A Guide to the In's and Out's of Discharging a Mortgage in Ontario

Before buying or selling your home, you need to make sure that your mortgage is discharged. Even if you think it is, it’s a good idea to make sure everything has been completed properly.

Mortgage discharges are a type of legal document that frees a piece of real estate from a loan or another kind of collateral hold. A mortgage discharge is necessary to render a property title clean, which is required to buy, sell, or refinance a property. Discharging a mortgage in Ontario is a relatively easy process, with the ability to handle all necessary paperwork within a week.

What Discharging a Mortgage in Ontario Entails

The mortgage discharge process will involve a few people and entities: You, a mortgage lender, and the territorial or provincial land title registry office. In some cases, you may also need to consult with an expert on the matter such as an attorney, commissioner of oaths, or a notary.

The following steps will be required to discharge a mortgage.

Confirm the mortgage is paid in full

If any balance remains on the mortgage, you’ll need to pay it off. You can determine the amount you need to pay by requesting a payoff figure from the mortgage company, which will include the total balance, an expiration date, and a per diem.

Get a discharge of mortgage document

You can obtain this document from an attorney, online, or from the local Registry of Deeds.

Consult with an real estate lawyer

You should then speak with an experience real estate lawyer who doubles as a notary and will be able to witness the completion of the Discharge of Mortgage document.

Schedule a Meeting

Next, schedule a meeting with your lawyer and the original mortgage holder, to which you should bring your mortgage paid-in-full letter to help speed up the process. Keep in mind that the original mortgage company will need to fill out the discharge form with the attorney acting as a witness. The attorney must also sign and seal the document.

Keep Copies for Your Records

Make copies of documents to stay in your records by taking the original discharge to the Registry of Deeds, where an abstractor will record the mortgage discharge to be stored in the registry. Keep in mind the Registry will charge a fee for recording the discharge.

If you’re looking for an experienced real estate lawyer who will help you with all aspects of buying a home, contact us for more information.