Ten projects that show Toronto condo development is still going strong

One Bloor West - photo credit Mizrahi

When plans for an 80-storey Toronto condo development at the southwest corner of Bloor and Yonge were unveiled earlier this year, Torontonians reacted with a predictable range of emotions, including deep worry and angst. Online commenters fretted not only about the physical appearance of the proposal – dramatically named ‘The One’ – but also the congestion it might bring to the neighbourhood, the shadow it would cast, the effect it might have on the bird population, and, of course, the shadowy, ubiquitous threat of “Manhattanization.”

While some reservations are understandable when confronted with a proposal of this stature, Globe and Mail columnist Marcus Gee wrote on March 18 that “Toronto has finally found the confidence to act like a big city,” perhaps suggesting that The One ought to be celebrated, if only for its ambition.

In that spirit, let’s have a look at nine more confident projects:

One Bloor East - Great Gulf Homes

One Bloor East

Directly across Yonge Street from the possible future location of The One sits One Bloor East, a 257-metre, 76-storey mixed use space which is nearing completion. Urban Toronto recently shared some images from the unfinished penthouse suites of the building, and the views are spectacular.

Mirvish+Gehry

 

Mirvish+Gehry

Before ‘The One,’ the Mirvish+Gehry was arguably the most controversial proposal in Toronto. The massive, two-building Toronto condo development (the taller of the two towers will reach over 300 metres) is likely to be located in the heart of downtown, at 260 King St West. The preservation of the Princess of Wales theatre is an important aspect of the proposal, as earlier plans included its demolition.

1 7 yonge photo via urban toronto

1-7 Yonge Street

At the foot of Yonge St, in a space currently dominated by the Toronto Star building and several parking lots, Pinnacle International is hoping to erect an impressive selection of six new buildings. The proposal would redefine two underused city blocks, and the tallest new building would be the third on this list to reach 300 metres.

10 york tridelTen York Street

Ten York is particularly interesting for its shape: the 67-storey, wedge-shaped building is located immediately south of the notorious Gardiner Expressway, and directly north of the Yonge-Bay-York off-ramp. While living between two separate portions of the Gardiner may not appeal to all, the building is indicative of the densification Toronto’s southern downtown core is experiencing.

themasseytower dot comMassey Tower

Expected to be completed next year, the 207-metre Massey Tower incorporates two historic bank buildings in its design. The Bank of Commerce on Yonge St just north of Queen will be restored and will serve as the new condo’s lobby.

385 yonge

385 Yonge St

The development proposed for 385 Yonge St may be the most shocking design proposal on this list. It includes two towers at 62 and 73 storeys, respectively, which will be joined by a large platform roughly two-thirds of the way up the shorter of the two. Situated just north of Yonge and Dundas Square, this Toronto condo development could be a true architectural landmark.

soleilEau du Soleil

Eau du Soleil is the furthest Toronto condo development from downtown on this list, located on Lake Shore Blvd West, on the Humber Bay Shores. The striking, two-tower design of the building will stand out among smaller, more conservative developments in the area.

88 Scott Concert properties

88 Scott Street

Currently under construction, 88 Scott St will top out at approximately 200 metres, and will feature a range of amenities to go along with an outstanding central location. The podium levels will include retail, restaurants, and commercial office spaces below 525 residential units.

33 Gerrard - Great Eagle Holdings33 Gerrard West

The 33 Gerrard West Redevelopment is the newest proposal on this list. Currently occupied by the Eaton Chelsea Hotel, the location could soon feature four new towers at heights of 80, 74, 50, and 46 storeys. For the moment, details on the proposal are scant, but early renderings suggest an international style-influenced design which would stand out beside glassy neighbours Aura and 385 Yonge.

Each imaginative Toronto condo development on this list will contribute to the growth and maturation of Ontario’s capital. Visit Renting Toronto today for listings of available condos for rent in Toronto. We’ve been in the business of connecting qualified tenants and reliable landlords since 1999.

