Image

Real Estate

Real estate development is a major engine of the Canadian and international economy, and those in the field know how much value is added by a lawyer with real experience in the process. Shibley Righton LLP has been handling major real estate developments and transactions, and related dispute resolution, corporate, and tax issues, for almost fifty years. We've been at this during the boom times, and the hard times, and we've learned a thing or two along the way.

The professionals who make up our real estate team have experience in matters involving:

  • land assemblies, condominiums, commercial and industrial projects, limited partnerships, joint ventures, and a broad range of other development activities and structures
  • restructuring development projects and protecting the rights of mortgage holders and other creditors in a project context
  • purchases and sales, corporate acquisitions, commercial leasing, zoning and municipal matters, mortgage financing and remedies, and other transactions for residential and commercial property owners and franchise businesses to not-for-profits and public and private schools.

Contact

-1

Contacts

Name and Title
Featured
Name and Title
Featured
Name and Title
Featured
0
Name and Title
Featured
Name and Title
Featured
Name and Title
Featured
0
Name and Title
Featured
Name and Title
Featured
Name and Title
Featured
0
Name and Title
Featured

Publications

Description

Although changes that took effect in 2016 mean that testamentary trusts are now generally subject to tax at the highest marginal rate, a notable exception is now in play — the Graduated Rate Estate (GRE), Toronto litigator Matthew Urback writes in The Lawyer’s Daily.

As Urback, an associate with Shibley Righton LLP, explains: “A GRE is a special designation that a qualifying estate may adopt. In particular, a GRE is an estate that comes about as a result of an individual’s death, on or after Dec. 31, 2015, and no more than 36 months after the death. The estate at that time must be a testamentary trust. (A series of conditions must also be satisfied in order to qualify.)”

A major benefit of a GRE, says Urback, is that it continues to enjoy graduated tax rates on income earned during this 36-month period. It also strongly incentivizes and rewards charitable giving in a will, he adds.

“Perhaps most notably, charitable donations made on death, or after death, are no longer deemed to have been made by the deceased personally. Instead, the gift is now deemed to be made by the estate,” writes Urback.

This is an excerpt of an interview with AdvocateDaily.com.  Please click here to read the rest.

Date_Published
2017-10-04
Description

Rent control measures could stifle market supply if the past is any guide, says Toronto real estate lawyer Peter Neilson.

The legislature at Queen’s Park recently introduced legislation that extends rent control to all private units in Ontario. The Rental Fairness Act, 2017 caps annual rent increases by landlords at an amount set by the province, with the rate for 2017 set at 1.5 per cent. The maximum increase allowed in any year under the new law is 2.5 per cent.

Rent control has a long history in Ontario, but in 1991 the provincial government exempted any units built after that year.

Neilson, a partner with Shibley Righton LLP, says the 1991 exception was made in an attempt to spur development of new rental units.

This is an excerpt of an article that appeared on AdvocateDaily.com.  Please click here to read the whole story.

Date_Published
2017-05-29
Description

Politicians hoping to solve the Greater Toronto Area’s housing affordability crisis with legislation should proceed with caution, says Toronto real estate lawyer Peter Neilson.

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne has announced plans to introduce a 15-per-cent foreign buyer tax in the Greater Golden Horseshoe Area, taking in communities all the way from the Niagara Region to Peterborough.

Buyers who are not citizens, permanent residents of Canadian corporation will have to pay the levy, which mirrors similar measures imposed last year in B.C.

Ontario’s Finance Minister Charles Sousa initially rejected the idea of copying the B.C. tax in Ontario, but has since backtracked, as house prices continued to rise. In Toronto, they hit an average of more than $900,000 in March, which represented a 33-per-cent spike over the same month in 2016.

This article appeared on AdvocateDaily.com.  Please click here to read the full story.

Date_Published
2017-04-20
Description

A recent Ontario Court of Appeal ruling in a commercial real estate litigation may signal better protection for buyers, says Toronto litigator Isabelle Eckler.

In Singh v Trump, 2016 ONCA 747 (CanLII), two Toronto investors sued for damages after their purchase of hotel units in the Trump International Hotel failed to produce the profit margins promised in the developer's marketing material, she tells AdvocateDaily.com.

They brought motions for partial summary judgment against the developer, which were dismissed on the basis that it was “objectively unreasonable,” for the plaintiffs to rely on the developer’s marketing material, but the appeal judge disagreed, points out Eckler, associate with Shibley Righton LLP.

