Thursday, May 29, 2008

Nuvo 1 and Nuvo 2

Nuvo 1 and Nuvo 2

35 Viking Lane, the southwest corner of Dundas St. W. and Kipling Ave.

A 29-storey building with 339 units and a 29-storey building with 334 units. Both buildings will have architectural precast façades with blue tinted windows.
Prices (parking included):

Phase 1, from $371,000 for 1,107 sq. ft. to $553,000 for 1,606 sq. ft.;

Phase 2, from $335,000 for 972 sq. ft. to $681,000 for 1,791 sq. ft.
Phase 1, 42 cents per sq. ft., plus hydro;
Phase 2, 41 cents per sq. ft., plus heat and hydro.

Amenities include: indoor pool, whirlpool and aerobics room. Central reception lobby for both towers, Large Party room with kitchen.

Sales: Phase 1, 95 per cent sold; Phase 2, 80 per cent sold. Status: Phase 1, built and registered; Phase 2, under construction.

Occupancy: Phase 1, immediate; Phase 2, summer 2008.

Are you an Owner?
If you own a unit in this building and you would like to sell your condo, click here and get a free condo value analysis.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Real Estate Values related to Transit Hubs

This is a great article and short video done by City News about Transit expansion.

The transit corridor of greatest importance is the remodelling and improvements to both the Kipling and Islington Subway stations. ( and how bus's from Islington will be moved to Kipling)

Of great issue is the Light Rail Transit that is proposed for the lakeshore.

RE/MAX and Children's Miracle Network Telethon

TUNE INTO TELETHON May 31st, June 1st 2008

Learn more about these great events and how they feature RE/MAX and Children's Miracle Network’s mission to help sick children. The Telethon is more than a fundraising event; it’s truly a “Celebration”—a celebration of community, children and RE/MAX. A partnership that resulted in over $4 million in miracle home donations to children’s hospitals in Canada last year alone! Tune in to and watch tributes of courageous children helped by YOU and enjoy the recognition that RE/MAX receives from their generous donations to this worthy cause!
Click Through to view the broadcast schedule or check you local T.V. guide listings
Broadcast Schedule
Children’s Miracle Network proudly supports twelve hospital foundations in Canada. Of these, six are in the Ontario-Atlantic region, and of these six, four do “traditional” telethons and one an “alternative” broadcast:

The Janeway in St. John’s, NFLD.
IWK in Halifax, NS.
McMaster Children’s Hospital in Hamilton., ON.
CHEO in Ottawa, ON.
SickKids in Toronto, ON. (alternative broadcast)
All 6 markets in Ontario-Atlantic run Children’s Miracle Network public service announcements as well as the national RE/MAX ads. In total, each market shows at least 15 minutes of commercials/PSAs combined, providing wonderful recognition for RE/MAX.
Broadcast /Date/Time /Channel
CHEO Telethon
7 p.m. Saturday, May 31 to 7 p.m. Sunday, June 1
Live broadcast on CTV Ottawa, Bell ExpressVu 196 & Star Choice 311, from Lab 7 at Nortel, Carling Avenue and Moodie Drive
SickKids Believe in Heroes
7 p.m. Saturday, May 31 to 9p.m.
McMaster Children’s Hospital Celebration
New Dates and Time! Saturday, May 31, 2008 6 p.m. to midnight and Sunday, June 1, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
IWK Telethon
May 31 and June 1, from locations in Saint John, Charlottetown, Sydney and Halifax
Live Broadcast on CTV
The Janeway Children's Miracle Network Telethon
May 31 & June 1
CBC Television

We can stand out from the competition when we explain to clients why they should list their home with a RE/MAX Associate!
Your home can be listed with an attractive sign rider.
You will make a contribution to the Children's Miracle Network hospital in your area
When a home is listed with a RE/MAX Associate, they not only get the best possible service, they will be helping children in their community too!

Together, we can make miracles happen for children! “Little did I know that when I sold my house I would be saving my baby’s life” RE/MAX seller whose infant received care at a Children's Miracle Network hospital RE/MAX Client

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Nevis Condominium 80 - 88 Palace Pier Court

Etobicoke Condo Waterfront Humber Bay Shore
88 Palace Pier Court


Located on the south west corner of Palace Pier Court and Lakeshore Blvd. West. A 16 storey, 130 unit building and a 6 storey, 29 unit building of terrace suites.

One bedroom $190,000 to buy
Two bedroom $250,000 - $520,000
Terrace Suites from 1,400 to 1,705 sq. ft up to $600,000 - $700,000


Buildings share 24-hour concierge, putting green, Fitness centre, lounge with kitchen, billiards rooms and TV room. Underground parking garage with car wash

80 Palace Pier Court

Located at the south west corner of Palace Pier Court and the waterfront. a 5 storey building with fewer amenities but a much better waterfront.


One bedroom $275,000
Two bedroom $340,000 - $550,000
Three Bedroom $650,000

Pictures and Sold information updated May 08.
Are you an Owner?
If you own a unit in this building and you would like to sell your condo, click here and get a free condo value analysis.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Top Ten Myths about Agents

Myths About Agents: What's True and What's Not

Just when you think you've found out everything you need to know about the "dirty, little secrets agents don't want you to know" from a bazillion of misinformed and, in all fairness, probably well meaning Web sites, here's what you really need to know: Forget the hype. Forget the books you need to buy, the online services you need to subscribe to and start looking at what's really going on. Here's the straight story:

1) Real Estate Agents are Always Late for Appointments
False. There is no excuse for habitual tardiness among professionals. None. I don't care if it's your doctor, your cable TV installer or your Realtor. Every person deserves respect, and respect is earned by providing what is promised and being on time. If your agent has a god-like, self-deluded impression of her or his own importance, find another. The agents I know are on time. Clients who listen to agents' excuses allow tardiness to happen. The agents I know are always prompt. Don't let a few bad apples give the entire industry a perception it doesn't deserve.

2) The More You Pay for a House, The More an Agent Makes
False. Ever hear a friend say this: "Every dime more you pay for that house makes the agent more money, so don't trust that agent." That's a misunderstanding. The difference between $300,000 and $310,000 is about $150 to an agent. Do you really think the agent pays any attention to the commission difference of a $10,000 spread?

3) The Less Commission You Pay to Sell, The More you Make
False. Discount brokers like to propel this myth. They claim to save sellers money by charging less. The truth is agents who are top producers and excel in this business do not discount services. Why? Because they don't have to. Less-than-full-service agents can't afford all the bells & whistles paid for by full-service agents, who tend to draw higher offers. It boils down to you get what you pay for. A 2% commission reduction doesn't amount to much when your price is discounted 10% or more because your agent couldn't afford full market exposure.

4) Agents Must Show You Homes On Demand
False. Unless you have a signed contract with an agent or that agent represents the seller, that agent you call doesn't have to show you anything. You can't call a local real estate office and demand service or demand to be shown homes, because agents don't work for free. If you aren't planning on writing an offer with the agent you call, be upfront or don't waste that agent's time. But don't expect that agent -- who is likely to earn nothing -- to be too excited about jumping in the car with you. That agent is not obligated to show you anything. Nor is the listing agent obligated to show you a listing if you are represented by another Realtor without a request from that Realtor.

