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Thursday, January 8, 2015

Condos in 2015 are going up, up, up

To make a prediction for Canada’s crazy housing market would be, well, crazy, but some agents believe it’s safe to say high-rise living will continue to post strong gains in major markets – especially for larger family-friendly units.

 “The demand is going to continue. That trend away from houses, just with the prices of housing going up dramatically, more people are happy being downtown and living the condo lifestyle.” says an agent in Toronto.

Agents expects demand for larger units – particularly those with two bedrooms or more – to increase, especially for two of Canada’s most active demographics moving up and down the property ladder.

The next big thing in condos is very small

People looking for the next trend in the condo market may need to squint: micro-condos are set to take Canada’s densely populated cities by storm.

[Micro condos] are becoming more common, just simply because of the population; as more immigrants come in, they’re more used to smaller places. Someone living in Hong Kong or India, they don’t mind smaller places.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Percentage of Toronto condos owned by foreign investors is very low, CMHC says

For the first time, the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation has put a number on the percentage of condos across the country owned by foreign investors, and says that number is highest in Toronto — at a mere 2.4 per cent.
Vancouver is close behind, with 2.3 per cent of its condominiums owned by people who reside outside of Canada.
The low number came as a shock to many housing observers who believe the percentage is at least twice as high, and could be much more if CMHC was able to get a handle on money funneled from overseas banks to buyers with Canadian addresses.
But CIBC World Markets deputy-chief economist Benjamin Tal says the numbers don’t come as a surprise to him. He estimates “pure foreign investment” as a small segment of the market, although slightly higher if you factor in families where the husband continues to live overseas while the wife and children live here so the kids can go to school.

How much you need to earn to buy a house in every major Canadian city

Many say property is the best investment you can make. Bursting housing bubbles and mortgage scandals aside, they’re usually right.
The price of making that investment varies widely in Canada, depending on where you live. We looked at how much you need to earn to buy a house in every major Canadian city.
To get these numbers, we consulted Adrian Williams, a Toronto mortgage broker, and used his calculator. He explained that to calculate the income required you need to know the purchase price, down payment, rate, utilities – mortgage qualifying must include a minimum of $100 a month for heating costs – and taxes.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

July Numbers up 10%

Toronto Real Estate Board President Paul Etherington reported strong year-over-year growth for July 2014 sales and the average selling price. Sales reported by TREB Members through the TorontoMLS system were up by 10 per cent to 9,198. This was the second-best July sales result on record.

“The second half of 2014 started where the first half left off, with very strong demand for the diversity of affordable home ownership options in the Greater Toronto Area. Sales were up strongly for most major home types and market conditions actually tightened, with sales growth outpacing listings growth. The result was average price growth well-above the rate of inflation,” said Mr. Etherington.

The average selling price for July 2014 sales was $550,700 – up by 7.5 per cent compared to July 2013. The strongest rate of price growth was reported for the detached market segment in the City of Toronto, with a year-over-year change of 11 per cent. The better-supplied condominium apartment segment experienced average price growth of 5.3 per cent for the GTA as a whole.

“Strong demand for ownership housing will underpin robust average price increases for the remainder of 2014. In fact, the pace of price growth that we have experienced over the past year will continue until growth in listings outpaces growth in sales for a sustained period of time,” said Jason Mercer, TREB’s Senior Manager of Market Analysis.

looking for information on Toronto condos or Toronto lofts check it all out at

Q2 Sales Jump!

New Toronto Condo Sales took a huge jump partly due to rental demand.
A huge demand for rentals absorbed a huge supply of new projects satisfying both Toronto renters and  Condo investors.
Condo sales rose 10 per cent to 6,553 in the three months ending in June from the same time last year.
The average Toronto Condo price was $367,010, up 5.5 per cent in the first quarter.
According to the Toronto Real Estate Board about a quarter of new Condos are purchased by investors who rent out their units to residents in Toronto where the supply of rental apartments are limited.
Last year there were 58,659 Condos under construction with about 19,000 scheduled for completion in 2014.
The Toronto Condo market consists of young professionals, baby boomers and families who find Condominiums a more affordable option to housing in Toronto.
looking for information on Toronto condos or Toronto lofts check it all out at