Ontario’s A Place to Grow Act turns ten: what does the policy mean for the Toronto condo rentals market?

Photo credit: SimonP/Wikimedia Commons

Photo credit: SimonP/Wikimedia Commons

The term “urban sprawl” defines the grey, wandering expanse of commercial properties, strip malls, and suburbia that stretches endlessly from the heart of significant urban centres. The words have long been associated with environmental degradation, aesthetic and cultural emptiness, and urban planners’ bad dreams. In the Greater Toronto Area and surrounding Golden Horseshoe – Canada’s most populous region – creeping sprawl has consumed thousands of acres of prime farmland, raising widespread concern. As David Suzuki put it in a 2013 Toronto Star editorial: “continued sprawl threatens the health and well-being of our communities and the ecosystems that sustain us.”

In 2005, the Government of Ontario instituted the Places to Grow Act, a massive, multi-year program that “supports economic prosperity, protects the environment and helps communities achieve a high quality of life across the province,” according to official provincial literature. By creating a 7,300 square kilometre green belt around the Golden Horseshoe and implementing strict limitations to development outside existing municipal boundaries, the Ontario government sought to curtail unrestricted suburban expansion. In the past decade, Places to Grow has redefined the GTA housing market, and contributed to a steep rise in condo ownership and Toronto condo rentals.

In terms of pricing, the Canadian real estate market is divided into two categories: Toronto and Vancouver; and the rest. The price of a single family home in Vancouver is more than double the national average, and Toronto doesn’t lag far behind. In both cases, a primary pricing factor is land availability. Out west, the Pacific Ocean and Rocky Mountains restrict Vancouver’s ability to grow outwards, while Toronto is bounded to the south by Lake Ontario and to the north by the Places to Grow-instituted greenbelt.

“It’s essentially a grow up not out approach to the region’s future,” said RealNet Canada president George Carras in an article from the Business News Network. “If housing requirements over the next 20 years call for another 2.4 million people to move here, the kind of housing you’ll have is driven by the kind of housing you can create. You can expect more high-density, less low-density, and the price behaviour is going to vary between those two because of supply and demand.”

At the end of 2014, just 7,200 single detached homes were under construction in the GTA, compared to 57,000 condo units. As a result, the February 2015 price gap between new houses and new condos reached $300,000. This is good news if you’re looking into Toronto condo rentals, but significantly less positive if you’re planning to purchase a house. Climbing prices have made traditional bedroom communities like Markham and Vaughan largely unaffordable to first time home-buyers, who are looking as far afield as Kitchener and Barrie in pursuit of a front yard.

The detached housing market is expected to be put under further pressure as millennials continue to age into prime candidates for suburban migration. http://rentingtoronto.com/ontarios-a-place-to-grow-act-turns-ten-what-does-the-policy-mean-for-the-toronto-condo-rentals-market/ http://rentingtoronto.com/ontarios-a-place-to-grow-act-turns-ten-what-does-the-policy-mean-for-the-toronto-condo-rentals-market/ http://rentingtoronto.com/ontarios-a-place-to-grow-act-turns-ten-what-does-the-policy-mean-for-the-toronto-condo-rentals-market/ http://rentingtoronto.com/ontarios-a-place-to-grow-act-turns-ten-what-does-the-policy-mean-for-the-toronto-condo-rentals-market/In the next ten years, the widespread availability of Toronto condo rentals (25,571 units were completed in the GTA in 2014) will push the housing price gap to an expected $750,000 to $800,000.

“Condos will continue to play an important role in the GTA property market for three reasons,” explained Carras in a Toronto Star op-ed. “They represent the primary source of affordable home ownership options; they’re still a key source of rental-unit supply; and they represent a proven property-investment opportunity.”

