Toronto Condos Earning Less Rent + Home Sellers Tested in Pandemic

In Toronto: Average rents for Toronto Area condos have dropped, with downtown falling fastest.

Elsewhere: Vancouver's home prices to be hit by Coronavirus crisis if Australia is a warning, America is getting worse at building homes and an examination of the UK housing crisis. 


Condo rentals vacancies rise, rents fall due to short-term rental market collapse amid COVID-19 pandemic (CBC News)

Pasalis says there's been a 25 per cent increase in listings and he thinks that former Airbnb hosts are scrambling to lease out their units. 

Tory calls for rent relief as City announces affordable housing initiative (Daily Hive)

The mayor said that tenants and landlords need to work together, adding that “in order to make this the most effective response, every landlord should sit with every tenant on the residential side, which has been done already I know. But there needs to be some agreement to defer payments from March to help tenants out. I’ve been taking about the need for relief for sometime now, nothing has changed.”

Developers try new ways to sell condos amid pandemic (The Globe and Mail)

A presale contract is essentially a bet on the future value of a condominium apartment, and the economic uncertainty wrought by the pandemic has pushed Toronto condominium builder Lifetime Development to make an unheard-of guarantee for the 280-unit Liberty Market Tower, Phase 3 of a development in Liberty Village. Unheard of, because for the past decade or more of rising values, it has been hard to imagine a Toronto-area condo presale unit selling late in a cycle for less than the early access sales price.

What it’s like to sell a house during a pandemic (Toronto Star)

They considered different scenarios for how to handle the possibility that their house might not sell, such as asking the seller of their new house for an extension on the closing. Ryan said he wondered if they should wait and try and sell in May.

Hand sanitizer aplenty for Yonge-Eglinton bungalow visitors (The Globe)

“The property was vacant but I provided wipes, sanitizer, soap and towels,” agent Mary Jo Vradis said. "I would go or have a colleague go open the door and allow a prospective buyer to walk through with instructions not to touch anything in property. [I would] wait and allow them to leave, clean up after, shut lights, sanitize and leave.

City of Toronto to spend $47.5M to build 250 supportive modular housing units (Global)

Officials said two three-storey buildings with 110 units each will be erected by Horizon North on a City-owned site by September. The first phase will cost $20.9 million, of which $8.25 million in grants and loans is being provided by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.


Stalled population growth threatens Canadian real estate investors: TD (Livabl)

In a Canadian housing forecast update published earlier today by TD Economics, economist Rishi Sondhi wrote that population growth is one of four factors that have negatively impacted demand for housing, not just from recent immigrants but from real estate investors as well.

COVID-19 crisis set to hammer Metro Vancouver’s housing prices (Vancouver Sun)

The real-estate industry, including construction, normally makes up Canada’s largest sector, accounting for 15 per cent of economic output. And it’s almost inconceivable real-estate values will not be slammed by the multitudinous ways the lockdown has weakened the finances of both Canadians and the trans-national migrants who invest in housing in Vancouver, Toronto and Victoria. Australia is already providing early-warning signs.

Ottawa's hot housing market cooled, but not frozen, by COVID-19 (CBC)

Trinh Yogaratnam and her husband had planned to list their semi-detatched home in Old Ottawa South at the end of March. They'd already purchased a new home in the Glebe with an August close date. Then COVID-19 struck.


America is getting worse at building new homes (The Economist)

In 2019 just 2% of houses in Nevada lay empty, close to a record low—and quite a change from the early 2010s, when abandoned properties with “No Trespassing” signs blighted the suburbs of Las Vegas. Yet even before the pandemic, something was amiss with Nevada’s housing market.

'Cancel the Rent' Could Be Just the Beginning (City Lab)

For the second time since the country started lockdown protocols to flatten the curve of the coronavirus pandemic, the rent is coming due. In a crisis defined by grim slopes on alarming charts of infections and deaths, rent day marks an ominous recurring cliff, with millions of families going over the edge each month.

Which Cities Offer Renters the Least and Most Personal Space? (NY Times)

If you thought cities with the smallest average apartment sizes are where renters have the least personal space, you’d be wrong. Be it the cost of rentals or their lack of availability, some places just have more people living under the same roof, leaving less room for each.


Fatcat developers created our housing crisis. Here's how to stop them (The Guardian)

Meanwhile, the housebuilders get ever richer. Berkeley Group, one of the Top 10 UK builders, built 3,536 homes in 2017, which sounds like a decent contribution to meeting the housing shortage. That is, until you realise that the average price of these homes – proudly described as “popular with overseas investors” – was £715,000.

Social distancing in 100 square feet: Hong Kong's cage homes are almost impossible to self-isolate in (CNN)

Vigilantly practicing social distancing at home isn't an option for Lum. He lives in one of Hong Kong's "cage homes," subdivided apartments that often have space for only a bed and some clothes. His closest neighbor is just a few feet away, inside the same room.

Top Photo Credit: Getty-istock/NicolasMcComber

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