November 2011 Home Of The Month – Leslieville

Leslieville/Riverside’s ‘Home Of The Month’ feature is a post showcasing what our Buyers are purchasing in the current City of Toronto marketplace. Here’s November 2011!

When my buyers contacted me in the Spring of this year, I’m pretty sure they didn’t believe it would take an arduous seven months of searching, multiple bidding, multiple losses, and trying once again to secure the perfect place to call Home. But who ever expects a house search to take so long?

It’s a matter of course when I meet new clients how surprised they are when I tell them it generally takes six months to a year to find the right property. It’s not always the case of course, but in the world of real estate one has to lovingly manage the expectations of one’s clients, as the process can be time consuming, mentally exhausting and emotionally taxing. ‘Buyer’s fatigue’ is alive and well in Toronto. You can learn a bit more about the realities of Toronto hot market and establishing market value in a bidding war situation by clicking one of my past posts HERE.

My buyers, a young urban professional couple with great style and panache, knew they wanted to be located in the downtown core, with a leaning to the hot downtown east pocket of Leslieville and Riverside. This hip happening ‘hood is gentrifying at a scorching hot pace, as cool home furnishing retailers, organic food purveyors, and amazing restaurants, bars and cafes blossom on Queen Street East. It’s the go-to destination for contemporary urban life right now. In fact, if you peruse my past blog postings under Retail and Restaurants, you’ll see plenty of examples of what make this neighbourhood rock. Click HERE for an especially personal historical snapshot.

The housing stock in Riverside / Leslieville / South Riverdale is remarkably affordable for Toronto’s skyrocketing price point. A blend of Victorian and Edwardian working and merchant class housing, with a smattering of the quirky and quaint, this funky neighbourhood has become the darling of mid-scale developers who have converted the vintage factories on Carlaw and Broadview Avenues into live/work loft condominiums and begun aggressively intensifying the main streets of Queen and Broadview. This higher density will provide the synergy and foot-traffic to sustain an eclectic mix of commerce and retail, assuring longevity for this once down and out location.

My buyers, during our search, quickly identified an attraction to character details, vintage charm and a space plan that was neither ‘too big’ nor ‘too small’. It wasn’t long until I noted that the house-to-be would be the kind of property that had high ceilings, the patina of exposed bricks wall, and perhaps a touch of stained glass. Call me a housing psychic, but lo and behold, after a long search this is exactly what my buyers secured.

This three bedroom 2 bath century row house was once located across from the Colgate Factory until it was demolished for infill freehold and condominium residences, some of which are in the presale development stage. Well-maintained and in good nick, the house had a finished basement that wasn’t maximized to its full potential, a kitchen well past its prime, and the residue of an 80s renovation including an abundance of massive ‘eye-ball’ recessed lighting. The ‘flaws’ are, in fact, opportunities, for they allow my Buyers the ability to put their own personal stamp on the property while increasing its value. As a realtor committed to creating a ‘return on investment’ for my clients this property was ideal. Unlike a Victorian in original condition, it doesn’t require an extended period of time, large amounts of liquid capital, and temporary accommodations to make it your own, nor was it a ‘luxe magazine showcase’ that would have garnered a premium sale price.

Listed at $519,000, my Buyers secured this house with a bid 10% over list against a handful of other Buyers. After seven months of searching, Home is now where my Buyers’ Hearts are. Congrats!

If you, or someone you know, has an affinity to vintage housing stock with potential, or is keen to live in Riverside / Leslieville, please know is here to help!

~ Steven

Home Of The Month

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