By the numbers on Toronto Condos

A recent CMHC survey reveals 17% of Condos in Toronto and Vancouver are investor owned.
This survey stated 58% on these investors plan on keeping their Condos more than 5 years with 18% planning on holding these units 2-5 years and 7.6% plan on keeping their Condos less than two years.
CMHC also found that 12% of Condo investors planned on reselling their unit for profit within 1 year of purchase.
Over 42% of Condo investors had no mortgage on their last purchased Condominium.
The survey also found that 82.9% of Toronto and Vancouver Condo buyers were homeowners.
looking for information on Toronto condos or Toronto lofts check it all out at

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Demolition Commences at E CONDOS.

E condos demolition commencing at Yonge and Eglinton. The highly anticipated building by Bazis and Metropia is getting underway and has the scoop; here it is:
The Yonge and Eglinton area is seeing a great deal of intensification in advance of the Eglinton Crosstown LRT's 2020 opening, with a number of residential developments under construction as well as several more in the planning, approvals and marketing stages. The largest development coming to the neighbourhood is Bazis Metropia and RioCan's E Condos, and construction will soon commence on the Rosario Varacalli-designed 58 and 38-storey condominium towers, which will rise to heights of 642 and 403 feet respectively.
E Condos, Bazis, Metropia, Riocan, Rosario Varacalli, TorontoE Condos site viewed from the west side of Yonge Street north of Eglinton, image by Jack Landau
The site is currently being prepped for construction, the first step of which will be the removal of the existing buildings located on the site of the future complex. Commercial and retail properties fronting onto Yonge Street and Eglinton Avenue have already begun to vacate the block, and the only remaining storefront on site still open for business is the TD Bank branch occupying the northeast corner of Yonge and Eglinton.
E Condos, Bazis, Metropia, Riocan, Rosario Varacalli, TorontoE Condos site viewed from the southwest corner of Yonge and Eglinton, image by Jack Landau

To the east and the north, storefront windows are now covered in paper and awaiting demolition while businesses located north of the Kitchen Stuff Plus location remain open and are not included in the soon-to-be-redeveloped land parcel. 
E Condos, Bazis, Metropia, Riocan, Rosario Varacalli, TorontoSign in the window of Kitchen Stuff Plus on Yonge Street, image by Jack Landau
E Condos, Bazis, Metropia, Riocan, Rosario Varacalli, TorontoClosed retail properties fronting onto Yonge Street, image by Jack Landau

On the north side of the site, a 7-storey, 30-unit rental apartment building at 25 Roehampton Avenue has also been cleared of tenants. This section of the land parcel seems closer to demolition than the storefronts on Yonge Street and Eglinton Avenue, and a demolition sign in front of the building hints of imminent action.
E Condos, Bazis, Metropia, Riocan, Rosario Varacalli, Toronto7-storey rental apartment building soon to be demolished, image by Jack Landau
Once construction of the project wraps up in 2017, E Condos will add 854 residential units to one of Toronto's most liveable neighbourhoods, with ample restaurants, shops and entertainment options nearby. 
E Condos, Bazis, Metropia, Riocan, Rosario Varacalli, TorontoRendering of E Condos, image courtesy of Bazis
In the meantime, additional information and renderings can be found in our E Condos dataBase file, linked below. Want to get involved in the discussion? Check out the associated Forum threads, or voice your opinion in the comments section provided at the bottom of this page.

Looking to purchase a condo at E CONDOS? Don't hesitate to click here and get stated. 

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Canada Real Estate Market Ends 2013 in Soft Landing Mode

Canadian existing home sales fell in December for a third month as the real estate market ended the year on a soft note after surging for much of 2013.
Sales fell 1.8 percent in December from the previous month, the Canadian Real Estate Association said today in a statement. In 2013, realtors sold 457,893 units through the Multiple-Listing Service, up 0.8 percent from a year ago with the average sales price in 2013 rising 5.2 percent to C$382,466 ($349,300).

