Category Archives: For Buyers

Gorgeous Modern Detached Minutes From St Clair!

Stunning Modern Detached Home! Professionally Renovated Top To Bottom In 2015. Bright, Open Concept W/Gas Fireplace, Beautiful Large Kitchen, Pot Lights Throughout, Skylight, Spacious Master W/Large W/I Closet & 4Pc Semi-Ensuite. Hardwood Floors Throughout, Finished Basement. Gas Line For Bbq. Short Walk To St-Clair, Shops, Transit, Earlscourt Park, Excellent Location And Neighborhood, Mins To Stockyards, New Community Centre.

Address: 254 McRoberts Ave
Bedrooms: 3
Washrooms: 3
Type: Detached
Parking: Detached Garage
Extras: Stainless Steel Fridge, Gas Stove, B/I Dishwasher, Front Loading Washer/Dryer, All Window Coverings, All Electrical Light Fixtures. Full Renovation Includes: Plumbing, Electrical, Furnace, A/C, Windows, Roof, Sump Pump, Back Water Valve, Waterproofing (W/ Warranty), And More!

Beautiful Detached Home With Small Town Charm Meets Abundance of Amenities


Beautiful All Brick Detached 1 Year Old Home In New Avalon Sub-Division By Empire Communities in Caledonia! Open Concept Layout, Bright Double Door Entry, Double Car Garage. $60K In Upgrades! 9 Ft Ceilings, Wall Mounted Hood Range, Backsplash, Samsung S/S Appliances, Maple Wood Kitchen Cabinets, California Shutters Throughout, Oak Wood Staircase, Frameless Glass Shower, Upgraded Enlarged Windows, 6 1/2″ Baseboards, Cold Room In Basement.

Address: 29 Cromarty Ave
Bedrooms: 4
Washrooms: 3
Type: Detached
Parking: Double Car Garage With 4 Driveway Spots
Extras: Samsung Stainless Steel Fridge, Stove, B/I Dishwasher, Front Loading Washer/Dryer, California Shutters Throughout, All Window Coverings, All Electrical Light Fixtures

Prestigious Ritz Carlton Residences Suite

previous arrow
next arrow
Slider

Welcome To The Prestigious Ritz Carlton Residences, Offering A New Standard Of 5 Star Downtown Living. 24Hr Concierge, Valet Parking, Spa, Pool, Exercise And Access To All Hotel Amenities. Direct Access to PATH. Stunning 1657 Sqft One Bedroom With Private Elevator Access. Clean North West City And Lake Views. Stunning Luxury Finishes, 10 Ft Ceilings, Chef’s Kitchen, Gas Fireplace In Living Room, Herringbone & Marble Floors, Spa-Like Ensuite And Walk-In Closet. Lots Of Storage!

Address: 183 Wellington St W #3801
Bedrooms: 1
Washrooms: 2
Type: Condominium
Parking: 1
Locker: 1
Extras: Sub Zero Fridge & Wine Fridge, Wolf 5 Burner Gas Stovetop, Wolf Built-In Oven And Built-In Microwave, Miele Dishwasher, Side By Side Washer & Dryer In Large Laundry Room, Window Treatments.

Why the Ontario’s Fair Housing Plan won’t curb housing prices

Premier Kathleen Wynne announced 16 measures today to help increase supply in the Golden Horseshoe region. Hopefully, these measures will slow down the 30%+ increases, to the 10-15% range for the rest of the year. This won’t cause a decrease in prices, just a more gradual increase.

So for the Buyers out there, you may see some relief in the pre-construction sector. For the Sellers, not to worry, you’ll still be seeing the bidding wars and gains.

Here are a couple of the major measures announced and why they won’t curb housing prices:

15% Foreign Speculation Tax
This tax won’t affect the market much as it will only apply on home purchases by non-resident foreigners in the Greater Golden Horseshoe. It will not apply to new immigrants or those planning to live here. The Toronto Real Estate Board estimates that only 4.9% of residential real estate transactions are by foreign buyers and more than half of those are either buying for themselves or a family member. I concur with this estimate as virtually all of my ‘foreign’ buyer clients are either from other parts of the country or are buying for themselves or a family member living in the city.

