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Saturday , 25 March 2017

Monthly Archives: March 2017

Exceptional year ahead for high-end Toronto condos; speculators and investors more active than previously thought

Spring is here and it is going to be a good one for the high-end condominium market in Toronto, if Sotheby’s International Realty Canada is right. Already this year sales of condos worth more than $1 million are up—“soaring” to use their word—exceeding 2016 levels for the same period by 104 per cent. To date, four condos have sold for more than $4 million in Toronto, one-third more than in the first two months of 2016. Sotheby’s Spring Forecast says that the “exceptional” performance in the top-tier condo market is being driven by a combination of factors, including shifts in demographics, strong consumer and investor confidence, and comparative affordability compared ... Read More »

Method in the madness: law-breaking cyclists, motorists believe they are being rational

Let’s start by admitting that we all do it. Break the law, that is, when using the roads. Whether we are walking, driving a car, riding a bicycle or using some other form of transportation on land or water, 100 per cent of people admit to jaywalking, running a stop sign, speeding, or doing something else they shouldn’t have done. Most of the time, thankfully, our illegal acts do not have serious consequences. Often they go undetected. But one group, namely urban cyclists, gets a lot of bad press, mostly from angry motorists, and the feeling is certainly mutual. A new study sheds some much needed light on the situation ... Read More »

O happy Canada! Not just money, but freedom, generosity, trust make countries happy: report

Does this surprise you? The Chinese are no happier today than they were twenty-five years ago, despite being five times richer, with millions more people owning personal computers and cars, as well as the usual accoutrements of affluence—colour television, air conditioning, washing machines, refrigerators. We would have taken it for granted that all of that economic improvement would have translated into greater happiness for the people, but evidently that is not the case. As for the United States, the world’s greatest economic power is in the midst of a social crisis, and its happiness level is actually falling. And once again, this is so despite a rise in GDP and ... Read More »

More families likely to choose condo living if available: report

Whatever their personal preference might be, in the end people have to live where they can afford to live. Asked where they would choose to live if money were no object—in this instance that meant having a budget of $750,000—about half of respondents to a Fortress Real Developments poll picked a single-family home in the outer/inner suburbs; another 10 per cent chose a bungalow “in the country”; and 27 per cent opted for a spacious condo of 1,000–1,500 square feet, either downtown or outside the core. Where people currently live is also an important factor in where they would consider moving to if they needed to move. Nearly two-thirds of ... Read More »

More purpose-built rental units needed to avoid affordability crisis in Toronto: economist

Toronto’s housing market is not a normally functioning market. Legislation-driven land constraints suggest that we are in a classic case of market failure. The invisible hand, that enigmatic force mentioned by enlightenment economist Adam Smith, whereby self-interest is somehow transformed into public good, will not work in Toronto. These are the arresting opening thoughts in a new analysis by the always interesting Benjamin Tal at CIBC. Never mind wasting time speculating about how “bubbly” the Toronto housing market is. Instead, find the optimal policy mix to prevent a “full-blown affordability crisis.” And these must be GTA-specific policies, not blunt instrument national ones. Could one of these policies be a foreign ... Read More »

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