March 5, 2012 -- Greater Toronto REALTORS® reported 7,032 sales in February 2012 – up 16 per cent compared to February 2011. New listings were also up over the same period, but by a lesser 11 per cent to 12,684. It is important to note that 2012 is a leap year, with one more day in February. Over the first 28 days of February, sales and new listings were up by ten per cent and six per cent respectively.
“With slightly more than two months of inventory in the Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB) market area, on average, it is not surprising that competition between buyers has exerted very strong upward pressure on the average selling price. Price growth will continue to be very strong until the market becomes better supplied,” said Toronto Real Estate Board President Richard Silver.
“It is important to note that both buyers and sellers are aware of current market conditions. This is evidenced by the fact that homes sold, on average, for 99 per cent of the asking price in February,” continued Silver.
The average selling price in the TREB market area was $502,508 in February – up 11 per cent compared to February 2011. The Composite MLS® Home Price Index for TREB, which provides a less volatile measure of price growth compared to the average price, was up by 7.3 per cent compared February 2011.
“If tight market conditions continue to result in higher than expected price growth as we move into the spring, expectations for 2012 as a whole will have to be revised upwards,” said Jason Mercer, TREB’s Senior Manager of Market Analysis. “While price growth remains strong, the average selling price remains affordable from a mortgage lending perspective for a household earning the average income in the GTA.”
Many people think being a landlord and investing in real estate is a way to make easy money. It can be financially rewarding if you do your homework and reduce your risks. But easy, it isn’t and it can lead to financial ruin if not done properly.
Moneyville columnist Alison Griffiths wrote about her adventure as a landlord earlier this year. It’s a humorous look at what can go wrong and the lessons learned, but anybody thinking about an investment property might want to read: Why did I think being a landlord was easy money?
The trick is to end up with money in your pocket at the end of the month after paying your bills and collecting the rent as you slowly pay down the mortgage and end up with a nest egg.
Here are some tips:
• Research the area where you’d like to buy. Is it in decline or on the way up? A good indication is if chains like Wal-Mart, Tim Hortons and Home Depot are moving in. These companies do a lot of work on demographics and income before deciding where to locate. You can get a big picture look at vacancy rates at settlement.org, a federally funded site that helps immigrants with information and resources to settle in Canada.
• Use a real estate agent who also is an area investor. Ask them to show you their properties and the rents. Ask for the names of other investors they have helped. Call them. Make sure they have a team of professionals you can use, such as property managers, insurance advisers, mortgage brokers, home inspectors, accountants and lawyers.
• Once you own more than four rental units, find a reliable property manager. You don’t want to take a call in the middle of the night. A rule of thumb is that you should allocate up to 10 per cent of monthly rent to a property manager. They will make sure your building is properly maintained and can help find tenants.
• Do not be in a hurry to rent a vacant unit. Take your time to qualify any potential tenant, since it can take months to evict a problem tenant. Call all tenant references, ask for a current pay stub and speak to at least two prior landlords. Where possible, require the tenant to pay for utilities. The tenant will have to apply to the utility company for an account, which amounts to an extra credit check being done by the utility company.
• Be careful with basement apartments and homes rented to students. Although these units can provide additional income, you must make sure that they are legal, comply with the fire code and have any required licenses to operate.
• Buy and hold your property for the long term. This way, you have an income and slowly start to pay down your mortgage.
• If you are investing with others, have a partnership agreement. Problems may occur later if the friendship breaks down, especially if one partner loses their job and cannot pay their share of expenses, or if one partner wants to sell while the other does not. With a partnership agreement, you can provide what will happen in these situations in advance, without having to pay costly legal fees to figure it out later.
Investing in real estate is not easy. But by taking the proper precautions, it can be very rewarding.
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Spacious & Updated 2 Bdrms & 2 Bathrooms Condo Unit W/Split Bedroom Layout. This Affordable & Sun-Filled Tridel-Built Condo Is Centrally Located In Downtown Mississauga W/Convenient Access To Square One, Public Transit, Major Hwys Q.E.W & 403, Schools, Parks, Shopping, Etc. Building Is Equipped With Amenities Such As Indoor Pool, Sauna, Tennis Courts, Theatre Room, Gym & 24 Hour Security. Excellent Opportunity For 1st Time Buyers Or Investor. Move In Ready!!
Connected to the PATH system, Ice Condominiums at York Centre is just steps from the financial core, Maple Leaf Square - Canada's only fully integrated residential, sports and entertainment complex, Air Canada Centre and Union Station. Residents will also enjoy living adjacent to the waterfront and to the citys most exclusive marinas, Rogers Centre, CN Tower and the Entertainment District. The city surrounds Ice with world-famous restaurants and exceptionsal shopping - it's unquestionably the destination of choice for sophisticates from around the globe.
Address: 16 York Street (Toronto)
Builder Name: Lanterra Developments
For the common room, you can choose a tile that has a smooth texture and has a motive to support the aesthetic. For example, for the living room and family room, you can choose the type of mosaic tiles.
For a more personal space like a bedroom, you can more freely choose the type of ceramic tile. However, you should make sure that the tiles you will use have a color matching and theme carried in the outdoors to bring comfort.
Tiles with monochromatic colors, for example, the most appropriate if placed in a room that is not so large to cause a feeling of space. For a large room, you can more freely decide what type of tile with a variety of colors and motifs.
For the kitchen, for example. Because the room is easy to get dirty, you’ll want to select a tile that has a smooth surface for easy cleaning. We recommend that you do not choose a quarry tile, because tiles are not suitable for the kitchen because of easy to absorb dirt and stains.
Specifically in the bathroom, you can choose a non-slip rough glazed tiles. These tiles can help reduce the risk of accidents in the bathroom because the floor is slippery. Meanwhile, in the area outside the home, such as the terrace, you can choose a tile that is relatively resistant to weathering.
Bruschetta with Roasted Tomato, Ricotta and Prosciutto
6 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 large garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
6 large plum tomatoes (about 1 1/2 pounds), quartered lengthwise
12 1/2-inch-thick diagonally cut baguette slices (each 3 to 4 inches long)
12 tablespoons ricotta cheese, divided
6 thin prosciutto slices, cut in half
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1 cup frisee lettuce, chopped
1. Preheat oven to 425°F.
2. Stir 6 tablespoons oil, garlic, rosemary, 1 teaspoon coarse salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper in large bowl to blend. Add tomatoes and stir to coat. Let stand 5 minutes.
3. Line rimmed baking sheet with foil. Lay the tomatoes in a single layer on the baking sheet, Save the marinade for later.
4. Roast tomatoes until skin is browned and blistered and tomatoes are very tender, about 35 minutes. Cool tomatoes on sheet.
5. Arrange bread slices on another rimmed baking sheet. Brush top of each with reserved marinade (including garlic and rosemary bits) and toast the bread in the oven it is golden, 10 to 12 minutes. Cool toasts on baking sheet.
6. Spread 1 tablespoon ricotta cheese on each toast and sprinkle with it with pepper. Fold prosciutto halves in half again and place on ricotta. Put two tomatoes on top of prosciutto. Whisk lemon juice and remaining 1 teaspoon oil in medium bowl to blend; season with salt and pepper. Add frisee and toss to coat. Top bruschetta with frisee, place on a platter and serve!