5) Agents Get Kickbacks from Lenders / Title / Inspectors
False. Since 1974, agents have been prevented from receiving any kind of kickback or favor from real estate vendors. It's against the law. It's against REBBA: the Real Estate and Business Brokers Act. Some agents are slower than others to realize how the law affects them, but most have heard of REBBA and would not jeopardize their license, regardless of the temptation.

6) An Agent's Home Inspector Will Always Favor the Agent
Any agent worth her salt wants disclosure. Why? Because she wants what is best for her client but also, and this is not to be taken lightly, because she does not want to be sued. Agents must disclose material facts. A buyer is always, without fail, better off knowing the truth about a house. Good agents care that a buyer receives full disclosure and are willing to fight for repairs on the buyer's behalf or help the buyer cancel the transaction.

7) All Real Estate Agents Make Too Much Money
False. An agent's average annual salary is less than $36,000 a year. You will find that about half the agents in any large brokerage close less than four deals a year. Nobody can live on that. Not once office fees are paid, MLS fees and lockbox fees are deducted, overhead and expenses for the agent are deducted, errors & omissions insurance and office supplies are paid.

8) Agents Sell Their Own Homes for More Money Than Yours
False. Busy agents and top producers don't have the luxury of time to waste when selling their own home. They also understand the market better than your average home seller, which means if a home isn't selling within a reasonable period of time, it means it is priced too high. I have witnessed first-hand what happens when agents put their residences on the market. If they need to sell, they might even cut the buyer a better deal than the buyer can get on the open market. After all, the person most likely to be persuaded by a sales pitch is a person who sells for a living.

9) Agents Should Tell You About Crime, Schools & Ethnic Make-up of Neighbourhoods
False. Fair Housing laws prevent a real estate agent from discriminating against a number of protected classes, which automatically prohibits an agent from disclosing anything remotely relating to the protected classes. Therefore, it may come as a shock to many people that agents cannot disclose crime rates, school stats or ethnic mixes of neighborhoods. If that kind of information is important to you, an agent can tell you where to find it but cannot provide it. Those who tell you otherwise are misinformed.

10) Agents Will Say Anything to Make the Sale
False. Although it is true that some agents will lie to you, it's unfair to paint all agents with such a broad brush. Top producing agents, those who enjoy a solid reputation in the community and practice real estate honestly and truthfully, are very careful to uphold a client's trust. Making misrepresentations or a false statement is against the law. Agents who break fiduciary relationships or fail to disclose material facts are subject to prosecution and a loss of their license to sell real estate.

St Andrews on the Green Etobicoke Condos

St Andrew on the Green 9 Burnhamthorpe Crescent.


St. Andrew on the Green is located in Etobicoke at 9 Burnhamthorpe Crescent in the historic Village of Islington.St. Andrews on the Green is a finely proportioned and elegant terraced building overlooking one of the City's oldest and finest golf clubs. This building offers the best of luxury condominium living.

Special features of this building include, cascading terraces, over-sized garden balconies, high ceilings, large windows, French doors, designer kitchens, marble baths and gleaming hardwood floors. The building features 1, 2 & 3 bedroom residences, nine 2-storey garden town homes and 13 spectacular penthouses. Amenities include; 24 hour concierge, indoor pool, lounge and exercise room. Completed 2006.

Last Sold information for past 6 months is available at ;click here
Photo's available for Lobby, Pool and Exercise Area.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Charity Link Realty

Mary Ferguson, while volunteering with the United Way in London approached Tom Dampsy. REALTOR® with an idea: How about matching donors (who want to donate money but are finding it harder to do so) with real estate agents, who have demonstrated a high level of knowledge and professionalism in their particular area?

The majority of the referral fee the referring agent normally collects could be donated to a charity. A clear win for everybody. A very unique concept.

Effectively, the money that has been donated is the buyer's or seller's; they are redirecting a portion to his or her charity...freely. The agent receiving the business has agreed to perform his or her duties for a set amount of money ahead of time. Referrals are an intricate part of a real estate agent's business and have been for a long long time.

The "1997 National Survey of Giving, Volunteering and Participating" found that Canada has over 175,000 voluntary organizations, of which over 77,000 are registered charities. About 21 million Canadians made donations of some kind to a charitable or non-profit organization, which received direct financial support totaling some $4.51 billion. About 7.5 million Canadians volunteered 1.11 billion hours of their time. This is equivalent to 578,000 full time jobs, or more than the labour force of Manitoba Registered Charities, other than hospitals and teaching institutions, that generated over 570,000 jobs.

CharityLINK is committed to helping Buyers, Sellers, REALTOR®, and Charities achieve success.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

GTA Resale Housing Market Moderate in May

May 20, 2008 -- Moderate sales and healthy price increases continued to characterize the GreaterToronto Area resale housing market during the first half of May, Toronto Real Estate Board President Maureen O’Neill announced today.

“With 4,422 sales throughout the GTA in the first two weeks of this month, activity has declined 12 per cent compared to the 5,003 homes sold during the first half of May 2007,” said Ms. O’Neill. “Prices however, continue to be strong, averaging $400,817 in the GTA, up six per cent from the $377,612 reported a year ago.”
In the City of Toronto, there were 1,734 sales, representing a 15 per cent decline from the 2,053 homes sold during the first half of May 2007 and an 11 per cent decline from 006. The average price in the 416 is $437,205, up six per cent from $412,701 a year ago.
In the 905 Region, there were 2,688 sales, down nine per cent from 2,950 a year ago but up four per cent from the same period in 2006. At $377,688, the average price is up seven per cent from the $353,192 recorded during the same timeframe in May of 2007.
Despite moderate sales overall, some neighbourhoods experienced heightened activity during the first half of May. The GTA is showing signs for a healthy 2008 compared to the diminished activity during the first quarter of 2008.
The Danforth (E03) saw sales increase 29 per cent overall compared to the same timeframe a year ago due to strong detached home sales.
Interest in detached homes also led Streetsville (W20) to a five percent overall sales increase compared to a year ago.
In the Annex (C02) transactions rose 39 per cent compared to the same period a year ago, driven by strong condominium apartment and detached home sales.
Richmond Hill South (N03) saw strong sales in most property types resulting in a three per cent increase compared to a year ago.
“In recent years, homebuyers have faced a major challenge with respect to limited selection,” said Ms. O’Neill. "Now though, inventory is up 11 per cent compared to a year ago, which has resulted in more choice for home buyers and will a positive effect on the quality of available listings.”
A wider selection from which to choose has also resulted in increased Days on Market, which has risen to 35 from last year's 28.
“The Greater Toronto Area offers a wide array of housing stock to fit almost any budget; I encourage anyone thinking of making a move to contact their REALTOR® to learn more about all of their options.”

