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Happy New Year!



We made it! We got through 2020! The year we thought would usher in a new roaring decade, ‘roared’ in an unexpected, and terrible way. Ideally, it will follow that old adage of in like a lion, out like a lamb, and we can move forward with our lives and rocket this economy back into rolling forward once again. New micro industries will come out of this that we could have never fathomed when 2020 began. Everything will be different, and we’re here for it! Bring on the new world, we’ll adapt and thrive with open hearts and minds.

-The EXP Ossington Team

 

2020 Market In Review & What to Expect for 2021


As any year comes to an end, it’s natural to look back at what happened and forward to what’s next. That’s especially true now, as what can only be described as a ‘unique’ year has finally closed. As for real estate in 2020, it was the best of times, it was the worst of times…. Early in the year it seemed we were headed for a steady, stable market and everything seemed normal (the old normal, not the ‘new’ normal). Then, as the reality of Covid started to creep into our consciousness, everything changed. At first, the market ground to a halt, and we were forced to consider the possibility that a remarkable cycle of price gains and increasing equity had finally come to an end. It had been a good run, nothing lasts forever, and we began to prepare for price adjustments and changing market dynamics. As with many things in 2020 - that now seems like a long time ago. Canadians were forced to re-evaluate their home environments and the possibility of a minor move or even a huge one became an important discussion for many. Whether it was financial considerations, working from home, exploring previously unthinkable locations or just needing to get out of the unsuitable spaces you were stuck in, you had thoughts and questions.

We real estate professionals found ourselves fielding inquiries about everything from the future of the condo market to settling outside the GTA and much, much more. So, after a rocky start to the year, the result has been an approximate 16% increase in local housing prices. That includes a less than a 1% increase in condo values, meaning a house continues to be an excellent investment. People are now asking about likely market conditions in 2021. That in itself is a good sign – it shows a willingness to look forward and optimism about the future. Government housing watchdog CMHC is predicting a 9-18% drop in housing prices across Canada, as do large banks like RBC and National Bank. In contrast, real estate industry lobbying group CREA predicts modest gains, and many brokerages see 6-8% returns. It’s too early to tell what the full year will bring, but at least locally, there’s every indication that the year will start as it ended. Through much of the GTA, many non-condo properties received multiple offers and sold for well over the asking price. There continue to be listings on the market now, planning to accept offers two and three days before Christmas. In years past that would have been unthinkable but, well, that’s 2020!

 

Sellers

So, if you’re thinking of selling, it might be time to corral that clutter and look at some paint swatches. The market looks good now, but if we’ve learned anything from this year, it’s that things can be unpredictable. Also, keep in mind that there are dozens or more micro-markets within the GTA. your house is unique, and your street is different from the next one over. Plus properties often sell in a week or less – meaning the local market is constantly in motion and one transaction can change everything. Knowing all this, I’m sure you understand why you need sound advice.

Buyers This may all sound daunting and difficult if you’re a buyer, and it can be a challenge. The trick is to be prepared and to be positive. One piece of good news is that with record-low mortgage rates, your dollars go much further than they ever did. The other good news is that, while you may not do this every day, we do. From credit ratings to mortgage approvals, market conditions, strategy, timing and (eventually) where to hang the TV, we’ll guide you through an informative and positive process. We will only be satisfied when you’ve got the keys to your dream home, and you know you made a smart decision.

Condos As for the condo market, there’s a reason for optimism. Among the reasons people had for wanting to sell their condos were a desire for more space, a desire to no longer share common areas, plus shuttered amenities like gyms and pools. Investors sold because of loss of tenants due to financial changes and lack of demand for short-term rentals as a result of travel restrictions and increased regulation. Condos are also often occupied by new Canadians, and immigration was at a standstill through much of 2020. With all that, prices still rose very slightly this year, which seems remarkable. 50,000 people usually move to the GTA each year (and the current government would like to increase immigration) and the job market & economy is bound to improve. Those conditions previously led to the unprecedented rise in condo prices and the cranes you see dotted across the city. It’s logical to assume that will happen again soon.

Us As you can see, there’s a lot to consider! Luckily the EXP Ossington Team has local-knowledge experts across the GTA (and beyond). Our experienced and knowledgeable team provides free, no-obligation property valuations and assessments and can often do so with little notice. If you have questions about the buying process, and you’re not sure where to turn, we make the same offer. We’ll answer your questions and offer free, sound advice. You may choose to work with us or not (I would because we’re smart and fun, but I may be biased) - we won’t pressure or bother you. Call, email or say ‘hi’ on one of our socials! We’ll respond promptly and do whatever it takes to be of assistance. There’s nothing to lose and there could be a lot to gain. -John Garland



 

Introducing Nicole Jay


Nicole knows that life never stops moving! As a working mom she's on the go from dawn to way past sunset, every day. She has a passion for life; whether at her favourite local foodie spots, on the golf course, or road-tripping, she's ready to rock with a smile! Nicole has watched the evolution of many significant Toronto neighbourhoods, and is well versed in growth and change. Her favourite part of working in real estate is the freedom it gives her for work/life balance, and enables her to help others do the same. Financially, through their investments, or in business opportunities she’s accomplished in many aspects of the market and what it can offer. She also works all over Ontario and isn’t scared to jump on a new territory. Being originally from the East Coast of Canada, she’s always there with a helping hand or a guiding voice, and just a phone call away - her clients are always her top priority!

 

National Houseplant Appreciation Day was January 10th, and it’s well worth celebrating! Plants do much more for us than we give them credit for. Other than purifying the air in our homes, they also have a relaxing effect on our minds! Surrounding ourselves with greenery in our homes brings us back to nature. When you’re stuck inside all winter (or all Covid) it helps to feel the warmth of a plant basking in the sunshine, and watching that new baby leaf unfurl! In addition, they give us something to care for; Pruning, watering, fertilizing and even singing to our plants will help them thrive, and give us purpose when we’re out of new Nexflix shows to binge.

Bring some light into your life (and some refreshed air) with a new houseplant this week (#treatyourself) to celebrate National Houseplant Appreciation Day with one of these awesome local plant shops offering online sales, curbside pick up, and/or delivery!



 

FEATURED LISTING


FOR LEASE

74 Stanley Terrace Trinity-Bellwoods, Toronto $4250/month 3 Bedroom + Den 2 Bathroom


Ideal King West living, handsome laneway home close by to Stanley Park with tennis courts and a pool. All of the conveniences for the modern urban family featuring 4 bedrooms (3 Up 1 Den), 2 bathrooms, hardwood floors and ceramic, balcony with a view of the park. The kitchen features modern cabinets, granite counters, and S/S appliances. Bathrooms feature modern vanities. Extras include direct access to the Financial District by King Streetcar. Walker's Paradise, Rider's Paradise.




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