Oliver Baumeister von Bretten, Broker | Sotheby’s International Realty Canada, Brokerage

The Future of Affordable Living: How Toronto Walks Ahead of the Curve

Perch Condos Toronto
Rendering of Perch Condos exterior with ravine room

Who can ever say no to a good deal? Be it a bargain or a steal deal, financial savings cannot go unappreciated. Also, there’s no point in saving money if you’re ignoring the quality at the go. 

Of course, the balance is quite simple to maintain in some areas. For example, when you invest in a trendy pair of shoes, you can always excuse yourself from buying that large pizza. That’s basic math obviously! 

However, there are some areas in life where it gets very difficult to maintain the balance. Real Estate is one of them where the challenge is real. From optimizing value to finding what would save without compromising with the quality, there’s so much to look into! 

As per a study made by the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board (TRREB), the average cost of a house in the GTA increased 14.9% up to a massive $1.05m in February. 

The truth is that you can find a lot of lofty listings. Vacant lots and shed-like properties can demand as much as $1 million (plus 800k more as an additional fee). They might look attractive from far away but it’s more of an optical illusion. Consider this like buying two regular pizzas instead of one large pizza. You may believe you have more to eat but that’s not true. 

Toronto’s real estate insiders have more to say on this. As per these insiders, the most prolific benefits are on the edge (and maybe, a little to the east too) where most are currently looking.

Michael Kluggman, founder of Firmland says “If you’re looking for value, you look for places that are not over-popular today, but where the trends are going.”

Formerly the leading member of Lindvest High-rise and H&R Construction Management, Kluggman has had an amazing experience in the industry, including the foundation of Firmland Developments. Considering that, listening to what he has to say can prove to be mighty worthy.

“We see the trends heading east, we see the trends heading out of the downtown core, we see the trends going closer to nature. We like the trend of buildings that are not too large, and we keep an open mind,” Klugmann emphasizes “Realize: we live in a world that’s changing, and be open to it.”

Pulling the vision Klugmann has to the zenith and making it the new face of development, Scarborough’s Highland Creek is going to be the epitome every developer would dream of reaching. The Perch Condos project is the new baby Firmland is birthing and it is going to have the newest transit hubs that are going to expand through the Scarborough campus of the University of Toronto.

All this while, the magnificent nature is set to awe people even amidst the urban background. That’s right, Perch is born of a very nature-friendly approach even after being the offspring of a city.

Rendering of Perch Condos lobby with concierge

Perch Condos 

With this project, we see the development in every field except in the case of the price. 

Units under this project start anywhere from 400s. The project is taking shape at the helm of a city buzzing with life. Access to transportation and education are available at all times while the breathtaking view of the landscape around keeps you hooked to the window. 

So, how expensive these condos must be considering they have so many amenities? They are actually relatively low. However, if you listen to the advice of the experts, they say that the accessibility is temporary. So, if you want to snatch the latest piece while the costs are favorable, stop hesitating and buy it already!

“You can’t out-save real estate,” says Hunter Milborne of Milborne Group, Canada’s leading business group that markets multiphase communities. Milborne is all set to work alongside Firmland to bring Perch Condos to life in Toronto.

“If you want to buy something, you’re better to buy something — even if it’s not your dream place — and get on that ladder of appreciation. Even if you buy [a place,] move into it and only live there a year, at least you can trade up to something better — that you like — as opposed to waiting and trying to save for more. Because every month or quarter that goes by, you save a little bit, but [real estate] prices [will have gone up] faster than you’re saving.”

For areas like Highland Creek, prices are already increasing year after year. Milborne predicts that sooner or later accessible price listings are going to be nothing but a rare sight. 

“[Where Perch is,] a couple years ago, the per-buildable-foot land price was $40 to $50. Now, because that’s the cheapest land in the GTA, more and more developers go to buy there, so now it’s $60 to $80 per-buildable-foot. And pretty soon, it’ll be $100 per-buildable-foot,” Milborne elaborates.

“So what you’ve got is this relentless demand from purchasers, that follow through to developers, that push up the price of the land. And then you’ve also got the price of the construction.”

Here’s a better explanation in the same context. The cost of the brand new Perch project is almost 50% of what other projects at core are sold for. Take it this way, the price-per-square-footage (the metric system in Toronto) of downtown is at $1436. Compare that to Highland Creek’s $850 price-per-square-footage!

All of this is without considering the additional benefits that come with the location and the luxuries offered by the condo itself. Perch is surely set to make a lasting impression with the designs by Core Architects and the oh-so breathtaking, top-notch interior design by Cecconi Simone. Perch takes pride in giving an upscale experience in a core condo and at a very affordable price. 

Not only that, Firmland’s construction plans of Perch Condos circles around the importance of sustainability. In other words, buyers are going to feel good about themselves for investing in a property that thinks about the environment. Almost 40% of the land used in the Perch project has been contributed to the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority. How does that help? Well, for our future generations, the land around it (including the ravine) will be kept under public protection, thus letting the area restore to its natural glory. 

We certainly can’t deny that the Perch project is going to give Highland Park and even Scarborough some major contributions. With the popularity rising, the Condos are surely going to attract big bucks from Toronto’s richest pockets. So, there’s an estimation that the costs will rise with time. As Milborne explains, the phenomenon “ties back to the city being like something many might not consider: an island”.

A study conducted by CIBC in 2012 made some important notes about how real estate is more expensive on islands. Milborne pulls the reference to say: “Manhattan, Singapore, Hong Kong, and the like. Toronto, of course, is not an actual island (except for where it literally is), but it’s akin to one”, Milborne explains, “because of the Greenbelt.”

He further goes on to say, “I don’t know that anybody really got the significance of what [the implementation of the Greenbelt Legislation in 2005] would mean; it choked off a significant amount of supply of single-family homes.”

“Because of [Lake Ontario,] and because of this Greenbelt, effectively what [happened was,] Toronto was an island, in terms of its ability to supply new homes.”

Toronto, with its properties much like a peninsula, is sure to see prices hiking. And when there is a rise in the value of a property, it is surely going to prove itself to be a wise financial move, whether you are living in that property or have put it on rent. 

“[Investors say:] ‘If I’ve got the choice between investing in the stock market — which is like a casino — or in real estate — which is pretty much a sure thing — why wouldn’t I buy a condominium, and wait three or four years to delivery?’” Milborne says.

For the capable end-users, Milborne further says that the choice is completely logical, especially when it occurs during preconstruction.

“The reason pre-construction is good is you have 18 months to get these deposits together. It’s not the same as going out to buy something and closing on it in 60 or 90 days.”

With this additional time, buyers can grab the opportunity to gather more capital for a downpayment. Milborne further muses that at Perch, with the prices set to increase at a steady rate, the value of a suite might just rise even more by the time the construction is done. 

Milborne, moreover, spoke to the present marketplace located at Toronto’s East end at the 2021 Economic and Investor Forecast, where he stated, “there’s a great opportunity to purchase, and really get a great buy.”

The Dean of Condos, also recalled as the industry expert also put in some valuable and thoughtful advice: “Don’t buy more than you can afford and don’t sell at the wrong time. If you follow those two rules, you’re going to not lose, and then you’re going to win… by default.”

Despite everything, buying a condo like Perch is going to be a win-win no matter what. The place is going to evolve as one with elegance and luxury and there’s too much industry insight put into the project to ignore. Overall, the buzz created by the Perch Condos is proof of industrial intellect and wisdom.

Compare listings