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Toronto real estate experts say now is the time to rent a condo before prices go up again – blogTO

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New condo developments keep on popping up in Toronto despite the fact that the market for the housing type has softened quite dramatically over the course of the pandemic while sales and costs of single-family homes continue to skyrocket.

Condos are the only subgroup that has seen prices drop year-over-year, with investors who bought pre-construction scrambling to sell off their units in the face of new Airbnb restrictions, lower travel and immigration rates, an exodus of people moving out of the downtown core and a forthcoming vacant home tax.

As a result, there has been a surge in condo supply, with micro-condos in particular flooding the market and driving down average rent prices in the city for the first year in many.

It’s a trend that has gone on for many months, but won’t continue for long, experts say, meaning that now may be the end of the best time to purchase or sign a lease to rent a condo before things bounce back.

Canadian real estate website Zoocasa has made its official predictions for the New Year, one of which is the fact that the industry will see more of a return to normal.

“Based on today’s expectations of an approved COVID-19 vaccine being rolled out in the coming weeks and months, plus an entire real estate industry that now has experience safely working within the framework of COVID-19 as we know it, buyers and sellers can expect for more traditional real estate cycles to reemerge in 2021,” the company states, noting that the market will be fiercest in spring and fall.

It also forecasts increased demand in the rental market following the re-opening of the Canada-U.S. border and the return of international students, vacationers and newcomers to the country.

“If a renter is looking to get into a beautiful, trendy downtown condo at a prime location, now is a great time to lock it in,” Toronto Zoocasa agent Andrew Kim said in a release.

“If the border opens up, and life begins to trend closer to what it was like pre-pandemic as a result of the vaccine, we can expect demand for rentals to grow again in city centres, particularly in the latter half of the year.”

Pundits at Royal LePage likewise expect the landscape to flip back to a sellers’ market come spring 2021 for all housing types, while TorontoRentals.com and Bullpen Research & Consulting say in their latest GTA Rent Report that rent prices will continue falling until mid-next year.

After that point, they expect prices to increase again, spiking more severely in 2022 — meaning the window to take advantage of cheaper rents and condo prices may only last for a few more months.

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What $500,000 buys in today's Canadian real estate market – Vancouver Sun

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This home is located at 80 Jenkins Drive in Killarney Road, New Brunswick.
This home is located at 80 Jenkins Drive in Killarney Road, New Brunswick. Photo by Courtesy Rebecca Steeves /PNG

Killarney Road, New Brunswick

80 Jenkins Drive ($499,900)

Located a four-minute drive from Fredericton, this New Brunswick home is reminiscent of a New England farmhouse. The five-bedroom, 3.5 bathroom two-storey features red cedar shingles and tiled floors and, in the kitchen, red shaker cabinetry with accent glass doors, stone backsplash, porcelain floors and new appliances. The kitchen opens to a formal dining room with red pine plank floors. A spacious living room and den/potential bedroom complete the main level. The upper level offers a newly refinished bathroom with porcelain floors, tub/shower with white subway tile and three bedrooms. A large master comes with a private ensuite, complete with large vanity, soaker tub, tile shower and porcelain floors. The recently finished lower level includes a generous-sized family room, two more large bedrooms, and a third full bathroom, also with tub/shower with white subway tile. Outside, a back deck and two covered front porches look out on a landscaped yard.

This home is located at 2410 Rue Ste-Catherine E., in Montreal.
This home is located at 2410 Rue Ste-Catherine E., in Montreal. Photo by Courtesy César Balbin /PNG

Montreal

#202-2410 Rue Ste-Catherine E. ($499,700)

This two-bedroom, one-bath Montreal condo offers 1,232 square feet of open space with large bedrooms and a private 20′ x 8′ terrace. It’s located in the Ville Marie neighbourhood, home to Montreal’s central business district.

1420 Dupont St.
This home is located on 1420 Dupont St., in Toronto. Photo by Courtesy Cam Woolfrey /PNG

Toronto

#1112 -1420 Dupont St. ($499,900)

Located in the Junction Triangle in Toronto’s West End, this one-bedroom, one-bathroom condo features exposure to an abundance of natural light. Panoramic views of the city are on display from the bedroom and balcony. Freshly painted with upgraded bedroom storage and glass roller door, the unit is near shops and grocery stores as well as subway and transit. Parking included.

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These are the most affordable cities for real estate in Ontario – blogTO

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If you’re looking to take the dive into homeownership but, like the vast majority of us, can’t possibly afford housing in Toronto, there are a number of nearby cities where you can get more bang for your buck (and won’t have to spend a million dollars).

