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Demand for condos is up, as Canadians are priced out of low-rise homes

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Photo: James Bombales

Housing affordability reports for the third quarter of 2018 are coming in, and they’re not looking pretty.

Affordability worsened in nine out of 10 urban markets last quarter, according to the National Bank’s latest housing affordability index. While home price growth has slowed in many cities, average income is struggling to keep pace.

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“Expensive housing markets such as Vancouver and Toronto slowed down markedly in 2018 and home prices even declined in Q3,” reads the report. “Despite lower home prices, homebuyer affordability failed to improve as wages were down in those markets.”

As affordability deteriorates, a trend is making itself known — families unable to afford a low-rise home are increasingly turning to the condo market as a cheaper alternative.

“While a significant portion of home buyers have been priced out of single-family homes, demand is currently strong for condos as shown by prices rising 6.8 percent over the past year [while non-condo prices are flat],” reads the report.

But as demand shifts towards the condo market, its affordability is beginning to deteriorate. The trend is particularly noticeable in Toronto, where condo prices were up 6.1 percent year-over-year last quarter.

“With non-condo ownership being unattainable for most households, a spillover could be headed towards the relatively more affordable condo segment,” reads the report.

Meanwhile, Vancouver’s condo market experienced its 13th consecutive quarterly affordability deterioration in Q3. While the average home price was down 0.9 percent quarter-over-quarter, it rose to a nationwide high of 6.9 percent over the past year.



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Fourth annual real estate summit proves Jersey City is just getting warmed up

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Photo: Robert Clark

There may have been a lot of talk about Amazon at the fourth annual Jersey City summit for real estate investment yesterday, but the summit’s real takeaway was that the Jersey City housing market is just getting warmed up.

The summit, held at 210 Hudson Street, included panels and discussions on Jersey City retail, the multifamily sector, office development and amenities. New Jersey’s 56th governor, the honorable Phil Murphy also addressed attendees.

Of Jersey City, Murphy said, “The best days are yet to come.”

Amazon — which announced yesterday morning that nearby Long Island City, NY will be the future location of one of its two new HQs —  cast a long shadow over the Jersey City-focused summit, but the talk was surprisingly positive.

“Amazon will impact Jersey City, and the state of New Jersey, both directly and indirectly,” said Murphy.

Despite high taxes (in New York) and high living costs, Amazon chose LIC and New York City because they wanted to go where it’s “cool,” noted Jeffrey Gural, chairman at GFP Real Estate and Newmark Knight Frank.

Jersey City’s proximity to Manhattan, diversity, strong sense of community, and growing local amenities make it a great place to live and raise a family — an experience hard to be topped across the river.

“Jersey City is in a prime position to benefit from New York City’s strong labor market, growth, and from Amazon and Google expanding,” said Marshall Tycher, chairman at Roseland Property Trust.

The Manhattan-New York City migration into Jersey City has been accelerating in recent years as many businesses and families find themselves priced out of their current digs.

“If New York City job growth continues, Jersey City will prosper,” said Jonathan Kushner, president of the KRE Group.

Murphy urged developers to look beyond Jersey City’s thriving downtown — recently ranked one of the best in the country — and offered incentives to encourage development that creates opportunities within the community.

If anything, many believe Amazon’s arrival next door will only fuel Jersey City’s ongoing rivalry with Manhattan and force it to grow even more.

“Jersey City has thrived despite having the Big Apple as a neighbor,” said Gural. “Los Angeles doesn’t have Manhattan as a neighbor.”

By the end of the summit, two things were abundantly clear despite the cloudy, rainy autumn weather — Jersey City isn’t worried about Amazon and Jersey City is just getting started. Indeed, the best days are still ahead.



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Fourth annual real estate summit proves Jersey City is just getting warmed up

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Photo: Robert Clark

There may have been a lot of talk about Amazon at the fourth annual Jersey City summit for real estate investment yesterday, but the summit’s real takeaway was that the Jersey City housing market is just getting warmed up.

