If you are considering hiring a Toronto property management company, you may not be sure exactly what such a company does. The responsibilities of a property manager can provide property owners with a number of benefits.Read more
Every experienced real estate investor realizes the importance of having a commercial property management company handling the day to day operations of their investment assets. Most investors also have ties to property investment brokerages to help them navigate the various real estate markets and make smart, informed investment decisions.
New Commercial Real Estate Investment Trend
There is a new trend in development now, however, which is proving to be incredibly efficient. It is gaining popularity very quickly, as more and more investors are catching on to how incredibly convenient it is. To make a long story short, we are talking about having your property management as your main local advisor on real estate investment.
This has become so self-evident that many are now wondering, how is it that we missed this natural connection from the start? A Toronto commercial property management company is naturally positioned in a way that allows it direct detailed knowledge of the local market.
Most companies manage the assets of multiple investors and know exactly how well each property is doing in all its aspects:
1. How much it costs to maintain
2. How long it takes to populate
3. How high is the tenant turnover
4. How the rent had changed over time
5. How good is the neighborhood
6. What kind of tenants to expect
7. If a given property is problematic
8. And much more.
Whenever you are searching on a specific market, a local property management company is your best advisor – it is practically embedded in the market itself. A Toronto property manager with years of experience can evaluate a property pretty much at a glance, identifying problems and assessing renovation and maintenance costs on the spot.
The Local Real Estate Market Insiders
Moreover, having a constant ear on the ground, so to speak, Toronto company management companies are the first to find out about hot real estate deals and are best positioned to negotiate their price. Whereas a regular investment broker needs to run a search, a property manager can serve as your connection to a multitude of investment properties all over the GTA more or less immediately.
Last but not least, when you are looking for commercial property for investment, you will also likely need a management company to run it. Taking our advice on this will save you time and effort by getting a 2 in 1 deal.
Having a property management company advise you on GTA investment properties is a smart move. Contact us now to find out more!Read more
Houses to Rent in Toronto Suburbs – Real Estate Toronto
Toronto Real Estate Market Feb 2016 — Top Performing Areas
View The GTA’s top performing housing markets in a full screen map
Toronto’s Suburbs are becoming increasingly popular–and with good reason!
It was another record-breaking month for the Toronto Real Estate Market and the rest of the GTA. With conditions being as tight as they are in the city, it’s not surprising that properties in the suburbs are going fast–and fetching a pretty penny too! We ranked areas in the GTA according to their price increase, highest selling prices, largest sales increase, and least expensive.
Biggest Price Increase
Avg. Price 2015: $789,730
Avg. Price 2014:$658,358
Year-Over-Year % Change: 20
Avg. Price 2015: $618,498
Avg. Price 2014: $531,376
Year-Over-Year % Change: 16.4
- Richmond Hill
Avg. Price 2015: $886,773
Avg. Price 2014: $762,219
Year-Over-Year % Change: 16.4
Largest Sales Increase
Avg. Price 2015: $596,379
Total Sales 2015: 2,038
Total Sales 2014: 1,570
Year-Over-Year % Change: 23
Avg. Price 2015: $746,715
Total Sales 2015: 1,087
Total Sales 2014: 927
Year-Over-Year % Change: 14.7
Avg. Price 2015: $410,915
Total Sales 2015: 1,043
Total Sales 2014: 897
Year-Over-Year % Change: 14
Fastest Selling Homes
Avg. Price 2015: $491,035
Avg. DOM 2015: 13
Avg. Price 2015: $488,304
Avg. DOM 2015: 15
Avg. Price 2015: $618,498
Avg. DOM 2015: 17
Most Expensive Homes
Avg. Price 2015: $1,006,701
- Richmond Hill
Avg. Price 2015: $886,773
Avg. Price 2015: $831,088
Least Expensive Homes
Avg. Price 2015: $349,797
Avg. Price 2015: $392,101
Avg. Price 2015: $410,915
Why is Spring 2016 the Best Time to Sell a House in Toronto? Just take a look at historical Toronto Housing Prices for this time of year.