Monday, May 19, 2008

The Age of the Condo

Although people's eyes glaze over at the mention of Statistics Canada, the latest 2006 census make interesting reading, particularly as they relate to a favourite topic of dinner-party conversation - Toronto's booming condo market.

Over the past year, Statistics Canada has been releasing the results of the 2006 census and the findings illustrate how demographic changes have been and will continue to shape housing needs across the Toronto Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) in favour of condominium living. This explains in large part why new high-rise condo sales have accounted for a growing share of total new-home sales in the area over the past several years and actually exceeded new low-rise (single-detached, semi-detached, townhomes) sales for the first time in 2007 by capturing 52% market share, according to RealNet Canada.

Simply put, Toronto's population is growing, ageing and diversifying in ways that it never has before, and in favour of condominium apartment living more so than ever before.
According to the census data, the population in the Toronto CMA grew by 9.2% from 2001 to 2006, from 4.68 million to 5.11 million residents. Interestingly, the suburbs (905 region) grew by 19.2% and accounted for more than 93% of Toronto CMA population growth during this period. The city of Toronto (416 region) grew by only 0.9% and contributed to only 5.3% of Toronto CMA population growth. Yet, the rate of new household formation was significantly higher in the city of Toronto, accounting for 22% of total household growth in the Toronto CMA during the inter-census period. This means that although the city of Toronto did not experience as much population growth as the suburbs, its population was both older and ageing at a faster rate; thus creating new households and new housing demand through the splitting up of existing households. For example, a family of four who lived together as a one household in 2001 may have split into two or three different households by 2006 as the now-grown children left home as first-time condominium buyers or renters.

As the majority of new high-rise condominium apartment sales from 2001 to 2006 occurred in the city of Toronto and over 50% of sales were likely attributed to this new group of young, first-time home buyers from 25 to 35 years of age, it is not surprising that the census data also confirms that nearly 90% of new households created from 2001 to 2006 were one-person (more than 28,880) and two-person (more than 10,805) households typically favouring a condominium-type lifestyle. (Note: Statistics Canada defines a household as a person or group of persons who co-reside in or occupy a dwelling.)

Similarly, a decrease in the number of married couples (down 0.3%) and a significant increase in the number of separated or divorced individuals (up 6.2% or 12,565) also translated into changing housing needs and preferences likely in favour, again, of condominium-style living.
An ageing population where children are leaving home also means that there is a growing number of ageing parents whose housing needs are also changing. Now finding themselves empty nesters, many no longer need (or want) to maintain a large (and largely) empty family home, perhaps in favour of spending more time at the cottage or travelling; so downsizing to a more carefree, maintenance-free condominium lifestyle is growing increasingly attractive. According to the 2006 census data, the leading edge of Baby Boomers aged 55 to 64 years were the fasting-growing segment of the population in the Toronto CMA during the inter-census period, increasing in numbers by 27.7% (more than 113,400). This suggests that demand for condominium apartments will likely continue growing among these Baby Boomers, particularly as they shift into the pre-retirement and retirement stage of their lives.

In summary, condominium apartments have become an integral part of the housing market in Toronto and as long as there are still children growing up and creating empty nesters out of their parents, young adults who want to move out of the family home and renters who dream of buying their own home, there may continue to be demand for condominiums. Check out the latest Statistics Canada 2006 census data if you need proof.

• Jeanhy Shim is president of ThinkBUILD Consulting Inc., a real estate consulting firm specializing in residential product developments. She can be reached at National Post

The Humber Bay Shore Community Association has some impressive figures of their own;

Community Summary Group Total Suites
HBSCA Member Communities 3,807
Properties Under Construction or in Presale Stage 1,054
Proposed future projects 2,807
Community Total 7,668

As the figures indicate above, within the next five years or less the number of condominium suites located in the Humber Bay Shores Community is expected to double! How will this affect our community? One of prime goals is to serve as your voice and represent your views as to how this dramatic growth will impact all aspects of living in our community.

This bodes well for the community and business' that serve the condo owners along the Mimico Lakeshore Business District.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

5 Telltale Signs That this house isn't for you

Shopping for a Home is a Process of Elimination

You search for homes based on your specific criteria and eliminate those homes that are not up to par. When you find your dream home, you usually know it immediately. When you come across a dump, the same holds true. Our intuition is usually right.

Buyers Beware

Ever come across a home online or in print whose images and property detail descriptions just about seemed perfect? Yeah, me too. It’s kind of like what Alicia Silverstone said in the movie Clueless, “She’s like a Monet. Well, from far away she looks pretty good but up close she’s just a big old mess.” And just like in the movie the Money Pit, the home may look pretty from the outside but once you start turning things on all hell can break loose.

You might want to keep looking for your dream house if:

5. The neighbours yard looks like a scene from Sanford and Son.
4. The real estate agent warns you about funny sounds coming from inside the house.
3. The listing sheet highlights all the negative features of the home with suggested remedies and prices from experts of improving them.
2. The basement has water marks 3 feet high and when you turn the light switch on, the garage door opens.
1. You’re told by the homeowner, “Trust me, the smell is only seasonal.”

Bonus: After you look at the house the neighbour asks if you’re really serious about buying the place and then laughs hysterically and walks away.

If you can top these, we’d love to hear your stories.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Victoria Day - Holiday weekend

Victoria Day is a statutory holiday in Canada, and falls on the last Monday before May 25th. In 2008, Victoria Day is on May 19th.

Most people in Canada consider the Victoria Day weekend the real start of summer. The problem is that it's often still pretty cold for the first long weekend of summer (I recall getting snowed on while camping near Stratford a few years back). Still, chances are good the weather will be nice enough to be outside, even if you may need a spring jacket. This is why gardening, camping, patio-lounging, fireworks and other outdoor entertainment are all popular choices over the Victoria Day weekend.

So What's the "May Two-Four"? If you're new to Ontario you should know this weekend has another name - one which has very little to do with celebrating royal birthdays.

A "two-four" is slang for a case of 24 beers, and since the Victoria Day Weekend often ends up including the date May 24th, well, the "May Two-Four" is that weekend where you have an extra day to drink, or recover. However you want to look at it.

The Start of Gardening Season In the hopes that the frost is really over, many people break out the gardening gloves for Victoria Day and get dirty. If you're one of them, check out the Green Toronto calendar for gardening workshops, or visit a nursery to get the plants you need (just don't forget to check their hours, first!). Many grocery and department stores also have garden centres open for this weekend.

Victoria Day Fireworks

Free Fireworks Display at Ashbridges Bay Grab a blanket and head down to the Beaches on Monday May 19th to enjoy a free fireworks display that should start after 9:30pm. Just remember it will be cooler by the water, so dress appropriately and bring something comfy to sit on.

Fireworks at Ontario Place On Sunday May 18th and Monday May 19th you can spend the day at Ontario Place and then enjoy fireworks in the evening. The park will be open from 10am-10pm with regular admission rates. Of course, you can also just get near Ontario Place and keep your eyes on the sky.