Photo credit: Rick Harris/Flickr

Photo credit: Rick Harris/Flickr

A Place to Grow might not bode well for developers or prospective buyers of detached family homes, but the environmental realities of unchecked urban expansion makes the legislation nothing less than a necessity. Although the act is up for review in 2016, its forward looking statement peers ahead to 2041, calling for “compact development that makes the best use of our limited land supply and offers a diversity of choices for living, working and enjoying culture.” As such, the Golden Horseshoe’s residential housing market is likely to become increasingly competitive and expensive for the foreseeable future, while Toronto condo rentals will continue to offer a convenient, affordable alternative to home ownership.

If you’re interested in Toronto condo rentals, or are seeking to rent out your condo unit, contact Renting Toronto today. Our company has been in the business of connecting great tenants with competent, qualified landlords since 1999.

How to handle issues with your landlord

When you rent from a landlord, it’s always in both of your best interests to have a good relationship. Unfortunately, sometimes this doesn’t always happen.

Renters should be aware of their rights as a tenant and how to appropriately handle any issue to avoid any legal repercussions.

Does my landlord have the right to visit?

Renters may not realize it, but landlords have various situations where they’re allowed to enter the property, with or without notice. It’s in both people’s best interests to know ahead of time. In Ontario, landlords may enter without notice due to an emergency, if the tenant decides to let them in, if it was decided that the landlord will need to regularly visit to clean the rental unit and if both the tenant and landlord have agreed to end their rental agreement, the landlord can show the space to other prospective tenants without notice.

Besides these scenarios, landlords are expected to give renters at least 24 hours written notice before stopping by, which should include details such as why the landlord needs to stop by and when the landlord plans to visit. While a landlord is allowed to stop by, landlords are expected to limit the number of times they visit.

In Ontario, tenants may deny the landlord entry if it doesn’t follow the Residential Tenancies Act, but it being an inconvenient time isn’t a good reason to.

What issues might you encounter?

When you rent a property, it’s expected that both you and the landlord will come to an agreement into who will handle property maintenance, such as snow shovelling or mowing the lawn, and that certain rules may be set.

If you’re renting an apartment, it’s expected that you’re living in a manner that follows the building’s rules, such as avoiding excessive noise at night or not smoking indoors if it’s against the building’s rules. If you live in a way that violates the city’s bylaws, the police can be called which may lead to warnings or fines.

The landlord has the right to ask a tenant to either clean up their space, if it’s extremely dirty, or make repairs to the unit, if they damaged it, through either a verbal or written request. http://rentingtoronto.com/how-to-handle-issues-with-your-landlord/ http://rentingtoronto.com/how-to-handle-issues-with-your-landlord/If you don’t comply, the landlord may take their issue up with the rental authority. If you feel that you’ve been wrongfully accused of a situation, you may need to gather proof and witnesses to show otherwise.

Meanwhile, landlords are expected to complete emergency repairs in a timely manner, but tenants must be aware that they’re not allowed to withhold rent as leverage since that could lead to your eviction.

 

How to rent an apartment with bad credit

Many landlords conduct credit checks on potential tenants since it gives them an idea of how likely they are to pay their rent on time based on how well they manage paying their other debts.

But if you made some financial mistakes in the past, you may find that it will come back to haunt you when it comes time to find a place to rent. Most derogatory information will remain on your credit report for about six years, which is why you need to manage your credit well, avoid paying your bills late or defaulting on any loans.

If it’s unfortunately already happened, be aware that you may face a tougher time when it comes to finding a place to live and give yourself extra time to find a place to call home.

Before your start your apartment search, the first step is to check your credit report. This way you won’t be surprised by any unexpected issues. This is important since your bank or another service provider may have made a mistake in processing your bills or your identity may have been stolen and you’re left on the hook. If this is the case, get in touch with the financial institution and the credit reporting bureaus to resolve the issue and ensure that a note is made about the problem if it isn’t cleared up right away.

If your credit rating is due to a financial mistake on your own accord, the best thing you can do when applying to move out is to be upfront and honest about the issue. Get your previous landlord as a reference to vouch for you and you might consider attaching a letter or a receipt from your previous landlord or an explanation letter about the situation.

If you’re able to demonstrate good proof of employment, solid income and good references, landlords may not solely base their decision on the results of your credit report.

