Tag Archives: condo

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Menkes Breaks Ground on Waterfront Innovation Centre on Toronto Waterfront

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Menkes Breaks Ground on Waterfront Innovation Centre on Toronto Waterfront

Menkes Developments Ltd. in partnership with Alcion Ventures, has broken ground on the Waterfront Innovation Centre – a new landmark office building on the Toronto waterfront.

The groundbreaking marks the first construction milestone of a 400,000-sq.-ft complex designed by architects Sweeny & Co, which will be comprised of two buildings, with three distinct but interconnected components: The Exchange, The Hive and The Nexus, a space that will serve as a public square and directly connect the two buildings.

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Located in East Bayfront, adjacent to Canada’s Sugar Beach, the Waterfront Innovation Centre anchors Toronto’s surging innovation cluster on the eastern waterfront, representing the next evolution in workplace design that helps reinvent how today’s workforce collaborates in the city’s burgeoning creative and technology sectors.

MILESTONE OCCASION

The milestone represents another step in the revitalization of Toronto’s waterfront. The complex will not only drive economic development with the creation of nearly 3,000 jobs, but also help to shape East Bayfront into a beautiful new neighbourhood where people can live, work and play.

“This is a one-of-a-kind commercial office complex that will redefine how innovative market leading companies conduct their business in our city,” says Peter Menkes, president of Menkes’ commercial/industrial division.

“The Waterfront Innovation Centre will be a cutting edge, collaborative work environment that responds to the changing needs of the workplace and the demand for high quality office space.”

Menkes has more than 60 years of history in residential and commercial development in Toronto. “It is the city we live in, we build in and we are truly passionate about,” says Menkes.

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SUGAR WHARF COMMUNITY

Among the company’s more than 25 million sq. ft. of office and industrial space in the GTA is the recently opened One York Street in Toronto’s South Core, an office building that overlooks the water and is home to the headquarters of Sun Life Financial. In addition, in January, Menkes broke ground at 100 Queens Quay, a new office tower just west of the Waterfront Innovation Centre. That project signifies the first phase of Sugar Wharf, an upcoming waterfront community on an 11.5-acre site which will be anchored by a two-acre park.

The Waterfront Innovation Centre will include cutting-edge building automation controls, under-floor air distribution, direct/indirect LED lighting, a high-performance curtain-wall system and occupancy/daylight sensors. Floor-to-ceiling glass will allow for maximum natural light penetration as well as spectacular views. The building will also generate power via a rooftop photovoltaic solar array.

“By focusing our development efforts on underutilized space, we are not only driving economic development, with a landmark building that will house nearly 3,000 jobs, but we’re also helping shape East Bayfront into a new beautiful neighbourhood,” Menkes says.

WPP, a London, England-based multinational advertising and public relations firm, will become the anchor tenant at the Innovation Centre, occupying 260,000 sq. ft. – more than 60 per cent of the building.

“The Waterfront Innovation Centre is the workplace of the future, supporting Waterfront Toronto’s mandate to make Toronto’s waterfront synonymous with innovation,” says Helen Burstyn, Chair of the Board, Waterfront Toronto. “We’re thrilled to celebrate this milestone occasion with Menkes, as it demonstrates how we’re providing the enabling conditions and infrastructure to attract private sector development that catalyzes the business and job growth necessary to make our Toronto and Ontario more competitive on a global scale.”

Expected occupancy is 2021.

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Finance: To Move or Not To Move?

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Finance: To Move or Not To Move?

To Move or Not To Move? That is the question

An overwhelming number of Canadians over the age of 65 want to stay in their family home. A survey, commissioned by Home Equity Bank and conducted by Iposos, revealed that 93 per cent wanted to stay in their current home throughout their retirement.

While this may be the preferred choice for many, smaller retirement nest eggs, as well as rising health care costs and maintenance on a larger property, often make it impossible to do so.

Take the time to figure out what it actually costs you to carry your home.