It’s hard to believe that February is already over and Spring will be here in just three weeks. Like many Torontonians, Realtors love this time of year, not only because of rising temperatures but because it’s the best time to sell a home. Any seasoned Toronto Real Estate Agent will agree that certain seasons are more favourable to sell a house than others. Oftentimes, the transition between cold months to warmer months sparks something in buyers, and with the current condition of the Toronto Real Estate Market, this couldn’t be truer. In fact, it’s in the Spring when Toronto housing prices increase and homes sell at or above asking price. Furthermore, the amount of time they on the market is significantly short when compared to other seasons. We’re still in a seller’s market, and the pent-up demand from buyers is exceeding the supply of Houses for Sale in the Toronto. While warmer temperatures do have an impact on home sales, but there are a few other reasons people want to shell out a few extra dollars for a house in the Spring.
- Most families prefer to purchase a home in the Spring because that leaves them with ample time to register their kids in new schools. When it’s time to close, it will be relatively early in the summer, you most likely won’t have to deal with a heat wave when packing moving boxes.
- Spring is a great time to showcase your home as well. With the snow finally gone, lawns are visible and houses just appear to be more attractive in the spring. There are no sub-zero temperatures or icy driveways to deter buyers from venturing outside of their homes. By the end of March, some annual flowers will be in fresh bloom and trees will begin to bud, and a feeling of a new beginning will be in the air.
- With holiday debts and bills finally paid off, buyers are in higher spirits and aren’t as stressed about making a big purchase. Additionally, most buyers will have the benefit of a tax return in the Spring–this is especially helpful for first-time buyers who are feeling the impact of the increase in the minimum down payment. Remember, many people are entering the market for the first time, so be ready for people who are on the hunt for condos for sale in Toronto.
- Competition among buyers is very stiff, and they’re willing to bid to the very end. Bidding wars occur most frequently in the Spring than at any other time of year because home buyers want the perfect move-in date. Use this to your advantage to ensure you make the most of your home sale.
Although Spring isn’t officially here until the Equinox on March 20, it’s definitely sprung early for buyers in the Greater Toronto Area. If you’re planning on selling your house, now is the perfect time to consult your GTA Real Estate Agent. The window of opportunity is wide open, so take advantage of it before other sellers start adding to the mix. While the market conditions will guarantee your house will sell, you want to get the best dollar for it.Read more
Setting Clear Goals: FINANCIAL RESOLUTIONS 2016
It’s that time of year when many of us are feeling the holiday bloat from all the festive cheer we partook over the past month and are now considering our new year’s resolutions. While many of us are adding “lose weight,” “eat healthier” or “get to the gym four times a week,” we often forget that we’ve made these resolutions in the past, and were lucky if we stuck to them for more than a month. With 2016 quickly approaching, now is the perfect time to take a look at our spending habits over the past year to assess where we are financially, and set some clear goals or money resolutions for the new year. As some goals, such as planning your retirement may affect your loved ones, it would be best to sit down with your family to discuss them. Not only will your family be aware of your goals, but they can acts as accountability partners if you fall off track. Here is a list of some resolutions that you might want to add to your list—also, eating healthier is always a good resolution.
- Create a new budget
You and your family may have experienced a significant change in 2015, such as a new baby, purchasing your first home, or helping your child through her first year at university. Playing the guessing game can be tough as we might not know how things will play out until several months have passed, but try your best to sit down with a pen and paper and write out your expenses in as great detail as possible. Although it’s important to revisit your budget annually, try to visit it quarterly as this might help you adjust expenditures accordingly.
- Take advantage of TFSA and RRSP contribution room
If you haven’t maxed out your contributions in the past and have some money kicking around, why not place it in a TFSA or RRSP. Maybe you’ve landed a new job or received a promotion—and are receiving a higher income than last year. A smart way to ensure that money gets set aside is to set up preauthorized transfers to your TFSA and RRSP. You’ll thank yourself when tax time rolls around in 2017 and also feel accomplished knowing you’ve contributed to your nest egg or retirement.
