Trusted Tips and Resources

Trusted Tips & Resources

Trusted Regina Real Estate Lawyer Robert MacKay asks: Do you know what kind of mortgage you have?

What an exciting time – the old house is sold, the new one is ready, and all that’s left is the move…..oh wait – not quite yet! There’s all that legal “stuff” to deal with now….signatures….titles to be given…and pages and pages of documents that need to be signed before the key is in your hand!!! And to top it all off – who really knows a good real estate lawyer?

The Trusted Regina team is proud to bring you a partner that can help! Welcome Robert MacKay, Regina’s #1 Home Lawyer to Regina’s directory of excellence!


Hardly anyone pays attention to what type of mortgage they have. 


Sure, they know whether they have a fixed rate, a variable rate or an adjustable rate but few are aware that their mortgage will have a particular legal standing or why it is important.

When a market goes up, it's all roses and sunshine, at least if you already own your own home. Trying to buy in such a market can be a scary proposition. When the market goes down, well, that's scary too but for different reasons. 

Buying a house to find out it might be worth less in a year's time is not a fun proposition. However, we all still need a place to live and the markets will do what it will do.

In the event the downturn is significant or if the you know what hits the proverbial fan, all of a sudden that legal distinction can be very important. 

Purchase Money Mortgage

For if you have what is known colloquially as a "purchase money mortgage", moneys borrowed to buy the property, then the bank's recourse is limited to the seizure and sale of the property.

So, if it sold for $1.00 but you still owed $1,000,000, well, the bank will be hoping its mortgage was insured, as they not unable to chase you for any deficiencies under the mortgage.

This is an important consideration in a lot of foreclosures, as a lot of people have refinanced their property to consolidate debt or finance renovations. Luckily, the portion of the mortgage that related to the property's purchase is still protected.


Once you have committed to either buying or selling your property, simply tell your realtor and lender, as applicable, that Robert MacKay will be representing you and to forward the appropriate instructions to MacKay & McLean, attention "Robert MacKay". 

Robert MacKay is your Trusted Regina Real Estate Lawyer   

Robert MacKay explains how having primary and secondary wills are beneficial if you are a business owner

It is said that in this world, nothing is certain but death and taxes. Modern estate planning aims to assist individuals to navigate both of these unpleasant certainties.  Preparing double wills is an estate planning technique which minimizes the amount of probate fees (estate administration taxes) payable on death by your estate.

Double Wills – Primary (Public Asset Will) and Secondary (Private Asset Will)


Depending on the nature of a person’s assets, it is often beneficial to have a “primary” Will to deal with real property and assets held in financial institutions (public assets) and a “secondary” Will to deal with assets held in a private corporation, personal effects, vehicles, the proceeds of life insurance policies payable to the estate and any other asset which does not require probate to pass to a beneficiary (private assets).

Probate is required in select circumstances, and when it is required for the estate trustee to effectively deal with one asset in a will then all assets governed by that will must be probated. In that event, the estate will be required to pay the estate administration tax on the combined value of all assets governed by the will. Savvy individuals can avoid this problem through the use of multiple wills and proper drafting.

The use of multiple wills received judicial approval in Ontario in Granovsky Estate v. Ontario, 1998 CanLII 14913 (ON SC). Therein the court considered the testator’s use of two wills: a ‘Primary Will’ and a ‘Secondary Will’. The Secondary Will exclusively governed the testator’s private company shares, amounts owing to the testator from said companies, and assets held in trust for the testator by said companies. In other words, the secondary estate consisted solely of those assets that the estate trustee could deal without needing probate. Whereas the Primary Will governed all of the testator’s other assets, for which probate was required. The court in Granovsky found that there was no prohibition in the applicable legislation which could prevent a testator from having both a primary and secondary will – a testator may plan his or her estate as she or he sees fit. Notably, the court held that there was no requirement to submit the Secondary Will to probate or pay the estate administration tax on the value of the assets governed by the Secondary Will.

