A/C In The Summer – Can Landlords Charge More?

We’ve all been there – a heatwave in the middle of the summer. Relying on airconditioning has become much more of a necessity than a luxury.

Does a landlord have the right to charge extra for air conditioning? What if your hydro fees are included in your rent?

In short, yes. But there are a few exceptions to this.

Under section 123 of the Residential Tenancies Act, a landlord is legally allowed to charge you for the use of an air conditioner. This section allows for a landlord to increase the rent if both the tenant agrees to the addition of a “prescribed service”. If a clause for extra charges is not in the lease, the landlord must get the tenant to pay an increase in rent but will have to go to the Landlord & Tenant board to enforce it.

If a landlord is to charge for additional electricity, it must be included in the monthly rent cost. It cannot be a lump sum for the entire month, and the maximum increase should amount to the cost of the actual service the landlord is providing. A reasonable amount must be negotiated if the exact price cannot be determined.

An illegal charge would be if a landlord were to charge a tenant for an A/C unit that they did not previously charge for.

If you’ve been asked to pay an illegal charge, you may have it resolved here: http://www.sjto.gov.on.ca/documents/ltb/Tenant%20Applications%20&%20Instructions/T1.pdf    

 

Looking For Your Perfect Rental With No Hidden Fees Or Hassles?

Give Sutton Realty a Call – We Help Every Step Of The Way, We Even Help Landlords!

Sutton Group Realty Systems Inc., Brokerage

416-896-3333 / 905-896-3333

www.SuttonRealty.com

 

Landlords: Is An Inspection Report Important On Move-In & Out Days?

“One Ontario resident learned the hard way about the importance of inspections. When she initially moved in, neither she nor her landlord formally inspected the property. When she moved out, she found herself legally and financially responsible for removing a wall that the previous tenants had constructed in the unit.”
It is critical that the condition of the rental unit be documented on moving day.
This will help:
  • Note previous damage
  • Establish a baseline to evaluate normal wear and tear
  • Decide who is responsible for paying for any potential damages that might occur in the future.
For tenants, it will also waive any liability for damages that existed prior to moving in.
Tenants and landlords should always conduct the move-in inspection together.
[call-out: Did you know? In some provinces, the security deposit is only repayable if the move-in inspection matches the one completed upon moving out.]
Located in British Columbia or the Yukon?  (not Ontario)
A Condition Inspection Report is required by law. Both the tenant and landlord should complete, sign and date the form at move-in and move-out.
Final inspections
When a tenant moves out, the Move-in Report will come in handy.  Refer to the initial inspection that was completed upon moving in, and compare it with the condition of each room on moving out.
We strongly recommend taking photos prior to move in, ever little bit helps to avoid confusion at move out.
Ask your Sutton Realty for any photos available from the time you listed the property.

Which Features Will Help To Sell Your Home Quickly?

With trends constantly changing these days, it’s hard to tell which new features and design improvements will actually benefit in the quick sale of your property.

Realtor.com has offered a few key features that have helped home owners sell their home the fastest and for the best price!

  1. Gourmet Kitchens/Chefs’ Kitchens
    Open kitchen designs have exploded onto the real estate market, becoming a centerpiece for each home. Luxury is important to buyers, especially when it comes to hosting friends and dinner parties. Dark palettes like black & navy have taken precedent over the more traditional white and neutral shades. Open shelving, double doors, lots of windows, quartz counters, stainless steel appliances – these are all adding to the popularity and success of home-selling!
  2. Specialty Rooms Whether it be a home office, theatre, gym or mudroom – buyers are asking “why go out when you can stay in?”. While not as popular as they were in the beginning, design experts are saying that homes which come equipped with any type of specialty room usually go for about twice as much as the national median!
  3. Outdoor FeaturesSolar panels have become a really hot commodity thanks to the demand from climate-conscious buyers and those who are looking to cut down their electricity bills. Built-in pools (whether shared or private) have always been consistently popular, but while they attract some buyers in warmer parts of the globe, some buyers may repel due to maintenance and liability issues. Bottom line for pools is to install it for your own enjoyment first, resale value second.
  4. Smart Home Features and Electronics Anything from interconnected appliances or internet-controlled thermostats to fully-wired homes. This can be an expensive addition, but the trend is booming thanks to Amazon Echo and Google Home. These electronic home features are so easy and convenient to use – there is almost no reason these additions will go out of style. With this technology, homeowners can now pick up a simple smart home security system for pricing as low as $150, vs. having a technician come in and install a system which could run a bill over $1000! People really like having an app on a phone to know if someone’s at home or not.
  5. Indoor FeaturesNo matter where you go – fireplaces are always welcome and will never go out of style, however there are definitely more modern approaches to the classic fire place, such as being built into the wall. Another key indoor feature is the walk-in closet; not as popular as they once were due to the de-cluttering movement.

