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Monthly Archives: September, 2017

OTM: 147 Maclean Ave – Gorgeous Beach Property

September 29th, 2017 Posted by OTM (Off The Market) No Comment yet

Oasis in the City – Recently featured in the Toronto Star, this beautiful home is a one-of-a-kind Arts and Crafts restoration. Fully finished, it features five bedrooms and four bathrooms over three floors plus a finished basement. There’s plenty of room inside for living and entertaining, as well as several unique outdoor spaces that offer private retreats from the city.

** Check out this awesome 3D interior tour! **

Originally built circa 1917, the home was purchased by the current owners in 2005. With the exception of just the dining room, which was purposely left as the only remaining historically vintage room, the house was taken back to the studs. All of the wiring (including the dining room) and plumbing was replaced, and the home restored using some recovered original woodwork (refinished and put back in place) blended with new, matching woodwork that expanded on the Arts and Crafts style.The restoration project included the addition of a small office on the main floor, plus a third floor/roof (2008) with 2+1 bedrooms and a fabulous, tree-top deck.

Starting at the foyer, every room has character woodwork. The entrance to the living room features oak colonnades, and a massive fireplace and built-in shelving fills the south wall. Nine foot ceilings add to the feeling of size and comfort. The large dining room, with an original built-in Arts and Crafts hutch along one wall, comfortably seats 8, and features an original sun room off the back.

The custom kitchen features hardwood cabinetry (3/4 inch solid quarter-sawn oak), marble counter tops, heated marble floors, and professional-grade appliances, including a Wolf stove and a built-in fridge. The office addition has a built-in desk and shelves, and a walk-out to a gorgeous, landscaped back yard. A cosy sitting area set between the kitchen and dining room features a wall mounted TV; a second oak colonnade provides access between the sitting area and the dining room.

On the second floor, the master bedroom includes an Ensuite bath with heated floors, separate his-and-hers closets, and a very private porch – perfect for a quiet morning cup of coffee. The large second bedroom has a walk-in closet with built-in shelving and a window seat with a great view. The main bath also has heated floors – and a laundry chute!

The third storey addition (8’6” ceilings) includes two bedrooms and a third room suitable for storage or conversion to a bathroom. (Pipes are roughed-in.) The deck off the rear bedroom/media loft puts you up amongst the treetops, and really has to be experienced… don’t miss it!

The basement features: a media room with a built-in entertainment unit and a gas convective heat fireplace; an exercise room; a large bathroom (2017), a laundry room, storage; and a recently completed solid oak liquor/wine cabinet with a seating area. Large, south-facing windows allow for lots of natural light, and there’s a separate side entrance offering nanny suite potential.

The custom landscaped backyard features a garden pool and a raised ‘outdoor kitchen’ with a built-in BBQ, stone counter top, sink, a fridge and seating for 8 under a cedar trellis. It’s very private, which is great for relaxing with the family or entertaining guests. With the beach and boardwalk just a few minutes walk down the street, plus nearby parks and ravines, this home doubles as a cottage in the city!

Generous spacing between homes on the street allows for a private drive. At the back of the lot sits a rare detached, double garage with a 10 foot ceiling and parking for one car; the other side is converted to a workshop.

The front of the home has a classic, Beachy front porch – the perfect spot for watching the sunset down well-treed Crown Park Rd and chatting to the neighbours over a glass of wine. The mature front garden with large oaks, flowering shrubs, natural stone walls and flagstone gives the home fantastic curb appeal.

Other features and improvements include:

  • Water supply
  • Drains
  • Wiring (200 AMP panel in 2005)
  • Plumbing
  • Natural gas boiler (2013)
  • Pool heater w/efficient heat pump (2017)
  • Power to the garage
  • Power to the back shed
  • Aluminium shingles (2008)
  • Rebuilt chimney
  • Double brick main floor and plastered frame for second and third
  • Built in cabinets in kitchen, living room, dining room, third floor and basement are all 3/4 inch solid quarter sawn oak
  • Double closets off of entrance hall
  • Upgraded windows maintain the character of the home
  • 5″ solid quarter sawn oak floors in living and dining room, with front hall and hallway as tile/ same wood (2012)
  • Lots of storage both inside and outside (shed, garage, under sun room)

** This fabulous house is no longer listed for sale on the TorontoMLS. **

26 Irvington Cres in Willowdale – ** SOLD!! **

September 19th, 2017 Posted by SOLD!! No Comment yet

This is a great house in a fantastic area. Willowdale has long been known for its comfortable homes on large lots. In recent years, the area has also become known for rapid growth. The nearby Bayview Subway station has been open for about 15 years, and major public transit infrastructure usually spurs economic growth and housing activity, and that’s what’s been happening.
Irvington Cres is tucked away in a little pocket of just four quiet streets accessible (by vehicle) only via Calvin Ave, southbound off Sheppard Ave E. So, with no ‘through traffic’, the area is rather idyllic, considering that the Bayview/Sheppard intersection is actually quite close by. Kids can play ball hockey, and pedestrians usually have the road to themselves. Plus, there’s foot/bike access to Bayview Ave at the east end of the street, which is super convenient for the locals.
The house itself is fairly original, and will benefit from some updating. It got a new roof in 2007 (and the garage roof in 2009), and a new sliding glass door to the back patio just this year. The back addition family room was done in the late 1980s, and features a wood stove for extra warmth in the winter. There’s loads of wood out back, too, from a couple of old elms that were taken down a couple of years ago.

