Developer plans 8 Storey Condo in Leslieville

New Development in Leslieville East

A little while ago we reported that developers were getting set to announce some serious plans for development along Queen Street East in Leslieville and Riverside. Back in August a development group named Trolleybus (um kind of a ripoff of Streetcar…) held a meeting with the BIA and local property owners to discuss their latest project. Here are some details and notes from that meeting.


Trolleybus Developments along with Rockport Development Group are experienced Toronto developers with thousands of completed units under their collective belt so we’re not concerned with their ability to get this done. Unlike that mess at Pape & Queen! They’re calling in the highly skilled designers and architects from RAW Design and will hopefully hire a local Broker to handle sales (perhaps us???)


Their focus is to build an end-user friendly building with wide open floor plans with a nice mix of condos, townhouses, and retail at 1327 Queen Street East on the South East corner of Queen and Laing. The Townhouses will have Memory Lane addresses.

  • 8 Stories proposed with 2 street frontages. One on Queen St and the other on Memory Lane
  • 13,000sqft of Queen Street retail which could be broken down into five to seven separate spaces. We’d totally get one.
  • 150 Residential units in the mid-rise tower with various floor plans and sizes
  • Underground Parking and lots of auto-share spots
  • 8 large Townhouses fronting on Memory Lane

Good or Bad?

That’s up to you to decide but I give this one a giant stamp of approval. The Eastern portion of Leslieville has been neglected for long enough. Some businesses have managed to stay afloat here but many have come, failed, and moved on. There simply aren’t enough people walking about and shopping there. This development will be a game changer for East Leslieville businesses and will also spike home prices along this stretch. Locals will have the typical objections like parking issues, traffic congestion and shadowing but I’m certain that the City of Toronto will approve this. Perhaps they’ll only approve 6 stories or maybe they’ll get the full 8. Either way, I like the mix of floor plans, the focus on the end-user, and the large townhouses on Memory Lane.

There’s no question that we’ll be THE first to know anything about this so if you’d like to to know more before anyone else. Get in touch right away and we’ll hook you up. Got an opinion? Comment below. Also there’s a public meeting March 24th from 7-9pm at the Maple Cottage located at 62 Laing Street. No need to RSVP, just show up.



Gerrard St is the new Queen St

It was only a matter of time before commercial rents along Queen Street became too expensive for your average mom and pop shop or just more than they want to spend on rent. This jump in Queen Street commercial rents has two outcomes:

Breeds Creativity & Better Business Planning

Many long standing commercial tenants were just simply stuck in their ways, old business models, narrow profit margins that worked fine in the old days with a different a demographic but the surge in housing demand in neighbourhoods along Queen Street East like, Leslieville, Corktown, Riverside, Riverdale, and even the Beach have caused a shift in demographics which in turn changes the commercial needs of a neighbourhood.

Many long standing tenants have been lax with their lease agreements and some don’t even have one! Remember what happeend to the Real Jerk a while back? Ya, it most definitely sucked for the owners and for the neighbourhood (glad to see them open in a new spot now) but they didn’t have a lease in place (there’s obviously more to the story but that’s the gist of it). This was likely the most reported case in an area of rapidly increasing property values and rents.

Other businesses in the area were able to adapt to the new market conditions and increase profits which allowed them to stay in business. Look at the Ceili Cottage for example. They have a huge patio that was only profitable in the Summer. What do they do with that space in the cooler months? Duh, build a yurt! So smart, so very smart. Another great example is the Leslieville Pumps. A regular old gas station turned into an awesome BBQ joint with a small town feel. Just when you get used to everything they offer, the chef and owner is coming with something new and exciting to make sure you come back for more. It’s just smart business, there’s absolutely no time to get comfortable in business these days. These are just two of the many examples of businesses doing it right. Know any others?

Open up on Gerrard St

Most people associate popular neighbourhoods like Leslieivlle and Riverside with Queen Street East. Well, let me tell you something (I’ve been saying this for years!) Gerrard Street is the new Queen Street. Thanks to Leslieville business pioneer Ted Koutsogiannopoulos (formerly of Joy Bistro) his massive investment into Gerrard has paid off. He opened McGugans Pub, The Great Burger Kitchen, and Aprile Bambina Cucina at the corner of Jones and Gerrard. Shortly after home buyers who were getting priced out of “prime” Leslieville began to see value in homes on streets surrounding this new hotspot. Now you’ve got homes on Ivy selling for nearly a million dollars (yup a former TCHC property went for nearly a million after an amazing renovation). Another awesome place I love is called Matter of Time, it’s a fantastic little antique shop just South of Gerrard on Jones. So glad to see many amazing new businesses bring back the energy to Gerrard Street East!

That being said, there are still many great commercial opportunities along Gerrard Street East and some decent home buying opportunities too. Give us a shout to find out more and don’t forget to use the Worlds Greatest Search Tool to find your next home. It’s better than the MLS, believe me.