Whether you are looking to sell your home at an amazing price or are looking to purchase a home which includes any of the above upgrades, please give us a call!

We have agents waiting by the phones to answer your questions and help you with all of your buying and selling needs – each step of the way!

Sutton Group Realty Systems Inc., Brokerage

416-896-3333 or 905-896-3333

www.SuttonRealty.com

Can You Guess How Low These Mansion Rentals Are In Vancouver?!

Suddenly there are hundreds of multi-million dollar mansions on the rental market in Vancouver for insanely low prices!

“The first day we moved in, me and my family were like, ‘What? Is this real?'” said a UBC Student who moved from Toronto into a 6,000 sq.ft home in West Vancouver.

It could be a combination for the city’s empty home tax or the province’s speculation tax that are dropping the rental rates for these mega-homes.

Some numbers for thought… One $4.64 million home with 5 bedrooms is being offered at $5,900 per month, and another $7.23 million dollar mansion with eight bedrooms for $7,000 per month! With these astonishingly low prices, the City of Vancouver may have the cheapest real estate in Canada right now.

However, these low rental prices definitely put landowners in a difficult position when you think about the tax rate on such a large home. Taxes can add up to 1% of the home’s assessed value, and if the landlord declares less than 50% of their combined household income for the year, the minimum tax rate will be 2%.

One of the reasons landlords are renting at low rates is not to make a profit, but rather to hang onto the property until they are ready to retire and move back to Vancouver. If they don’t rent it out, they’ll need to pay hundreds of thousands a year. If you rent out a building, it saves hundreds of thousands per year, even if the renter does not may any rent.

Many of the renters for these properties feel fortunate to have such an affordable and large home. A lot of them are being asked “How much are you paying?” and “Are you rich?!”… One can only hope that Toronto will see such rental prices for fabulous properties in the near future.

Are you looking for a great rental property in the GTA area? We have thousands of condos, houses and townhomes for lease right now! 

Give us a call any time, we have real estate agents standing by waiting to help answer your questions and find you a perfect rental!

Sutton Group Realty Systems Inc., Brokerage

416-896-3333 / 905-896-3333

www.SuttonRealty.com

What You Need to Know About the Toronto Rental Market. Rates Rising In Toronto At Fastest Pace In 30 Years!

According to Statistics Canada date, the cost of rental housing jumped by the most in 30 years during January!

Recently the cost of renting an apartment in Canada shot up 0.9 per cent in a single month which was the fastest one-month leap since August 1989.

“This one-month movement reflects price change and not a change in methodology. However, given the new methodology, the variation we see now will be different than what we’ve seen in the past under the previous methodology.

Bank of Montreal analyst, says StatCan’s measure of rental rates has been “subdued for decades” and probably missed the spike in rental rates that has been taking place in recent years.

“The new way they measure it is actually capturing what’s going on,” he said.

And what’s going on is rental rate increases that are quite widespread, spreading well beyond the priciest markets. The latest data on asking rates for apartments from rental site Padmapper shows double-digit increases in 12 of the 24 cities covered.

How much did Toronto Condo Rental Prices Increase?

Asking rates for one-bedroom apartments in Toronto jumped 10.2 per cent over the past year, to an average of $2,270. In Vancouver rates rose 4.5 per cent, to $2,080, and Montreal rents jumped 11.1 per cent, to $1,500.

Moving to Toronto?  Looking for a Rental?  If you are looking to Rent in Toronto know what to expect.  Understanding the average prices of a 1 Bedroom and 2 Bedroom Apartment can help decide on a budget and area.   Looking outside of the downtown core could also help  your search.  Visit Toronto Rentals Condominiums for Lease for fresh rental listing posted dailing, not only in Toronto but in Mississauga, Oakville Brampton and ask far as Hamilton.

What is the Average Toronto 1 Bedroom Condo Rental Rate?

Many experts say the jump in rents over the past two years has to do with the slowdown in the owner-occupied housing market. Many would-be homebuyers have been priced out of the housing market due to the new mortgage stress test or rising interest rates, forcing people to stay in rental housing longer.

At the same time, Canada’s population growth has accelerated over the past few years, leading to the fastest population growth in several decades. A Bank of Montreal report from last year suggested the experts may be underestimating how much new housing Canada needs.

Many in the real estate industry blame rent controls, arguing that laws which prevent large rental rate increases make rental housing a less attractive investment. But supporters of rent controls point out that a lack of rent controls in some markets didn’t result in rental housing being built.