Landlords are legally allowed to reject potential tenants based on their credit reports and your best bet is not to try and hide your previous mistakes, but rather show recent evidence that you have paid your bills or rent on time.

A landlord may choose to accept you as a tenant, but they may request you to have a guarantor or a co-signer for your rental application. While you will be the person renting the property, your guarantor will be responsible for covering the rent if you miss a payment. Make sure you talk to close friends or family before submitting their name in your application.

Another way to entice a landlord to rent to you is offering them a higher security deposit to assuage their fears, offer to sign a shorter term lease so you’re able to prove yourself first or offer to move in right away.

It may take longer, but you should be able to find a place to rent, though you may not have as many choices. http://rentingtoronto.com/how-to-rent-an-apartment-with-bad-credit/ http://rentingtoronto.com/how-to-rent-an-apartment-with-bad-credit/Don’t be deterred by the situation and continue to monitor your credit report accordingly to prevent any future issues from putting a damper in your renting plans.

Renting Toronto will always conduct credit checks when consider renters for condos for rent in Toronto. Our company has been in the business of placing competent, qualified tenants in owners and landlord’s properties since 1999 and owners have the final say on all prospective tenants.

How to find a condo to rent?

If you’re looking to find an apartment or a condo to rent, there are many ways you can go about finding a place to live.

There are rental magazines or postings on bulletin boards, but the best place to look is online. Visiting rental listing websites will let you sort property options based on their amenities, the number of occupants and the location. This way you’re not browsing through rental options that are nowhere near your ideal living location and it’s not as daunting since you can easily narrow down your choices.

Also, it’s easy to put up and remove a listing online, which means when searching, you’re accessing the most up-to-date listings out there.

Another important aspect of these websites is that they typically show images of the property, which gives renters a glimpse into how the space looks. Many renters judge a rental property by the pictures before they go ahead and set up a viewing appointment.

But just because you can browse listings online, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t visit the place. Online listings should help you limit your choices, but seeing that the property matches your expectations is important too.

A viewing appointment lets you verify the details that’s mentioned on the listing and it also gives you a chance to chat with the landlord and ask any questions you may have, such as what utility payments and maintenance will you be responsible for. If possible, see if you can get references from any past renters to hear about their experiences, before agreeing to move in.

If everything is to your liking, make sure to get in touch with the landlord or the property management company right away since some listings may be in demand.

Once you’ve mentioned your interest in renting the property, your landlord will likely request proof of employment, a credit check, content insurance and any past references before approving you as a renter. http://rentingtoronto.com/how-to-find-a-condo-to-rent/ http://rentingtoronto.com/how-to-find-a-condo-to-rent/Have these ready to ahead of time to ensure a quick and smooth transaction. They may also request you to sign a lease agreement, which if you do, read the terms of your stay to ensure you’re aware of any costs and responsibilities associated with renting the property.

Once that’s squared away, if needed, give appropriate notice to your current landlord and prepare for your move.

If you’re a first-time renter in Toronto, these commonly asked Renter FAQs will help you find the right place to live. Visit Renting Toronto for listings on available places for rent in Toronto. Our company has been in the business of placing competent, qualified tenants in owners and landlord’s properties since 1999 and owners have the final say on all prospective tenants.

What is a credit check?

When a landlord is choosing a prospective renter, they have the right to ask for written permission to request a credit report.

Credit checks shed some valuable insight into your financial situation, which could influence a landlord to either accept you as a tenant or reject you.

What is a credit report?

A credit report details information about any loans you’ve taken out within the last six years, along with how often you meet your payment deadlines. The report also offer details about the credit cards under your name and the amount of credit you have at your disposal and how much you have used.

Before hunting for a place to rent, renters should request a free copy of their credit report from the credit reporting agencies, Equifax and TransUnion, to see their current status. These reports will also include a credit score, which is based on your use of credit to come up with a score. This score is based on multiple factors, such as the type of credit you use, your payment history, the amount you owe on credit, the length of your credit history and any new credit you may have applied for.