Best Mortgage Rates for Sept 5th 2012

1 yr 2.74 – 3 yr 2.69 – 5 yr 2.94 – VRM 2.65

We got our rate announcement from the Bank of Canada today and they have indicated that they are leaving rates as they are, much to everyone’s expectation.  This is great news for everyone in a variable rate mortgage!  As well as those with lines of credit or student loans that are tied to prime.  There’s no expectation rates will be moving before the end of this year – yay!

In fact, the Bank of Canada can’t see rates really moving until foreign policymakers can get their act together and put policies in place to alleviate the debt crisis in Europe.  China is also experiencing some slow down which will have some drag on the global economy.

When things do start to pick up, the Bank of Canada sees it as slow and gradual.

Although we did have a slight up and down with bond yields the last few weeks, it seems that most rates have levelled off and the major lenders are staying away from another major rate war, still recovering from the previous couple bouts.  That being said, fixed rates are still really low and there are still a couple specials that offer sub-3% rates for a 5 year term.  None of these offers are from a major bank.  Very interesting.

The next Bank of Canada announcement is October 23rd and I’ll keep you updated on that yawner too.

Lee Welbanks is a Mortgage Broker with Welbanks Financial Group, Lee will be posting these informative “Market Minutes” each week for you to enjoy. Heard about our awesome new home search tool? We’ve opened up the MLS just for you. Make sure you login to our custom Spring Realty Homefinder Tool and give it a spin! Find us on Facebook and Twitter too!



Fixed or Variable Mortgage? All the Rates look good!

We’ve had some interesting data recently that has some Canadians wearing smug looks. The most gratifying is the hotly-debated report from Environics which indicates Canadians are richer than Americans. It says the average Canadian household was worth about $363,000 in 2011, compared to almost $320,000 in the U.S., a difference of more than $40,000 – dollars that are pretty much at par. Of course, home prices had a lot to do with it. Canada didn’t see the collapse that the U.S. did and skyrocketing values in Vancouver and Toronto did a lot to jack up the national average.
The big credit monitoring firm, Equifax, says Canadians have slowed the speed at which they are driving themselves into debt. It says the rate of debt-growth dropped to 3.1% from 4.4% on a year-over-year basis. Credit card debt is down 3.8% and Canadians are sticking with their existing debt vehicles and not opening new accounts. Mortgage debt isn’t included.
And one dire sounding report that isn’t as bad as it seems from the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants. It suggests 48% of the people surveyed would find it “challenging” to meet their mortgage or debt payments if there was a “significant rate hike”. By “significant”, they appear to mean a 3.5% increase over what they are paying now. Rate increases will surely come but, given the current state of affairs, that sort of bump is highly unlikely. Also, keep in mind that “challenged” is not the same as “unable”.


1 Yr – 2.39%

3 Yr – 2.64%

5 Yr – 2.89%

VRM – 2.65%

Lee Welbanks is a Mortgage Broker with Welbanks Financial Group, Lee will be posting these informative “Market Minutes” each week for you to enjoy. Please remember to the Spring Realty Insider Club list to receive new blog post notifications, featured properties and insider access to Toronto’s hottest new developments right to your inbox. Find us on Facebook and Twitter too!


Best Mortgage Rates in Canada for July 18th, 2012

The Bank of Canada left the overnight rate at 1.00% at its meeting yesterday, as was universally expected. This is great news for anyone with a variable rate mortgage, or any product tied to prime like a line of credit or student loan.

More notable was the Bank’s assessment of the global outlook, which was deemed as having deteriorated relative to April.  The weakening in the global environment was cited as a factor restraining growth in Canada; however, the Bank views the domestic economy as continuing to grow at a moderate pace. These factors resulted in the Bank downgrading its 2012 growth forecast to 2.1% from 2.4%. The Bank forecasted that the economy will grow at a faster 2.3% in 2013 (albeit a tad slower than April’s 2.4% forecast) and 2.5% in 2014 (higher than April’s forecast of 2.2%).

The tone indicated that there may be need to reduce stimulus in order for the Bank of Canada to maintain the 2% target rate for inflation, but most economists don’t expect that to happen till 2013. More great news for variable rate mortgages, and anyone with debt tied to prime.  Yields are trending down so there may be some room for some short term decreases to fixed rates.  Sit tight and we’ll see!

Much of this is due to the slowing economic growth in Canada, the U.S. and China, and the unrelenting economic problems in Europe.  These helped to handcuff our central bank.  It has been looking to raise rates in an effort to slowdown the growth of household debt in Canada. But the Bank of Canada did get some relief with Ottawa’s imposition of new lending rules for high-ratio mortgages and new mortgage qualification limits.  The regulatory moves amount to a de facto interest rate increase in the housing sector and, anecdotally at least, appear to be having the desired, cooling effect.

1 Yr – 2.39%

3 Yr. – 2.69%

5 Yr. – 2.94%

VRM – 2.79%

Lee Welbanks is a Mortgage Broker with Welbanks Financial Group, Lee will be posting these informative “Market Minutes” each week for you to enjoy. Please remember to the Spring Realty Insider Club list to receive new blog post notifications, featured properties and insider access to Toronto’s hottest new developments right to your inbox. Find us on Facebook and Twitter too!

Condos Are Homes Too – Get it?