In Ontario, for instance, apartments built after 1991 were exempt from rent controls for many years. But that did not lead to an increase in rental housing construction. However, despite the Ontario government’s introduction of new rent controls in 2017, there has been an increase in purpose-built rental apartment construction around Greater Toronto.

In Toronto, for instance, when rent controls on newer units were removed in the 1990s.  There was no increase in rental housing construction. However, despite the Ontario government’s introduction of new rent controls in 2017, there has been an increase in purpose-built rental apartment construction around Greater Toronto.

Federal parties get involved

The federal Liberal government has outlined a $10-billion plan to support affordable housing across Canada, which would include some 100,000 new affordable housing units over 10 years.

To put that in perspective, that’s somewhat less than the number of new dwellings Canada needs to create every year to keep up with population growth.

The NDP are pushing for a plan to create 500,000 affordable housing units over five years.  But, have not put a price tag to the plan. The Liberals recently voted down an NDP motion on the proposal.

The federal Conservatives have suggested solutions that would increase the supply of new housing.  Loosening regulations on new house construction. They have also suggested they would make it easier to qualify for mortgages.

Relocating to Toronto or Area?   Call our Full Service Rental Department Today, our Luxury Rentals start at $2,000 a month for bachelors and we cover the entire GTA

View some of our feature rental listings at http://www.iTorontoRentals.com
or call us at 416-896-3333 or email sutton@realtor.com

Ask about our Tips for Tenants to find the Best Rentals in Town.

 

For more on this article, visit: https://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2019/03/03/canadian-rental-rates-statcan_a_23682881/

Severe Housing Downturn in Canada is Unlikely

 

Royal Bank has stated that a widespread real estate downturn is unlikely and that the probability is “still low but has increased somewhat in recent months”. Mortgage stress tests and rising rates are making it harder for buyers to get a foot in the door.

Toronto, Vancouver & Alberta are currently at risk due to the high interest rates put on the high-priced areas, and affordability is a major at a crisis level. “Regulatory changes made the market healthier – it is now balanced, well supported by economic and demographic fundamentals, and while condo building activity is elevated we see few signs of overbuilding,” says RBC.

Montreal remains one of Canada’s stronger markets at the present time, says RBC. Elevated levels of apartment construction in Montreal, Vancouver, and Toronto is a potential long-term concern, however unsold inventories are low.

 

For more on this article, visit: https://ca.sports.yahoo.com/news/severe-housing-downturn-canada-unlikely-rbc-190257940.html

 

Canada Considers Applying Mortgage Stress Test Rules To Private Lenders

Canada is considering subjecting private lenders to the same mortgage stress test rules faced by banks to prevent housing markets from being destabilized by the lenders’ rapid growth, three sources with direct knowledge of the matter said.

Private lenders currently account for approximately one-tenth of Canada’s $1.5 trillion mortgage market, and are still dwarfed by banks but their growth has accelerated since the new rules have been introduced. The B-20 rules that were introduced last January require banks to test the borrower’s ability to make repayments at 200 basist points above their contracted rate, and have resulted in more applications for loans being rejected.

As of now, private lenders are not subject to the B-20 rules because they are supervised by provincial regulations rather than the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions, the federal regulator. Bringing them under federal supervision would require a change in the law.

Two options were discussed, either the federal government would have to ask provinces to apply the B-20 guidelines themselves, private lenders would then also need to provide stress tests the same as the banks’, or the less severe alternative – to recommend provinces ensure private lenders run tighter checks on the ability of their borrowers to repay loans but stop short of imposing the actual stress test. A final decision has yet to be made.

Mortgage investment companies (MICs), have been the main driver of private lenders’ growth, picking up borrowers spurned by the banks. Lending up to 90 per cent of a property’s value, they typically charge borrowers an annual rate above 10 percent, sometimes as high as 15-20 compared with the 3-5 percent offered by banks.

For more on this article visit: https://business.financialpost.com/real-estate/mortgages/exclusive-canada-mulls-measures-to-curb-private-lenders-growth

 

 

10 Canadian Housing Charts That Show How Out Of Whack The Market Is

After years of booming times, Canada’s housing markets are at a turning point. Interest rates are rising, and the new mortgage rules have taken some steam out of the market.

Below are 10 charts illustrating just how out of whack things have become.

