≈ Comments Off on BANK OF CANADA INTEREST RATE DROP GREAT NEWS FOR NEW CONDO BUYERS
New condominiums are already the choice of a phenomenal number of home buyers across Toronto and the Greater Toronto Area – and now, potential purchasers can look forward to even more value in a new condo suite. On March 4, the Bank of Canada lowered its target for the overnight rate by 50 basis points to 1¼ per cent, to help keep inflation on target (https://bit.ly/38sZwcZ). That may sound minor, but trust me, over the course of mortgage amortization, it translates to thousands of dollars for home purchasers.
Oh, and April 6 is just around the corner – when the mortgage stress will be eased. If that happens as planned AND the rate cut holds, potential home purchasers will definitely have more buying power. These monetary policy adjustments will enable more people to jump on the new condo bandwagon. I always say that if you’re thinking condo, buy now rather than later, and this week’s announcement by the Bank of Canada is another reason why.
≈ Comments Off on ALTUS GROUP STATS FOR JANUARY BODE WELL FOR INDUSTRY
The Greater Toronto Area new home and condo sales saw a busier than usual January, with overall sales up 65 per cent from last January, and 14 per cent above the 10-year average. Condo sales alone were up 33 per cent from last January, and 12 per cent above the 10-year average! Last year’s momentum is continuing, boding well for the months to come.
Adding to that momentum is pricing – the benchmark price for new condos was $925,209, which is up 15.1 per cent over the previous 12 months. Also, January was typical in that very few new projects launched, meaning remaining inventory decreased even more.
Overall, if you are thinking of purchasing a condo in the GTA, NOW is the time to do it, before prices go up again – which they will, considering demand exceeds supply. To read the entire BILD release, visit https://bit.ly/2uB5evB
≈ Comments Off on GTA CONDO SALES ROBUST IN DECEMBER AND ALL OF 2019
BILD has released the most recent Altus Group statistics for new home and condo sales in the GTA. Overall, 2019 sales were far and above those of 2018, which were the lowest since 1996.
Once again, condominiums fared really well, up 27 per cent from 2018 and 16 per cent above the 10-year average. In December alone, condo sales were up 132 per cent from the previous December, and 63 per cent above the 10-year average. That month, the benchmark price for new condos reached $916,585, up 15 per cent over the previous 12 months.
This is great news for condominium owners, whether they live in their suites or rent them out. With the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Toronto at $2,300, the potential for a condo as a lucrative addition to a financial portfolio is appealing.
Of course, we still hear about affordability being a problem, but obviously, people are finding ways to purchase condominiums. Relatively attainable price points (compared to low-rise), excellent locations, amazing architecture, spectacular amenities, superb features and finishes … condos will be a driving force on the new home landscape for years to come!
≈ Comments Off on TORONTO NAMED ONE OF THE TOP 10 MOST VALUABLE CITY BRANDS IN THE WORLD
Global City Lab’s analysis report released in December 2019 ranked the top 500 city brands in the world. Toronto came in 10th, and was the only Canadian city in the top 10. Based on the dimensions of reputation, governance, culture, economy, environment and talent, Toronto’s brand value was set at US $773 billion. That Toronto has done so well with urban branding is a triumph in competing on a global scale.
According to the researchers at Global City Lab, the first professional organization to evaluate city brand values, a city brand embodies a city’s core competitiveness. A brand ranking is an indication of national power. It also reflects the “story” the city can tell through its residents, government and media. And Toronto certainly tells a wonderful story. In the past few months alone, Toronto was ranked as one of the world’s most beautiful cities by travel site Flight Network; the 7th most livable city in the world by the Economist Intelligence Unit’s annual Global Liveability Report; and one of the world’s most innovative cities by JLL’s Global Research team. Those are just a few of the accolades our wonderful city has earned over the past year.