Jubilee Queen Cruises - Fireworks Cruise If you'd rather see the fireworks from the water, Jubilee Queen Cruises offers a special evening cruise on the Victoria Day Weekend that also includes dinner and dancing.

Fireworks at Canada's Wonderland Weather permitting, the giant theme park just north of Toronto will be putting on a fireworks display on Sunday May 18th at 10pm. There's also a brunch being served starting at 10am, that has nothing to do with Victoria Day exactly, but if you're going to go, you might as well make a day of it. Regular admission applies and the brunch is extra.

Other Special Events for Victoria Day 2008

HarbourKIDS and the Toronto International Circus Festival Harbourfront and Zero Gravity Circus team up to present three days of FREE events exploring the theme of "fearless". Other performers will be at Harbourfront as well, plus there are numerous hands-on and interactive events to participate in.

Victoria Day at Toronto's Historic Sites Fort York will be open from 10am-4pm on Victoria Day, while the Gibson House will be celebrating the Queen's Birthday from noon-5pm. The Scarborough Historical Museum is having a tea Sunday afternoon to celebrate and Montgomery's Inn is having one on Monday.

Drive Safe everyone!

FSBO Myths

I recently came across an ad for a For Sale by Owner site.

In their Myth's about real estate section they made remarks about all the reasons to sell you home by yourself. For only $695 they will "list" your house. * all savings based on 5%, 6% and 7% commissions. SAVE SAVE SAVE

They are indeed all tempting points. You can earn the portion of the commission you pay by dealing with the lawyers, bankers, mortgage company, insurance company and property appraisers. Attend every showing at an hour's notice, keep the home sparkling clean all the time. Dealing with Buyers and their objections or comments. Your lawyer can draft a contract.

All, while you're at work...

Then they went on to discuss how 50% of the market is now FSBO?

Their websites receive thousands of hits?? The Elegant Homes websites receives close to 10,000 hits per month, people from other Canadian cities considering moving here.

How does that compare with Millions of Hits at (soon to be renamed May 28, 08) received on a monthly basis. Searchable properties by Neighbourhood and pricing. All property Details have verified Data.

The site gave an example of how a home sold in Toronto at $16,000 had a real estate fee of $960.00, many years ago. My father, new to Canada, bought a house in 1954 at $16,000. In the heart of Roncesvalles Village. This was more than 4 times his annual blue collar wage, we had no family car, there was no cable, there was no TV till '68. [He] was concerned with earning a wage and providing for his family and future education.

I would like to see what gas prices were in 1954. I remember filling up the family Beetle for $4.00 (that was in '71 when gas was 49 cents per gallon).

Please, consider some of the unsubstantiated and outrageous claims with a grain of salt.

Real estate results and sales are tracked and reported (because taxes are collected at each sale)

Realtors need to comply with myriad regulations that puzzle buyers and sellers. Legal disclosures, multiple offer acknowledgements, Consent and awareness of Agency Laws. Buyers Agency and Representation, and you haven't seen any houses yet.. Confirmation of Representation, prior to signing an offer to Purchase.

Buyers who are cruising FSBO's are also looking to "Save the same commission' and usually are looking for undervalued properties and unsophisticated Sellers.

Newest is the FINTRAC Reporting. If you use cash.... we need to tell.

I am obligated to obtain and retain photo ID or passports. (photocopy)

More for Sale by Owner Myths

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Red-hot housing market loses its heat

As a flood of sellers sent home listings to their highest level on record last month, at the same time sales slowed as wary buyers remained on the sidelines.

This shift in dynamics suggests a marked change is taking place after the frenzied bidding wars that characterized the country's housing boom, providing good news for buyers who want to make less pressured purchase decisions.

“For the first time in a long time, sellers are not in the drivers' seat any more. I'm not necessarily saying that buyers are in the drivers' seat either, but what we've seen truly is a return to a balanced market,” said Douglas Porter, deputy chief economist at BMO Nesbitt Burns Inc.

Resale home listings across Canada rose by 17.7 per cent last month from the year before, putting them at the highest level on record, according to data released Wednesday by the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA).

In the same period unit sales dropped by 6.1 per cent from the year before, although they edged up slightly from a weak March.

Listings in Saskatoon rose by 121 per cent compared with the year before, and by 18 per cent in the country's largest housing market, Toronto, which makes up about 18 per cent of all resale housing activity on the Multiple Listing Service.

CREA's data came on the same day as a survey suggesting two-thirds of Canadians are either negative or neutral about the prospect of buying a home right now. The other third said that now is a good time to buy a home.

The results are similar to a study last fall, and this consistency suggests Canadians haven't been too shaken by the U.S. subprime mortgage crisis, said Will Dunning, chief economist at the Canadian Association of Accredited Mortgage Professionals (CAAMP) and author of a report released Wednesday that included the housing survey.

Canada's strong economy, primarily the high rate of employment, is helping maintain confidence in the housing market, Mr. Dunning said.
However in regions where prices escalate quickly, sticker shock can trump economic fundamentals in the short term, he added.

This was demonstrated by CAAMP's survey, in which residents of Saskatchewan were the most leery about buying a home, with 70 per cent saying it is not a good time. Home prices rose 32 per cent in the province last year and are expected to rise by 19.5 per cent in 2008, compared with the forecasted 5.3-per-cent national average, according to CREA.

Despite the glut in supply, there have been no economic reports forecasting a drop in home prices this year, merely a cool-down from the double-digit gains of the past.

So far the data bear this out, with none of the cities included in CREA's report showing a year-over-year price decline in the first four months of 2008.

Prices are very “sticky,” they are one of the last things to adjust when the market cools and it takes a great deal to drive them down, Mr. Porter said.

Perhaps one of the biggest signs that sellers may have to lower their expectations can be found in CREA's press release referring to the data.

“This means buyers face less competition in their search for a home. It also means more competition among home sellers, so presentation factors such as prudent pricing are necessary for faster sale,” said Calvin Lindberg, president of CREA.

This, Mr. Porter said, is “a polite way of saying: ‘If you're looking for double-digit [annual] price gains, dream on.'”

A return to balance in the market has been a welcome relief for Jim Sparrow, a real estate agent with Calgary-based Keller Williams Platinum Realty. He remembers the peak of the market last year as an agonizing time for some of his clients, who were making and losing hundreds of offers as they desperately tried to crack the Calgary housing market.

Perhaps the craziest situation he witnessed was the bidding for a small, no-frills condo unit which just months earlier would have sold in the $90,000-range. With an unconditional, cash offer at $30,000 over asking price, Mr. Sparrow's client figured she'd finally put up enough to break a string of lost bidding wars. She lost the 21-buyer race to someone willing to pay nearly $200,000 for the tiny unit.

A year and a half later you won't find situations like that in Calgary any more, Mr. Sparrow said.
“We've been in a buyers' market for the last three or four months here. What's unfortunate is that a lot of sellers don't realize that yet,” he said.