Blackberry sells off Real Estate positions

BlackBerry Ltd. plans to divest the majority of its Canadian real estate holdings in a bid to raise cash, with properties on the block comprising more than three million square feet of commercial space.
The money-losing device maker said it will pursue a combination of sale-leasebacks and vacant asset sales, but remains committed to maintaining its headquarters in Waterloo.
The company will continue to have “a strong presence in Canada along with other global hubs,” said BlackBerry CEO John Chen in a statement.
“This initiative will further enhance BlackBerry’s financial flexibility, and will provide additional resources to support our operations as our business continues to evolve,” he added.

What this west-end bidding war says about Toronto’s housing market

It’s a simple semi, not that much different from all the others lined up along Perth Ave. in the up-and-coming Junction Triangle, except that now it’s got all the neighbours — and Toronto real estate watchers — talking.

It was considered one of the first “good listings” of 2014 in a shockingly tight market for lowrise houses where, since the recession, demand has far outstripped supply: A tastefully renovated house in an up-and-coming neighbourhood, priced under the magic threshold of $800,000.

More than 400 people, some of them battle-scarred bidding war veterans, lined up during open houses last weekend to dutifully check off all the boxes that now drive the decision to buy in the highly sought-after 416: Renovated kitchen and bathroom, stainless steel appliances, close to schools, transit, the city core.

By the 7 p.m. deadline for offers Tuesday night there were 32 of them. The house, which had been listed at $639,900 sold for $848,625 — almost $210,000 more.

“Overwhelmed” Keller Williams co-listing agent Mike Gryspeerdt — who actually owns the house and has raised his family there over the last 12 years — is still apologizing for the bidding frenzy.

“I’m genuinely, 100 per cent shocked by this. I did not expect this to happen — nor did I want this to happen. I’m not comfortable with this at all,” said Gryspeerdt in an interview Wednesday.

He’s now being, he believes, unfairly “vilified” by frustrated house hunters and real-estate watchers.

But even fellow realtors — who are prohibited by the Real Estate Council of Ontario’s own code of ethics from speaking out publicly against a competitor — are outraged by how low Perth Ave. was priced, given similar properties nearby went for well over $700,000.

Maggie Lind, the realtor for the buyers, who declined to talk to the Star, acknowledged that the house was priced low considering a similar one on Perth Avenue sold for $730,000 last spring.

Gryspeerdt points out it had a designer kitchen, a basement music studio and “high-efficiency everything.”

“I don’t think it was about price. It was about winning,” Gryspeerdt says of the bids, believed to be a record number for Toronto. “Also, the Junction Triangle is a great neighbourhood.”

In fact, realtors say, Perth Avenue is a perfect example of problems plaguing a market that just won’t cool down, despite Finance Minister Jim Flaherty’s best efforts.

Most pressing is the lack of inventory: The Toronto Real Estate Board has seen a dramatic drop in the number of homes listed for sale, especially since the 2008 recession.

Listing that used to average about 16,000 even in the slow December period were down to 13,241 in 2012 and dropped a further 14 per cent just from 2012 to 2013, says TREB.

“A lot of it is about where do you go next — (moving up) is drastic,” says Lind. “A lot of people are getting discouraged by that next step up and how high it is and they are staying put and renovating. It can easily cost $100,000 just to make the move.”

TREB cites Toronto’s double land transfer tax, but realtors may be at least partly to blame as well: Most have fought hard to keep commissions at five per cent as house prices have skyrocketed, pushing fees sky-high right along with house prices.

Flaherty’s own moves to tighten mortgage lending rules may also be contributing to the frenzy: It’s now so much harder to buy a $1 million-plus home with anything below a 20 per cent down payment, it’s now boosting competition for lower-priced homes, says mortgage broker Steve Garganis.

Add on top of that all those buyers who’ve been waiting for prices to drop the last two years and now realize they aren’t. (Condos are another matter, that market has more supply than demand.)

Sales may have slipped in the latter part of 2013, but prices haven’t: The average transaction price for a detached house in the City of Toronto hit $894,654 in mid-January, up 21.1 per cent year-over year, according to TREB figures.

