Investment Condos Fueling Market Growth

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While this update is meant to be real-estate related, on a larger scale, nothing is more important than the freedoms we have as a result of the lives lost and affected from defending their country.  I was at a sporting event yesterday where everything stopped at 11am.  The participants came together and took off their hats.  We stood solemnly reflecting on the sacrifices our troops made while the bugle play The Last Post. After spending that past year and a half of the pandemic often secluded, it was touching to be together to honour our veterans.

As clocks fell back an hour last weekend, the diminishing daylight typically spells the end of the fall real estate season.  Toronto’s autumn real estate market ended with a bang as October’s results showed price increases across all types of housing amidst tight supply.

One sector fueling the real estate market is the investment condo market.  The CMHC estimates that Toronto’s vacancy rate is 1.7% as of September 2021.  The table below provides a 3-year perspective of the apartment rental market.

Key observations:

  1. Rental rates have risen throughout 2021 but have not reached pre-pandemic rental rates.
  2. The mix of apartments that have been leased has remained steady. Bachelor: 5%, One BR: 60%, Two BR: 32%, Three BR: 3%
  3. Dramatic increase of units listed and leased from 2019 compared to 2021. There have been 60% more apartments leased and 71% more available to lease during this time.

The expectation is that as the economy opens up and Canada’s commitment to increase immigration will further tighten the rental market which will lead to rental rates surpassing those pre-pandemic.

Eventually, just about all homeowners get to the point where they think about moving. Some want to upsize, some want to downsize, while others just want a change.

And now, over to Shen…

Shen Shoots the Breeze

This past weekend we went up to our friend’s cottage in the Muskokas. The views were stunning with the colourful foliage and it felt like we had the lake to ourselves with nary a boat in sight.

We were also there to lend a hand with closing the cottage for the season. What we learned is there is a lot of work that needs to properly winterize so as to keep possible pests from making it their home and avoid water damage due to sub-zero temperatures.

While urban properties require way less work to prepare for winter, it would be wise to use the daylight savings weekend to check off the following items:

  1. Change the batteries for your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.
  2. Clear your exterior pipes of excess water and wrap up your garden hoses. If water in your pipes freeze, it can expand and you could experience water leakage.
  3. Eavestrough and roof. Clean out the leaves from your eavestrough. You should do this twice a year even if you have gutter guards. Full eaves and clogged downspouts are a major source of basement water leaks. Inspect your roof for any missing or loose shingles. It’s much easier to have them replaced when there’s no snow on the roof.
  4. Garden and backyard stuff. Pack up your patio furniture/umbrella, removeable garden lights and accessories for the season. Rake up all the leaves and if weather permits do one last mow. It’s much easier to rake up dry leaves than to wait til Spring when they’re all wet and muddy. This is also a good time to plant your bulbs. Drain the gas out of your gardening equipment if applicable.
  5. Check your windows and doors for any leaks. This will improve the heating efficiency in your home and will save on heating bills.
  6. Have your furnace inspected. Nothing worse than having your furnace break down on the coldest day of winter.
  7. Trim your bushes and trees. Remove any dead bushes or trees that are located close to your house to prevent them from possibly falling over if too much snow accumulates on them – they may damage your exterior or windows. Another reason to trim them is that if branches are too close to the house, critters may use them as gangplanks to access openings in your home (and maybe your warm attic) during the winter.
  8. Not related to your house, but now’s a good time to get your winter tires on, purchase salt and anti-freeze before the first snowfall of the season.

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