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Archive for June, 2013

Price Growth In All Major Home Types In May

Tuesday, June 18th, 2013



June 5, 2013 — Greater Toronto Area (GTA) REALTORS® reported 10,182 sales through the TorontoMLS system in May 2013, representing a dip of 3.4 per cent compared to May 2012. Sales of single-detached homes in the GTA were up by almost one per cent compared to the same period last year, including a three per cent year-over-year increase in the City of Toronto.

“The sales picture in the GTA has improved markedly over the past two months. While the number of transactions in April and May remained below last year’s levels, the rate of decline has been much smaller. A growing number of households who put their decision to purchase on hold as a result of stricter lending guidelines are starting to become active again in the ownership market,” said Toronto Real Estate Board President Ann Hannah.

The average selling price for May 2013 sales was $542,174 – up by 5.4 per cent in comparison to $514,567 in May 2012. The annual rate of price growth was driven by the tight low-rise segment of the market and particularly by single-detached and semi-detached home transactions in the City of Toronto. Average condominium apartment prices were also up slightly in comparison to last year.

The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) Composite Benchmark was up by 2.8 per cent year-over-year.

“The annual rate of price growth in May was not surprising given the competition that still exists between buyers, particularly for low-rise home types such as single-detached and semi-detached houses. We remain on track for a three-and-a-half per cent increase in the average selling price for 2013 as a whole,” said Jason Mercer, TREB’s Senior Manager of Market Analysis.

*supplied by the Toronto Real Estate Board

*Toronto Real Estate Board Info
Year Over Year Sales Summary GTA

2013 2012 %Chg.
Sales 10,182 10,544 -3.4%
New Listings 19,216 19,075 0.7%
Active Listings 22,677 20,462 10.8%
Avg Price $542,174 $514,567 5.4%
Avg. DOM 23 21 9.4%

Downtown/Midtown Sales Statistics
Month of May 2013**

May/13 Apr/13
Properties Listed 1862 1760
Property Sales 578 561
Avg. Price $873,670 $917,607
Median Price $703,500 $706,667

**areas bounded by Yonge-Ossington-Lakeshore-Eglinton

Improve your neighbourhood by being a good neighbour

Friday, June 14th, 2013

When you’ve been in real estate as long as we have, your collective heap of horror stories about lousy neighbours begins to topple. Trust me, we’ve heard some doozies.

But rather than focus on the negative, we thought it better to look at the opposite. If real estate is all about location, the neighbourhood in which you live is a big part of that. As a resident within that neighbourhood, you play a key role in making it good, bad or just mediocre. So here’s to those long on friendly smiles, doing good deeds and exercising simple and helpful acts of kindness.

Here’s to being neighbourly:

Say hello – It helps to show you’re human. Wave, say hi or smile to your neighbours. This goes a long way toward building a pleasant environment. At the very least, it shows you’re extending a kindness to your neighbour and that there is some kind of expectation for a mutual greeting. It doesn’t mean you’ll be fast friends but it should earn you a few brownie points.

Keep the volume down – Eighties metal band Metallica might still be number one in your heart but not a favourite on your neighbours’ playlists. Keep the volume at a whisper. If you’re having an outdoor party, be sure to inform your neighbours, or better yet, invite them over. Be considerate of neighbours who are sick or at home with a newborn. Don’t mow your lawn at god-awful hours and if your dog is a barker, pay close attention and let him inside once the yowling begins.

Think beyond your four walls – Be considerate. If you share a wall with a neighbour, try not to place noisy appliances or electronics on the common wall. Be mindful of where you park your car. Don’t over-rev your engine or slam car doors too loudly early in the morning or late at night.



Get to know your neighbours – Do they have kids? Pets? Where do they work? How many actually live in the house? While acquiring this info may seem intrusive, knowing about their lifestyle helps you be a good neighbour. Knowing that you live next someone who works shifts, for example, helps you keep your outdoor noise level down during certain times of the day. It also arms you with the info needed to keep your neighbourhood safe. The recent discovery in Cleveland of a homeowner who imprisoned three women inside his house for nearly ten years is an extreme example of the segregation and mile-high fences we often build in neighbourhoods. Try reaching out instead.

The Annex Highlight: Studio 976

Monday, June 3rd, 2013

The sign on her salon says Studio 976 but everyone on the block knows her as Mary the Barber.

A fixture in the Annex for 34 years, Mary Vinci is a barber, hairstylist, confidante, major Leafs fan – you name it.

“I’ve watched people grow from when they were babies,” says the follicle goddess of her one-woman Bathurst Street empire that’s smack in between Dupont and Bloor. “I don’t do nails, sun tanning, pedicures. I strictly do hair. Because I’m a one woman operation here, it’s hard to do everything. Besides you’ve gotta stick with what you do best and do it well.”

The 55-year-old Italian-Canadian has groomed some great heads in her time. And she doesn’t discriminate – male or female, young or old, Muslim, Christian or Jew – she’s worked her aesthetic talent on them all.

Our family – my grandparents, my father, my uncle and my son – have surrendered to Mary’s charms: her capable hands, her colourful stories and her never-ending wit.

In 28 years, she’s been witness to my slow and regrettable hair loss, but having Mary tend to my crowning glory has somehow made it a little more bearable. She’s great for a laugh or to find out what’s going on in the neighbourhood.  A diehard Leafs fan, her clients know it’s the holiday season when Mary puts up her beloved blue-and-white Christmas tree.

About 70 per cent of Mary’s customers are men. Haircuts for men are $20, while for a women, it’s $25.

She’s proud of her 22 year-old daughter, who is following in her footsteps and currently apprenticing at a separate salon. Mary thought her daughter’s training in the business would be best done outside of her shop.

Thinking back on her early days, she recalls working for a lawyer after studying legal administration but she hated the office atmosphere because it was simply “too boring.”

“This is so much more fun,” she says of her 500 square foot salon. “I get to play around with people’s hair and make them look good and hear all their nasties.”

Had Mary not followed her heart we’d all be the lesser for it.




The data included on this website is deemed to be reliable, but is not guaranteed to be accurate by the Toronto Real Estate Board. The trademarks REALTOR®, REALTORS® and the REALTOR® logo are controlled by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify real estate professionals who are members of CREA. Used under license.