September 2017 – Home of the Month – Harbord Village

Buy of the Month

Welcome to our September 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 Carl Laudan, whose Buyers were searching for a detached freehold property for less than $1,000,000, that still satisfied all of their desires for their dream home. Here’s Carl’s story:

When I met my Buyers, they were considering a fixer-upper in order to remain under the $1M threshold because, in Ontario, the down payment rules require 20% down on properties over $1M, which these Buyers were unable to procure. Why? Because the challenge lay in not only saving a substantial down payment in one of the country’s most expensive cities, but also paying the significant closing costs, legal fees, and the onerous Ontario provincial and City of Toronto land transfer taxes. These fianancial obligations – all beyond purchase price – make it challenging for many Buyers to save a 20% down payment, even when a couple’s combined incomes qualify them to afford a more valuable home.

This journey was a family affair. The parents – who live in England – joined in the search. Given they hail from a country where rules are much different, part of their learning curve was understanding Canada’s highly-regulated real estate industry. For example, in England your sale hinges on your purchaser’s property successfully closing. If it doesn’t, it can result in a cascade of failed deals. If one buyer in a chain of property agreements of purchases and sales is unable to sell their house, it can trigger all the trades to fall like dominos. Plus there’s Gazumping, where a seller can raise the contracted price of a property after having informally accepted a lower offer from an intending buyer. You can imagine the complexity!

As a realtor who focuses on several Toronto neighbourhoods, one of my favourites is Harbord Village, for its proximity to the University of Toronto, the shops and eateries along Harbord street itself, and its central walking location to College Street, Koreatown and Kensington Market. It’s one of the most convenient neighbourhoods in the West of Toronto, so when this property came to market on Lippincott Street – which runs north-south through Harbord Village – it was an immediate contender.

The house represents one of the architectural styles typical of the area. It was originally part of lot 17 purchased in 1815 by George Taylor Denison for the building of his new home “Belle Vue.” – Wikipedia  It includes a selection of Toronto architecture, including Victorian worker’s cottages, Toronto bay-and-gable homes and more modern bungalows.

Although the market did demonstrate signs of cooling off during the Summer (here’s Steve’s August Tales From The Real Estate Trenches called The Wackadoodle Toronto Real Estate Market), seeing a reduction in buyers and bidding wars, statistics indicated freehold properties were still hard to come by. And while the Buyers weren’t adverse to purchasing a property that required renovation, many of the listings were in rough shape lacking even the most fundamental ‘good bones’, even when Sellers still had high price expectations.

So – in this context – when this dwelling on Lippincott hit the market, we knew right away we had to see it. It was smack-dab in a very desirable neighbourhood, in great shape, with laneway parking, and a finished high-ceiling basement with heated floors. Oh, and a list price just a bit over $1,000,000.

Take a look at the MLS photos, to see how stellar this listing was:



As it was listed for over a million dollars, the Buyers (hindered by the aforementioned down payment rules) were limited in what they could offer to secure the property. So we offered the best sum the Buyers could pay, submitting it the same day we saw the property — just two days after it hit the market. Two sign backs later, after using all the negotiating skills in my tool kit – not to mention some creative deal making – we agreed on the conditions and a price that wouldn’t push the Buyers beyond their limit. Finally, I was able to make the phone call all realtors love placing!

The Buyers were out that night at a concert at the Air Canada Centre. It was so loud, I had to shout into my phone: “Please tell your wife that you got the house!”

The husband replied: “She’s very happy! In Tears!”

And finally: “Well done Carl – we knew you were the right man for the job!”

So no matter how difficult the job, how long it takes, and how tricky the deal-making can be we, at Urbaneer, are up for the challenge!


~ Carl


Are you familiar with Harbord Village? 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 a real estate team whom subscribe to a pressure-free approach – and a specialty in unique urban homes – please know we are here to help!


Steven Fudge & The Innovative Urbaneer Team

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

earn your trust, then your business


Celebrating Twenty-Five Years As A Top-Producing Toronto Realtor


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Buy Of The Month

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