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Ask an Agent: How can I convert my rental property to condos?

Ask an Agent: How can I convert my rental property to condos?

Before a rental property in the Montreal agglomeration can be converted into condos, there are important legal steps to follow.

As a Quebec notary, much of my practice consists of residential real estate. Lately, I've had an increasing number of requests from prospective buyers who want to invest in a rental property (e.g. duplex, triplex) in Montreal to convert that dwelling’s individual rental units into condos. The recurring question is: "How do I go about doing a condo conversion according to law?"

In 1975 in Quebec, a moratorium was placed on the conversion of rental properties into condos. In 1987, the condo conversion ban was ended, except with respect to rental properties within the agglomeration of Montreal.

The general principle for the agglomeration of Montreal is that conversion of a rental unit into a condo unit is not permitted, unless special authorization is obtained from the borough/municipality.

Numerous rental property owners have considered converting their properties into condo units, which would result in the sale of distinct dwelling units, in separate transactions, rather than the sale of the entire residential structure in one transaction. Before a rental property in the Montreal agglomeration can be converted into condos, there are important legal steps to follow:

  • The property owner must send each of his tenants a notice of his intention to convert the rental property into divided co-ownership (i.e. condos). The landlord must then transmit a copy to the Régie du logement.
  • The property owner must request authorization from the municipality approving the condo conversion. Many factors are taken into consideration, and vary depending on the borough or city.
  • The property owner must obtain the authorization from the Régie du logement to convert the duplex into condos.
  • The property owner must hire a Quebec land surveyor to prepare a cadastral replacement and new certificate of location.
  • A notary must register a declaration of co-ownership (condo agreement) at the appropriate registry office.
  • Before the first sale of each condo unit, the property owner must provide the prospective purchaser with the following information: expert’s report, information circular, budget forecast, offer to sell, authorization from the Régie and summary or draft declaration of co-ownership.
  • It is important to note that the existing tenant has a first right to purchase the unit.

    Converting a rental property into condo units is a complex process. Prior to submitting an application to, it's recommended to obtain as much information as possible by contacting your borough's city hall, the Régie du logement, and of course, consulting your notary or lawyer.

    What if you're refused special authorization from your municipality to convert the residential rental property into condos? A popular option around this ban has been to first convert the building into undivided co-ownership (where each co-owner owns a certain percentage in the entire building). I will discuss the steps involved in converting a building into undivided co-ownership in a subsequent article. Stay tuned



    Read more: http://www.montrealgazette.com/life/Agent+convert+rental+property+condos/5609227/story.html#ixzz1bvyQW9lF

    SOURCE: The Montreal Gazette