Globe and Mail May 14, 2008

Cracks appear in the real estate market

The Canadian housing boom is ending, but there is no “major correction” in the cards – and buyers are unlikely to see anything near the bargain-basement prices that currently characterize the United States housing market, the Bank of Nova Scotia said Thursday.

“After many false calls, there is now convincing evidence that Canada's housing market has come off the boil,” the Bank of Nova Scotia in a report on real estate trends.

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp., in its second-quarter outlook, reported Thursday that new home construction will begin to slow in 2008, “but remain high by historical standards.”

Both Scotiabank and CMHC said the Canadian housing market is fundamentally strong.
However, higher mortgage carrying costs “will be a catalyst for the decrease in residential construction to 214,650 units in 2008, from 228,343 in 2007,” CMHC said in its second quarter housing market outlook.

Bob Dugan, CMHC's chief economist, added that most of the pent-up demand that built up during the 1990s “had now been fulfilled and residential construction activity will gradually move in line with Canadian demographic fundamentals.

“These factors will continue to exert downward pressure on housing starts, which will decline to 199,900 units in 2009,” Mr. Dugan said.

Scotiabank, looking at the resale market, reported that home resales – having fallen for four consecutive months – are running about 15 per cent below last summer's historic peak.

“Average annual home price appreciation has eased back into the mid single digits, as overall market conditions come into better balance,” according to the Scotiabank report.

“Adjusted for inflation, the average resale home price in Canada registered its first quarterly decline in seven years in the first quarter of 2008,” the bank said.

However, senior Scotiabank economist Adrienne Warren said in an interview that the softening market is due to a “cyclical slowdown,” and the Canadian housing market is “fundamentally stronger than the situation we're seeing in the U.S.”

The cooling could bring eventually price relief to buyers, she said.

“The market is becoming better balanced, so there will be more homes listed, which takes a little bit of pressure off prices,” Ms. Warren said.

“But it will take some time, and a number of years of fairly soft prices, in order to bring affordability back to the levels” that are typically seen at the beginning of an upward cycle, she said. CMHC forecast that existing home sales, as measured by Multiple Listing Service, will fall by 8.5 per cent in 2008 to 475,900 units, and the trend will continue in 2009, with a decrease to 465,000 units.

“Despite a slowdown in MLS(R) sales, demand remains strong by historical standards,” CMHC wrote. Average resale prices will increase by 5.1 per cent to $323,000 in 2008, and by 3.3 per cent, to $333,500 in 2009, CMHC projected.

In line with the CMHC report, Scotiabank noted that “cracks are appearing on the new home front as well. “While housing starts in early 2008 are essentially tracking last year's elevated levels, demand for new residential building permits has fallen sharply. Price increases for new homes are moderating, while inventories of unsold new homes are trending higher.”

Ms. Warren said she expects overall sales volumes in 2008 to be about 15 per cent below last year's record levels, and home prices to increase on average by about five per cent.

“Price gains should slow further in 2009 with the return of a balanced market for the first time in a decade. Meanwhile, housing starts are projected to gradually moderate, returning toward underlying annual household formation levels of around 180,000 by the end of the decade, from the current 225,000 unit range,” Ms. Warren said.

The report also notes that the cooling in overall activity is most pronounced in many of Canada's hottest urban housing markets in recent years, including Calgary and Edmonton.

“Both centres have officially moved into buyers' territory as soaring prices weaken demand and fuel new listings. More generally, however, economic conditions continue to favour the resource-rich markets in the West over manufacturing-dominated centres in Central Canada. Regina and Saskatoon are currently in the strongest sellers' position nationally, supported by good affordability, rising population inflows and tight supply,” according to the report.

However, risk of a major correction is low, Ms. Warren said.

“Home prices in Canada are not substantially overvalued. Our long-term housing price model puts average home prices in 2007 at about eight per cent above their long-term trend, compared with a premium of 12 per cent and 18 per cent, respectively, at the 1976 and 1989 housing cycle peaks. Recent International Monetary Fund (IMF) estimates placed Canada at the bottom rungs of international home price overvaluation.”

Scotiabank also said in its report that Canada's real estate market is not overbuilt. “While inventories of unsold homes are trending higher, the number of unabsorbed units, including condominiums, remains well below prior cyclical peaks in most major centres. Tighter lending guidelines and high construction costs have likely contributed to a more cautious approach among builders.

Overall mortgage quality is still sound, Scotiabank said. “Canada does not have ultra-low teaser rate mortgages that have contributed heavily to U.S. defaults as they reset. Adjustable-rate mortgages, sub-prime lending, borrowing against home equity, and insured investor mortgages all account for a much smaller share of the Canadian mortgage market than in the United States,” the report said.

At the end of the day, we predict a soft landing for the Canadian housing market, with somewhat lower sales and construction, and a period of relatively flat inflation-adjusted home prices,” added Ms. Warren. “While underlying domestic housing fundamentals remain healthy, a major risk to the outlook would be a deeper and more protracted downturn in the U.S. economy, with more serious repercussions for domestic output, employment and income growth.”

Globe and Mail Update May 15, 2008

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

First Time Buyers Rebates for LTT

Land Transfer Tax Refund for First-Time Home Buyers

First-time buyers of BOTH re-sale, and newly constructed homes, will be eligible for a rebate of the provincial land transfer tax of up to $2000...

As announced in the 2007 Ontario Economic Outlook and Fiscal Review, the government proposes to expand the Land Transfer Tax Refund Program to include first-time homebuyers of resale homes. This measure would be effective for agreements of purchase and sale entered into after December 13, 2007. As a result of this change, first-time homebuyers of resale homes would be able to receive a refund from the provincial government of up to $2,000 of the land transfer tax paid. More

Land Transfer Tax applies to all conveyances of land in Ontario. First time purchasers of newly constructed homes may be eligible for a refund of all or part of the tax payable.

The Benefit

The refund for first time purchasers of newly constructed homes may offset the land transfer tax ordinarily payable at the time of registration. The maximum amount refundable is dependent upon the date of the agreement of purchase and sale:
For agreements entered into after March 31, 1999, the refund will not exceed $2,000.
For agreements entered into on or before March 31, 1999, the refund will not exceed $1,725.
No interest is paid on this refund.


Requirements to qualify for a refund
The purchaser must be at least 18 years of age.
Applications for a refund must be made within 18 months after the date of conveyance or disposition.
The purchaser must occupy the home as his or her principal residence within 9 months of the date of the conveyance or disposition.
The purchaser cannot have previously owned a home or had any ownership interest in a home, anywhere in the world.
A spouse of the purchaser cannot have owned a home or had any ownership interest in a home, anywhere in the world while he or she was the purchaser's spouse.

How to Apply moving to will be revamped on May 28th. Finally interactive mapping will be available. We will see if they actually make some significant improvements.

