August 2017 – Home of the Month – Parkdale

Buy of the Month, Roncesvalles Village

Welcome to our August 2017 Home of the Month! This feature provides a snapshot of what’s Buyers have recently purchased in the City of Toronto.

This month’s buy comes from Urbaneer team member James Ormston, who assisted Buyers who recently arrived to Canada from abroad, and have already begun building their real estate portfolio. Having only lived in Toronto a few years, these Buyers aren’t intimately familiar with many of the city’s neighbourhoods, so part of their learning curve has been determining which downtown communities – in proximity to preferred urban village amenities and green space – best suits their lifestyle and investment strategy.

The Buyers, a young professional couple with a growing family, seek well-situated well-built properties which offer the flexibility of being their principal family home with the added security of an accessory apartment, or alternately, an income property to form part of their real estate investment portfolio. They’re willing to undertake repairs and upgrades to ensure a property can generate its highest income and greatest potential.

So when Urbaneer’s Steve Fudge listed this 1960s mid-century modern dwell in prime Parkdale for $999,000, it caught their attention! And so it should, given the property featured solid construction, the potential to become a 2 or 3-unit income dwelling (dependent upon city approvals), and the opportunity to elevate it with intelligent upgrades!

With the offer day just around the corner, the Buyers required as much information as possible to complete their due diligence. In addition to personally viewing the property – and its generous 22 x 130 foot lot – and the presale home inspection, James sent the Buyers the recent comparable sales, a financial prospectus, and a cost benefit analysis to estimate the range of value for this ‘smart buy’ property based on different upgrade scenarios. In our experience, providing Buyers with a financial assessment based on their specific needs and requirements is the best way to provide the necessary context to evaluate a specific property – and, ultimately, proceed with greater confidence in an acquisition.



Analyzing Income & Expenses:

Here’s our framework for establishing value based on a property’s income & expenses:

1) Estimate the property’s present value based on how the property currently presents itself (“as-is”), using actual rents and accurate-as-possible expenses (i.e. property taxes, insurance costs, and utilities (heating, hydro, city water/waste).

2) Estimate the property’s future value based on how the property could potentially present itself, using projected figures for rent and expenses once upgraded and improved.

3) Factor in the necessary repairs, mid-grade upgrades and higher-end renovation costs necessary to garner low to top rents (we try to estimate as realistically as possible, acknowledging there may be hidden costs as is the case with so many renovations).

4) Create a pro-forma for the Buyers showing a range of expenses, incomes, and market values to compare and consider based on Items 1, 2 and 3 – so the Buyers could establish the price they were willing to pay based on their objectives.


Addressing Repairs, Upgrades and Renovations

For any dwelling, it’s important to outline the necessary repairs, upgrades and renovations as it relates to your immediate and long term needs and objectives. In this situation, the property required several immediate building component repairs and upgrades. Although maintained by the current owner throughout her ownership, the windows, roofing, and heating/cooling systems were approaching the end of their life span. Also, there was failing brickwork and moisture issues with the garage. According to the inspection report, the property required an immediate repairs of around $75,000.

With the property having the original kitchen – which was effectively obsolete – and two original washrooms, the property was ready for some immediate upgrades too. Also, if the Buyers were seeking to convert the dwelling to have one or two additional suites, then the property would require further improvements. An upgrade budget of around $125,000 would sufficiently elevate the property into a mid-grade income property with modern fittings and finishings.

As with all properties, there’s always an opportunity to renovate a property into its highest and best use, which could include substantial renovations, extensions or additions. In this situation, the dwelling only had one rear entrance from the lower level out onto the garden. Given both owners and tenants value outdoor space, this property presented the opportunity to add a multi-level deck tower so that each floor could have French doors to a generous garden terrace with exit stairs. For Buyers looking towards the long term in comfort and adding value, an additional budget of $75,000 would be a direction to make this an executive residence. One might go further – potentially adding skylights, higher grade finishes, and – ideally doing a full legal multi-unit retrofit. One could easily spend a further $100,000+ to align this property to others in the neighbourhood which are garnering sums towards $million.

If you’re interested in creating a repair, upgrade and renovation pro-forma here’s some of Steven’s essential must-reads:

Understanding The Six Layers Of Property

Dear Urbaneer: We’ve Moved In To Our New Home. Now What?

The Black House Financial Tally 

Dear Urbaneer: Help! We Want to Renovate, And Keep Our Relationship Intact

How To Strategically Purchase An Income Producing Property

Dear Urbaneer: What Are The Steps To Home Renovation?


Here are the real and estimated figures for the property shared with the Buyers:


The Buyers, using these figures, felt that the extent of the required repairs and upgrades – and the uncertainty of how costly the renovation could spike from delays, to  and unanticipated costs – meant they would have to demonstrate prudence while still offering a sum over the list price to be competitive. Like all of Urbaneer’s clients, we steered our Buyers to successfully secure the property on the basis these figures left a reasonable margin for a return on their investment, based on their comfort level and objective.

When considering an older property to transform, Buyers must be able to use their imagination to see its full potential. Take a look!



Congratulations to our Buyer!  They successfully secured this wonderful property against two other bidders, offering just 5% more than the list price of $999,000 – making this a very smart buy indeed!

Let the renovations begin!


Are you familiar with Parkdale? The housing stock of Parkdale is elegant, eclectic and cool! Here’s a flavour video of this choice neighbourhood:


Check out our Neighbourhood Pages to explore many more of Toronto’s desirable neighbourhoods! They featuring flavour videos, city census data on the area, plus past amenity blogs!


Serving first, second and multi-time buyers, young families, down-scaling Zoomers, renovators and those building their investment property portfolios, our mandate is to help our clients strategically secure the best real estate on offer, while ensuring their purchase best serves their practical needs and their dream of ‘Home’. We identify a property’s best qualities, features and insouciant charm in the context of the future target market while meeting your own wishes, wants and desires.

If you, or someone you love, has specific real estate needs, wishes and desires, and would enjoy the personalized service of someone Celebrating Twenty-Five Years As A Top-Producing Toronto Realtor who subscribes to a pressure-free approach – and a specialty in unique urban homes – please know my team and I are here to help!


Steven Fudge & The Innovative Urbaneer Team

Bosley Real Estate Ltd., Brokerage – (416) 322-8000

earn your trust, then your business


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Buy Of The Month

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