Bosley Realestate

March 2014 Home Of The Month - St. Clair / Bathurst

March 12th, 2014 | Buy Of The MonthWychwood / Humewood - Cedarvale

Welcome to's Home Of The Month feature, which showcases what our clients have recently purchased in the City of Toronto.

When our clients relocated to Toronto from Vancouver, they embarked on their house hunt with limited knowledge of the City. As a result, not only did they have to navigate a housing market which is oscillating at a frenetic pace, but they also had a vertical learning curve trying to determine which neighbourhood was the right fit for them. In fact, one of their initial questions inspired us to write our monthly 'Dear Urbaneer' post addressing the issue of how to choose a location.

While our Buyers initially gravitated to the central east side of Riverdale, which is a family-friendly location with village amenities and reputable schools, they were shocked to see how intense the competition was for the modest upgraded semi-detached three bedroom residences in the area. One of them included the house below which, listed at $649,900, soared to a sale price 21% over the asking price to $785,100 with 13 offers.

The challenge our Buyers had with this sale was not solely the high sale price, but the size limitations of this property. This dwell was around 1100 square feet above grade which, while serving their needs for the immediate future, was something they believed they'd outgrow in five years unless they put on an extension. While the location would support the cost of an addition, it also meant if they went that route they would either be heading to a final $1million price tag or, if they didn't, it would necessitate a future move into something larger with all the associated expenses of selling and buying. And given the intention was to purchase something for the long term, while keeping economics in mind, our Buyers suggested an alternative approach which was very savvy indeed.

Our Buyers suggested they increase their purchase price to buy something larger that had an income supplement, with the objective of getting more space for a lower monthly cost.

Riverdale - and Playter Estates - do have some merchant class residences that are sufficiently large enough to accommodate a family with an income offset, but they're in short supply and rare to market. In fact, during our search, nothing of merit came to market. But there were properties on the west side including the Annex and Wychwood, which fit the bill.

The one that caught their eye was a purpose-built duplex dating from the 1920s located just south of St. Clair west of Bathurst steps from the popular Wychwood Barns. This massive property, with two legal addresses, had been in the same family for several generations. On the main level was a large two-bedroom apartment of around 950 square feet with original details like wood floors, a separate formal dining room and character trim. The second and third floors comprised a massive four-bedroom two-bath suite of around 1500 square feet.

Here's some photos of the upper suite in the property with its generous south-facing deck:


Having a private drive, a two car brick garage, and a generous lot, this detached residence was listed at $1,200,000. Offering superior value relative to the modest Riverdale properties, and yet located in a comparable location just steps to a park, community centre, the village amenities of St Clair West and the St. Clair West subway station, this property featured an owner's suite with one-third more living space, a two-bedroom suite that will garner around $1700+ per month, plus a full unfinished basement with separate entrance which lends itself to be converted into additional income.

Our Buyers purchased this property for 92% of the asking price, meaning that for just $300,000+ more than the semi-detached house in Riverdale, these clients secured something which will serve their needs for the long term, while generating an income that will pay down their mortgage faster.

How prudent is that?

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~ Steven and the urbaneer team

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