Ban on Pre-Construction Speculators
This is something that the government has been trying to crack down on for years. This will be good buyers looking to get into the market and for the resale market, where investors will now go to invest in real estate.

Power for Municipalities to Impose a Vacant Home Tax
The Municipalities will wait and see how the real estate market will react to these new provincial measures before implementing a Vacant Home Tax. However, I am sure they will end up imposing such a tax in the near future because the measures announced today will not curb prices by much.

Other Measures Include:
– Expanding existing rent control systems to cover all tenants, including those buildings built after 1991
– Rebate of development cost charges to encourage building of more rental housing
– A move to identify provincially owned surplus lands that could be used for affordable and rental housing development
– $125-million, five-year program to encourage construction of new purpose-built rental apartment buildings by rebating a portion of development charges.

Overall, this will be good for the GTA because the 30-40% increases we are seeing this year are unsustainable. It will put us into bubble territory if it continues this way year-over-year and nobody wants that. For those who have been following me on social media, I have been a huge proponent of transforming single-family homes to multiple units as an investment vehicle. I continue to believe that it is a smart investment decision and now the government will make it easier to do so.

Quaint Condo for Sale in Richmond Hill

Welcome Home to Your Future Luxury Condo On Yonge Street, In A Prime Richmond Hill Area! Lovely & Bright, Open Concept, Soaring 10Ft. Ceilings. Spacious 1+Den With Separate Powder Room For Guests. Walk Out To Terrace & Gazebo. Steps To Viva/YRT, Close To Schools & Shopping. Amenities Include: 24Hr Concierge, Gym, Indoor Pool, Steam Room, Billiard Room, Party Room, Library & Guest Suites.

What $20 Million Buys You in Toronto

Address: 35 High Point Road

Neighbourhood: Bridle Path – Sunnybrook – York Mills

Price: $19,800,000

The Place:
A stunning mansion in the heart of The Bridle Path.

Bragging Rights:

The house has more amenities than some condominiums in the city. With its very own indoor pool and spa, exercise room, his and hers change rooms, party room with commercial grade kitchen, wine cellar, billiards room, home theatre and tennis court, it truly has something for everyone. It even features its own playroom with specialized rubber for the little ones.

Big Selling Point:

The exquisitely landscaped grounds makes living in the city feel like cottage country.

By the Numbers:

• $19,800,000
• 18,086 sq ft
• 2 acres
• 7 bedrooms
• 15 washrooms
• 4 parking spaces
• 1 wine cellar

Listing Agent: Ashley Lo


5 Reasons why home ownership is better than renting

Why use your hard-earned cash to pay the landlord’s mortgage when you could be using the rent money to buy a home of your own? Although home ownership is not right for everyone, it does make sense in many cases.

Here are 5 reasons why home ownership is better than renting:

  1. Home ownership is a great investment. Although short term real estate prices may follow similar patterns as an economic cycle with peaks and valleys, there has always been a general upwards trend. Especially with cities such as Toronto, urbanization and gentrification become more predominant over time, and scarcity of land drives prices up. Over the past 40 years, the average Toronto home price increase per year still remains at 7%, even after a couple of recessions!

    1. Leveraging your money. With interest rates at an all time low and with as little of a down payment as 5%, you can still have completely control of your property. Act fast though, because lending rules are becoming more stringent!

 

    1. Home ownership acts as a method of forced savings.By getting into the real estate market early (imagine having your income trying to catch up with a 7% increase a year!), you are able to save for a more expensive home in the future by paying down your mortgage every month and leveraging your current home equity. Monthly costs of owning are often only a little more than what you would pay for an equivalent rental.

 

    1. Pride of ownership and being in full control. Any improvements or decoration changes need no approval from your landlord. Feel free to upgrade as your please! (Amen to that!)

 

  1. Tax benefits. Especially as a first time home buyer, there are many perks from a tax perspective such as RRSP withdrawals and land transfer tax credits. In addition, there are no capital gain taxes on a principal residence. Even for investment properties, there are significant tax deductions which can make property ownership a great investment strategy.

