Our weekly round-up of real estate news in Toronto, across Canada and the world for the week ending February 10, 2017.


MaRS announces refinancing of its West Tower through private-sector support (Newswire)

MaRS Discovery District today announced that it has completed a significant private financing of its West Tower. The proceeds of this transaction will be used to repay most of the Ontario government's interest-bearing loans to MaRS almost three years ahead of schedule.

Manulife, Sun Life Financial and iA Financial Group led the $290-million transaction by investing in 19-year bonds issued by Phase II Investment Trust.

Toronto has over 99,000 unoccupied homes, here’s where they are (Better Dwelling)

Hold my beer Vancouver, we got this. The newly released 2016 Census numbers from Statistics Canada, show the City of Toronto saw Vancouver’s 25k+ unoccupied homes, and trumped it by another 74k units. Now with over 99k unoccupied homes in the city, speculation of Toronto real estate might be worse than previously thought.

The number of homes in the GTA that aren’t being occupied is growing almost as fast as the price of shelter. The latest numbers show that 99,236 homes are not regularly occupied, as identified by the owner of the residence. This represents 8% of all homes in the city, and a 10.5% increase over the past 5 years. The general population grew by 4.5% during the same period, which means this trend appears to be accelerating.

Meet ‘The Real Housewives of Toronto’ (ET Canada)

Reality TV is about to get a whole lot wilder with “The Real Housewives of Toronto”, a homegrown entry in the hit reality franchise that follows six of the city’s most privileged, powerful and glamorous women as they navigate the elite social scene of Canada’s largest city. For these outspoken women, Toronto is their playground and they have the real estate, cars, and the diamonds to prove it.


Homeowners moving away from urban centres (Money Sense)

Julien Simon and his wife were living happily in their condo in the Vancouver suburb of Burnaby when life intervened last year in the form of a baby on the way.

The couple— he’s an Internet marketer, she’s an environmental engineer— couldn’t see themselves living in a shoebox crammed full of baby stuff, so they pulled up stakes, put their condo up for sale and moved about four hours away to Kamloops, B.C., where they bought a four-bedroom house for nearly the same price.

Rise in house prices slowed by December pause in Toronto, Vancouver markets (Globe & Mail)

Canadian new home prices rose less than expected in December amid a pause in price growth in the hot markets of Toronto and Vancouver, though home values continued to rise in several regions in Ontario, Statistics Canada data showed on Thursday.

The 0.1 per cent gain was short of analysts’ expectations for an increase of 0.2 per cent. National prices have risen steadily on a month-over-month basis for nearly two years. The index excludes apartments and condominiums, which account for about one-third of new housing.

‘Canadian housing just won’t quit’: Homebuilding picks up in January, especially in Ontario cities (Financial Post)

The pace of housing starts across Canada picked up in January compared with December, fuelled by multi-unit projects such as condominiums and apartments.

The seasonally adjusted annual rate of housing starts was 207,408 units in January, up from 206,305 in December, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. reported Wednesday.


Silicon Valley's immigrant tech workers are scared of buying homes after Trump's travel ban (Business Insider)

A pair of married software engineers hooked up with real estate agent Tim Gullicksen about six months ago in pursuit of their dream home.

After taking time to peruse the market, the couple found a multimillion-dollar single-family home in San Francisco that they loved. In January, they wrote an offer letter to the seller, complete with an attached photo of the young family, and squared away their finances.

A mismatch of home buyers and sellers points to pain this year (The Wall Street Journal)

The divide between the prices of homes Americans want to buy and the inventory of such homes is growing, suggesting first-time home buyers and high-end sellers might have a difficult year ahead of them.

Steep rise in unmarried couples buying homes together (Realty Biz News)

The share of young unmarried couples buying homes together has been on the rise over the past decade, according to a new Zillow analysis. Across the country, almost 15 percent of all homebuyers age 24-35 are unmarried couples, up from 11 percent in 2005.


3 high-yield real estate plays paying up to 8.6 per cent (Forbes)

The headlines in the global real estate space are terrifying right now. It’s the kind of negative press you see in just two situations: the throes of a full-blown crash, or near a market top.

This is the latter.

Sure, high-yield opportunities are available – like the three REIT funds yielding 5% to 8.6% that I plan on highlighting for you today. But concern about a planet-wide real estate bubble is well-founded.

China's cash outflow crackdown could crash Vancouver real estate (Huffington Post)

Global real estate markets are breaking a sweat, and Vancouver should be no exception. Those same foreign buyers that sent property values soaring around the world are now a little short on foreign currency.

New regulations now prohibit the exchange of yuan for real estate, making it tricky to get currency into foreign markets. Without that sweet yuan converted, Chinese buyers won't be able to continue driving prices, and could have trouble paying for existing property.

Karachi real estate expo marks the revival of the realty market (The Nation)

The announcement of the 2016 budget pushed the real estate market of Pakistan into gloom since it was accompanied by a new property tax intended to bring black money into the tax-net. The heightened enthusiasm generated by the country’s property market in the two years preceding the 2016 budget was cut short by the new property tax which dampened the spirits of investors, property developers and real estate agents.

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