While prices have continued to skyrocket in Toronto and other parts of the GTA as if there isn’t a global pandemic and worldwide lockdowns taking place, there are parts of the province where homes can still be purchased for fairly reasonable prices.

Take Kingston, for example, just halfway between T.O. and Montreal and under two hours’ drive from Ottawa.

Known for being home to Queen’s University and the Kingston Penitentiary, the city of less than 200,000 people is rich with history and beautiful heritage architecture. It also has the benefits of low crime rates.

As noted by RE/MAX, the average price of a residential property sold in Kingston in 2020 was only $464,083, compared to a whopping $986,085 in Toronto — a huge difference that just may make the move a few hours east worth it.

Then, there’s somewhere like Windsor, the most southernmost locale in Ontario.

Separated by the Detroit River from the U.S. — which actually sits to the northwest of the city — the border crossing in Windsor is the busiest commercial land crossing between the two countries, meaning it’s bustling with Americans and provides easy access to the states.

Slightly larger than Kingston, Windsor is known for its auto industry and its cheap real estate, with houses in 2020 going for an average of just $406,861, which is actually way up from the year previous.

As the experts at RE/MAX state, “when you consider that this price will not get you any house or condominium in Toronto or Vancouver, this market could be considered a steal for first-time homebuyers.”

If you’re willing to move further north in the province, things get even cheaper, even while staying in an urban centre. The average home in Sudbury, an old mining settlement that’s a four-and-a-half hour drive north of Toronto, sold for a meagre $311,940 last year.

If you’re really looking for a steal but still want to live in an Ontario city, you’ll have to go another 11 hours northwest of even Sudbury, all the way to Thunder Bay, which has a population of around 120,000 and abuts Lake Superior. It is also known for its scenic views and nearby hiking trails where residents can get in touch with nature.

While Sudbury has a giant nickel, Thunder Bay is home to a giant curling rock, as well as the cheapest home prices in Ontario: just $248,462, on average. For comparison, you can buy a coveted parking spot in Toronto for a third of that price, or the average detached home for about $1.5 million.

But, with population forever on the rise and municipalities across the province growing, housing costs are expected to increase in many Ontario housing markets this year, some of them significantly, so things may not be so affordable for long.

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These are the most affordable cities for real estate in Ontario – blogTO

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If you’re looking to take the dive into homeownership but, like the vast majority of us, can’t possibly afford housing in Toronto, there are a number of nearby cities where you can get more bang for your buck (and won’t have to spend a million dollars).

While prices have continued to skyrocket in Toronto and other parts of the GTA as if there isn’t a global pandemic and worldwide lockdowns taking place, there are parts of the province where homes can still be purchased for fairly reasonable prices.

Take Kingston, for example, just halfway between T.O. and Montreal and under two hours’ drive from Ottawa.

Known for being home to Queen’s University and the Kingston Penitentiary, the city of less than 200,000 people is rich with history and beautiful heritage architecture. It also has the benefits of low crime rates.

As noted by RE/MAX, the average price of a residential property sold in Kingston in 2020 was only $464,083, compared to a whopping $986,085 in Toronto — a huge difference that just may make the move a few hours east worth it.

Then, there’s somewhere like Windsor, the most southernmost locale in Ontario.

Separated by the Detroit River from the U.S. — which actually sits to the northwest of the city — the border crossing in Windsor is the busiest commercial land crossing between the two countries, meaning it’s bustling with Americans and provides easy access to the states.

Slightly larger than Kingston, Windsor is known for its auto industry and its cheap real estate, with houses in 2020 going for an average of just $406,861, which is actually way up from the year previous.

As the experts at RE/MAX state, “when you consider that this price will not get you any house or condominium in Toronto or Vancouver, this market could be considered a steal for first-time homebuyers.”

If you’re willing to move further north in the province, things get even cheaper, even while staying in an urban centre. The average home in Sudbury, an old mining settlement that’s a four-and-a-half hour drive north of Toronto, sold for a meagre $311,940 last year.

If you’re really looking for a steal but still want to live in an Ontario city, you’ll have to go another 11 hours northwest of even Sudbury, all the way to Thunder Bay, which has a population of around 120,000 and abuts Lake Superior. It is also known for its scenic views and nearby hiking trails where residents can get in touch with nature.

While Sudbury has a giant nickel, Thunder Bay is home to a giant curling rock, as well as the cheapest home prices in Ontario: just $248,462, on average. For comparison, you can buy a coveted parking spot in Toronto for a third of that price, or the average detached home for about $1.5 million.

But, with population forever on the rise and municipalities across the province growing, housing costs are expected to increase in many Ontario housing markets this year, some of them significantly, so things may not be so affordable for long.

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