Toronto Condo Debuts the First Virtual Concierge

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Vanessa Singh always has a smile as she welcomes deliveries and watches that all is well in the hallways of Tridel’s newest downtown condo, Reve.

It’s not unusual for residents to stop by the front desk to chat or ask for restaurant recommendations, though they know Singh is really about 30 kilometres away, keeping an eye on the King St. W. condo from her high-tech desk in Mississauga.

Singh, 24, is one of a kind in Canada, at least for now — a virtual concierge.

“She knows every time someone’s come in the front door or into the parking garage. It’s incredible what she can control in the building,” says Tridel vice president Jim Ritchie who hopes to eventually have virtual concierges in most Tridel buildings.

“She’s very pleasant and engaging, although I’ve only met her virtually.”

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I always recommend Tridel buildings to my clients.

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$99 Report Reveals Home’s Full History

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Resale car buyers are given more protection than resale home buyers by the government and the courts.

There is no supervision on the home inspection industry, while car mechanics must be licensed in order to certify a car. The courts often use the concept of buyer beware for home buyers, even though many defects can’t be seen when you are inspecting a home. The result is sometimes unhappy buyers who are forced to correct problems that were not disclosed when they bought the home.

A lot of the sort of information you need is collected by insurance companies, but they don’t share it. They have huge databases about a property’s history, including claims for such things as water damage or theft. They use this to calculate how much they charge for a policy, but don’t share it, arguing that it is private.

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Toronto’s Most Underrated Neighbourhoods: Weston

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Before The Junction became the place that hipsters go to raise their young, it already had a couple of the ingredients you could use to predict an urban renaissance: a preserved, century-old streetscape that made you feel like you were living in a movie, plus a community of residents fiercely proud of their neighbourhood’s history and identity.

In the historic Village of Weston, you’ll find similar raw material. On Weston Road around Lawrence Avenue, you can feel the history contained in the stone and brick prewar architecture and the old-school penny-farthing bicycle sculptures hanging from lampposts. Landmark libraries, churches and a host of local history and community groups trumpet the area’s legacy as a strong, independent industrial town.

The large brick heritage homes on the tree-lined residential streets carry on the traditional feel, and offer access to vast swaths of parkland along the Humber River.

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Did You Buy in the Right Neighbourhood?

Toronto Life,, has added a fantastic real estate section which includes neighbourhood profiles of 76 of the City of Toronto’s defined neighbourhoods.

Each profile contains selling features, crime rates, commuting information, restaurants , shops and more.

Check it out here !

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Spring Home Maintenance Checklist

Great article in Canada Realty News :

Keeping your home in top shape requires year-round care. While each season brings different tasks and challenges for homeowners, spring is an especially important time – it’s when to assess winter wear and prepare for summer.

Many big home repairs start out small but, left unattended, become more costly problems. By taking care of little issues now, you can save yourself a lot of money and stress in the long run. Keeping a list of what needs to be done, and when, can help you to avoid and prevent the most common household problems.

Many of the necessary task are probably easy enough for you to take care of yourself. However, if you don’t feel comfortable or don’t have the proper equipment, consider hiring a qualified contractor to help you.

Inspect the roof.  Shingles that curl (turn up) and claw (turn down) can make your roof inefficient and susceptible to leaking. Check around vents, skylights and chimneys for leaks and repair as necessary.

Don’t forget to check your roof from the inside too. Look in the attic for any signs of moisture or surface discolouration on the underside of the roof that may point to leakage from above or air leaks coming from your house.

Repair leaks. Before rainy spring weather hits, check to make sure you don’t have any leaks, especially in a basement or attic. Double-check your door and window seals, too, in case they might need a fresh coat of caulk or new weather-stripping.

Clean gutters and drain pipes so leaves won’t clog them and be sure they drain away from the house. Drain outside faucets.

Chimneys. If you have a masonry chimney, check the joints between bricks or stones. Have any fallen out? Is there vegetation growing out of them? Each signals water infiltration. Also, look for efflorescence which is a white calcium-like deposit that indicates your masonry joints are no longer repelling water but absorbing it. Consider re-sealing masonry with a clear, impermeable or water-resistant barrier material (like Thoroseal products). Brush it on, small areas at a time; let it absorb for 15 minutes, then reapply—it may need a couple of applications.

Clean siding with a pressure washer to keep mold from growing. Check all wood surfaces for weathering and paint failure. If wood is showing through, sand the immediate area and apply a primer coat before painting. If paint is peeling, scrape loose paint and sand smooth before painting. Replace rotted siding or trim.

Check foundation walls, floors, concrete and masonry for cracking, heaving, or deterioration. If you see large cracks or a significant number of bricks losing their mortar, call a professional.
Inspect trees for broken branches. If the broken limb is high up, hire a licensed arborist. If you can reach it from the ground, take it down using the three-cut technique, which prevents bark from tearing and creating an open wound on the trunk.

Seal cracks on the driveway and paths before weeds take up residence. Home centres sell patching materials and fillers designed for asphalt and concrete surfaces.

Spring is also a great time to clean your windows, screens and hardware and replace storm windows with screens. Check your screens for holes or tears first and repair or replace them if needed. Examine putty/caulk lines around exterior windows and doors and ensure weather stripping creates a good seal.

Check all decks, patios, porches, stairs and railings for loose members and deterioration. Open decks and wood fences need to be treated every four to six years, depending on how much exposure they get to sun and rain. If the stain doesn’t look like it should, or water has turned some of the wood a dark gray, hire a professional to treat your deck and fence.

Prune landscaping and create good drainage. Shrubs and landscaping help against soil erosion, but should be planted to form a negative grade, which means water will flow away from the house. You don’t want growth up against the foundation of the home itself.

