After a few weeks of panic over Toronto’s “bursting real estate bubble”, the media started to look deeper into the situation. Turns out, it makes more sense to look at the segments of the market separately: be it cottages, detached homes or condos, suburbs or properties next to the Downtown core. We’ve prepared a quick overview of the last week’s top stories to keep you updated.
Better Dwelling: Toronto Condos Get An Over 50% Price Hike In Some Neighborhoods
With the recent shift on the market, the condo and detached housing segments seem to follow rather different dynamics. Condo market is the fastest growing in Toronto with some neighbourhoods like Malvern/Rouge Valley area and Kennedy Park/Birchmount/Wexford-Maryvale area of Scarborough seeing price increases of over 50 per cent year-over-year. The benchmark condo apartment in Toronto is now worth $485,200, which indicates a 32.16% increase from the year before.
In line with the general real estate market slowdown, the average price of condos dropped from last month, but they are still seeing the highest increase compared to any other segment of housing.
Torontoism: Boomers Make Ontario’s Cottage Market Go Boom
There is a significant surge of baby boomers to Ontario’s resort areas heating up the market there. John Fincham, who specializes in selling cottages in areas like Muskoka, Parry Sound and Georgian Bay, says that this year has been exceptionally busy for him: “We were able to sell 50 percent more compared to the sales last year and this is just the beginning of the summer”. Most of the buyers are baby boomers not only looking for a holiday home but also planning to move permanently to the cottage country.
The main reason for this migration to the resort areas is the lifestyle that the lake cottages offer. As Richard Silver puts it, “As Toronto life becomes more hectic and busy, people have started looking for tranquility in the countryside, far from the ever-increasing crowd”.
Self-storage is booming in Canada. The industry is seeing the development of almost three dozen new sites in and around Toronto. Ottawa-based Dymon Storage is developing the largest storage facility in the world in the west Toronto’s Etobicoke, across the street from an Ikea.
Dymon storage is also trying to re-define the storage industry by placing their high-tech facilities in the Downtown instead of relegating them to the city margins. New self-storage facilities now increasingly feel like condos for stuff: they have music, WiFi, boardrooms and shredding services. The self-storage expansion is often associated with urban growth and the increase of condo living, which discourages clutter, and higher rents.
The industry observers are saying that Toronto’s real estate market is likely to rebound, just like the recent example of Vancouver showed. Their argument is mainly based on the large-scale economic factors: the economy is stable, inflation is low, the employment is improving and the population is growing – all of that suggests that the housing market should expand instead of collapsing. The most obvious threat to the economy could be the trade negotiations between Canada and the U.S., which might cause consumer anxiety.
Toronto market slowdown is expected to continue for a while before recovering though, while both buyers and sellers are figuring out how to react to the policy. However, the current downturn has its good sides as it gives governments some breathing room to reconsider the supply part of the equation.
The Globe and Mail: Growing up
It would be difficult to imagine before the beginning of the 2000s that Toronto warehouse district could turn into a bristling Shanghai of glass skyscrapers. And yet, more than 99 projects have been built, approved or pitched in King-Spadina district since 2004.
A development summary for the Entertainment District, which includes King-Spadina, shows more than 1.5 million square metres of residential space being added to the area. The number of people who call King-Spadina home is expected to double to 40,000-plus by 2020.
With such a high demand, the developers build even on small places like former parking lots. Some city leaders, including Jennifer Keesmaat, are concerned about the hyperdensity of the area. One the other hand, the residents enjoy much more lively neighbourhood with lots of restaurants, bars, theatres and shops.