Do the math

When you have several people living in a house during the child rearing years, you expect expenses to be higher. As the children move out, those higher costs don’t add up – especially if you’re only using a portion of the the house. If you still have a mortgage, add that to what it costs to maintain the property, as well as utilities, repairs and property taxes. If, when totalled, that number represents the same portion of your retirement income as a mortgage did when you were working, then it might be a sign that you need to move. Retirement income is often lower, so it doesn’t make financial sense to pay the same costs as when you were working.

It’s a wonderful idea to preserve the family home for when children and grandkids come to visit. But, in reality, how many times do they actually spend the night? If you moved, would an extra bedroom be sufficient? Or, maybe, there’s a guest suite in your condo building. There are lots of options for visitors.

Lifestyle changes

Where you live may have been, partly, determined by where you worked. If retired, living in a specific place is no longer a requirement. If you’re helping with grandchildren, or find that much of your social life is outside the area in which you live, it might make sense to move closer. If you’re a traveller, having a smaller living space, like a condo, makes economical sense and it’s a great no-worry option when you’re away.

Make staying more affordable

If, after weighing all the pros and cons, you decide to stay in your home, there are still ways to save money. Consider renting an extra bedroom to a student or to a person who’s on a temporary contract in your area. Another great option is Airbnb. Or, go a step further and create an income suite in your basement for long-term tenants.

It may be possible to refinance your home. In this case, it means that you will have to make mortgage payments, and when the home is passed onto your beneficiaries, that loan will be settled first by your estate. There is also the option of a reverse mortgage. Read the fine print carefully, as the rates on such loans are often much higher, which means it’ll cost you more.

Selling the family home, and downsizing, can be an emotionally difficult period of time. By looking at it from a financial perspective, it could prove to be a responsible decision, so that you have the money to do what you want to do during your retirement.

Rubina Ahmed-Haq is a journalist, personal finance expert and HPG’s finance editor. She appears on CBC TV and radio, CTV Your Morning, Global Toronto, and writes for ratesupermarket.ca. Follow her @alwayssavemoney. AlwaysSaveMoney.ca

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Condo Market: Is A Condo Right For You?

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Condo Market: Is A Condo Right For You?

This is such a good question that CMHC has devoted an entire section of its “Condominium Buyer’s Guide” to “The Pros and Cons of Condominium Ownership.” Yes, there are a few cons for some people, but the advantages far outweigh them. Still, it is important to be realistic when it comes to making your purchase decision. The best way to do that is to consider all of the parameters of buying a condominium suite in a new building, and then to be realistic about condo living.

For example, CMHC lists one “con” as possibly paying for amenities you hardly ever or never use. The first thing that comes to mind is the swimming pool. Depending on the buyer, the existence or absence of a pool can be a deal-breaker. In fact, savvy buyers who rarely use a pool understand that the portion of their maintenance fees that covers this amenity is very small, and the fact that there is a beautiful pool in the building can add to a suite’s future resale value.

Another point under CMHC’s “cons” is the possibility of having less privacy and more noise in a condo. Today’s developers are going to great lengths to use construction materials and techniques that keep noise to a minimum. In addition, most balconies have privacy walls. As for the interior of the building, by virtue of what a condominium is, residents do interact with people on a daily basis in elevators and common spaces. They have privacy in their suites, and they can socialize when they want to.

And take CMHC’s “con” of restrictions on things such as pets, smoking, window coverings, what you can keep on your balcony, etc. It is true that the condominium corporation will set out standards that are expected to be followed to protect residents’ privacy, safety and quality of life. This benefits everyone in the building.

I could go on, but my point is, are these really “cons,” or are they simply the realities of condo living? The pros listed are enticing: having a say in the running of the condominium; fewer responsibilities for maintenance and repairs; access to gorgeous building amenities; security features; predictable condo fees; and more.

This goes for singles, couples and families. It really does take a community to raise a child, and more parents are realizing that condominiums are in essence vertical communities where people get to know their neighbours in the hallways, elevators and shared amenity spaces. Today’s condominiums are graced with familyfriendly amenities, from fitness facilities to games rooms, theatres, party rooms, pools and rooftop barbecue terraces. Some condos even feature daycare facilities. Remember, too, that the condominium lifestyle includes the peace-of-mind of built-in security measures, beginning with eyes-on-the-street concierge service.

