purchased will occur late in the afternoon of closing in order to avoid unnecessary moving costs if you are paying movers on an hourly basis. If you are moving into a condominium apartment, contact the management office well in advance to reserve any elevator that might be required; reserving an elevator often involves a security deposit; consider closing the purchase for a condominium at least one day before moving so that there will be no problem regarding time for reserving an elevator for the move if a key is not obtainable on the actual closing date until about 5:00p.m.


Even if a purchaser is able to get a key early on the day of closing a resale property, there is no real benefit if the vendor does not finish moving out until 6 p.m. on the closing day (being the maximum time limit for vendors to move out according to the terms of the typical sale agreement).

When choosing a lawyer, a purchaser should ask whether the lawyer's office has electronic closing facilities (Yes! ... We have  electronic closing facilities!). This can be an important consideration for possible early release of a key on closing day if the property is located in land registry offices capable of remote electronic registrations.

If the property being bought can be registered electronically (and the lawyer's office is equipped to close electronically), the client's advantage is that the lawyer might be able to get a key (for purchaser) or closing funds (for vendor) earlier on the closing day than was traditionally the case when the lawyer would have had to travel to the registry office and get into a time consuming line-up in order to complete the purchase/sale on the day of closing, which typically would result in a key (or closing funds) not being available to clients until about 5 p.m. on the closing day. Think about it! Is the lawyer's office ready to close electronically? In order to complete an Electronic closing, both the purchaser's and the vendor's lawyers' offices must have electronic facilities!