Last Week In Real Estate – February 11-17, 2024

5 most desirable areas to buy a home within a one-hour drive of Toronto

Seeking homes near Toronto for under $1 million? Mississauga offers diverse neighborhoods with average home prices around $981,000. Halton Hills, reminiscent of “Gilmore Girls” small-town charm, lists homes at an average of $902,000. Pickering, a nature lover’s retreat, has homes averaging $933,000. Milton, cited as one of Canada’s happiest places, sells homes for about $979,000. Aurora rounds out the list, where homes hover around the $1 million mark, offering a blend of urban convenience and natural beauty. My personal top pick? I personally like the Halton Hills region that comprises of the aforementioned Milton, Georgetown, Oakville and Bulington areas. Milton for its quickly developing city, Georgetown for its quaint town like charms and sprawling country sides making your daily driving commute less mundane, Oakville for the wide range of different lifestyles from lakeside, to downtown, and rural and urban living, and Burlington for the more budget alternative to Oakville.

Bidding wars are making a comeback as homebuyers try to beat interest rate cuts

In Mississauga, a home listing below market value at $749,000 attracted 85 offers amid 300 showings, highlighting the intense demand and low inventory in the Erin Mills area. This strategy, while not always effective, capitalized on the scarcity of affordable options. The property eventually sold for $999,999, reflecting a competitive Greater Toronto Area market that’s regaining momentum. Real estate professionals note a resurgence of buyer interest and multiple offer situations, especially for properties under $1 million, as the market reacts to stabilized interest rates and anticipates further changes.

Government announces two-year extension to ban on foreign ownership of Canadian housing

The Canadian government, led by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Chrystia Freeland, has announced a two-year extension to the existing ban on foreign ownership of Canadian housing, aiming to address housing affordability and speculation. This move extends the prohibition until January 1, 2027, affecting foreign commercial enterprises and non-Canadian citizens or permanent residents. This policy is part of a broader effort to make housing more affordable for Canadians, including significant federal housing investments and initiatives to accelerate home construction and homeownership.

Toronto councillors debate budget that includes 9.5 per cent tax bump for homeowners

Toronto’s council debates a budget prioritizing social programs and housing amidst a $1.8 billion deficit, proposing a 9.5% property tax increase. Mayor Olivia Chow’s budget freezes TTC fares, boosts library funds, and invests in affordable housing. Despite initial plans to reduce police budget growth, Chow supports a $20 million increase for Toronto police, influenced by anticipated government support. The budget faces critique from activists and challenges in maintaining services without further financial strain, highlighting Chow’s efforts to balance investment in city improvements with fiscal responsibility.

Why should Toronto city council support lowering property taxes for rental housing?

The GTA’s urgent need for housing is compounded by Toronto’s budget shortfall. BILD supports Mayor Chow’s proposal to reduce the rental property tax increase to 3.5% but urges more action to boost new rental construction. A study predicts a 58% rise in renter households in the next decade, necessitating over 300,000 new rental homes. Despite federal and provincial incentives, challenges like aging purpose-built rental stock and economic barriers hinder new developments. Lowering taxes on rental properties is essential to prevent rent hikes and encourage the construction of much-needed rental housing.

-The TanTeam Editorial