Snow Washing – Our Embarassing Money Laundering Problem

The term ‘snow washing’ was coined by the Toronto Star to describe the flow of dirty money into Canada, mostly through real estate transactions, to evade taxes or to finance terrorist operations. The term is in wide use internationally because Canada has become known as a destination for money laundering due to its weak rules… Read More

Back To School Free Ice Cream Event

Mark your calendars for Monday September 7 (Labour Day)! Our ice cream truck will be making 5 stops in High Park, The Junction, Bloor West Village and Swansea! We will have free ice cream cones plus a draw for a chance to win an iPad!         Here’s the truck stop schedule: 12:00… Read More

Ontario Government Encouraging Co-Ownership Of Homes

If you’re tired of renting but can’t quite scrape together a down payment for a home of your own; or if you are retiring and would like to keep your living costs as low as possible; you may need to get creative. One option is to purchase a home with friends or relatives, entering into… Read More

Falling Rents May Impact House Prices

A recent report from Capital Economics highlights falling rents in Canadian cities, especially Toronto and Vancouver, and points out that this could have a significant knock-on effect on Canadian house prices.   The report identifies several reasons why rents are falling: The surge in unemployment due to COVID-19 lockdowns has hit low-wage earners the hardest,… Read More

No Nosedive Ahead for Canadian Real Estate Prices: RE/MAX

Canadian real estate kicked off 2020 with a bang, but there are conflicting opinions as to how we’ll finish out the year. Canada’s federal housing agency has warned that average house prices could fall by up to 18 per cent over the next 12 months – a dismal prediction that’s being challenged by RE/MAX based on market… Read More

Coronavirus Threatens Survival of Toronto Small Businesses

The Broadview-Danforth Business Improvement Association (on behalf of dozens of Toronto BIAs) recently surveyed 561 small business tenants and 137 landlords across the city as to how the Coronavirus lockdown has affected them. A majority of the respondents (61%) said that they would not survive over the next 3 months without rent relief, and 76%… Read More

Canadian Government Supporting Mortgage Market

Soon after the COVID-19 lock-downs began last month, signs started to appear that the mortgage market was headed for a credit freeze, where mortgage lenders would be unable or unwilling to keep lending to homebuyers. A credit freeze would likely crash the real estate market – if mortgage lending isn’t possible, home sales would collapse… Read More

Changes Coming To The Mortgage Stress Test

The ‘stress test’ for mortgage qualification in Canada requires that homebuyers must qualify for a mortgage as if the mortgage interest rate were higher than the actual rate they will get. The idea is to determine that the applicant will be able to keep up with the payments if interest rates should rise.  That ‘higher… Read More

Mortgage Rates Are Falling, But This May Not Affect Prices

Largely because of the Novel Coronavirus and the resultant ‘flight to safety’ among investors, Government of Canada bond prices are being bid up, and this means that the corresponding interest rates are falling (bond prices and interest rates move in opposite directions). The major banks’ fixed mortgage rates are tied to these bond rates, and… Read More

Airbnb Bylaw Is Now In Effect in Toronto

Early in 2018, the City of Toronto approved the regulation of short-term rentals in Toronto. However, the resulting zoning bylaw amendments were immediately appealed to the Local Planning Appeal Tribunal (LPAT). Almost 2 years later, on November 18, 2019, the LPAT issued a ruling dismissing the appeal and upholding the bylaw amendments. The new bylaw… Read More