March 2017 – Home Of The Month – Roncesvalles Village

Buy of the Month, Roncesvalles Village

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

In this month’s installment, we share the journey of clients who lived in Yorkville and worked in the Financial District. Having located to Toronto only a few years earlier, our Buyers weren’t intimately familiar with many of the city’s neighbourhoods, so part of their learning curve was finding which downtown community – in proximity to preferred urban village amenities and green space – would best suit their lifestyle and their next family home.

Fortunately, having a multi-disciplinary education that includes the history of how 42 of Toronto’s central city neighbourhoods evolved and subsequently gentrified – spanning from The Beach in the east, west to The Kingsway, and from Lake Ontario up the central corridors to Highway 401 – I was able to introduce our Buyers to areas which complemented the lifestyle they envisioned within a reasonable commute to work by public transit. One of the foundations for our search was following my Dear Urbaneer guide to Choosing A Winning Location.

Our Buyers – a professional couple with a budget up to $1.4m – sought a detached residence with parking in a family-friend neighbourhood that had good transit links to the financial core. We initially explored midtown – up the Yonge and Avenue Road corridors including the Davisville, Allenby and Lawrence Park neighbourhoods – but we soon determined in establishing their Housing Matrix, that to secure a dwelling in North Toronto they had to compromise too much on size, condition or accessibility.

We also explored Seaton Village, the South Annex, and Bloorcourt Village – on a trajectory west along the Bloor subway line – but our Buyers found the houses too small and cramped. We checked out Bloor West Village where the dwellings have deep front porches and are constructed fairly close together, but this limited the natural light our Buyers craved. But we hit our stride exploring Roncesvalles Village – just east of High Park – and Riverdale – south of The Danforth east of Broadview – where the generous Victorian and Edwardian housing stock had the vintage character they sought, and the neighbourhoods boasted family-friendly vibes and amenities which aligned with the way they envisioned the next chapter of their lives.

While we were collectively identifying their preferred locations, it was important to address selling their current condominium. Located in Hazelton Lanes, their exceptional ‘pinch me perfect’ one bedroom suite had all the bells and whistles Buyers crave, but it was also challenged by having high common fees of nearly $1600 per month. Although high common fees aren’t unusual for an amenity-laden building with a 24 hour concierge in a complex having just 73 suites, it can impact how quickly a property sells. In this case, the last sale of an identical suite three floors higher took 204 days to attain 93% of its list price, which indicated it could take some time to secure a buyer.

The issue is this: Buyers who need to use the proceeds of their current dwelling to facilitate their next purchase always run the risk of finding their dream home and  buying first – even in a hot market like we’re experiencing. But if you own a property where there are mitigating factors which can impact the ease of sale, sometimes it’s better to sell it first to avoid unwarranted stress. In this instance, given our Buyers were likely going to have to do upgrades or renovations to whatever vintage dwelling their bought, finding a temporary rental to lease for one year would allow time to both execute the search and complete the renovations. This approach made sense to our Buyers, who listed their condominium and, to our delight and relief, sold in six days instead of dragging on like the previous listing. The quick sale equipped our Buyers with an advantage, both because they now knew precisely how much capital they had for their next purchase, and the liquidity to compete in a bidding war and match a Seller’s preferred closing date without duress! If you’re considering selling first, here’s my informative post on the matter – with 5 reasons to consider this approach – called The Case For Selling Your Property First And Renting.

Having started with a ‘big picture’ idea of where and what one wants to purchase, as the house hunt continues we ask our Buyers to consistently refine their housing needs, wants, and wishes, so that the search becomes narrower with more specificity. Essentially, over time fewer properties are viewed but these prospects become stronger candidates for pursuing with an offer. As our Buyers closed on their condominium and moved into rental accommodations, we viewed listings both east and west, but nothing hit the nail on the head until this Prime Roncesvalles residence cane to market.

Located steps from Roncesvalles Village in the coveted Fern Avenue School catchment district, this 2.5 storey Edwardian four bedroom dwelling with laneway parking had been substantially renovated in the 1980s, including a dug out lower level income supplement. Featuring terrific proportions, character details and a generous 13×19 foot south-facing kitchen, this well-loved home had not been on the market since 1988.

Here are some snaps of this dwelling:



Basement Apartment:


Listed at $1,099,000, recent sales of similar properties in proximity to this house – including one on the same street which lacked legal parking and required a substantial to-the-studs-gut which garnered $1,260,000 three days earlier – supported a much higher selling price. So it was no surprise that, proceeding with a bully offer within 72 hours of coming to market, we still found ourselves in competition. Fortunately, our Buyers secured the residence with a bid 27% over list and the Seller’s preferred closing date.

* Congrats to our Buyers! * May the renovations commence!

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 Top Producing boutique Toronto real estate outfit who subscribe to a pressure-free approach – and a specialty in unique urban homes – please know we’re here to help!


~ Steven and the Urbaneer Team
earn your trust, then your business

Steven Fudge, Sales Representative
& The Innovative Urbaneer Team
Bosley Real Estate Ltd., Brokerage – (416) 322-8000


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** Did you also know Steve leads a Student Mentorship and Internship Program for Canadians being educated in the field of housing? Consider visiting our sister site called

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