On May 28th, 2008, will be introducing some new features to the web site on behalf of REALTORS® across Canada. The result will be an even better real estate resource, with more information about the properties displayed on the site.The first change will be the introduction of interactive mapping. You'll be able to use Microsoft Virtual Earth software on the site to determine your search area, and to determine where a property is located. Interactive mapping will make it much more convenient to search traditional neighbourhoods or a specific region.The web site will also have a new streamlined text search. You'll be able to input your initial search criteria without all of the details of an Advance Search. The site will still offer the detailed or Advance Search option, but also has a streamlined text version to make looking for properties even more convenient.There will be a new look, or design. The traditional REALTOR® map is still a key part of the web site, but the new layout will make it easier to look for properties and information.And there will be a new address - Don't worry, you don't have to memorize it. You'll automatically be redirected to the new address even if you input our old one.

Yet it is still interesting to me why the consuming public's appetite does not draw them to an Agent's website portal. The Elegant Homes and Humber Bay Shore websites contain this feature.

MLS data is inevitably delayed and filtered for content and permission, by the home owner at the time of the listing. A portal permits viewing of ALL the listings in live time. This means that properties listed in a fast moving neighbourhood are available immediately rather than [days] later.

Monday, May 12, 2008

What every first time home buyer should know before obtaining a mortgage


One common mistake most homebuyers make is not getting a pre-approval. This will give your realtor an idea of what price range they can begin searching for. A Pre-approval is a powerful tool that can tell you how much you can qualify for, and its best that you disclose everything, to avoid any surprises before the final closing date.

The Pre-approval allows you to hold the rate you were approved at, for a period of 120 days. This could be beneficial for you in a world of increasing interest rates. However, if rates should fall between your pre-approval date and your final closing date, you are guaranteed the lowest rate in that 120 day period.


Do you know what your credit rating looks like? Most of us don’t. I’d suggest you obtain a copy of your own credit report. You may obtain a free report at
It is a good idea to fix up any credit issues you have before the mortgage process to ensure that you get the rate you deserve.


Before meeting with your mortgage broker, ask your employer to draw up a letter of employment for you, and bring it along with your latest paystub. This will make the
Pre-approval process much more efficient, and you’ll be able to start shopping for your dream home with your realtor in no time !
Guest Contribution by Vivien Lai, Mortgage Alliance Mortgage Specialist. Feel free to contact Vivien at 416 816 8252

Location of your new home

At this weekend's open houses I heard a concern that had not been as vocal before.

With the type of vehicle you drive, How long is the commute to work? How much is it costing to fill up? I know that this was a topic of discussion in my household this past Sunday.

I have already seen the Cambridge Kitchener buyer relocating back to Mississauga or Etobicoke because after 3 years of commuting; they have used up their cars, missed their children's birthdays; all by spending time being attentive on the road.

They simply leave earlier and arrive later. As the GTA continues to grow this will just get harder.

One recent family, Mom and Dad, and two adult children, had 4 cars. That's 4 insurance policies, 4 sets of tires, plus snow tires, oil changes and like a wayward child, someone needs to stay home when one of them is sick. They were calculating the savings of giving up two cars; to be one bus to the subway.

With this years price of gas, I am sure many others will join this fray.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

First Annual Roncesvalles Yard Sale

First Annual Roncesvalles Avenue Yard Sale!

On May 31, the first Roncesvalles Avenue Yard Sale, a neighbourhood-wide event, takes place. In addition to being a new a great way to sell unused stuff, the organizers have designated the event as a fundraiser for the Wabash Building Society.
Mark this date on your calendar and tell all your family and friends. Stay tuned for further details.

Please see attached flyer flyer-3.pdf

I have always had a strong attachment to this neighbourhood as I grew up there. I wish them a great sunny day for the event.

Kingswood on Bloor

3391 Bloor Street West (Islington)

Builder: Quadra Management
Maintenance fees: 36 cents per sq ft plus hydro separate meter.

Kingswood is an 11 storey precast and glass tower with approx 143 units, including a few lofts.
Amenities: party room, fitness room, concierge and a 7,000 sq ft landscaped terrace.


  • Private, architecturally designed suite entry.
  • Soaring 9' ceilings (9'6" for Grand Penthouses).
  • Suite have either pre-finished engineered wood flooring in foyer, kitchen and living/dining areas, or plush 40oz broadloom.
  • Paneled- style interior doors.
  • White DŽcor light switches and receptacles throughout.
  • Numerous open-air terraces and balconies.
  • Gourmet Kitchen – imported Italian Kitchens
  • Doors are either High Pressure Laminate or solid Ash wood in a cream of cherry finish.
  • Ensuite laundry facilities featuring a brand name, stackable washer/dryer unit.
  • System and Security with concierge on duty seven days a week.
  • Ample underground visitors parking.
  • High speed internet facility in every suite.
Kingwood Club

A private exercise facility features His & Hers showers, change rooms and lockers as well as a full range of state-of-the-art fitness equipment.

Located at south west corner of Bloor Street West & Islington Nearby Buildings - Clarica Centre 1, Clarica Centre 2, 56 Aberfoyle Cresent, 3511 Bloor Street West, Clarica Centre 3, Bell Building, Network Lofts, 8 Lomond Drive, Town and Country I, Islington Square
This building is now available for viewing resale and remaining builder units. Sold Data is available updated May 08.08 Please complete to receive report immediately by email.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Tips for Selling in a Buyer's Market

As the summer season brings the usual slow-down in home sales activity, many cities in Canada that experienced hot sellers' markets over the spring are now seeing a change toward buyers' markets. But don't let that hamper your plans -- if you prepare properly and make the right moves, you can sell your house.

One of the first things real estate brokers and agents will encourage you to do if you're selling in a challenging market is to price your house appropriately.

"We are experiencing a buyer's market," said David Pylyp a buyers representative from West Toronto, ONT. "If you are a buyer this is good because there is a wide assortment of houses from which to select. If you are a seller it is especially important to have your house priced appropriately."

A real estate broker from Etobicoke, echoes similar sentiments. Although the number of sales has reduced slightly on a monthly basis prices appear to be holding with an average single family home priced at $ 390,000.

"Today there are more homes on the market, and if the homes are not priced at market, it will take 60 to 90 days to sell," said Clemente Cabillan.

Maybe, in Toronto the job stability is a major factor in the current market but low interest rates are contributing to homes selling.

"Our market continues to be soft; a true buyers' market," said David Pylyp "A significant percentage of the listings in our MLS have had at least one price decrease since they initially came on the market. Layoffs or potential layoffs by some of the area's large employers have dampened home-buying enthusiasm. However, continued low interest rates have provided a supply of buyers."

Some regions, like Oshawa and Pickering Ontario, are seeing a pronounced slowdown.

"We're definitely shifting into a buyers' market, but where are the buyers," said David Pylyp. "Thirty-year-low interest rates and I am hearing this story throughout the real estate community of a low volume of buyers, high volume for sale. For sellers, that translates to pricing very competitively to begin with and do those extra things that will make the house have super appeal."

So what can you do to give your house super appeal? For starters, you should:

Set your price competitively.