Buy vs. Rent Example


Featured listing: Gorgeous 2 bedroom + den at Yonge/Finch for sale at $299,000

MLS # C2437195

More information on this property: https://ashleylo.com/5785yongest202

Comparison

Purchase Price – $299,900
Down Payment 5% 10% 15%
$14,995 $29,990 $44,985
Monthly Expenses
Mortgage Amount (including Mortgage Insurance; Interest at 3% for 5 years)
Property Taxes
Maintenance Fees
Total Monthly Expenses
$1,479
$157
$886
$2,522
$1,367
$157
$886
$2,411
$1,281
$157
$886
$2,324
Annual Cash Spent
Average Annual Savings From Principle (based on 5 year term)
$30,268
$8,278
$28,929
$7,843
$27,890
$7,407
Annual Cost of Ownership
vs.
Annual Cost of Renting at $2,150/month
Savings From Home Ownership
$21,989
$25,800
$3,811
$21,086
$25,800
$4,714
$20,483
$25,800
$5,317

As you can see, even with a down payment of 5% and having to pay mortgage insurance, it would be more beneficial to purchase vs. rent, even without taking into consideration home price appreciation! As GoC bond yields decrease (which is what our fixed-mortgage rates are based on), interest rates will be even lower, allowing an even greater gap between this buy vs. rent scenario. In addition, this example is based on the first 5 years, with additional savings as time passes as you pay down more of your principle and have less interest in your mortgage.

Questions? Feel free to contact me at anytime!

Tarion changes good news for pre-construction purchasers

Regulator of Ontario’s new home building industry, Tarion Warranty Corporation has introduced a number of program changes which will benefit consumers, including lower enrolment fees and better disclosure of extra charges in builder sales agreements.

By law, every agreement of purchase and sale for a new home or condominium must contain a lengthy disclosure statement called an addendum. Tarion has now introduced a new schedule to be added to every addendum, called Schedule B.

Schedule B became optional for builders on July 1st, and on October 1st it will become mandatory for all homes and condominium projects where the first purchase agreement is signed on or after that date.

There will be two parts to the schedule. Part I will contain an itemized list of all charges, fees or other adjustments to the final purchase price or balance payable on closing, where the dollar value is set out in the builder’s agreement of purchase and sale.

Charges listed in this section may be items such as the Tarion enrolment fee (which has now been reduced by $150), a charge for holding the purchaser’s deposits in trust, a fee to discharge the builder’s construction financing and a fixed charge to subsidize the builder’s legal fees.

Part II of the new schedule will set out all additional charges, fees or other anticipated adjustments to the final purchase price, which are to be calculated after the purchase agreement is signed, according to the written terms of the agreement.

For condominium purchases, charges in this section may include items such as:

  • The unit’s proportionate share of the cost of installation of gas, hydro, sewers and water service and meters in the project,
  • Any new / increase in taxes, levies or development charges imposed on the unit by any level of government after the agreement was signed (such as parks and other municipal charges, education or transit development charges)
  • A portion of the costs associated with a development agreement entered into with the city,
  • HST on the value of the appliances included with the unit,
  • Interest on the balance of the purchase price until final closing,
  • A portion of the building’s first common elements study.
  • Each charge will be referenced to the relevant text in the purchase agreement so buyers can determine whether it is unlimited or capped at a particular amount.

    Your real estate agent should be limiting the charges on your behalf, however, assembling all the open-ended charges in one place will also alert purchasers to the additional financial risks involved in signing the pre-construction agreement.

    Another significant change to the Tarion warranty came into effect on July 1st. It affects all new houses sold after that date and all condominium units where the first purchase agreement in the project was signed after that date.

    A new definition of “major structural defect” has been implemented by regulation. The warranty program now protects purchasers against a defect in work or materials if it results in a failure of a structural load-bearing element, or adversely affects the use of the building for the usual and ordinary purposes of a residential dwelling.

    Breakdown of mechanical equipment like a furnace, where the builder has no control over its manufacture or ongoing functionality, will now rest solely with the manufacturer, either through the original warranty or ongoing service contracts.

