January Newsletter

1332773382_newsWell Happy New Year!

I’d mention the weather, but that’s all that has been on the news for the last 3 weeks.  Hopefully, you didn’t lose power, or lose power for too long.

Below are some interesting real estate news articles over the last month that you may have missed, you can click on the title to read the article from the original source.

My favourites include:

  • 65% of condo owners are women
  • What $390,000 Will Buy You Across The Country
  • The 1856 panorama of Toronto


If you are thinking about purchasing your first home or selling your home, and would like more information on how to get started, feel free to email me with your questions.



Sales and Average Price Up in Calendar Year 2013

January 6, 2014 — Greater Toronto Area REALTORS® reported 4,078 residential transactions through the TorontoMLS system in December 2013 – up by almost 14 per cent compared to 3,582 sales reported in December 2012. New listings entered into the TorontoMLS system were down by almost four per cent over the same period.

Total sales for calendar year 2013, at 87,111, were up by approximately two per cent compared to 85,496 transactions in calendar year 2012.

“After a slow start to the year, sales growth accelerated to a brisk pace in the second half of 2013. Despite the inclement weather in December, we finished the year with a respectable gain in transactions compared to 2012. Looking forward, I believe that home ownership in the GTA will remain affordable as borrowing costs stay low. The result could be a further increase in sales in 2014,” said Toronto Real Estate Board President Dianne Usher.

“The average selling price will be up again in 2014 and by more than the rate of inflation. The seller’s market conditions that drove price growth in the second half of 2013 will remain in place in many parts of the GTA. Some neighbourhoods, especially those characterized by low-rise home types like singles, semis and townhomes, will continue to have less than two months of inventory,” said Jason Mercer, TREB’s Senior Manager of Market Analysis.

The average selling price for December 2013 sales was $520,398 – up by 8.9 per cent compared to the average of $477,756 in December 2012.

The average selling price for 2013 as a whole was $523,036, which represented an increase of 5.2 per cent compared to the calendar year 2012 average of $497,130.

Click here to see Full Report [pdf]

Historic Annual Sales and Average Price [pdf]



Home prices and sales keep climbing in Toronto

Neither weather nor warnings that Toronto’s housing market is overpriced managed to dampen a market that continued to defy the naysayers through a surprisingly strong 2013.

Total home sales were up 2 per cent last year over 2012 andhouse prices ended the year up 5.2 per cent, despite a wet spring and one of the snowiest pre-Christmas months in years, according to figures released Monday by the Toronto Real Estate Board.

The average selling price was $523,036 across the GTA, compared to $497,130 in 2012. Even the resale condo sector ended the year on a high, despite widespread warnings in 2012 around oversupply and dwindling demand.




Sellers to benefit in strong spring housing market: report

Real estate agency Royal LePage is expecting Canada’s housing market to shift in favour of sellers in the first half of this year, and is forecasting a strong spring.

The agency, which represents more than 15,000 Canadian real estate agents and is part of Brookfield Real Estate Services Inc., is also predicting that house prices will maintain their momentum.

“We predict continued upward pressure on home prices as we move towards the all-important spring market,” Royal LePage CEO Phil Soper stated in a press release.




Investors own less than a quarter of Toronto condominiums: CMHC

Investors are a “strong presence” in both Toronto’s and Vancouver’s condominium markets, but to far less a degree than widely thought, according to an annual review of the housing market by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.

About 23 per cent of Toronto’s condo stock was being rented out by investor-owners in 2012, says the federal housing watchdog in its annual Canadian Housing Observer review which places a special focus on the national condo market this year, revealing some interesting details.

The fact less than a quarter of Toronto’s condo units have become rental apartments, rather than home ownership suites, is likely to surprise local housing experts, economists and realtors who have come to believe that investors make up at least 40 per cent of the condo market and own up to 90 per cent of the units in some downtown skyscrapers close to transit lines….

….And women dominate sales centres: They made up 65 per cent of all owner-occupied condominiums in 2011, and accounted for 76 per cent of owners aged 55 or older.




What $390,000 Will Buy You Across The Country

That old golden rule of real estate — location, location, location — is probably more true in Canada than just about anywhere else.

From frighteningly expensive Vancouver to the almost suspiciously affordable Trois-Rivieres, Que., this is a country with a multitude of very different housing markets.

Like the people in those cities, the housing markets are dealing with differing economic circumstances. Though it certainly does seem to be the case, at the moment, that an east-west divide has opened up.



The 1856 panorama of Toronto

The Toronto panorama of 1856 might just be one of the coolest things I’ve come across during my digging through archival photos of Toronto. In fact, it’s one of those things that I’m surprised I hadn’t stumbled across before. As I was trying to determine whether or not there was enough compelling material to extend our series of historical photo posts on Toronto, I noticed that the Wikimedia Commons was particularly loaded with material from the year 1856 in what was otherwise a pretty sparse decade for their holdings.




The 38 Most Haunting Abandoned Places On Earth. For Some Reason, I Can’t Look Away… [Photos]

These real life ruins offer an eerie glimpse into a world without humans. Their dark walls inspire a sense of wonder like I’ve never felt before.




Bathrooms of the Future: 10 Hot New Trends [Photos]

Bathrooms are serious business. Whereas kitchens have a dimension of showmanship, bathrooms are all for us – they’re our private sanctuaries, our mini-spas, our personal temples where we peacefully commune with our thoughts and feelings…while picking our zits and stuff.

But seriously, if a bathroom reno is in your future, feast your eyes on the most up-to-datebathroom designs, that are sure to capture your imagination.




‘Frost quakes’ blamed after Toronto residents wake to loud booming in the night

The extreme cold is leaving Toronto with a bang rather than a whimper as residents around the GTA report loud booming sounds in the night that may be caused by “frost quakes.”

People reported noises loud enough to wake them up as temperatures dipped below -20.

The booms occur when moisture in the ground freezes and expands, putting pressure on ice and rock. This pressure is ultimately released with a loud boom and the rock cracks.




Freezing pipes: Six tips to avoid a giant homeowner’s headache

Plunging temperatures have the potential to create a headache for homeowners who may face the possible risk of freezing pipes if appropriate measures aren’t taken.

Ralph Suppa, president and general manager of The Canadian Institute of Plumbing & Heating, shares tips on how to help prevent the problem from arising.