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  • Writer's pictureBarbara McDougall

Landlease Q & A

Updated: Aug 12, 2020

Affordable is a word that could be used to describe a Landlease Community. Also described as "Leasehold Ownership" it simply means that you get the full use and enjoyment of the land for flower gardening and private use, but you don`t pay for the ownership.

With Landlease Ownership you own your home, make changes to it, and live in it as you wish. You use the land, but you don`t have to pay for ownership. After all, most of us live in the house not on the land.

Using the land, but not owning it, reduces the cost of purchasing your own home by 30-40%. At the price that freehold homes are selling nowadays it is not surprising that home ownership suddenly becomes far more affordable with Landlease Ownership.

Many buyers have a home to sell before buying. When their current home is sold, buying home in a Landlease Community will require much less cash than buying a similar home and lot. This usually leaves more cash left over from the sale of the current home to use for travel, other interests, or reinvestment. The investment income may be enough, or more than enough to pay the monthly fees, while providing maximum cash liquidity and flexibility.

Q. Is Conestoga Estates an "Adult Only" Community? A. Conestoga Estates is no an "Adult Only" Community. The Ontario Human Rights Code prohibits a landlord from discriminating because of age. There is a mix of retirees, empty nesters, young families and first time homeowners living on Conestoga Estates.

The smaller one floor homes, in the community and the rules and regulations attached to the lease work very well for retired individuals.

Q. What is the term of a lease? A. The term of the lease will vary with different landlords. Leases can however not be greater than 19 years.

Q. Do I have to move if my lease has expired or I do not renew my lease? A. No. There is security of tenure provided under the Ontario Residential Tenancies Act, 2006. Once a lease term expires you are renting “month to month”.

Q. Will the monthly fee increase annually, if I have a lease? A. Conestoga Estates will increase the rent annually. The right to increase the rent will be detailed in the terms of the lease and the increase will be calculated in accordance with government regulations as provided under the Ontario Residential Tenancies Act, 2006. Under this legislation permitted fee increases are annual and typically based on the rate of inflation.

Q. Are there Rules and Regulations? A. Conestoga Estates has rules and regulations or guidelines to keep standards high and preserve the integrity of the community. Often these guidelines are merely dictated by common courtesy and common sense. For example:

· Pets must be on a leash at all times and "poop'n scoop" is mandatory.

· Call before you dig to avoid disrupting services or obstructing maintenance activity.

· Permission is required from the Landlord for additions, decks etc and will require applicable municipal building permits.

· Fences are not allowed as they detract from the country like setting or interfere with lawn maintenance if it is a service being provided by the landlord.

Q. What does the monthly fee cover?

A. Conestoga Estates' monthly fee covers the right to use the lot, water and sewage consumption, a means of providing disposal of household waste and the maintenance of the community roads and common areas.

Q. Will I have to pay property tax?

A. Property tax is paid to the township by the Landlord. Tenants are billed for their portion in four installments or monthly. The amount charged is based on the assessed value of the home set by MPAC and the mill rate set by the township.

Q. Are there any additional charges.

A. Conestoga Estates is not on municipal services and operators its own water treatment facility. There is a small monthly fee of $14.00 for water testing. There is an additional charge for the parking of recreation vehicles and utility trailers in a secure compound. Additional maintenance services such as lawn care and snow removal for your individual lot are available for a fee from a on-site contractor.

Q. Can I get a mortgage on the home when the land is leased?

A. There are many banks and mortgage companies that will finance landlease homes. CMHC’s (Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation) Chattel Loan Insurance Program is commonly used to insure landlease home loans. You can often obtain a CMHC insured loan with a minimum of 5% down payment. The bank provides a loan to you based on your credit worthiness and an appraisal may be required for the home. There is an application fee for a CMHC loan.

If you have any other questions regarding landlease please let me know and I will try to answer them.


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