    More information can be obtained here: http://www.tarion.com/Pages/New-Policies-in-Effect-July-1st-2012.aspx

    Questions? Contact me

    Ashley Lo | Real Estate Advice, Real Estate Solutions

E Condos – Yonge/Eglinton VIP Access to prices & floorplans



E Condos is located in one of Toronto’s most sought after locations – Yonge & Eglinton. This mid-town condominium project will have direct access to subway and with the expansion of the much-anticipated Eglinton Crosstown below grade LRT, there will soon be another added convenience to the east-west transit link. This project is just steps to the Yonge / Eglinton Centre, an energetic entertainment/shopping complex with movie theatres, bookstore, supermarket and shops.

Contact me today for VIP access to prices & floorplans of this highly anticipated project!



Development Name: E Condos

Developers: Bazis Inc., Metropia and RioCan

Address: 8 Eglinton Ave E, Toronto, M4R 2H1

Estimated Completion: 2017

Number of Buildings: 2

Storeys: 64, 44

Architect: R. Varacalli Architect


View Larger Map

Buying Pre-Construction Condos



When looking to purchase a condominium, there are essentially two choices – resale or pre-construction. There are advantages and disadvantages to both, however when buying new, there are some details you should be aware of that differ from a typical resale.

Deposit Structure:

Unlike When buying resale where you could have a down payment as low as 5%, buying directly from the builder requires a minimum down payment of typically 20-25%. This may seem like a lot, especially for first time buyers, but this may be an advantage as there will not be additional CMHC loan premium insurance costs and this will reduce your monthly mortgage payment. In addition, the deposit is paid in installments, so it does allow for some time to save. A payment schedule could look like this:


  • $5,000 upon signing the Agreement of Purchase and Sale

  • Balance of 5% in 30 days

  • 5% in 120 days

  • 5% in 350 days

  • 5% at occupancy (see below)


  • TIP: Your Realtor may be able to negotiate a better deposit structure for you.

    10-day Cooling Period

    By-law in Ontario, anyone who buys a new property from a builder has a 10-day cooling off period, during which they can rescind their offer with no penalty. This also allows time to do 2 things: 1) have your Agreement of Purchase and Sale reviewed by a real estate lawyer, and 2) obtain a mortgage approval for your purchase to satisfy the builder’s requirements.

    TIP: Sometimes lenders work with specific builders to offer special rates and incentives.

    Closing Costs

    When you buy pre-construction, there are some additional closing costs that you do not incur when buying resale. Estimates are hard to make because they vary by developer, but averages are outlined below:


  • Development and educational levies ($500-$6000)
  • TARION Warranty enrolment fee ($900-$1200)
  • Utility hook-up fees ($1000-$2000)
  • Misc. fees (law society of Ontario, discharge of builder’s mortgage, etc.) ($200-$500)
  • Assignment fees (if you sell before final closing, or ‘flip’ your unit) ($3000)
  • Occupancy fees (see below)


  • TIP: some of these closing costs can be capped at a maximum figure so it’s important to have Realtor and a lawyer who are experienced in pre-construction condos on your side to help you negotiate these terms with the builder.

    Occupancy Period

    When buying new, there is usually a short period of time between when occupy the condo and when you actually receive title to your condo, known as the occupancy period. During this time, you must pay the developer for the right to occupy the suite. The amount of the occupancy fees is more or less equivalent to interest on the amount outstanding on the purchase price + monthly property taxes + condo fees. You will only pay occupancy fees until your final closing, where you begin paying for your mortgage, but you will never have to pay both at the same time.

    Learn more about Occupancy & Interim Closing

    TIP: to minimize your occupancy fees, buy as high up into the building as possible. Buildings take occupancy from the ground up, therefore the higher your suite is in the building, the shorter your occupancy period will be.

    Final Closing

    Final closing when the building is finally registered and your occupancy period is over. This is when your mortgage payments begin and you officially own your unit. You can choose to put down additional funds on your condo if you want to have more than the typical 20-25% that most builders require.

    TIP: remember that you can shop around for the best mortgage rate right up until final closing, so even if you obtained an approval during your 10-day cooling off period. You can even choose a different lender if you like. That is, your initial pre-approval will satisfy your credit worthiness to the builder, but you can always get another pre-approval from an alternative lender up until you close.

    Ashley Lo | Real Estate Advice, Real Estate Solutions