Jan 242013

As noted in my blog earlier this week, and as discussed at my October Business Mixer, the supply of new home builds is far exceeded by demand. Resale home prices are thus propped up by the new home shortage-especially those resale homes that have been renovated. But what of tired, poor curb appeal, non-renovated homes? These are diamonds in the rough.

Often these homes can be purchased at a discount, especially true as we head into a buyers market later this spring. With financing available on the renovated cost (not just the purchase price) of the home it is possible to afford to live in the neighbourhood of your choice. As you consider this option, don’t hesitate to give me a call to discuss the key considerations of your plan. We can help you find the right home and project manage your move from your current one.

Make sure you interview two or three contractors including Mike Manning, President of Refined Renovations of Oakville.  Click here to download a Refined Renovations Press Release. His new website will be live this weekend.

The Blair Zilkey Team-Insightful Advice, Leading Edge Implementation

Jan 222013

Us 40 and 50 somethings should get with the program. It’s often said-’Toronto can’t support so many condo developments.’ In the past I’ve kind of agreed, but no more. My response will be “There are going to more, and not just in the Core.”

It is true that a very high percentage of purchasers over the last 10 years have been investors and this has driven the market to date. But when you dig a little deeper there is in fact another systemic-and more important-shift occurring.

People want to live downtown.

In a recent report, as reported in today’s Toronto Star, TD economist Francis Fong notes ” double-digit job growth in downtown Toronto from 2006 to 2011 has followed in the footsteps of all those folks who are now opting to live downtown, rather than in the suburbs, close to transit lines and amenities in what’s now become a vital, vibrant world-class city.”

Large employers who very recently were setting up shop in the suburbs are now returning to the core-just look at all the commercial space under construction. Why? That is where the labour pool is.

Governments want intensification

The GTA housing market is shifting away from low density housing (detached) towards higher density (condos). Government policies at the provincial and municipal levels have created this shift. We see this most notably in Toronto, but even in the suburbs. In Oakville, for instance, the development north of Dundas Street will be much further intensified (higher percentage of condo’s, semi’s, townhouses) than south of ’5.’

George Carras, president of RealNet Canada Inc. noted that as of November 30, 57% of new home sales were high-rise. My opinion is that this % will continue to increase. With less supply, low-rise prices of both new builds and resale will continue to increase. The impact will be felt not just by first time buyers, but by ‘Next to Last to Sell’ downsizers who will end up moving in increasing numbers to ‘condominiumized’ towns and semi’s.

Lot’s to consider.

We are always available to answer your questions about the housing market, and delighted to help you project manage your move. Just give us a call to get started.

The Blair Zilkey Team-Insightful Advice, Leading Edge Implementation.






Jan 092013

Royal LePage, Canada’s largest and oldest real estate brokerage released their quarterly Royal LePage House Price and Market Survey yesterday. It calls for very modest home price appreciation over the next few years.

This view is largely shared by TD Bank Financial Group, the Ontario Real Estate Association, and leading real estate lawyer and commentator Mark Weisleder.  It is the view I support and have shared with all of my clients over the last 18 months. Economic ‘fundamentals’ are strong, immigration into the GTA is strong, and interest rates remain low (TD forecasts no more than 2-25 basis point increases late in the year, if at all).

In 2013, expect a slower first half of the year similar to what we have seen over the last three months-fewer listings and fewer sales. Listings and sales are expected to rise in the last quarter of 2013.

The expected result? Similar sales volumes to 2012 but lower price growth (flat to 3% vs. 6-11% growth in various GTA Markets).

Selling Now? There is comparatively little quality inventory in most neighbourhoods and micro-markets (e.g. townhouses, certain price points) within those neighbourhoods. Listing now will provide serious buyers with a choice they have lacked-your quality listing.

Waiting to Sell until things ‘pick-up’ and prices rise? Timing the market rarely works. An appropriately priced and properly marketed property will always sell. And prices are not going to appreciate as quickly as they have in the past.

Buying Now? Many buyers seem to be waiting on the sidelines, so you can be first to see quality properties, without the ‘competition’ and stress of multiple offer scenarios.

Waiting to Buy until prices drop? While there may be more choice later in the spring, you will be joining the game with your competitors. And prices aren’t likely to drop.

Call us today and let’s get started.

The Blair Zilkey Team-Insightful Advice, Leading Edge Implementation