- Reevaluate your mortgage situation
Will your mortgage term be coming to an end before you have your house paid off? If you have three years left on your amortization, but paying off your home won’t be possible for another four years, you might want to consider refinancing options. Chances are mortgage rates are not going to get any lower than they are now, and if your term is up in four years, who knows how high the interest rates will be. Reassess your situation, take advantage of low lending rates and breathe a sigh of relief knowing you’re making the most out of one of your biggest investments—your home.
- Teach your kids about budgeting
Whether you have a son in middle school or a daughter in university, it’s never too early to teach your child about the importance of budgeting. Take some time to sit down with your young one to discuss his or her allowance. If they’ve been itching to get that bike that Santa didn’t leave in their stocking, you can teach them how to put away a portion of their allowance, birthday money, or money from their paper route to buy that bike. If your child wants a bike by June, he would have five months to save for it. On top of lunch money, entertainment, a long-term savings account and even donations (we should teach our kids about philanthropy), figure out what is left every month/week and how much of it needs to go to the bike. For those of us with older kids off at university, check in to discuss their plans after post-secondary, as well as how much debt has been accumulated. Depending on the financial institution and repayment terms, help your child prepare for the next step after graduation. If your child is lucky enough to land a job after he or she graduates and if you’re planning on helping him/her with their payments, discuss a fair amount that needs to go directly to paying their debt.
- Purchase an investment property
If you’ve been considering buying a rental property, early 2016 would be a fantastic time to do so. With rock-bottom lending rates that will undoubtedly rise in the near future, purchasing a multi-dwelling house is something you might want to consider. Investing rental in Toronto or the GTA can be a source of residual income with the population of the GTA rising with young professionals. If you have any questions, talk to a real estate investment expert who will point you in the right direction. Also, make sure you hire a property manager to ensure your rental home is in good hands.
- Hey, Big Saver!
Some people are great at saving and before they know it, they have a piggy bank that’s bursting at the seams. If you find yourself maxing out your RRSP and TFSA contributions, and are satisfied with your investments, why not plan a paradise getaway or donate to your favourite cause. Treating yourself now and then never hurts, however, using your money toward meaningful experiences with your loved ones will create memories that are priceless.
The Priority Pyramid
Remember that when making a financial plan it’s wise to follow a priority pyramid to help employ the best strategies to successfully complete Operation: Financial Resolutions 2016.Read more
Are Mortgage Rates in Canada on the Rise?
In an announcement made last week by Toronto Real Estate Board President Mark McClean, GTA home sales showed the best results on record to date. With 8,804 home sales reported through TREB’s MLS® system, October was a favourable month for Greater Toronto Area REALTORS®.
Additionally, The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) Composite Benchmark was up by 10.3 per cent year over year in October. Over the same period, the average selling price for all home types combined was up by 7.3 per cent to $630,876. Price growth continued to be driven by the low-rise market segments.
Source: Toronto Real Estate Board
Although sales are robust and predicted to climb in the upcoming year, some believe that the province-wide municipal land transfer tax that the Wynne government plans to introduce could affect the market. When asked their opinions on the new tax, the vast majority of Ontario residents surveyed opposed it.
In mortgage-related news, Stats Canada released new data on the labour force, which showed improvement during the month of October. A total of 44,000 new jobs were created, the majority of which, however, were part-time. There was also a substantial increase in employment in the manufacturing sector, which shows hope for the state of our Loonie. If this trend continues, we could head toward a more sustainable economy. How does this all affect mortgage rates? It is predicted it is less likely that we will experience another cut in the Bank of Canada’s lending rate, and mortgage rates will eventually rise. Last week, five-year fixed mortgage rates increased across the board and range between 2.54% to 2.69%. There is no need to worry, as there is no sign of a significant spike, just a more optimistic outlook for our economy. Another contributing factor to a change in rates is what our neighbours to the south are planning—it’s a matter of time before their rates go up, and inevitably, we must follow suit.Read more
The Municipal Land Transfer Tax is coming to a town near you, and most likely, your town as well.