Following Granovsky, Ontario has witnessed a marked increase in the popularity of multiple wills as a method for effective estate planning. Complimentary to the reduced tax liability are the added benefits of ease of administration of one’s estate and privacy, as a probated will is a public document. These combined benefits make preparing multiple wills a prudent investment for the common sense business owner.


For advice you can succeed with contact Robert MacKay 


Robert MacKay is your Trusted Regina Lawyer   


Recently sold your home? Robert MacKay your Trusted Regina Real Estate Lawyer expert explains how CRA may penalize you if you fail to report it.

It’s an exciting time – the old house is sold, the new one is ready, and all that’s left is the move…..oh wait – not quite yet! There’s all that legal “stuff” to deal with now….signatures….titles to be given…and pages and pages of documents that need to be signed before the key is in your hand!!! And to top it all off – who really knows a good real estate lawyer?

The Trusted Regina team is proud to bring you a partner that can help! Welcome Robert MacKay, Regina’s #1 Home Lawyer to Regina’s directory of excellence!

In this article Robert explains why you have to report the sale of you principle residence to CRA. 

Reporting the sale of a principal residence was unnecessary before 2016, the year the federal government announced a series of steps designed to slow the housing market down and close housing-related tax loopholes. Some people used the previous lack of scrutiny of gains from the sale of a home to their advantage, including investors flipping homes, and others who owned both a cottage and a house and weren’t conscientious about declaring which was a principal residence.

CRA says that if you forget to report the sale of a principal residence, you’ll need to amend your tax return for that year as soon as possible. Late reporting may be accepted in some cases, but it’s possible you’ll have to pay a penalty equal to the lesser of $8,000 or $100 for each complete month you’re late in reporting.

In most cases, you won't pay tax on the money you make from selling your home if it was your principal residence every year since you bought it.

If you sold property in 2017 or after that was, at any time, your principal residence, you must report the sale on Schedule 3, Capital Gains (or Losses) corresponding with the tax year and Form T2091(IND), Designation of a Property as a Principal Residence by an Individual (Other Than a Personal Trust). 

According to CRA here is why you must report the sale.

For the sale of a principal residence in 2016 and subsequent years, we will only allow the principal residence exemption if you report the disposition and designation of your principal residence on your income tax return. If you forget to make this designation in the year of the disposition, it is very important to ask us to amend your income tax return for that year. Under proposed changes, we will be able to accept a late designation in certain circumstances, but a penalty may apply.


For more information check out this article from Tim Cestnick with the Globe and Mail

Once you have committed to either buying or selling your property, simply tell your realtor and lender, as applicable, that Robert MacKay will be representing you and to forward the appropriate instructions to MacKay & McLean, attention "Robert MacKay". 

Robert MacKay is your Trusted Regina Real Estate Lawyer   


June is Credit Score Month and our Trusted Regina Partner Robert MacKay want's to help you understand the importance of your credit score.

June is Credit Score Month and our Trusted Regina Home Lawyer Robert MacKay of Mackay and McLean want's to help you understand the importance of your credit score

It’s often the first indicator that you are an identity theft victim. If you find names you don’t recognize, Social Insurance numbers that don’t belong to you, or accounts that aren’t yours, you might be a fraud victim. Credit reporting companies can help you stop the credit fraud and prevent future misuse of your identity.

Here are 5 reasons to check your credit score:

  • It’s free. Never pass up a freebie, especially when it can affects your financial health and well-being. Your credit report plays an important part in your credit transactions and many other financial relationships.  Get your annual credit report.
  •  It’s an important step in rebuilding and maintaining good credit. Reviewing your credit report periodically will help you make sure it is in good shape when you are ready to apply for new credit and enable you to monitor your progress if you are recovering from past credit problems.
  • It’s an important part of managing your personal finances. You should review your credit report just like you do your bank statements and credit card bills. Managing credit, keeping track of spending and putting aside savings are all essential to being financially successful.
  • It’s often the first indicator that you are an identity theft victim. If you find names you don’t recognize, Social Security numbers that don’t belong to you, or accounts that aren’t yours, you might be a fraud victim. Experian and the other national credit reporting companies can help you stop the credit fraud and prevent future misuse of your identity.
  • It’s the first step in correcting any information you feel is inaccurate. The vast majority of the time people find everything is accurate. But if you do find something wrong, your personal credit report comes with instructions for submitting disputes and contact information including a toll-free telephone number, Internet address and mailing address.