Whatever your situation, if you are shopping for a condo for the first time, gather all of the resources you can. Visit www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca/en/buying/condominium-buyers-guide and read through it carefully. I cannot say enough about the joys of condominium living. What a wonderful lifestyle choice for people of all ages!

BARBARA LAWLOR is president and CEO of Baker Real Estate Incorporated, winner of the pinnacle 2017 Riley Brethour Award from BILD, and an in-demand columnist and speaker. A member of the Baker team since 1993, she oversees the marketing and sales of condominium developments in the GTA and overseas. Keep current with The Baker Blog at blog.bakerrealestate.com

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Video: 9th & Main Condos + Towns

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Video: 9th & Main Condos + Towns

Suites, two storey lofts and townhomes coming to Stouffville.

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Penthouse Living : The most expensive condo in Canada

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Penthouse Living : The most expensive condo in Canada

1011 Cordova Street, PH02
Vancouver
$38 million
MLS Number: R2229814
Maintenance Fees: $4,762.79

The Fairmont Pacific Rim Penthouse 2 in Vancouver’s Coal Harbour area is a world class luxury residence sitting atop the five-star Fairmount Pacific Rim Hotel along Vancouver’s coveted Golden Mile just steps to the city’s vibrant business district, most exclusive shopping and finest restaurants.

This brilliantly designed two-level residence encompasses approximately 6,652 square feet of expansive living with over 2,900 additional square feet of outdoor terraces overlooking one of the most prized city, mountain and water views in Vancouver. This four-bedroom, five-bathroom residence has been redesigned by one of Canada’s most renowned architectural and interior design companies providing a luxury lifestyle like nothing else in the city.

All showings by appointment only for qualified purchasers.

http://www.northshorerealty.ca/listing/r2229814-ph02-1011-w-cordova-street-vancouver- bc-v6c-0b2/

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Home Realty: Buying With Students In Mind

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Home Realty: Buying With Students In Mind

Condos near schools, transit are rock-solid investments

With the current cost of real estate pricing so many young people out of the market, it’s becoming increasingly common for parents to help their kids by purchasing them their first condo. Especially when that child is heading off to school and will need a place to live.

Buying your child a condo for their college years provides a dual benefit: your offspring avoids having to pay rent when they’re at school (which you’d likely be bankrolling anyway), and the family then has a solid long-term investment for its portfolio, with the tremendous and ongoing upside as a rental property for other students down the line.

When it’s young people who will be condo’s occupants, the criteria for what constitutes an ideal unit changes than if you’re buying just for yourself. Perhaps most important on the must-have lists for students are locations that are well served by transit and close to quality post-secondary institutions.

For example, Parkside, Amacon’s 23-building mega-project in Mississauga City Centre — the city’s largest condo development — has enjoyed unparalleled success with investors and end users thanks in large part to its proximity to Sheridan College. And a number of residential projects are cropping up around the new TTC subway extension in Vaughan, a huge boon for York University and its students, which have been seriously under served in both the housing and transit departments. It’s the same situation in Markham, where York University has announced plans for a satellite campus.

One28 in Waterloo caters to students.

Condo projects in these transit oriented areas are selling out mere moments after launching, speaking to the insatiable demand for modern and well-appointed student accommodations.

A new project in Waterloo, One28, is located just minutes from Wilfred Laurier University, the University of Waterloo and the UW Technology Park. The 15-storey complex is unlike other typical student-targeted developments, boasting beautifully appointed and luxurious one-bedroom and two-bedroom suites that promise a completely new experience for residents looking to live in Waterloo’s university area.

Projects like One28, which are catering to younger buyers, must have an attractive amenity package, including fitness centres, yoga rooms, activity areas, communal spaces such as party rooms and rooftop lounges, and sustainable features like electric vehicle charging stations and bike storage lockers.

