September 30, 2016 14


Are Alternative Lenders Bad Business?

If you ask the folks over at The National Post, they would seem to suggest, “yes.”

An article ran in the Financial Post last week about “Joe Schmo” lenders that I personally felt was a little misleading, since they were talking about the “dangerous” lenders while interviewing people from alternative, albeit “A-lenders” like Street Capital, First National, and MCAP.  The latter three are A-lenders, who basically use the same lending criteria as the Big-5 banks; they just don’t have old-lady chequing accounts and security deposit boxes, like the Big-5 banks.

So should we be worried about “Joe Schmo lenders doubling their stake in Canada’s mortgage market,” as the Financial Post article suggests?  Or should we be happy that there are options outside of the banking oligopoly?

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September 28, 2016 12


Street Level Ground Floor Terraces

You all know how much I rave about outdoor space in downtown Toronto condos, and what a fan I am of large terraces.

Sure, you may only get to use them for 4-5 months of the year, and there are a lot of people out there that think it’s a “waste” to spend money on outdoor space in a city with our climate.

So with the season just changing from summer to fall, I wanted to take a look at outdoor spaces and throw a curve-ball at you: what about outdoor spaces on the ground level, facing the street?

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September 26, 2016 10


Condo Bathroom Renovation: From Start To Finish

This bathroom renovation was about a year in the making.  I just don’t know where to find the time for all this!

In any event, it happened, and I’ve documented the work from start to finish.

My wife and I are both very pleased with the results, although as it always does – this took about twice as long as we had hoped!

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September 23, 2016 33


Tales From The Fall Market: Part III

Today is Friday, so as promised, here is the third “crazy story” from this incredible Fall, 2016 real estate market.

Maybe these stories aren’t all that crazy, given the climate in the market.

But on a relative basis to other markets, or even the Fall, 2015 market, it’s just nuts.

We’ve talked about bully offers for crazy prices, sight-unseen and unconditional offers, and today we’ll talk about multiple offers – for units that really shouldn’t get them…

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September 21, 2016 20


Tales From The Fall Market: Part II

Not that it’s a contest, but I wonder which story will seem more outrageous between today’s and Monday’s, after you’ve read them both.

In Monday’s blog, we talked about crazy sale prices, relative to previous sales – both those from 15 months ago, and those from one day ago.

Today’s blog is not so much about the pricing, but the competition and feeding frenzy that exists when a new listing comes out – often resulting in unconditional, and/or sight-unseen offers…

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September 19, 2016 14


Tales From The Fall 2016 Market: Part 1

We’re only two weeks in, and already, I have more stories than I can possibly ever tell.

I knew this fall market was going to be crazy, and yet I feel like I was unprepared for what we’ve been experiencing thus far.

This week, I’ll tell you three stories, that underscore just how busy the Toronto real estate market is, and I expect these stories to make the “bears versus bulls” look like the Sharks versus the Jets, as both opinions will be out in full force…

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