The dreaded Municipal Land Transfer Tax (MLTT) might be spreading across Ontario as an additional taxation measure backed by the Liberal Government. This tax will be on top of the existing Provincial Land Transfer Tax (PLTT) levied upon closing a land or property transaction in Ontario. As a buyer, the amount you paid for the land as well as your mortgage or remaining debt related to the purchase of the property are factors that determine the tax payable.
In 2007, Toronto City Council approved the Municipal Land Transfer Tax to the dismay of Realtors® and hopeful residents alike. Currently, Toronto is the only city in the province that levies an additional tax on top of the Provincial Land Transfer Tax. Although the MLTT has caused some homebuyers to consider, properties outside of the city, buyers in Toronto seem to be more accepting of the tax as of late. In a competitive market where the cost of an average detached home is over $1 million, what’s another $15,000 in municipal taxes?
Several Realtors® are up in arms about the possibility of the Liberals moving forward with this decision, as it may have a significant impact on the housing marketing in cities outside of Toronto. Although Toronto’s housing market is robust, during its first five years, the MLTT is said to be responsible for a severe decline in home sales. The Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA) is requesting that the Liberals reconsider giving municipalities the power to levy this tax. Homebuyers in Ontario can expect this new tax to implement as early as next year, and if the Liberals do follow through with the policy change, Ontario will become North America’s most taxed jurisdiction.
As investors, what can we do to prepare for this? Not much, however, we can expect increased competition in housing markets in the surrounding GTA, especially luxury homes in York Region. With the policy change looming near, there is even more incentive to invest in property on the outskirts of Toronto. Do the suburbs suddenly sound more appealing? We think so too.Read more
Just listed! A Five Bedroom detached home, in one of Toronto’s SPOOKIEST neighbourhoods. Would you buy it?
Even a Haunted House in Toronto would sell in this market! Have a Happy Halloween!Read more
Does 2015 CMHC Fourth Quarter Report support promises made by the Liberals?
Members of the media had full plates for the majority of October–Between the Federal election and Post-Season baseball, it’s been difficult to cover much else. Now, with Trudeau’s win and the Blue Jays’ loss, Canadian consumers can set their sights back on the health of our Economy–and the future of the Housing Sector.
This morning, the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation released its Fourth Quarter report, which includes economic forecasts for 2016 and 2017. For those who recall promises made during the 78-day federal campaign, this report may offer some insight on what’s to come in 2016 and 2017. A highlight of the report focused on migration to Ontario, with the increase of new residents expected to outpace other parts of the country. Despite modest movement in recent years, Ontario’s economy is predicted to gain momentum in 2016 and 2017. Improving business conditions and expansion will increase hiring in the province, enabling job growth to rise to 1.6 per cent and 1.3 per cent in 2016 and 2017, as well as the unemployment rate to hover around 6.5 and 6.4 per cent respectively. This is one contributing factor to the appeal Ontario has to migrants, both nationally and internationally.
The CMHC quarterly report could not have been released at a more appropriate time. Following the federal election and Trudeau’s win, we can better gauge what type of action we’ll see in the housing sector. During their campaign, the Liberals focused on the best interests of the middle class; the high-tax battle, maximizing savings, and the accessibility of affordable housing. The high cost of housing in hubs such as Toronto and Vancouver has limited home ownership to those whose incomes far surpass the national average. In response to this issue, the Liberals propose new incentives for first-time homebuyers, including breaks on mortgage policies, as well increased amortization periods. To the discerning consumer, the promises sound more like suggestions, as nothing has been set in stone. Additionally, the Liberals propose to make changes to the Home Buyers’ Plan. Implemented in 1992, the Home Buyers’ Plan (HBP) allows Canadian residents to withdraw up to $25,000 from their RRSPs, tax-free to use toward the down payment of their first home. Participants of the HBP are given 15 years to replenish the amount withdrawn from their RRSPs. Although the withdraw limit isn’t expected to increase, the Liberal party proposes to make the HBP more accessible, by opening up eligibility beyond first-time homebuyers. Although interest rates are forecast to rise, the increase would be slight at worst, and are not expected to have a substantial impact on home buying.