Just a note on tax implications: if parents rent out a unit at market rates to a student family member who uses the property as his or her principal home, they can deduct tax losses from the rental activity, deduct the mortgage interest and write off all the other operating expenses, like utilities, insurance, association fees, repairs and maintenance.

Whether you’re purchasing a unit for your college-bound child, or you’re a savvy investor buying a unit to rent out to students, you can’t go wrong with a condo as an investment property.

Prices have been steadily rising, and many of those who can’t afford to get onto the ladder will be looking to rent for the long-term, making them ideal tenants for these investment units. Best of all, when students are the target demographic, there’s plenty of future potential in a market that continues to clamour for quality housing options.

Debbie Cosic, CEO and founder of In2ition Realty, has worked in all facets of the real estate industry for over 25 years. She has sold and overseen the sale of over $15 billion worth of real estate and, with Debbie at the helm, In2ition has become one of the fastest-growing and most innovative new home and condo sales companies. In2ition has received numerous awards from the Building Industry and Land Development Association and the National Association of Home Builders.

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Condo Market

Condo Market : Floorplan Reading 101

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Condo Market : Floorplan Reading 101

Purchasing a new condominium suite early in the selling cycle is a wise decision nowadays in the Greater Toronto Area. Chances are, by the time you move in, your new home will be worth more than you paid for it.

It is also likely that you purchased from a floorplan rather than being able to walk through completed suites. For seasoned home buyers, this is probably old hat, but for first-time buyers, it can seem daunting to visualize a three-dimensional space from a two-dimensional representation. The best thing to do is learn to read a floorplan to ease that visualization.

Typically, floorplans include symbols and abbreviations that may differ in style from builder to builder, but there are conventions that are used by most. Condo floorplans are drawn as though you are looking down at the suite from above. You will see the overall square footage of the layout and of the balcony or terrace area. Room dimensions are shown, usually with the width first, and with arrows indicating from which wall to which wall. If you are looking at an L-shaped room, this helps greatly with determining furniture placement. Squares with an “X” inside mean the fan coil units for distributing heating and cooling are located there.

Notice that some lines are a bit thicker than others. Those with more depth represent walls that contain plumbing, electrical and/ or structural elements. How does this help you? At your colour selection appointment, you know that you cannot move those walls as an option. Of particular importance is the key plate in the corner of the floorplan that features a shaded area indicating where the suite is located in the building’s floor plate. You may even see key plates that describe on which floors that particular design is available.

Keep in mind that where doors are concerned, icons show you which way they swing. Sliding doors to a balcony or terrace are shown with overlapping rectangular lines. And when you see parallel lines on the floor, that means hardwood or laminate. If the floor area is blank, it likely indicates carpeting. Squares are ceramic or other stone or tile flooring.

Kitchen drawings can be quite intricate, with lines that represent everything from appliances to breakfast bars. A blank square is the fridge; a square with four circles on it would be the stove seen from above. Dotted lines in the middle of a counter may signify uppers above it. A dotted line along the edge of a counter or island probably means there is an overhang under which you can place stools. If there is space for a dishwasher, there is a dotted line for that too. Icons with small circles (for drains) in the middle are sinks. W/D is the abbreviation for washer/dryer, and you may see LIN for linen closet. Bathroom drawings are easy to read, as the sink, toilet, tub and/or shower are obvious. The abbreviation WIC stands for walk-in closet.

The best advice I can give you is to ask your sales representative to explain anything on the floorplans that is not clear. If you can tour model suites, by all means, do so. Be sure to walk through models with the floorplans in hand, which will give you an excellent idea of how other suites will “live.” A new condo suite is a big investment for your future. Use all of the tools at your disposal to make the best choice for your needs and wants — and have fun in the process!

BARBARA LAWLOR is president and CEO of Baker Real Estate Incorporated and an in-demand columnist and speaker. A member of the Baker team since 1993, she oversees the marketing and sales of condominium developments in the GTA and overseas. Keep current with The Baker Blog at blog.bakerrealestate.com

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