The layout of the house seems to really encourage air flow; open up the windows on a warm day and a great breeze gets going, right through the house. The long kitchen is bright and roomy, with a nice little eating area right by the back door. There are two bedrooms upstairs, and a full bathroom, while the main floor includes a bedroom/office and a powder room. The basement is partly finished, with an extra bedroom, laundry room and a three piece bathroom. The cold room needs some work, but will be a great place for preserves (and wine!) when that’s done.

The back yard is huge. There’s room for a back patio, the detached garage, piles of wood, a trampoline, and a play structure – and there’s still lots of space! The owners have lived in the house since 2003 and have never used pesticides or herbicides on the lawn, which is great for children and pets.

The Neighbourhood

From Irvington Cres, one can walk to Bayview subway station in 6 minutes, and walk to Bayview Village Mall (Loblaws, Pusateri’s, LCBO, Chapters, Mastermind Toys, and lots more) in about 10 minutes. The Sheppard Centre (Yonge and Sheppard) is getting a Longos and LA Fitness in 2018. Other amenities include a nearby YMCA, places of worship, a ZipCar location and… IKEA!!

Also, there’s a farmers’ market every Tuesday and Friday from May-October just across Sheppard in the People’s Church parking lot. And, there are several parks nearby, including a few within a 10-minute walk: Sheppard East Park, for smaller children, renovated in 2017; Greenfield – Longmore Lands, which is relatively new; and Glendora Park, which has a splash pad and tennis courts. The bike trails of the Don Valley are also easily accessible.

The street is in the catchment areas for Hollywood Public School, Bayview Middle School , and Earl Haig High School. Readers should note that the TDSB cannot guarantee that all local kids will get in to their designated ‘home’ school, due to rapid population growth around some schools. It would be wise to check with the Board before making any decisions!

All the usual chattles are included: fridge, gas stove, Bosch dishwasher; gas dryer, front-loading washer; a gas BBQ and a play structure in the backyard. But, the underlying value is in the lot: 52ft by 150ft. A buyer could renovate the house, or do like so many of the neighbours have done, and start from scratch.

**UPDATE** After a week of marketing, including a busy weekend open house, we received a number of offers on this house on ‘offer night’. The house is now sold to some very happy buyers!

August 2017 Market Report

September 8th, 2017 Posted by Blog, Market Review No Comment yet

August was a slow month in the Toronto real estate market, which is fairly typical. TREB reported 6,357 sales, down 34.8% from the 9,748 sales we saw in August of 2016. While that sounds pretty dramatic, it’s more than the 6,418 sales reported in August of 2012 (which I just picked randomly when looking for something to compare this year to).

The average sale price has been volatile this year. For the last decade or so, that number has trended upwards steadily, and only sometimes dramatically. Then, in the first part of this year it spiked way up, mostly due to extremely tight supply. Then, as the ‘spring market’ got going and more supply hit the market, the average price dropped back down to normal. The average sale price in August was $732,292 – well below the April average, $920,791. Still, that number is up 3% over August 2016. Check out the graph (click to enlarge, courtesy my RE/MAX Hallmark colleague Robert Ede). Despite the hysterical headlines about a ‘plunging’ Toronto real estate market, we are still up over last year!

The condo segment had an interesting month. Sales volume in the 416 was down 24.5%, to 1,476 transactions. At the same time, the average price spiked 20.9%, to $540,169. That indicates to me that supply was limiting sales volume, and forcing buyers to step up.

Another number that I have been tracking recently is Active Listings. There were 16,419 at the end of last month, up 65% over August 2016 (9,949). Again, sounds dramatic, but in August 2012 there were 19,043 Active listings. So, when we are looking at what direction the market is going, it’s important to think past the short-term graph (which looks pretty wacky) and try to step back for a broader view. Supply is still tightly constrained, and demand is still strong. Look no further that the latest economic data and we’ll see that the economy and job creation are really picking up steam. That always boosts the real estate market. Also, this week’s Bank of Canada rate increase, and subsequent mortgage rate increases, should act to push more buyers into the market, as they look to lock in a great rate before those rise too much more….

Of course, anything could happen, but I expect the fall market to be busy, and for prices to start going back up – although I hope at a more sustainable rate than we saw earlier this year. We’ll know more in the coming weeks!