Inside the house:
When it’s warm enough outside, turn off your gas fireplace pilot lights where possible.

Carry out the manufacturer’s recommended maintenance for your air conditioning system and ventilation equipment.  Be sure to consult your owner’s manual for cleaning instructions or hire a qualified contractor.

Check your smoke, carbon monoxide and security alarms and replace the batteries.
Reopen any valves for outside hose bibs that were shut off last fall.

Please contact me direct at 416-520-6746 or by email,

How to Make Your House Picture-Perfect for the Sale

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Staging has become a common, if not integral, step in the home-selling process, especially as savvy HGTV-fed consumers continue to tune into programs like Designed to Sell, The Stagers and Get it Sold.

“Years ago you could put your house on the market and nobody cared what it looked like,” says Cindy Stocker, a property stylist at Vancouver-based Urban Presentations. “But people are more impressionable these days.”

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Noir Condos by Menkes

I have exclusive access for my Clients for VIP Platinum Pricing at :

Noir Condos by Menkes

This is an amazing development located at 87 Peter St. (at King St. West)  in the heart of Toronto’s Entertainment District

If previous projects in the area such as Peter Street Condos and The Bond are any indication, this project will sell and prices will go up significantly in 2-3 weeks

Currently the 29th and 42nd Floors are on hold for select Agents.

Occupancy in November 2016

Prices from the mid $250,000’s.

Prices per sq. ft as low as $638/sf

The Platinum VIP event will get you in on the ground floor before the regular agents and the public.

I have access to purchase the units. Prices after the VIP event will increase .

The most successful investors make a healthy investment return by attending Platinum VIP events with their Realtors.

A select number of Realtors only have access to Platinum VIP pricing.

** Click here for the Price List and Relevant information

** Click here for Floor Plans

** Click here for the Worksheet

** Click here for the Brochure

Units will be assigned on a first come first served basis starting today.

** A worksheet with your top choices must be faxed in by Sunday April 22, 12:00pm ,2012.

** Signing will begin by appointment only on April 20, 2012.

Please contact me at 416-520-6746 or respond to this email for further information.  

River City Phase 1: Nearing Completion

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The revitalization of Toronto’s Waterfront is a very important step in making the city one of the top must-see destinations in the world. Think of all the photographs you have seen of the world’s most celebrated skylines. The majority of them show the waterfront, because their waterfronts are worth seeing! The development of a waterfront comes with more retail, restaurants, bars, clubs, lounges, and most importantly, homes. With all of this in mind, we are happy to announce that construction at the first phase of River City by the Urban Capital Property Group and Waterfront Toronto is moving along exceptionally well! (Granted, River City is closer to the Don River, hence the name, but it is a project by Waterfront Toronto, and they have been working tirelessly for the past five years to develop our Waterfront into something we can be proud of.)

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Breaking Your Mortgage? Know the Rules

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Mortgage rates are falling. You want to break your closed mortgage and get a new five-year loan at 2.99 per cent.

Hold on. Take a deep breath. Talk to your lender first.

Find out how much you will have to pay to get out of your mortgage early. The penalty could wipe out all your profit on the deal.

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Cohabitation Agreements Help Give Common-Law Spouses Same Rights as Married Couples

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When Maria Prieto and her boyfriend James Agnew decided to buy a condo and move in together three years ago, Agnew suggested the pair get a cohabitation agreement.

Prieto admitted she didn’t know what that meant, but once it was explained to her she agreed to it right away.

“We just decided that if we were to break up, we wanted to know what would happen, who’s going to get the condo. We didn’t want it to be a fight if we broke up: ‘Who’s going to pay whom’ and that type of thing,” she explained.

Many people wrongly assume that cohabiting couples have the same rights as their married counterparts. For the most part, they’re right, but there are some areas where the law can mean you leave your relationship empty handed.

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Tight Market Pushes the Average Price Above $500K

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Greater Toronto Realtors reported 7,032 sales through the MLS in February 2012 . The number of transactions represented a 16% increase compared to February 2011 .  New listings , at 12,684 were up by 11.2% compared to February 2011. 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 10% and 6% respectively.

” With slightly more than two months of inventory in the Toronto Real estate board 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 the current market conditions. This is evidenced by the fact that homes sold, on average, for 99% of the asking in February,” continued Silver.

With market conditions remaining tight in the GTA, the average selling price continued to grow in February up by 10.8% % from the same time last year to $502,508.

” 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 the Toronto Real Estate Board’s Senior Manager of Marker Analysis Jason Mercer. “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.”

“TREB’s baseline forecast for 2012 is for an average price of $485,000, representing a more moderate 4.0% annual rate of price growth. This baseline view is subject to a heightened degree of risk given the uncertain global economic outlook,” continued Mercer.

Sales of Toronto ( 416 area code) condominium apartments grew by 7% from February 2011. The average price of a Toronto condo increased by 4% from the same time last year.


Condominium apartments accounted for 24.5% of total sales in the the GTA for February 2012 while detached homes accounted for 48.7% of the total sales.

Other notable statistics include the average days on the market for February at 24 days . Active listings were 14,456 in February 2012-up 0.1% from February 2011. The sales-to-listings ratio for February was 48.3% which is classified as a seller’s market . A ratio from 24%-28% is considered a balanced market.  

Sellers are looking for market value for their property . I prepare a comparative market analysis (CMA) for all of my Buyer clients prior to submitting an offer to determine the property’s market value range.

Real estate is very neighbourhood specific and even very street specific in some areas. The numbers as reported above are GTA averages. Results in one neighbourhood or on one street does not indicate that all other neighbourhoods or streets are experiencing the same results. We are still seeing multiple offers in some areas for the best homes.

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