How can you improve your credit report score?

If it’s the first time you’ve checked your credit score and you’re shocked by your standing, you’ll be glad to hear that the score isn’t set in stone.

Some people may have no credit history, which while this means they haven’t borrowed money, it also doesn’t offer any insight into your financial risk. In a case like this, you may need to provide a guarantor letter which will names a family member or close friend to be liable for the rent if you are unable to pay. Meanwhile, the best way to start filling your credit report is by properly managing your credit card use since this way any potential landlords will see you as a responsible individual.

If you made mistakes when using credit, whether it’s by making a late payment or racking up a great deal of debt with your credit card, the only way to improve your credit score is to practice good money habits, and wait for your past behaviour to fall off the report. Make sure you pay any loans and bill payments on time and as your good habits continue over time, the weight of your old habits will affect your score less and less.

Both positive and negative information will stay on file for about six years, which is why it’s important to adopt good financial habits right off the bat. Depending on the type of negative information, whether it’s a bankruptcy or a late bill payment, the timelines differ with the amount of time it stays on your file.

To avoid any ugly surprises, check your credit report before looking for a place to rent. If the results aren’t as great as you’d like, follow through with good habits to improve your report overtime.

The information provided in your credit report is useful to landlords since it offers them a glimpse into the amount of debt you’re carrying, whether you have enough money to make your payments and whether you have a history of paying in a timely manner. This info coupled with your letter of employment, which details your income, will offer the landlord a barometer into your financial picture, which may either encourage them or dissuade them from renting to you.

Renting Toronto will always conduct credit checks when consider renters for condos for rent in Toronto. Our company has been in the business of placing competent, qualified tenants in owners and landlord’s properties since 1999 and owners have the final say on all prospective tenants.

What should you look for when renting a property?

When you rent a place to live, there’s a lot that goes into your decision on where you decide you live. Before you start browsing property listings for available rooms, first figure out what you need in a space.

Cost: For most people, this is a deciding factor when they look at places to live. Always set a budget of what space you can realistically afford. If you miss payments, you may find yourself on facing an eviction notice. When meeting with any potential landlords, you’ll want to know whether the cost of the place covers monthly rent and utilities or if those need to be paid for separately. Also, learn about your tenant rights, including whether your province is regulated by rent controls.

Location: If you’re going to school or working, chances are you want to live a short distance or a short commute away. If you need to take public transit, keep an eye out for your possible routes, or if you have a car, make sure the place you’re renting has parking available and if not, where you can park. Your mode of transportation also affects what you’d like in your neighbourhood. For example, if you don’t have a car, you may want to live in an area with a nearby grocery store, a pharmacy or a bank. If you have children, you may want to live in a place near a park or near a smaller road that doesn’t see as much traffic.

Number of occupants: The number of people living in the space will determine the number of bedrooms you will need to rent. If you have children, seniors or anyone who’s physically disabled who will be renting with you, you will want to take their needs into consideration. The number of rooms you will need will also affect your budget since in certain areas, such as downtown, it’ll be more expensive to find a two- or three-bedroom space compared to renting in the suburbs.

What type of building you want to live in: Some renters may be pickier about this aspect compared to others. Typically renting a basement suite is more inexpensive compared to renting in a townhouse, but you may not be a fan of the lack of sunlight.

What does the space include: If you’re looking to rent a room in a house, you’ll want to know whether it comes with any furniture or if you’ll need to bring your own, which will affect your costs. On the other hand, if you’re looking to a rent a condo, you’ll want to know whether the unit comes with laundry, whether it’s in the suite or located in another part of the building, as well as the other amenities you can access, such as patios, a gym, a pool, an entertainment room or a BBQ. Some of these features you may be adamant on having, while others may not be as important to you.

While your preferences may change as you view properties for rent, it’s always important to have a general idea what you’re looking for so you can make a quick decision, if needed.

If you’re a first-time renter in Toronto, these commonly asked Renter FAQs will help you find the right place to live.

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