Offer incentives. If your carpet is old or outdated, offer a carpet allowance up front. If a potential buyer knows this right off the bat, they might be able to overlook the unattractive carpet - probably the first thing they'll notice when they walk in the door. Or, offer to include your appliances with the home. If you're moving into a new home, appliances may already be included, or you may be ready to upgrade. This type of offer will be especially enticing to first-time buyers who are putting most - if not all - of their available cash into their down payment and closing costs.

Offer to pay the nonrecurring closing costs - an adjustment on closing for broadloom, paint, redecorating, updating bathrooms or offering maintenance fees for a year, title insurance, or property inspections. Some have included Brand new appliances or Plasma TV. This can be a major motivation to cash-strapped buyers; these costs could run about 3 to 5 percent of the cost of the house or condo. Depending on your market and budget situations, you may offer to pay part or all of the costs.

Get a professional home inspection before you put your house on the market. Nothing will kill your deal quicker than a buyer's inspector finding a major problem during the inspection process. Even if you reach agreement with the buyer on who will pay how much of the repair work - or if you agree to pay all - the fact that the buyer has to wait for the repairs could put a damper on their plans, and even trigger them to break the deal, especially if there are plenty of other comparable houses on the market.

Be flexible. When you get an offer and the buyer wants to move in sooner than you'll be ready, make plans to stay in an apartment or with relatives until your new place is ready. A month or two of inconvenience will surely be worth it down the road.

Create good curb appeal. A home shopper's first impression is everything. The moment they pull up to the curb, they'll make an instant judgment. You'll want to be sure it's positive. You can begin by making sure leaves are raked up, and your shrubs and bushes are pruned. Make sure bikes and toys are out of sight.

Focus on your walls. If your walls are dirty, it will be an automatic turnoff to potential buyers. Think about touching up the paint on your walls before you put your home on the market, keeping the colors neutral and light. Save your favorite reds and greens for your next place, where you'll be staying put for awhile.

Make sure your home shows well. Get rid of all the clutter. Keep the house clean and simple. If you have a lot of knickknacks, keep them out of sight. Make sure there are no lingering pet or smoke odors. Set out some fresh flowers. Turn on some light music.

Let the light in. Open blinds and curtains so plenty of light illuminates the home's interior. And, most importantly, be patient. Don't be too hasty in reducing your asking price. But be ready to when the time comes. You'll want to talk to your agent about how long homes are staying on the market in your neighborhood. The time to think about reducing your price is once you pass that mark.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

What is a Buyer's Market?

No matter what City within the GTA you are living in or where you want to move, the home buying and selling market will be swinging toward one of two directions. Either it will be in a buyers' market or a sellers' market, or sometimes, a little of both.

Most real estate practitioners consider a typical market to be one in which homes take an average of six months to sell. REALTORS® keep track of this number by keeping up with the days on the market (DOM) of every home listed and sold. That means that in the MLS, there are likely to be at least six months worth of inventory (homes) on hand to sell for the number of buyers in the market. If the number rises above six months inventory on hand, then the market is swinging into a buyer's market. If it falls below, it is becoming a seller's market.

A buyer's market is one in which there are too many homes on the market for the number of buyers. Homes take longer to sell and prices fall.

Sometimes buyers believe that winter time is a buyers' market. Although it is true that there are fewer buyers, there are usually a compensating fewer homes on the market as well. Homes offered for sale during slower times of the year are generally aggressively marketed, and may not sell for a significantly lower price than they would if they were marketed in a busier period.

In the spring, a seasonal adjustment occurs, and more homes come on the market. Buyer activity picks up as families with children (still the single largest buyer demographic) buy homes so they can move during summer vacation.

A buyers' market can easily exist in the spring, if conditions dictate - that there are more homes than buyers, falling prices, and longer DOMs. Sometimes a buyers' market can be created that lasts for a long time. The exit of one or more major employers from a community, a natural disaster such as a flood or earthquake, or some other catastrophic event can affect home values in an area for years.

Seasonal or not, any time there are more than six months' inventory on hand, there is a glut of homes on the market. Whenever there is a surplus of homes, and prices begin to drop, sellers will work harder to attract buyers, including adding incentives such as owner-financing maintenance fees or a large redecorating or flooring allowance

As homes become more competitive, buyers realize that their interest is at a premium and they will increase their demands to sellers. That chandeliers from Aunt Sally that normally would not be included in the purchase price of the home, could now become a bargaining chip for the buyer.

The buyer may ask the seller to provide warranties or appliances at the seller's expense, or for the seller to pay more of the closing costs than usual out of the settlement proceeds, or any number of other concessions.

People who have occupied their homes for many years may be able to sell their homes at a profit in a buyer's market because they have built equity, but they will find that if they have performed little or no improvements the home will compare even more poorly with the glut of homes on the market and it will command bottom dollar.

Sellers who are in a must-sell position may take little or no profit from the sale of their homes, or may even be forced to take a loss. The homeowners who are most hurt by a buyer's market are those with little or no equity built into the home. If they are forced to sell, they may have to come to the closing table with cash to pay their mortgage off or allow the home to be repossessed by the lender.

The one certainty that can always be counted upon is that one side of the market will never stay on top forever. In fact, it can turn on a dime. The same area that remains depressed for a period of time can make a comeback as lower prices stimulate reinvestment.

Competing Offers

In certain market conditions, consumers may find that more than one buyer is interested in a property. This is a competing offer situation and creates unique conditions in a real estate transaction. Both sellers and buyers need to consider how to respond when presented with a competing offer situation. Working closely with your real estate broker or salesperson will ensure that you understand the process.

In Ontario, the seller's real estate broker or salesperson is required to disclose the number of competing offers to all buyers who have submitted a written offer. However, the terms and conditions of each offer are confidential to the seller and their broker or salesperson.

Working with a real estate broker or salesperson.

The seller's real estate broker or salesperson represents the interests of the seller in the transaction. The decisions about how offers are presented and responded to, as well as which offer is accepted, are made by the seller.

The buyer's real estate broker or salesperson represents the interests of the buyer in the transaction. The buyer makes the final decisions related to their offer, including the important decision of whether or not they want to participate in a competing offer situation.

In some situations, the real estate broker or salesperson will represent the interests of both seller and buyer or multiple buyers. Consumers should seek guidance from their real estate broker or salesperson if this situation arises.

Tips for Buyers

In a competing offer situation, buyers may be tempted to offer more for the property than they planned to and/or remove conditions from offers that are intended to protect them.
Before participating in a competing offer situation, buyers should consider factors such as:

Offer Price How much can the buyer afford to offer for the property and how much is the property worth? A high offer could enhance the buyer's chance of success. However, it may not be the best long-term financial decision for the buyer. A competing offer situation does not necessarily mean that a property will sell for more than the asking price. Similarly, an offer that meets or exceeds the asking price will not guarantee that a buyer's offer is accepted.

Financing Buyers should be aware that pre-qualifying for a mortgage does not safely eliminate the need for a financing condition in an offer.

