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Are you putting your house on the market? Then ensuring that your Real Property Report (RPR) shows the current improvements should be at the top of your to-do list. When an RPR isn’t up to date, real estate transactions can be delayed or even jeopardized, and sellers can incur significant expenses that they were not contemplating.

What is an RPR? An RPR is a schematic survey drawing of your property, including its boundaries and the buildings and structures on it. It provides homebuyers with important information such as precise property boundaries as well as issues, if there are any, with the property or adjacent properties. On the seller’s end, it protects him or her from legal liabilities resulting from property issues and the representations made in the standard Offer to Purchase. RPRs must be prepared by an Alberta Land Surveyor and receive a municipal stamp of compliance. Do you need to update your RPR? If improvements (including perimeter fences built by your neighbours) have been made to your property since your last RPR was created, then you will likely need to have it updated. It doesn’t matter whether you or a previous owner made these improvements. But there are a couple of exceptions, including the following:

  • If the removal of an improvement doesn’t necessitate an update (only when improvements are added is updating an RPR necessary).

  • Certain improvements such as ground level concrete, non-encroaching driveways and small movable sheds don’t need to be indicated on an RPR. However, you should consult a real estate lawyer in such cases.

Note, however, that the age of the RPR doesn’t necessarily matter. What’s important is that it accurately reflects the current state of the property and the methods used are still compliant with the Alberta Land Surveyor’s Manual of Standard Practice. Also note that you don’t always need to have the original document: good quality legible photocopies are acceptable. When should I have my RPR updated? If you’re putting your home on the market and your RPR needs updating, you should get this done as soon as possible. This minimizes the costs involved and more importantly gives you time to deal with any property issues you may discover. However, be aware that it can take up to three weeks to get an RPR from the city and up to three months to get it approved if there are encroachments or relaxations required. Let the real estate lawyers at First West Law LLP take on this process for you as part of our popular all-inclusive pricing. We order the RPR, ensure compliance, deal with issues, and only pass on our actual costs to you. Hire a real estate lawyer in Calgary If you’re having issues with an RPR or require expert advice in this area, the real estate lawyers at First West Law LLP can help you out. Whether you’re buying or selling a home, our team will help you complete the transaction in a timely and cost-effective manner. Contact us today!


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