Make sure your credit information accurate.

 Your credit score is a reflection of the information in your credit report. Checking your credit score can give you an indication as to whether your credit report is accurate. If your credit score is lower than you expect, it could be a sign that your credit report contains errors that need to be disputed with the credit bureaus.

Add a fraud alert

A fraud alert, or identity verification alert, tells lenders to contact you and confirm your identity before they approve any applications for credit. The aim is to prevent any further fraud from happening.

Ask the credit bureaus to put a fraud alert on your credit report if:

  • you've been a victim of fraud
  • your wallet has been stolen
  • you've had a home break-in

You may need to provide identification and a sworn statement to prove that you've been a victim of fraud.

You can set up a fraud alert for free with Equifax. TransUnion charges a fee of $5 plus taxes to set up a fraud alert.


A strong credit profile and reasonable debt ratio are equally important if you want the best mortgage rates and terms.


For more questions and help with any legal property issues consult with our Trusted Regina Real Estate Lawyer Robert MacKay

Trusted Regina Real Estate Lawyer Robert MacKay warns about the potential implications of renting your property.

Our Trusted Regina Real Estate Lawyer Robert MacKay want's to ensure Landlords are fully aware of the financial and legal issues that can arise from criminal activity conducted by a tenant.  

A recent article from the Star Phoenix "Regina landlords lose bid to make insurer pay for drug-house explosion" details how a local landlord attempted to gain compensation for the home from the insurance company.  The insurance company had denied their claim and pointed to a 2003 notice posted in a renewal package that stated simply: “We do not insure property used for the illegal cultivating, harvesting, processing, manufacturing, distributing or selling of marijuana.”

Even though the landlords claimed they took all reasonable steps to screen the tenant and his partner, who had children and were otherwise “model tenants.” There was simply no way for them to know the tenants were surreptitiously running an illegal drug operation in the home, they argued.  However Court of Queen’s Bench Justice Richard Elson rejected those arguments stating "changes to the policy were hardly “buried.” They came highlighted in a special box on the front page of the renewal form". Further, he noted that renting always carries an element of uncertainty — and landlords should be prepared for the worst.


How can a landlord limit responsibility for crime committed by strangers on the rental property?

Screen tenants carefully and choose tenants who are likely to be law-abiding and peaceful citizens. Weed out violent or dangerous individuals to the extent allowable under privacy and anti-discrimination laws that may limit questions about a tenant's past criminal activity.

  • Don't accept cash rental payments.
  • Do not tolerate tenants' disruptive behavior. Include an explicit provision in the lease or rental agreement prohibiting drug dealing and other illegal activity and promptly evict tenants who violate the clause.
  • Be aware of suspicious activity, such as heavy traffic in and out of the rental premises.
  • Respond to tenant and neighbor complaints about drug dealing on the rental property. Get advice from police immediately upon learning of a problem.
  • Consult with security experts to do everything reasonable to discover and prevent illegal activity on the rental property.
As in this case screening doesn't always help it can limit the possibility of being denied by your insurance company.  Ultimately the liability falls on the property owner to be aware of the possible issues that can arise from criminal activity.  

Before you decide to rent out a property consult with a lawyer such as Robert MacKay to be certain that you are aware of all the potential legal implications and your options.  

For more questions and help with any legal property issues consult with our Trusted Regina Real Estate Lawyer Robert MacKay



Full article:

Regina landlords lose bid to make insurer pay for drug-house explosion

Nine years after a "honey hash oil" operation sent a fire ripping through a Princess Street home, the tenants will have to pay more than $179K

ARTHUR WHITE-CRUMMEY, REGINA LEADER-POST Updated: May 29, 2018

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