Semis were up almost 14 per cent, to an average of $581,475.

The sheer number of realtors — some 37,000 in the Toronto board, many with less than five years’ experience — may also be an issue. They tend to have less sense of the market or strength to rein in would-buyers.

Veteran realtors stress that every bid contributes to escalating house prices overall: That Perth Avenue home will now become the new high-water benchmark comparable for realtors looking to price new listings in the area.

“The public wants to blame agents for underlisting, but I blame some of my colleagues for not always doing a good job of informing their buyers,” says outspoken realtor David Fleming.

“The first words out of any agent’s mouth walking in the door (of Perth) should have been ‘This is going to push $800,000.’”

And they were, says Lind. She refuses to discuss her clients’ winning bid at all, other than to say they are “ecstatic.”

“It’s a fabulous house. They really don’t have to do a thing.”

Check out > Toronto Condos

Article from Susan Pigg > > Published Jan 22nd 2014

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Home affordability takes a hit in Canada, RBC says

OTTAWA -- Higher prices and an increase in mortgage rates have made home affordability more of a problem for the average Canadian family, says a new report from the Royal Bank of Canada.
RBC's latest research on the portion of average household income needed to maintain a home shows that affordability deteriorated over the summer, the second consecutive drop in as many quarters.

Canada's real estate market most overvalued in the world?! Really?

Article from CBC
Real estate prices in Canada are the most overvalued in the world, according to a new study from Deutsche Bank, which estimates homes in the country are valued 60 per cent too high.
Some economists here have crunched their own numbers and come up with results similar to those of the German bank.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Rising prices, mortgages making real estate unaffordable for many: RBC

OTTAWA—Higher prices and an increase in mortgage rates have made home affordability more of a problem for the average Canadian family, says a new reportfrom the Royal Bank of Canada (TSX:RY).

RBC’s latest research on the portion of average household income needed to maintain a home shows that affordability deteriorated over the summer, the second consecutive drop in as many quarters.The level of deterioration differs from region to region and between types of homes, but for the average bungalow the affordability measure rose 0.7 of a percentage point to 43.3 per cent nationally in the third quarter, after a 0.3-percentage-point gain in the second quarter.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Why Real Estate Doomsayers Continue to be Wrong!

Canadians’ homes are getting less affordable, but we still keep buying
This article appears in the September edition of the Financial Post Magazine.
Mandy Coz needs a lead. She isn’t the first sales rep from a nearby real estate brokerage to cold call my parents’ home in the suburbs on behalf of a family that badly wants to become our neighbours. But she’s the most recent and she’s on the hunt for a new seller. Her clients “lost out” on another property on our street.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

No. 6 Wexford-Maryvale

From: Toronto Life
The Best Places to Live in the City: A (mostly) scientific ranking of all 140 neighbourhoods in Toronto: Wexford-Maryvale
At Al Premium, the gleaming new 75,000- square-foot grocery store at Eglinton and Warden, bags of Filipino jute leaves share the aisles with sacks of Vietnamese glutinous rice flour, Caribbean spices and Halal meats. The cafeteria counter transitions seamlessly from shawarma to mutter paneer to pho to dim sum, and the bubble tea station, staffed by a teenager in a hijab, abuts the espresso machine. The store caters to the mind-boggling diversity of the westernmost bit of Scarborough, which fulfills Toronto’s promise as a multi­cultural city in a way that no downtown neighbourhood has in decades—nearly half of the residents here are visible minorities. The diversity is vividly realized at the annual three-day Taste of Lawrence festival, for which the local BIA manages to close off a six-lane suburban arterial to traffic (downtowners would be surprised at how many people opt to walk).
The Best Places to Live in the City: A (mostly) scientific ranking of all 140 neighbourhoods in Toronto: Wexford-Maryvale
In contrast to the hectic excitement of the main streets, all is placid on the inner residential lanes, where pretty post-war bungalows on perfectly kempt lots go for less than $500,000. There are even a few reminders of the mid-1850s village that used to stand here, like the old Anglican Church of St. Jude in Wexford and a copse of gnarled, hundred-year-old oaks and sugar maples that somehow survived clear-cutting at the top of Wexford Park. Further north on Pharmacy Avenue is Wexford Collegiate School for the Arts, the east end’s magnet for budding singers, actors and artists, whose alumni include sculptor Shary Boyle, Canada’s representative at this year’s Venice Biennale; and Degrassi’s Nina Dobrev—and yes, the school’s “Gleeks” recently sang an earth-to-orbit duet with Chris Hadfield.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