The summit, held at 210 Hudson Street, included panels and discussions on Jersey City retail, the multifamily sector, office development and amenities. New Jersey’s 56th governor, the honorable Phil Murphy also addressed attendees.

Of Jersey City, Murphy said, “The best days are yet to come.”

Amazon — which announced yesterday morning that nearby Long Island City, NY will be the future location of one of its two new HQs —  cast a long shadow over the Jersey City-focused summit, but the talk was surprisingly positive.

“Amazon will impact Jersey City, and the state of New Jersey, both directly and indirectly,” said Murphy.

Despite high taxes (in New York) and high living costs, Amazon chose LIC and New York City because they wanted to go where it’s “cool,” noted Jeffrey Gural, chairman at GFP Real Estate and Newmark Knight Frank.

Jersey City’s proximity to Manhattan, diversity, strong sense of community, and growing local amenities make it a great place to live and raise a family — an experience hard to be topped across the river.

“Jersey City is in a prime position to benefit from New York City’s strong labor market, growth, and from Amazon and Google expanding,” said Marshall Tycher, chairman at Roseland Property Trust.

The Manhattan-New York City migration into Jersey City has been accelerating in recent years as many businesses and families find themselves priced out of their current digs.

“If New York City job growth continues, Jersey City will prosper,” said Jonathan Kushner, president of the KRE Group.

Murphy urged developers to look beyond Jersey City’s thriving downtown — recently ranked one of the best in the country — and offered incentives to encourage development that creates opportunities within the community.

If anything, many believe Amazon’s arrival next door will only fuel Jersey City’s ongoing rivalry with Manhattan and force it to grow even more.

“Jersey City has thrived despite having the Big Apple as a neighbor,” said Gural. “Los Angeles doesn’t have Manhattan as a neighbor.”

By the end of the summit, two things were abundantly clear despite the cloudy, rainy autumn weather — Jersey City isn’t worried about Amazon and Jersey City is just getting started. Indeed, the best days are still ahead.



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Playground Condominiums at Garrison Point is now selling

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Experience the very best of the Liberty Village and King West neighbourhoods at Playground Condominiums. Located at the corner of Strachan Avenue and Ordnance Street, this brand new 35-storey condominium residence boasts a signature four-acre city park and a comprehensive selection of onsite amenities. Featuring studio to two-bedroom plus den layouts, Playground Condominiums offers modern design and a connected urban lifestyle.

The project is being developed by Fernbrook Homes, Cityzen Development Group and Greybrook Realty Partners. Sales for available units range in price from $481,900 to $966,900. Floorplans are thoughtfully designed with 357 to 1047 square feet of living space, functional linear or L-shaped kitchens, organized reach-in closets and open-air balconies with sweeping views of the downtown core and Lake Ontario.







Playground lives up to its name with an exciting lineup of amenities. The wood and marble-clad lobby is overseen by an attentive concierge, and the state-of-the-art fitness centre allows residents to forego costly gym memberships. Host a large get-together in the party room, complete with a chef’s kitchen and comfortable seating areas.







The kids lounge offers plenty of space to run around, read quietly or work on an art project, and the theatre room is the perfect spot for a cozy movie marathon with friends. During the warmer months, head to the rooftop pool and jacuzzi for a relaxing soak. If enjoying a book in the sun is more your thing, there are plenty of chairs to lounge around on.







Playground Condominiums is just steps away from Liberty Village — home to a Metro grocery store, West Elm, EQ3, Balzac’s Coffee Roasters, and a wide array of casual pubs and restaurants. There’s easy access to bustling King West, as well as Trinity Bellwoods Park on Queen West. Even closer to home, the four-acre park is an ideal place to walk the dog, enjoy a picnic or play with the kids.







Register today to learn more about buying opportunities at Playground Condominiums.

For more information, please call 416 278 8071, email info@playgroundcondos.ca or visit playgroundcondos.ca.



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