December 2011 Home Of The Month – Dupont & Ossington


Welcome to’s Home Of The Month. This feature provides a snap shot of what’s Buyers have recently bought in the City of Toronto.

In a City where housing prices have continued to escalate for 14 of the past 15 years, locating a freehold house in a convenient location within proximity to the central business district for under $500,000 can be a challenge, especially if you’re seeking something that doesn’t need a complete ‘gut renovation’ from top to bottom. So when my lovely buyers were referred to me seeking a solid house with space to grow into, a kitchen that could accommodate her passion for culinary creation, within bicycle riding distance to work, and for as close to $400,000 as possible, I knew it would be a delicate balance to hit all these requirements without too much compromise.

As demand escalates and gentrification sweeps across the urban core (Click HERE to read more about Gentrification In The City), finding those ‘undiscovered pockets’ and ‘up and coming’ areas of affordable housing within the city’s downtown are increasingly difficult. One area that still offers good value for the dollar is the neighbourhood near Dupont and Ossington in the central downtown west core.

Bounded by Davenport Avenue to the north, Dupont Avenue to the south, and just west of Ossington Avenue, this pocket of predominantly Edwardian working class row, semi and detached housing has yet to hit its stride in popularity. With the well-established Wychwood park and Regal Heights neighbourhoods anchoring values to the north, and Bloorcourt Village transitioning from a warm to ‘Hot Hood’ just south, this area is surrounded by higher-priced real estate. And although this pocket’s market values are stunted due to the presence of light industry (autobody shops) and a rail corridor, and being of some distance to the subway or streetcar stops (it’s a 15 minute walk or requires a speedy bus ride), for my avid cyclist Buyers these ‘limitations’ were hardly limiting at all.

Listed at $449,900, this three bedroom two bath semi-detached house did not go into a bidding war as the listing agent had hoped. Despite the attractive price point and the fact the property had some recent upgrades including a newer furnace and central air system, recent kitchen cabinets, upgraded washroom and wiring panel, it still needed an immediate cash injection of around $15,000 to tackle some water management issues plus the removal of the existing antiquated knob and tube wiring. Furthermore, some of the Seller’s ‘quick fixes’ for resale weren’t of the best quality and calibre. Although these issues likely turned off the majority of Purchasers seeking a highly-stylized turn-key dwelling, my Buyers had the ‘foresight and vision’ to effectively see past them. Here are some pics of the ‘bland and boring’ main floor:

And here are two of the three bedrooms plus the upper level washroom:

Given my Buyers’ love for cooking, the 132 foot deep lot with south-west exposure means their dream of cultivating a vegetable garden will soon be realized though, as you can see in the photo below, it needs some Tender Loving Care.

To moderate the Seller’s expectations, under my encouragement my Buyers waited for the Offer date to pass and then swiftly submitted a ‘one shot’ bid of $435,000 to the Seller. Whatever the Seller’s circumstance, her motivation was sufficient that she accepted their offer conditional on financing and a home inspection. Within a few days the deal was firm and closing occurred within thirty days.

For Buyers who have some additional cash on hand beyond their down payment, and who can look past cosmetic flaws and bland interiors that are far from the ‘showcase’ aesthetic cultivated by the media as ‘Must Have’, finding those increasingly rare ‘Diamonds Needing Polish’ can be spectacular opportunities. For these Buyers, their goal of creating a long term family home within cycling distance to work has been realized for less than their budget. How many Buyers can claim that?

If you, or someone you know, has an affinity to vintage housing stock with potential, or is keen to live in the downtown core, please know is here to help!

~ Steven

Home Of The Month

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