Aside

2015.5.6

Saw my first potential condo rental; it was terrific save for a bathroom that had serious water damage to the ceiling (probably from flooding or leaks above the unit) and a bathroom shower that needed to be burned with fire and entirely replaced. Hopefully the next one is more suitable.

Link

First-time homebuyer? You could have less borrowing power under new mortgage rules

The CBC:

But Tal says the one place the rule changes will be felt is the Toronto condo market, where sale prices are below $1 million a property and deals often involve first-time buyers with down payments of less than 20 per cent.

“That’s exactly where the target is,” Tal said.

Shaun Hildebrand, senior vice-president of real estate market research firm Urban Nation, agrees with Tal.

“If there is a beneficiary to these policies, it will be the condo market, whether it’s on the for-sale side where buyers are forced into lower price points or on the rental side, as well, as fewer first-time buyers are getting into the marketplace,” Hildebrand said.

While I tend to agree that moving people towards a long-term rental market is important and not an inherently bad thing (in fact, that culture is prevalent in other housing markets), it does demand affordable rental properties. So: will the slowdown in the condo market actually reduce costs of condos due to competition, and lead to a lower rental rate for them on the basis that landlords will not have to recoup the same investment, or will rents remain where they are (and rise) so that wealthy landlords can extract further rents from their tenants?

Link

True stories of lawsuits, fisticuffs and harassment in condoland

Toronto Life:

Lifestyle clashes are inevitable when people of all ages and socio-economic backgrounds live on top of each other in a forced community. When different priorities collide, a siege mentality can set in. In the years since Pantoliano’s case, Toronto has sprouted tens of thousands of new condo units in every shape and size. Retired empty nesters live below boisterous hipsters. People who work night shifts are trying to sleep while parents are getting their toddlers off to daycare. Families with rowdy kids take up residence across the hall from quiet professional couples. And they all unrealistically expect the same degree of freedom and privacy as they’d have in a detached home. Instead, they’re keeping each other up at night, squabbling in hallways, sparring in elevators and petitioning condo boards. The shimmering vertical city has become a breeding ground for lawsuits, bullies and brawlers.

I’ve (generally) been blessed with good condo neighbours above, below, and around me for the entirety of my life. But having spoken to people in my own building who are living beside those who party all the time, cram 6+ people into three bedroom units, and drink and fight in the halls, I know that I’ve just been very fortunate.