Home Inspection In competing offer situations, it can be tempting not to include a clause in an offer that makes it conditional on a home inspection. While your offer might be more acceptable to the seller, you may later learn that there are property defects, required repairs or needed upgrades that you weren't aware of. In some cases, this can be expensive in the short or long-term. Foregoing a home inspection is a significant risk that a buyer needs to carefully consider.

Tips for Sellers

A seller facing competing offers has to consider how they want to deal with the situation. The seller can decide to: accept the best offer; negotiate with one buyer and reject all other offers; negotiate with one buyer and advise other buyers that their offers are being set aside while the seller negotiates; or reject all offers.

Even in a competing offer situation, buyers have other options and may choose not to continue to participate. A seller may attempt to negotiate only to find out that it was the best offer the buyer could present. In the meantime, other buyers have found new properties they are interested in.
The seller's real estate broker or salesperson can provide advice and guidance, ensuring that the obligations and the options available are understood.


Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Humber Waterfront LRT

Waterfront West Corridor

This 11-kilometre long corridor would link Union Station and Exhibition Place with Parkdale, High Park, and southern Etobicoke. The new light rail line would start from the existing Exhibition streetcar loop, and run west along the Gardiner Expressway/Lakeshore GO Train corridor to the existing Queensway and Lake Shore streetcar tracks, which would be upgraded where necessary to a dedicated surface right-of-way.

The light rail service would provide fast and frequent east-west service from southern Etobicoke to Union Station along the waterfront. Eventual extensions could be made west into Mississauga and east from Union Station into the eastern waterfront. Light rail service would operate entirely in a dedicated surface right-of-way. Estimated annual ridership in 2021 would be 21 million customer-trips. Order-of-magnitude cost of the corridor would be approximately $540 million.


The Toronto Transit City – Light Rail Plan should be endorsed as the basis and priority for rapid transit expansion in the City of Toronto. The plan would establish a network of fast, reliable, electric light-rail transit lines, to attract people out of their cars and onto environmentally-friendly public transport. The Plan would provide fast and reliable public transit service, increase the mobility of Toronto residents, would provide system-wide connections to existing and future rapid transit services, and would be seamlessly co-ordinated with Greater Toronto regional transit networks.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Marina Del Ray - Humber Bay Shore Condos

Marina Del Ray Humber Bay Shores
2261, 2267, 2269 Lake Shore Blvd. W.

Marina Del Rey Community is located on the shores of Lake Ontario, minutes from Downtown Toronto, Pearson Airport and major highways. Marina Del Rey is a glorious waterfront community. The three condominium towers, comprising the privately enclosed enclave, are terraced towards the lake on over eleven acres adjacent to Humber Bay Park. The development was a winner in 1989 of the Urban Development Institute's Residential Award of Excellence for 'Best Designed Community.' The buildings look into a central magnificently landscaped courtyard. Marina Del Rey is connected to the Waterfront Park & Marina by the waterfront promenade.

The Malibu club is among the finest private waterfront recreation facilities in Toronto with exclusive use to the residents. This two storey sports facility features an indoor pool overlooking the marina, lit outdoor tennis courts, squash court, billiards, exercise equipment, saunas, whirlpool, party/ entertainment facilities and 24 hour concierge.


Completed in 1990 by Camrost, 'Marina Del Rey' has 820 condominiums.
The suites range in size;
One Bedroom, One + Den 800 to 1000 sq. ft.
Two Bedroom + den 1000 sq ft to 1450 sq ft,
some lofts, patio suites and Penthouses at approx 2000 sq ft.
This condominium community along the Humber Bay Shore has currently available units; please email for updated lists of available units or past sales.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Moderate April but prices still up

GTA resale housing market moderate in April, but prices up
May 5, 2008 -- With 8,762 houses sold in the Greater Toronto Area, April’s resale housing activity was down seven per cent from the record 9,452 transactions from the same timeframe a year ago, Toronto Real Estate Board President Maureen O’Neill announced today.
“The market is showing signs for a healthy 2008 compared to the diminished activity we saw in the first quarter of the year,” said Ms. O’Neill. “We continue to experience a supply and demand situation and to-date, it remains a sellers market."
Sales activity however, was markedly different in the 416 and 905 regions. With 3,467 transactions in the City of Toronto, sales were down 10 per cent from a year ago. The 905 region was down five per cent from April 2007 sales, with 5,295 homes changing hands.
April’s GTA average price was $398,687, up eight per cent from the same period a year ago. In the City of Toronto, the average price was $446,781, up six per cent from last April. In the 905 region the average price increased five per cent compared to a year ago, to $367,196.
Several neighbourhoods experienced strong sales in April.
Scarborough East (E08) saw an eight per cent overall sales increase compared to April 2007, driven by robust detached home sales.
Caledon (W28) experienced a 15 per cent increase compared to the same timeframe a year ago as a result of strong condominium sales.
Condominium sales also drove Willowdale (C07) to a 32 per cent increase from a year ago.
In Thornhill sales increased eight per cent from last April due to strong detached home sales. “The number of listings on the Toronto Real Estate Board’s Multiple Listing Service has increased to 24,539, up seven per cent from a year ago, which is good for homebuyers, who will find a greater range of options in the market,” said Ms. O’Neill. “With prices continuing to appreciate and increased listing inventory there are favourable factors in today’s market for consumers.”
Go to complete copy of TREB’s Market Watch Report.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Now that you bought the house...have you ...

Congratulations, you finally have the new house, family and children just arriving, but have you considered a free insurance needs analysis?

One of the major mistakes many people make when they decide to take out life insurance is not to buy enough coverage or to buy the wrong product for their actual needs. Surely the last thing you want is for your family to be left in financial difficulty because you underestimated how much cash they would need to get by without you.

There is another mistake that consumers often make: not paying enough attention to getting the right product for their needs and end up paying more in premiums than they have to. It's nothing more than a waste of money and won't improve your payout from your insurer one little bit. Talk to us and we'll be able to help you work out all the best life insurance policy tips and tricks!

The first step to cost effective life insurance is finding out how much cover you actually need. If you have a young family and a partner that doesn't work then you obviously need a lot of cover to allow them to maintain their lifestyle with no financial pressure if you die. But, your personal situation may well mean that you can work the system and deploy a few tricks to get cheap life insurance. Say, for example, in the future you're married with grown-up children. You want to give your spouse some protection if you die. You have a small mortgage, good savings and your partner has a good job and pension scheme. You can, of course, take out a comprehensive product if you want to guarantee them a good payout in any case. Or you can simply take out a mortgage protection product that decreases as your mortgage is paid off. That would keep things nice and simple and you are likely to be offered cheap life insurance.

Much as we all like to save money the one thing we can't afford to do here is to make the wrong decisions and cut too many corners on for the sake of cheap life insurance. That would defeat the object of the exercise in the first place.

As independant insurance brokers, we, for example, can help you work out exactly what you need to get the ultimate protection for you and your family. You're under no obligation to buy from us - but we can help you do your window shopping!

Guest Contribution; Gene Meyer, Gene Meyer Insurance Agencies Ltd., 905 890 0998