#7. Mount Pleasant East

From Toronto Life
The Best Places to Live in the City: A (mostly) scientific ranking of all 140 neighbourhoods in Toronto: Mount Pleasant East
The snaking paths that connect the remains of the great and good in Mount Pleasant Cemetery are also some of the city’s most picturesque running routes, passing by fountains, gardens and hundreds of rare trees from around the world. It’s because of those trees that the midtown neighbourhood in which the cemetery sits has the city’s densest, plushest canopy. Unlike renter-dominated Mount Pleasant West next door, Mount Pleasant East feels like a small town full of professionals drawn by the quiet, leafy streets and central location. Housing stock here is a mix of brick semis and detached homes from the 1920s, with the occasional mansion and modern glass and brick stunner thrown in. One of the most attractive streets is Belsize Drive, which is split in two by a linear park, beloved by dog walkers, called Glebe Manor.
The Best Places to Live in the City: A (mostly) scientific ranking of all 140 neighbourhoods in Toronto: Mount Pleasant East
Homes don’t often come on the market, and when they do, bidding wars are the norm: one old semi recently went for $760,000—$80,000 over asking—after 200 visitors and seven bids. Of the two retail strips that flank the neighbourhood, Davisville Village, on the west side, is more interesting and varied than Bayview. Up the street is Mabel’s Fables, one of the city’s best children’s bookstores. The strip is also home to a 125-year-old camera club; two of the last small-time neighbourhood cinemas, the Regent and the Mount Pleasant; and three surprisingly good bistros, CĂ©lestin, Jules and Mogette, that fill up each weekend with families out for brunch.

Friday, August 23, 2013

#8 The Beaches!

From: Toronto Life
The Best Places to Live in the City: A (mostly) scientific ranking of all 140 neighbourhoods in Toronto: The Beach
The Beach is the only segment of Toronto’s waterfront that lives up to its enormous potential as a place to live and play. That’s why the 3.5-kilometre boardwalk is invaded every weekend by pleasure-seekers and why a detached home on one of the picturesque streets by the water seldom goes for less than a million dollars. It’s also why the word “Beach” has been climbing steadily uphill from the lake, first transforming the gracious homes north of Kingston Road into the Upper Beach and then spawning Beach Hill just south of the train tracks, the latter’s dubious connection to sand and spit notwithstanding. Residents of the actual area tend to stay away from the crush of beach volleyball and kitesurfing at Ashbridge’s Bay Park, sticking to the quieter eastern stretches or relaxing over a pint at the Balmy Beach Club, a relic of the days when the shoreline was filled with amusement parks.
The Best Places to Live in the City: A (mostly) scientific ranking of all 140 neighbourhoods in Toronto: The Beach
The styles of the houses here are more eclectic than in just about any other old Toronto neighbourhood. By the water, tiny Victorian summer cottages mingle with low-slung apartment buildings and larger houses from the ’20s and ’30s, some featuring kitschy lakeside resort details like porthole windows. In the 1990s, Greenwood Raceway was torn down and replaced with Woodbine Park, which gets taken over by a different festival every summer weekend (Ribfest, the Muhtadi International Drumming Festival, the jubilant Beaches International Jazz Festival). To the east, there’s a dense New Urbanist development laid out on six streets, bringing new waterfront housing to hundreds of families in the area for the first time in decades (even if the trees have yet to fully grow in). Beach residents are famously averse to new development, and the first modern mid-rise condos are only now appearing along the fiercely protected Queen East retail strip.