As a seasoned professional in the new condominium industry, I keep up with current trends, and I also think ahead to the new year. I have a few predictions for 2020.
- First, I predict a strong market for Toronto and the Greater Toronto Area next year, as mortgage interest rates are still amazingly low, the job market is strong, international immigration and interprovincial migration are on the increase, and there is a dearth of rental housing available. RBC’s Focus on Canadian Housing Report of September 25 states that in Toronto, the pace of rental supply will have to double to meet future demand. Condominium investors are critical to that process. The word from the agencies we deal with at Baker Real Estate Incorporated is that condominiums represent 60 per cent of new construction, and that percentage is growing.
- I also see a shift coming in the way developers and purchasers look at balconies. Right now, having a personal outdoor space is a must for many buyers, and developers include as many balconies as the building design will allow for. With prices continually on the rise and square footages getting smaller, I believe people will prefer the square footage a balcony takes up to be put toward their interior layout instead. Keep in mind that the outdoor shared amenity spaces in today’s condos are extraordinary. This predicted trend is a reality in cities such as New York right now, where you do not get balconies in new condos, period.
- There has been a lot of media attention recently to circadian rhythms – our sleep/wake cycles. When these are out of whack, we can experience insomnia, daytime sleepiness or both, putting us at greater risk of cardiovascular and metabolic disorders. The trend toward including Zen gardens and meditation-type areas in new condos has started. I see more of this kind of shared space in the future, including the possibility of nap rooms in offices and work areas, to encourage mindfulness and enhanced health.