Ontario's Expansion on Rent Control

21 April 2017

Why the Government’s sudden preoccupation with rent controls? The media has reported two cases where the landlord doubled the rent from $1600 to get rid of a tenant. The current rules of the Rental Tribunal make it very difficult to evict a tenant for non-payment of rent or for carrying out illegal activities. This is the only resort for landlords to get a speedy resolution. In both instances, the landlord needed to sell the unit as vacant. We can tell you that landlords value good tenants and want to keep them. By keeping a good tenant, you avoid vacancy costs and you save on leasing commissions. Good tenants can usually get rents below market for these reasons. But there are more tenant voters than landlords. Hence, we have rent controls which will not be good for tenants in the long term.

Market Report April-May 2017

21 April 2017

Paranoia seems to have set in with the rapid rise in real estate prices over the past year – almost 30% year over year.

Can 'Coming Soon' Signs Hurt Sellers?

11 April 2017

"Coming soon", what is that suppose to mean?! I've heard of "for sale" and "sold" and even "sold conditionally", but "coming soon"? Coming Soon means a listing has been signed, it's coming to MLS, but no one can do anything but look at the sign. Does this work for the Listing Agent? Absolutely, they're hoping for sign calls. The Agent wants to line up potential buyers, maybe even take them through the property when no one else can. Does this help the Seller; after all, this is what it's all about? Not really. Do you think potential Buyers will see the "coming soon" sign and stop looking at other properties? Not likely. If I was a Seller, I would get it on the market right away, or I would get my ducks in a row and make a big splash putting my property on MLS.

Form 244: The Solution to Bully Offers

04 April 2017

In a hot real estate market, Bully Offers are the biggest problem, not just for Buyers, but for Agents too. In every listing primed for multiple offers the Broker remarks say, "no offers until 7pm on such-and-such a date" then… guess what? A Bully Offer arrives 10 days early and the Seller wants to consider it. Now the Listing Agent has to race around to phone every other Agent who has booked an appointment to tell them the good news, or the bad news. We feel that if a property is primed for multiple offers, then that is the way it should be sold. Listing Agents complain that they did not want to entertain Bully Offers, but the Seller changed their mind. However, there is now a specific OREA form to solve the problem. It's called Form 244: A Sellers Direction in Property Offers.

Toronto Condo Market Report March-April 2017

22 March 2017

ebruary sales on the Toronto Real Estate Board were up by 5.7% over February of last year – a slower increase than any month in almost a year.

Conditional Clauses when Buying a Property

15 March 2017

Every offer usually has some sort of conditions and they're all written for the benefit of the buyer. Take financing for instance, why is it written as "financing satisfactory to the buyer"? What does that mean, a 0% interest rate or 100% financing? No, the clause should state what type of financing is being arranged, not a clause that's open ended for the buyer to change their mind and walk away. What about a status certificate? It usually reads "to be approved by the sole option of the Lawyer". You know, most Lawyers can't even read a Status Certificate. I had one Lawyer tell me that he did not want his client to buy a condo, so he would not waive it. Once again, the clause is not to be used as an 'out clause', but rather to insure that the Condo Corporation can meet its financial obligations.

What's In Store for Toronto's Crazy Real Estate Market?

06 March 2017

Everyone is talking about our crazy real estate market, and in particular prices, they're up 20% in just 4 months. You know I've been in this business for over 30 years (can't you tell) and I've never seen anything like this. But, I'm not alarmed about the level of today's prices, rather the rate of increase. Toronto prices are not out of line with other major cities in the world. Will prices level off? Yes, they always do. Will prices fall? No. The only time prices fall are when people are forced to sell when they can't afford their mortgage and mortgage rates are not rising anytime soon. If you think individuals have a problem with their debt levels, just look at our Governments, they're in even worse shape. We live in a high tax country.

How to Compete and Win in a Bidding War

27 February 2017

Today's market is dominated with multiple offer sales. Many people have to make 6-8 offers to finally land that property. So, how do you compete and win in this market. Here are 5 easy steps to follow. 1.Market Analysis First, realize that many properties are under priced to attract multiple offers. You should first do a market analysis to determine the market price of the property. 2. No Conditions Secondly, you need to go in with no conditions. Get a home inspection or status certificate ahead of time. Make sure you have financing for the price you want to pay. 3. Big Deposit Come in with a big deposit. The norm is 5% so come with 10%. 4. Save Some for Round Two Usually there will be two rounds of bidding. Save something for the second round. 5. Pick a Maximum Number Pick a maximum number you will pay for ... Read More

Market Report February-March 2017

22 February 2017

The Toronto Real Estate Board no longer publishes mid-month sales numbers hence we are forced to guess the market going forward, based only on January results.

Buying & Selling Assignments

10 February 2017

The Assignment market for condos is making a big come back. There are two reasons for this: First, there is a lack of resale condos to buy, forcing many people to look at the assignment market. Secondly, with tougher mortgage qualifications, many investors who bought pre-construction condos 3 to 4 years ago may not be able to close and will want to sell. While the opportunities are great and you can probably avoid the multiple offer scenario, the market is hard to track. Assignments are not usually found on MLS but are exclusive and the contracts can be difficult. Assignments are not really selling a property, it may look like that, but really it's just selling the paper. The paper is, the right to buy an option to close on a sale with a developer made 3 or 4 years earlier.