By: Thomas Cook

Questions to Ask Your Toronto Real Estate Agent

Buying a home isn’t like getting a haircut. Asking your friends for a few recommendations only goes so far – buying a home is going to be the largest investment you ever make, and the person helping you with that purchase, your real estate agent, can’t be just anyone. Before you decide to work with a real estate agent in Toronto, make sure that you ask them the following questions so you’re on the same page with regards to your expectations: Are you experienced with this type of property? What price do you suggest I list my property at? How often will you be in touch? Do you have any references? Are you familiar with my neighbourhood? Are y...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

A Few Things To Consider Before You Buy A Home In Toronto

Buying a home can feel like an overwhelming experience, and there’s certainly a lot to think about. Because a home is one of the largest investments you’re likely to ever make, it’s important to properly think out your purchase. Before you buy a home, ask yourself: Have I been pre-approved for a mortgage? Getting pre-approved for a mortgage before you go home shopping is vital. It will let you know exactly what you can spend on a home and prevent you from being disappointed later. More importantly, it tells sellers and their agents that you’re serious when you put in an offer. Can I see myself in this neighbourhood? Make sure that you choose an...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

Which Renovations WIll Give You The Best Return On Your Investment When You Sell?

The best renovations are the ones that appeal to buyers while allowing you to increase the value of your home for sale to recoup your costs. So if you’re planning to renovate your home to increase its value before selling this year, which renovations are the ones you should be planning for? 1. Extra Suites There are many different possibilities for adding an income suite to your home, whether it’s an entire floor or the basement (just make sure you have the right permits and you’ve made your improvements the right way, first and foremost). This is one of the most expensive renovations, but the added value will be quite high. In addition if you choose not to sell...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

Are You Prepared for a Weather Emergency In Toronto?

Toronto has seen its fair share of weather emergencies, even within the last few months alone. Many of these emergencies caused damage to homes, but there are ways that you can help prepare your home for significant weather events in advance. According to Paula Bandi, senior product manager, Home, RBC Insurance, “With extreme weather events on the rise, it is likely that most Canadians will experience moderate to severe weather in their area sometime this year. Canadian homeowners are on the front lines during emergencies and need to prepare. While the government may have resources available to assist as an emergency escalates, individuals need to take the appropriate steps to ...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

The Ultimate Ways To Clean Your Tile Grout

Nothing makes a kitchen or bathroom sparkle more than a good deep cleaning, but the grout between kitchen and bathroom tiles is notoriously hard to clean. Because it’s porous and not sealed, it can absorb stains while shredding sponges and paper towels into confetti should you even try to scrub it. Mildew, food stains and discolouration from age or wear and tear can make your tiles look unsightly and dirty, which is a big problem when you’re trying to sell your home. Luckily, getting your grout to look like new is a relatively easy task! Two ways to clean your grout: Using deoxygenated bleach Deoxygenated bleach (Oxiclean or similar products) is less harsh...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

OREA Releases New Report On Toronto Land Transfer Tax

The Ontario Real Estate Association has released a new report called Economic Implications of the Municipal Land Transfer Tax in Toronto, conducted by Altus Group Economic Consulting, which outlines the losses experienced by Toronto as a result of the Land Transfer Tax.  “The MLTT is bad for our economy,” said the Ontario Real Estate Association president, Costa Poulopoulos. “For one, it kills jobs, with an unemployment rate worse than the national rate and even that of the province as a whole, the City of Toronto could have used those jobs. It also adds to household debt and pushes the dream of home ownership even further away.” “This research p...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

Toronto Is The Best City To Invest In Real Estate

Toronto has been named the top city for long-term real estate investment out of 50 world cities by Grosvenor, a UK-based research firm. In fact, the top three cities on the list were all in Canada – Toronto, Vancouver and Calgary, with Chicago coming in fourth. The study looked at factors such as environmental sustainability, economic prosperity, community livability, resources, climatic factors and social vulnerability. “Toronto is no stranger to the importance of resiliency, having endured natural disasters such as such as the 1998 ice storm and even Hurricane Hazel in 1954,” said Grosvenor’s Group Research Director, Richard Barkham, in a news release. &...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

Average Selling Price For A Home In Toronto Increases By 11%

According to the Toronto Real Estate Board’s mid-April home sales statistics, home sales through the Toronto MLS Listings in Toronto increased by 10.8 per cent during the first two weeks of April compared to the same time last year. “The robust increase in sales speaks to the fact that home ownership remains affordable in the GTA,” said Dianne Usher, the president of the Toronto Real Estate Board in a press release. “The majority of home buyers purchase a home using a mortgage. A household earning the average income in he GTA can comfortably afford a mortgage on an average priced home.” She continued, “While the persistent listings shortage in ...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

Why Are Floor Plans So Important When Buying A New Toronto Condo?

It seems counterintuitive to buy something sight unseen, especially if you’re going to be living in it. However, it’s not uncommon for Toronto condo buyers to buy a condo before it’s completed, or before construction has even begun. This is a great way to find a great place to live in downtown Toronto while ensuring that you have all the best in modern amenities and green living space. However, it’s vital to ensure that you have an updated copy of the floor plans so that you know what you’re buying. Toronto Real Estate Lawyer Bob Aaron’s most recent column details a case, which explains how floor plans can be your best defence when buying a new...Read More

By: Thomas Cook

On Buying A Home In Toronto That Was Renovated Without A Permit

The list of actions that require a homeowner to take out a building permit from the City of Toronto is larger and more extensive than many homeowners realize. Adding an addition, balcony, deck, second suite or even wood burning stove all require a building permit, along with a number of other renovations. The full list is available here. Not having a permit can be a huge headache – even if it’s discovered long after the fact (and after the home changes hands). In fact, you could be forced to tear down an addition or go through a significant amount of construction in order to make the addition compliant, all at your own expense. Toronto Real Estate Lawyer Bob A...Read More