Good news for Investors and Renters
Benefits that are also included in Trudeau’s plans surround the 10-year investment in social housing infrastructure, focusing on affordable housing and facilities dedicated to seniors. The investment will fund new buildings, as well as refurbish existing housing. As an investor, you will experience tax breaks and new capital investments will not be charged GST. This initiative is to encourage the construction of new affordable rental housing, as well as converting other multi-dwelling units and freehold homes into rentals.
It is predicted that high-rise unit ownership and rental demand will continue to be supported by first-time buyers with limited funds, as well an influx of Baby Boomers, who are looking for a maintenance-free lifestyle. Resale housing will remain vigorous over the course of the forecast, with numbers ranging between 193,000 and 225,000 units in 2016, before easing to the range of 175,000 to 220,000 units in 2017. Ontario home prices are predicted to grow, however, at a slower rate than previous years. This is due to a more balanced market, an increase in new listings, and the demand for more cost-effective housing options such as condominiums and townhomes. For Investors looking to expand their portfolios, this report, coupled with the results of the recent election should be kept in consideration when purchasing an income property. With several consumers turning toward more affordable housing options, new condominium and purpose-built rental segment are predicted to be solid investments.Read more
The Ugly Duckling — Transforming an Unattractive Investment Property into a Beautiful Swan
If you’ve been itching to purchase an investment property in Toronto, then you probably know that pickings have been pretty slim lately. Move-in ready houses with curb appeal are often the subject of bidding wars and come with a hefty price tag. The thought of owning a property that will generate immediate rental income is ideal, however, after weighing the pros and cons, and taking price into consideration is it really worth it?
Enter the ugly duckling: The legal triplex that is in need of some TLC. It’s in a fantastic neighbourhood, however, it contains a unit that smells like several unappetizing meals were cooked in it and has carpet that dates back to the early eighties. Overall, it’s not a pretty sight, and you’re uninterested. These are signs of poor property management. Before you move on to the next house, consider this: The property wasn’t built with a smell reminiscent of burnt dinners past, and at one point, that carpet was new. The point is, if you ask anyone involved in property management, we can tell you about some of the most luxurious spaces that have been destroyed in a matter of months due to one bad tenant — we can also tell you have quickly we’ve cleaned them up and made them move-in ready by the next month.
If you’re willing to look past the cosmetic issues and focus on numbers, taking on a property that was poorly managed isn’t such a bad idea. This can often save you money on the initial investment, and after hiring a reputable property management to turn it around, you will then be able to increase the rent and earn a profit.
Signs Poor Property Management
1. Units Not Prepared For Renting – If the state of a unit makes you ask yourself “Who would want to live here?” after viewing it, then you know it’s been poorly managed.
2. Not taking accountability – If the previous managers blame the condition of the property on a bad area or bad tenants, they’re trying to draw your attention away from the real problem – bad management.
3. Vacancy – if there are six units, and two of them have been vacant for months, that’s never a good sign.
4. High Turnover – If the previous landlord couldn’t keep tenants because a) they were unhappy with the living conditions or b) they weren’t paying their rent, then those are both signs of bad property management.
As an investor, signs of bad management can mean dollar signs in the future. Unfortunately, you can’t change the location of a building or a property’s layout without major renovation. You can, however, change your property management company. It should be common sense to anyone that apartments should be clean, painted and livable by decent people’s standards if you want to rent them to decent people.
Returns on property investments shouldn’t require rocket science. Simplified, well-maintained properties yield great results. This includes responsible tenants who are properly screened, which results in higher rents, no vacancies and low-turnover. By hiring a reputable Toronto property management company, you can turn an ugly duckling into a beautiful swan, and attract the type of tenants you want to rent to. Toronto is a huge metropolitan city, and although there may not be thousands of investment properties to choose from, there are thousands of responsible, income-generating tenants to choose from. Sometimes the best returns are the ones that come from the most unexpected sources.Read more