Now, let’s add all of this to the recent announcement that Canada’s economy is on an expected path to reach the eighth largest in the world spot (after being 10th in 2018 and 2019) on the London-based Centre for Economics and Business Research, and the overall picture is outstanding. GO TORONTO, GO CANADA!
BILD has released the Altus Group statistics for November 2019, and the news is good on all fronts. Overall, new home and condo sales were up 53 per cent from November 2018 and 19 per cent above the 10-year average. Condo sales were up 32 per cent over November 2018 and 29 per cent above the 10-year average. According to Altus Group, when we receive the statistics for 2019 as a whole, new condo sales will be among the top four years ever!
Add to that the fact that the benchmark price for new condos was $866,827, up 10.2 per cent over the previous 12 months, and you have all the more reason to get into the market now, if you have not already.
In the BILD news release, President and CEP David Wilkes remarks that he anticipates a strong demand for new homes right into 2020. He also points out that in order to ensure stable prices and keep the industry supplying great jobs and contributing toward economic growth, the focus has to be on increasing housing supply.
Mortgage interest rates remain unbelievably low – for now – so NOW is the best time to get into new condominium ownership!
≈ Comments Off on “UNTITLED” AN EXCITING CREATIVE COLLABORATION
You may have read the news already – Reserve Properties and Westdale Properties are collaborating with Pharrell Williams to bring curated condominiums to Yonge and Eglinton. Called untitled, this collection will include two towers at this in-demand location.
Why Pharrell? The partnership was born out of a desire to do something really unique for Toronto and architecture as a whole. Reserve and Westdale believe by bringing in a cultural icon with vision and ideation from outside the realm of real estate it would help break the mold in terms of what has traditionally been done.
The Grammy Award-winning artist, producer, songwriter, philanthropist, fashion designer and entrepreneur is known for high-profile collaborations, including a capsule collection with Chanel and a long-standing relationship with Adidas and Human Made. Other collaborative projects include an upcoming Youth Centre in Virginia Beach with Oppenheim Architecture + Design, work with Zaha Hadid Architects and the creation of the Something in the Water Festival. Pharrell’s collaboration with Reserve and Westdale marks his first foray into multi-residential development.
Pharrell worked alongside Reserve Properties, Westdale Properties, and the design team, responding to everything from the vision and materiality of the architectural facade, to the overall interior programming and even the furnishing choices for individual spaces. The fabulous amenity spaces the team collaborated on will include a expansive spa, gym and yoga studio, basketball court, rooftop dining with barbecues and pizza ovens, plus an indoor/outdoor swimming pool as well as a co-working garden lounge to name a few.
Pharrell even helped decide on the name of the project explaining how untitled reflects the concept that physical space is a backdrop upon which residents can make their homes their own.
The project is most exciting, and talk about an all-star team! Exteriors are by IBI Group architects, and interiors are by U31, both firms that have earned international renown.untitled is just steps to the Yonge Street Subway Line and the LRT. Purchasers can choose from studios to three-bedroom designs, all with a balcony. It is all truly fresh, new and exciting. To register, visit http://untitledtoronto.com/
≈ Comments Off on BRAVO FOR BILL 145 PASSING SECOND READING
On Monday, November 25, Bill 145 passed a 2nd reading. It took only 2½ hours of debate to pass the “Trust in Real Estate Services Act 2019,” which if it passes a 3rd reading and Royal Assent, will replace the Real Estate and Business Act, 2002. The Real Estate Council of Ontario administers and enforces the Act to regulate the more than 86,000 registered sales people, brokers and brokerages in the province. This legislation protects consumers by helping to ensure that real estate professionals conduct themselves ethically. I support this move by the provincial government – something for which Ontario REALTORS® have been advocating for years.
Among the many improvements this bill incorporates are enhanced customer protection through increased transparency, improved professionalism, the streamlining of the code of ethics and adding to the Real Estate Council of Ontario’s ability to encourage compliance, and the creation of a stronger business environment including a potential specialist certification program. In addition, the new act permits real estate professionals to form personal real estate corporations so they will pay taxes at much lower corporate rates. It’s win-win all around, as it will make Ontario a North American leader in establishing professional standards for real estate professionals!
