This was about 3 years ago, when I was living in a condo with my wife and newly born baby Olive. We were in a 1 bedroom condo that was 623 sqft. This was fine before we had Olive. Once she came along her things took up more than half of our space. There were bouncers and rockers and mats and sterilizers and many other things that were gifted to us. How does a little 5 month old baby have so many things??
Our mortgage was coming up at the end of the year so we decided we wanted to move into a larger home. House maintenance was definitely something we didn’t have the time or patience for. As a Toronto Realtor I worked 6 days a week and my wife Carey had her hands full with taking care of Olive and our home. We finally agreed that a condo townhouse would be the best choice for where we were in our lives.
We knew we needed a minimum of 2 bedrooms with more space in the communal areas. Access to the subway was a necessity as we have only 1 car and Carey needed to be mobile with a stroller. Being a Toronto Realtor, I knew the perfect area to invest our money. We started to focus our search in the Junction Triangle. Prices were still very affordable in this area and it was along the Bloor subway line. I knew that this part of Toronto would be going through a lot of price appreciation soon; as it was situated next to the Junction, Roncesvalles and High Park.
One way for me to measure the pricing in a neighborhood is to see if there are any Coffee Time coffee shops in the area. If there are, then prices in the neighborhood will generally be “Toronto affordable”. Once the Starbucks moves in, prices would have jumped up a considerable amount and affordability is thrown out the window. The Junction Triangle still had Coffee Times, with a couple of strip joints thrown in for good measure.
There were only a couple of townhouse complexes that matched our criteria. A 3 bedroom plus loft townhouse became available one morning. I called Carey immediately and started to draft up the offer. I called the agent to book the showing and was given confirmation right away. Carey, with Olive strapped to her, joined me for the showing. It was the PERFECT home for us. It had 3 bedrooms, a loft, en-suite bathroom in the master and a private rooftop terrace with a BBQ hook up!
Being a Toronto realtor and seeing many of these homes I knew that the list price was bang on. I called the agent immediately to present the offer. His client was leaving for Montreal in a couple of hours and I knew if we didn’t get the deal done before she leaves, there was going to be multiple offers on this townhouse. We actually waited in the townhouse for the agent and his seller to return to the house. We negotiated very quickly and ended up firming up the deal shortly that week.
It was definitely a great decision as our neighbour after just 3 short years sold for $200,000 more than what we paid. We’re quite happy here but are toying with the idea to buy a freehold home. This might be a story for a blog in the future :).
Thanks again for reading my ramblings.
Written by Kevin Yu