Registered my first lien

I did an inspection for a small apartment building for a guy who is a small contractor and the Realtor referred me.
Low and behold his cheque bounced.
After the first call he agreed to look into it.
The second call his wife would get a certified cheque.
The third call no problem I will call you back.
All subsequent calls went to voice mail. I texted him and advised I would lien the property. I called the Realtor who called him and said he will call you with a visa card. DaDaDaDa Nothing even after more calls and texts to the Realtor even to the point I am at the computer in the Land Registry office ready to pay for the property search and register the lien. One last chance I call the Realtor I am going to lien the property! I will call him now. He texts back, “the buyer will call you with a visa card” tick, tick.
I text the Realtor “I have dealt with this type - full of lies, lies, lies.”
Register the Lien for inspection fee, bank charges for NSF, lien costs, parking and an extra 2 hours of my time at $150 per hour.
Now the transaction cannot get completed until I lift the lien or go to court.
Sad the this person who buys an over half a million dollar property will try to screw you for a few bucks.
This is a tip for others that you can lien the property if you fill out the right forms.
Allan Spisak
ACISS Home & Commercial Inspections

Thanks Allan for the report.
Please post how this works out.
This just might give others the info to do it too.
We where lucky never had to go this route .

Interesting that you can put a lien on a property that is not owned by your client but by a 3nd party. Canada must have some strange laws in regards to liens.

Minnesota requires notice of intent to file in the form of a pre lien notice. This can be a line in your contract.

So you filed a lien on the seller?, because if its the buyer then its not a lien.
Incorrectly filed liens offer double damages to the person who filed, at least in Minnesota, and filling out the paperwork wrong will get you double damages or double your lien amount given to the person who owes you money.

Also in Minnesota you only get the money owed for services rendered as in the form of materials or labor, an inspector would not be able to correctly file a lien or get filing fees, interest or time spent filing.

Welcome to America.

Canada sure is different. I assume you know enough about lien law that your comfortable with your actions?

I think this is the one he used

Construction Lien
A Construction Lien is governed by the Construction Lien Act in Ontario. A Construction Lien in Ontario is known as a Builders Lien]( in other provinces and territories in Canada. For information on Builders liens please see our other provincial sections. Construction Lien filing services in Ontario are very similar to other provinces’ Lien-Pro services that Lien-Pro provides
Who can file a Construction Lien?
According to the Construction Lien Act, a person who supplies services or materials to an improvement for an owner, contractor, or subcontractor, can place a lien upon the premises which they have improved for the price of those services or materials.
Persons entitled to a Construction lien normally include construction companies, contractors, subcontractors, workers, material suppliers and leasors of equipment (with or without an operator). Engineers who prepare designs for an improvement which is never in fact commenced are also entitled to a Construction lien. As well, under the Act, architects are now entitled to a Construction lien.
Materials means any movable property that (a) becomes or is intended to become part of the improvement; or (b) that is used directly in the making of the improvement; or © that is used to facilitate directly the making of the improvement, and includes equipment rented without an operator.
Supply of Services means any work done or service performed upon or in respect of an improvement, and includes, (a) the rental of equipment with an operator and (b) where the making of the planned improvements is not commenced, the supply of a design, plan, drawing or specification that in itself enhances the value of the owner’s interest in the land.
In Ontario you have 45 days from the date of completion or abandonment to file a Construction Lien. In the case of leasehold improvements, a demand and request for information letter ]( also be sent to the landlord prior to filing a Construction lien
Property Subject to a Construction Lien
According to the Construction Lien Act in Ontario, All real property on which the improvement is made is subject to a lien claim under the Act,EXCEPT:
(a) Interests of the Federal Crown. As a result, persons who supply labour or materials to a Federal Crown construction project, such as, for example, the building of an armed forces base, are not entitled to a Construction lien
(b) Interests of the Provincial (Ontario) Crown and includes Provincial agencies, boards, commissions, railways, public utilities, universities and manufacturing companies owned or controlled by the Province
© Where the Provincial Crown is owner of a premises or where the premises are a public street or highway owned by a Municipality, or a railway right-of-way, but there is a lien chargeable on the holdbacks required to be retained under the Act, plus any additional amounts owed under a contract or subcontract
Construction Lien Services
Lien-Pro knows Construction Lien filing and we are familiar with new changes affecting Construction Lien regulations. You will find our Construction Lien services easy to use. Our forms]( and lien systems are straight forward and are built to file your Construction lien in a timely and cost effective price.
Let Lien-Pro take care of your Construction Lien, so you can concentrate on your business. Our clients include builders, general contractors, sub-contractors and suppliers across Canada and the US. You will find our Construction Lien services quick and efficient.
For additional information on filing liens in specific provinces, please view our "Provincial Services" tab at the top of the page. For those who are running out of time and need to file a Construction Lien immediately, call us today for more details. 855-224-6650 or get information on filing your Construction Lien](


It’s unlikely Allan filed a Lien under this act. The specifics of this Act requires that the service performed by the contractor was to provide improvements to the property, and the property was owner (or mortgaged) by the person the services were performed for.

According to the details of the Act, every person who supplies **services **or materials to an improvement for an owner, contractor or subcontractor has a lien on the owner’s interest in the premises for the price of those services or materials. A construction lien is in essence a charge or security on the premises improved in favor of a party who has contributed to the enhancement of value to the lands.

Regardless of whether this was a pre-sale or buyers inspection, a Visual Home Inspection can in no way be considered a service offering “improvement”. While a satisfactory visual Home Inspection might contribute to the upholding of a current requested price, it is unlikely to be seen by any courts (nor do I find any precedent) where it can be seen as “contributing to the enhancement of the value of the lands”.

It is possible Allan issued a different type of Lien. If so, in Ontario there are a number of steps you need to follow in order to register (preserve) a lien.

How you “preserve” your lien depends on if the lien attaches to a piece of real estate or not. You can only preserve a lien on real estate that is owned (or mortgaged) by the debtor. In this case, you will first need to register your “claim for lien” with the local land registry office.

If the lien does not attach to a piece of real estate, the lien may be “preserved” by giving a copy of the “claim for lien” to the property owner. (In Allan’s case, the seller)

The lien can be initiated from standard forms found here:

The claim for lien will need to include certain information including a description of the services or materials supplied, the amount claimed, and a description of the premises to which the lien relates.

If the seller is the one who owes you money, you can attach the lien to the property and register a certificate of action (again available from the above link) with the registry office. This will perfect the lien.

If the lien is against the buyer, once you’ve filed the claim (preserved the lien) with the seller and client, you have 45 days to file your statement of claim with a court (perfecting the lien). This is usually a request that the claim be satisfied upon the sale of the subject property.

I suspect given the limited information in Allan’s original post, it is more likely he used the latter option rather than the construction lien as in your scrape.

This is an interesting procedure! I’m going to find out what our local (Québec) laws mention as we get some of these as well. Perhaps Allan can give us some more info…