“The developers were marketing the property on the basis that unit owners could take advantage of the hotel’s reservation program, which would allow them to make a profit,” she explains, noting that the case was further complicated by allegations that the developer’s profit estimates violated a breach of the Ontario’s Securities Act (OSC). “It appears that the developers wanted the Ontario Securities Commission to see the hotel units as real estate rather than securities.

This article appeard on AdvocateDaily.com.  Please click here to read the full story.

Date_Published
2016-12-19
Description

Any bylaws introduced to licence landlords and control the proliferation of AirBnB units in Toronto will almost certainly face legal hurdles and court challenges, says Toronto real estate lawyer Peter Neilson.

Neilson, a partner with Shibley Righton LLP, says Toronto's quest to control AirBnBs and landlords also opens up the proverbial legal can of worms, he says, since it could conceivably impinge on homeowners’ property rights.

“There are so many variables,” Neilson says. “You have a condo owner who lets out a unit through AirBnB and it’s likely no one in the building would be happy about that including the property management. But you’d have to consult the condo corporation declaration and rules to see if it is specifically barred.

This article origionally appeared on AdvocateDaily.com.  Please click here to read the complete story.

Date_Published
2016-11-22
Description

An Ontario Superior Court of Justice injunction issued on behalf of a family restaurant to block multi-million dollar renovations at Toronto’s Manulife Centre has given landlords, tenants and their legal counsel something to chew over, says Toronto real estate lawyer Peter Neilson

In the matter of Bloor Street Diner v. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company, the Bloor Street Diner, a long-time Manulife Centre tenant, argued the extensive renovations planned to make way for Italian food emporium Eataly were prohibited by the terms of its lease.

Date_Published
2016-05-19
Description

With the announcement the federal government is boosting the minimum down payment for higher-priced homes in Canada, it will likely be the Toronto and Vancouver housing markets that will be most affected by the change, says Toronto real estate lawyer Peter Neilson.

Starting in February 2016, the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation will require a 10 per cent down payment on the portion of any mortgage it insures over $500,000, the CBC reports. The current five per cent rule will remain the same for the portion up to $500,000.

“Homebuyers are currently insisted to put down a minimum of five per cent to qualify for CMHC insurance — protection that lenders insist on when providing a mortgage worth more than 80 per cent of the home's value,” the article states.

Neilson, partner with Shibley Righton LLP whose practice includes the acquisition, sale, leasing and financing of all kinds of real estate, says the cutoff point of $500,000 appears deliberate. In hot markets like Toronto and Vancouver, even modest homes and condominiums can easily surpass the $500,000 threshold.

“Certainly in Toronto and the GTA, even a first-time buyer financing that amount is not unusual,” he tells AdvocateDaily.com.

Neilson says he sees the logic behind the new policy. “By only putting down five per cent, you would be vulnerable to any changes in the market — a market may not seem to be changing yet. However, certainly interest rates are going to go up at some point.”

The more you put down, the more equity you have, he says.

“If your house price stalls and interest rates go up and you have to refinance, you may suddenly be looking at paying significantly higher monthly payments. A higher down payment gives you a bit of caution against that.”

Neilson is curious to see what the long-term impact of the policy shift will be.

“The interesting question is will this have a significant effect on the market? Will it mean people will have to moderate their price range and aim a bit lower or will they just be more cautious and save a bit longer? Who knows? It’s too early to tell if this boost will cool the market because there are so many other factors involved.”

This article origionally appeared on www.advocatedaily.com

Date_Published
2016-01-04
Description

News that the Canadian Broadcast Corporation has to cut its budget by $115 million over the next three years has some wondering if the broadcaster will sell or lease its downtown Toronto headquarters.

The CBC released its five-year strategic plan earlier this year, and according to an article in the Toronto Star, CBC president Hubert Lacroix was quoted as saying, “We can’t invest in infrastructure that drags us down. We can’t invest our money in bricks and mortar. We have to invest in content.”

The Star reports that “the 1.4-million-square-foot headquarters at Front and John Sts. is considered prime Canadian real estate” and is “valued at hundreds of millions of dollars.”

As businesses like the CBC look to save money and cuts costs, Toronto real estate lawyer Peter Neilson says that leasing less space or leaseback arrangements are common ways for a company to refinance and reduce costs.

Click here for the full story

Date_Published
2015-03-11
Publication
Description

Jessica Vickerman's article "Deconstruction new home warranties" appeard in the December 20th edition of The Lawyers Weekly

Date_Published
2014-01-10
Publication
Description

Matthew Urback's article about if the Residential Tenancies Act gone too far in protecting the tenant was published in appeared in Lawyers Weekly

Date_Published
2013-08-30

eBulletin Subscription