At Baker Real Estate Incorporated, we are
excited about representing Options for Homes’ new condominium, The Humber,
where developer Options for Homes offers the most powerful homeownership
program in Toronto – a Down Payment Loan Program that is payment free until
buyers sell or move!
Options for Homes will boost a down
payment of 5 per cent by 10 or 15 per cent of the purchase price of a new condo
at The Humber to help qualified buyers secure a conventional mortgage.
Purchasers can own homes sooner than expected, and take advantage of lower
monthly carrying costs. They will also enjoy some of the lowest maintenance fees
in Toronto. The loan is available to anyone who has a 5 per cent down payment,
who qualifies for and secures a mortgage from a primary lender, and who plans
to live in their Options home. First-time buyers may be eligible for an
additional $60,000 to boost their down payments!
The opportunity is outstanding. Located at
10 Wilby Crescent in the up-and-coming Weston Village neighbourhood on the
banks of the Humber River, The Humber boasts an idyllic setting with 13 km of
trails and parks at the door, and with local conveniences and restaurants just
a walk away. These include access to GO Transit, UP Express and the future
Crosstown LRT. UP Express gets residents to Union Station in 15 minutes, and
Pearson International Airport in 12.
This pet-friendly modern building features
a social lounge and party room with a kitchen, rooftop terrace and social
lounge on the 7th floor, outdoor barbecue patio, indoor bicycle
storage, plus numerous green features for environmental sustainability
including five electric vehicle spots. The Humber is also Toronto’s first
smoke-less condo, limiting smoking in private suites to vaporizer or
How can Options for Homes do it? The
organization develops high-quality condominiums with building partners, takes
what would typically be the developer’s profit and offers it as down payment
support. Once Options buyers move, sell or pay off their primary mortgage, the
loan is paid back with some appreciation – money that is rolled into Options’ next
development project. Talk about paying it forward!
Baker is proud to be associated with this
mission-driven social-enterprise organization that has operated for 25 years
without government funding! Register for The Humber at https://www.optionsforhomes.ca/the_humber/
You don’t have to crane your neck to
see that Toronto once again holds the record for the most construction cranes
of any city in North America! We saw similar headlines in August 2018, and in
January and March of this year. Now, the Rider Levett Bucknall Crane Index
reports that in July, we had 120 active cranes in the city, ranking us as
having the most real estate development on the continent. That is 16 cranes
more than we had in January, and 23 more than 2018. In fact, we have twice the
number of cranes than the next cities on the list, Seattle and Los Angeles,
which tie for second place with 49 each. It is no surprise that in Toronto, the
peak has largely to do with high-rise condominiums.
Toronto and the Greater Toronto Area
are growing concerns when it comes to new home real estate. Condos remain the
most attainable choices, and sales are on the upswing this year since a slower
first quarter. Now, with the Bank of Canada stress test rate being changed in
favour of buyers, we should see increased sales and even more cranes up in the
The Altus Group statistics for June 2019 released by BILD show that sales
for new condominiums in the Greater Toronto Area were up 14 per cent from one
year ago, and only 5 per cent below the 10-year average. In addition, the
benchmark price of new condos increased slightly from May and were up 3.9 per
cent over the past year. Interestingly, the total number of condos sold in June
was 2,420, and only 1,214 were in Toronto. The 905 areas of Durham, Halton,
Peel and York accounted for 1,206 of those sales. Of the 932 new single-family
home sales in June, only 6 were in Toronto. The rest were in the 905
A lot of this success has to do with overall inventory. In June, there
were 19,062 new homes for sale, which was up over 25 percent from the year
before. A full 14,377 of these were condos, up over 39 per cent over the same
time period. Of the 3,352 new home sales in June 2019, 2,420 were condos –
meaning once again, condos are king in the GTA!