There is a battle underway among several buyer types interested in owning Cliffcrest property, especially south of Kingston Road along Toronto’s Eastern Shoreline. Reminiscent of what has taken place in other neighbourhoods, the recent activity parallels the recognition of the Cliffcrest and Birchcliffe-Cliffcrest communities as the next frontier in Toronto’s downtown redevelopment.
With limited building land and strong population growth fuelled by both immigrants from outside Canada and migrants from across Canada, the demand for detached and even semi-detached homes continues to surpass existing supply. So who is interested in these properties and why?
It seems to have begun (or at least been accelerated) in January of 2016 when an original bungalow on Ridgemoor Avenue sold for over $800,000, setting a new benchmark for the homes surrounding Midland Avenue. This beautiful Bluffs area, light filled home with vaulted ceilings, stone counters and nine foot island bar, Spa bathtub, double shower and oversized soaker tub with ‘Heated Bathroom Floor’ and a beautifully vaulted room addition encased in windows and with double doors included a legal one-bedroom basement apartment. This is an ideal first home for a young professional couple wanting to raise their family in an established community, within a close commute to the downtown core, lots of outdoor space and the added potential financial benefit of rental income to help pay the mortgage. Of course, a tight supply of houses and large number of young couples looking for an ‘affordable’ detached home helped, both with a quick sale, and with an attractive price for the sellers.
The sale started a buzz among some of the realtors in the area and neighbours on Ridgemoor Avenue, Midland Avenue and surrounding streets. It captured the attention of builders who sharpened their pencils to figure out what they could build to maximize their profit with higher property values arising from increased interest from multiple types of buyers.
Two months later, on Wednesday, March 23rd, the base of Midland Avenue was lined with cars on both sides for over four hours as potential buyers made their offer on a house for sale. The contenders included young couples looking to move back to their childhood neighbourhood in the hope of raising their own family, new Canadians looking for a home they could eventually rebuild, investors planning to renovate and rent out, and builders planning to knock down the house and build new. Then of course there are the speculators, looking to flip the house.
With dozens of builders looking to buy properties in the area, the prices have jumped sometimes resulting in significantly above asking sale prices. The base of Midland Avenue and Fishleigh Avenue have especially been targeted by builders because of the views of the lake. The East side of Midland Avenue holds greater value for some buyers with children, because the homes on that side of the road fall into Cliffcrest, whereas the homes on the west side fall into Birchcliffe–Cliffside. The boundary lines for both R.H. King Academy (High School, 3800 St. Clair Avenue East, 416-396-5550) and Chine Drive Public School (51 Chine Drive, tel: 416-396-6155) end on the east side of Midland Avenue.
Builders are willing to pay a premium for the properties near the water, especially those within walking distance of the Scarborough Bluffs because of the promise that they will be able to sell the new homes they built there for a higher price. The idea is that if they built a $600,000 home on a property near the lake, as opposed to one on the north side of Kingston Rd., they will be able to sell it for more than the $600,000 plus the cost of the land.
It is important to understand that the value of different homes in the area will not be equally impacted by the heightened interest. Consideration should be given to the details of the specific property, such as (but not limited to) size, shape and slope of the lot, age and size of the home, proximity to lake, surrounding properties, school district and more.
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The good news is that the competition for the more expensive older homes has not yet matched their lower priced counterparts in the area. Builders are mostly looking for knock-down homes, specifically old and outdated bungalows,which means that they are virtually ignoring the more recently built, larger and updated homes. As a result, buying an older, more luxurious home with a spacious and quality lifestyle design will get you much more house per dollar spent.
One of the most beautiful and luxurious homes in the area is found at 19 Midland Avenue. It is in the same stretch of road that found itself lined with cars last week, waiting to present their offers for 27 Midland Avenue. But this is a different type of home and property and will attract a different type of buyer. Too new and large for a builder to demolish and too expensive for a young couple looking for their first home, this property is ideal for a successful professional or business owner looking for lots of open space and within a short commute to downtown Toronto at a good price. Did I mention it sits on a 50 foot by 300 foot ravine lot with views of Lake Ontario?
Walking through the home I couldn’t help feel the bright, positive energy and sense of bliss. The spectacular lake vistas are matched by an impressive 5 bedroom, 5 bathroom (2 ensuites) home with over 6,200 square feet of finished living space (including the basement). Luxury and comfort are in focus with the multiple fireplaces (a two-sided stone fireplace), hot tub on a two-level deck, grand open foyer, impressive curved staircase, gourmet kitchen, Palladian arched windows. The Master bedroom, with its own fireplace is fabulous with a stunning 5 piece ensuite. The “handyman” in me got a bit of a charge when I came across the large workshop and the Italian in me was impressed by the Cantina / cool room, ideal for a wine cellar or root cellar or combination of the two.
This is a home you have to see! … especially, if you’re looking for a home that you can truly enjoy with comfort in a family and dog friendly neighbourhood.
19 Midland is an ideal home for the successful individual who appreciates luxury and quality lifestyle at a great value that is hard to match anywhere else within the GTA. It is also a fantastic home for entertaining and social gatherings from intimate to more expansive.
Want to buy 19 Midland Avenue or another home along Toronto’s eastern shoreline? …Call me and get started on making your dream a reality!
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Baldo Minaudo, M.B.A.Broker,Real Estate Homeward, BrokerageDir: 416-564-0245
* Not Intended to Solicit Buyer or Seller Under Contract*
The last two properties I’ve sold in Scarborough have both sold for 110% of asking price. The first sold in 19 days, the second in 8 days. What could this mean?
For years Scarborough has been dormant, a secret within Toronto in which you’ll find wonderful neighbourhoods with individuals that have lived their for decades. It is here that a sense of community still lives on, where neighbours speak with each other, where properties have mature trees, gardens and signs of vibrant and active lifestyles.
One of the Scarborough communities is Agincourt, which in the 1980’s was targeted by foreign investors looking for spacious lots where they could knock down small post-World War II bungalows and replace them with 3,000-4,000 square foot homes. Agincourt which began as its own settlement and was amalgamated several times over the years is now ranked as #13 out of Toronto’s 140 communities as published by Toronto Life. It is no wonder that Agincourt properties are hard to come by and demand a premium.
Now it seems that nearby neighbourhoods, like Agincourt North are also seeing significant increases in house prices. Agincourt house prices continue to to be greater than surrounding neighbourhoods and for good reason given what it offers; golf course, great shopping, close to 401 and 404, close to Civic Centre & Scarborough Town Centre, great schools, and even a Go Station, and so much more. The city announced early in the year that the passenger rail service through Agincourt would be doubled, thereby contributing its accessibility to both the downtown and to the North.
There are many great communities in Scarborough and several that I believe will show some great appreciation in house prices. They are desired for their community feel, larger lots and/or homes, lifestyle options, open space, mature trees and established public services and infrastructure. Now that municipal, provincial and federal governments are focused on improving public transportation, accessibility to the downtown should improve and further support house prices in some communities.
If you are looking for a great home for your family or for an investment,especially in the Toronto Central and East communities (Harbourfront up to Willowdale across to Markham and down to Lake Ontario), you can reach me at 416-698-2090 and I’ll be happy to chat with you.