Canadians have never had to shell out more of their income to own a home:

Condo construction is at an all-time high:

Young families are not wanting to live in said condos:

You need to be a one-percenter to own an “average” Vancouver home:

Vancouver homes are comically overpriced:

Vancouver’s new distinction: Worst housing market:

There aren’t enough new residents to prop up Vancouver’s market:

Toronto has as much as it can handle:

Mortgage growth is at historic lows:

Investment condos are now often losing money:

 

Liberals Look To Make Home-Buying More Affordable For Millenials

 

Finance Minister Bill Morneau gave a speech in Aurora, Ont., where he asked if Ottawa has any plans to help first time-buyers. Morneau said the Trudeau government is looking for ways to make home-buying more affordable first-time buyers.

Housing is expected to be a prominent campaign issue ahead in October’s federal election. The Liberal government has focused on three housing-related issues: Canada’s shortage of affordable housing, a run-up in real estate prices and ensuring millenials can afford homes.

He stated that the Federal government has already taken steps to increase the supply of affordable housing and to cool the hottest markets by introducing stress tests that limit some people’s ability to take out big mortgages.

According to the Toronto Real Estate Board, the average price for all types of housing there was $810,000 in December. Detached homes were going for more than $918,000. Conservative MP Karen Vecchio argued in a statement Tuesday that Trudeau government policies, including it’s carbon tax, have made housing less affordable.

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh proposed measures he insisted will help build 500,000 new affordable housing units across Canada over the next 10 years. He said Ottawa should stop applying GST to the cost of building new affordable units, provide a subsidy to renters who spend more than 30 per cent of their incomes on housing and double a tax credit for first-time home-buyers from $750 to $1,500.

In 2015, Liberals promised to enhance the popular Home Buyer’s Plan which enables first-time buyers to borrow up to $25,000 tax-free from their registered retirement savings to purchase a new home. The amount musst be repaid within 15 years. And in 2017, they unveiled a 10-year, $40-billion national housing strategy which the government has billed as a plan that will provide more social housing and affordable renting units.

 

For more on this article, visit:  https://www.princegeorgecitizen.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Toronto remains popular choice for global CRE investors

Among the top 30 cities favoured by investors for commercial real estate, Toronto ranks among the top 30 cities. It has help this position for every year in the past decade. However, Canada’s only city in the annual JLL rankings has slipped down the list from 14th to 19th, through the duration of 2017 to 2018. Asia Pacific cities are increasing in popularity.

London is still being favoured in the commercial real estate world, despite Brexit. The global rankings show that investors prefer cities they are familiar with, that have a well-established investment market, and high levels of transparency. New York slipped back in 2017 with Los Angeles becoming North America’s top city.

“In a year when investors have had to deal with increasing populism, protectionism and political uncertainty, the appeal of real estate as an asset class has continued to increase,” commented Richard Bloxam, Global Head of Capital Markets at JLL.

Investors remain focused on gateway cities, despite tight pricing. Many are looking at alternatives or emerging locations, as well as varying real estate properties within these cities, rather than exploring other less familiar cities.

Total volumes in 2018 were $733 billion, up 4% from 2017, the best annual performance in a decade.

Cross-border purchases accounted for 31% of activity in 2018, close to the 10-year average, suggesting investors still have appetite to buy outside their own markets.

“A notable trend is that half of these established gateway cities are in Asia Pacific. Increasing transparency in these markets is encouraging more investment, moving these cities even higher up the rankings in 2019 and beyond,” Bloxham said.

Looking ahead for 2019
Over the next year, JLL is forecasting a pull-back by some investors due to caution and selectivity.

That could mean a 5-10% reduction on 2018’s volumes although real estate remains an attractive investment compared to other asset classes with strong fundamentals.

Yields are now at historic lows in most markets across the globe. A sharp correction is unlikely, as there is still a significant weight of capital looking to invest in real estate, and corporate occupier market fundamentals across many markets are positive.

Among other key factors in JLL’s forecast:

  • The institutional real estate universe will continue to expand, driven by factors such as low volatility, diversification benefits, long-term income and an attractive pricing premium to core sectors. Asset classes such as student housing, senior living and multi-family have continued to attract more institutional money in 2018 and this is likely to continue in 2019.
  • Industrial now accounts for 17% of all investment, up from 10% in 2009. In contrast, the retail sector has seen less activity as investors adjust their investment approach to reflect changing consumer behavior. In gateway cities, the office sector tends to account for a higher proportion of investment volumes—68% in 2018, compared to 51% in global volumes.
  • The top 30 will continue to be dominated by the gateway cities in 2019. However, at the edges, investors will consider a widening range of cities in their strategies. Reflecting real estate investors’ risk appetite, secondary cities in established transparent markets, such as Osaka and Atlanta, are likely to attract more attention, as opposed to moving into entirely new countries.

For More On This Article, Visit: https://www.canadianrealestatemagazine.ca/