Condos Are Homes Too – Get it?

Recently I was discussing real estate with a client and trying to determine her goals, requirements, budget for her next purchase. She’s been a condo dweller for a number of years and now with a child and a loving husband they’re considering a house. When speaking to her she kept saying: “I love the condo life but I really prefer a home”. Wait a minute; isn’t a condo a home? Please allow Spring Realty to clear this up for you: There are Condos, Lofts, Townhouses, Detached Houses, Semi-Detached Houses, Row Houses but they all share one thing in common. They’re all HOMES!

Happy Monday!

Midweek Mortgage Minute for May 30th, 2012

Another voice has chimed-in on the state of Canada’s residential housing market. DBRS triggered a lot of chatter with a report that makes the assertion that most Canadian households could survive a 40% decline in property value, based on net worth. It seemed a shocking figure given the various concerns that have been raised if there were just a 20% – 25% drop in home values.

Still the debt-rating service doesn’t stray too far from previous warnings from the finance minister and the Bank of Canada. DBRS says expanding household debt is a concern because it reduces the ability to absorb by other financial shocks. It says a combination of interest rate hikes, property value declines and a big increase in unemployment would be a major concern because mortgage defaults are closely tied to employment.

An article in today’s Globe and Mail also speaks to an example where rates increase 1.25%.  The overall impact for most Canadian families that aren’t already overwhelmed by debt is shockingly good.  There’s nothing for those in fixed rates to worry about now, but when those mortgages renew a few years down the road, the changes aren’t so large that the average family couldn’t adjust.  Certainly budgets will need to change to account for the increased mortgage payments, but it shouldn’t be large enough that it would force most families to sell.
Contrary to the federal government’s wishes, interest rates seem to be heading in the opposite direction they would intend. Diminishing bond yields have all of the big banks dropping their rates for 5-year money.  It wouldn’t be surprising to see another rate war occur as bond yields continue to drop.


Lee Welbanks is a Mortgage Broker with Welbanks Financial Group, Lee will be posting these informative “Market Minutes” each Wednesday for you to enjoy. Please remember to subscribe to the Spring Realty Insider list to receive new blog post notifications, featured properties and insider access to Toronto’s hottest new developments right to your inbox.




Mortgage Minute for May 10, 2012

Another quiet week but some housing numbers came out higher.  Most analysts expect those numbers to ease so they aren’t giving much attention to the results at this point.

The unemployment rate is announced on Friday and that may provide more of an indication of the strength of the improvement.

There has also been continued talk for the need to increase rates at some point as household debt continues to strangle families.  Other sources are noting that when it comes to borrowing, numbers are still in line and don’t appear to be over extended.

It will be interesting to watch over the upcoming months how the economy plays out and if Mark Carney will ever actually pull the trigger and increase rates.  Even if he did, he could only do it a little as Canadian manufacturing would go into a tailspin once the Canadian dollar increases further from its lofty price.

Todays Top Rates

Fixed – 1 year
Fixed – 3 year
Fixed – 5 year


Lee Welbanks is a Mortgage Broker with Welbanks Financial Group, Lee will be posting these informative “Market Minutes” each Wednesday for you to enjoy. Please remember to subscribe to the Spring Realty Insider list to receive new blog post notifications, featured properties and insider access to Toronto’s hottest new developments right to your inbox.


New East End Development: 1430 Gerrard St East Condo

Gerrard St East is the next big thing in Toronto’s East End with recent announcements of East Village Leslieville by George Popper and now this new mixed use development at 1430 Gerrard St East in Toronto’s Little India.

There isn’t any info in cyberspace yet so I took a drive over there to see what I could dig up. My chat with the general contractor on site was quickly cut short by an intimidating character in a nicely tailored dark suit. I’ve seen this man before in the area and found out that he is a prominent local property owner (he also owns the large building across the street that houses Dwarika Restaurant).

I was able to get some info from the contractor prior to being silenced! This old theatre, once called The Nazz Theatre ceased operation in the late 1970’s but was the main draw to the area for the Ontario South Asian Community. This historic theatre will be redeveloped keeping the existing structure and historic facade. The main level will include three retail spaces (one tenant already confirmed to be an Indian restaurant). The upper level will be loft conversion suites and 4 additional levels will be added to the top for a total of 6 stories.

Spring Realty, as always, has the most current information on 1430 Gerrard St East and will strive to keep you up to date. We will also get you ground floor access to the best plans and prices the moment they become available. Join our Spring Realty Insider club so you are kept in the loop. Spring Realty loves Facebook and Twitter so make sure you connect with us there too!

East Village Leslieville – Townhomes in Leslieville

We have floor plans and prices ready for you! 

(Original post from March 31, updated April 15th and a further update April 16th)

Breaking news from Spring Realty (thanks to our top secret insider). The East Village Leslieville Project is finally here!!! Check out the renderings at the bottom of this post.

After hearing rumors a month or so ago I could not dig up a thing on East Village Leslieville, but as of last night (March 30th)the website went live and we at Spring Realty got extremely excited! This spring, Leslieville will offer a new condo/loft project.

From the City of Toronto document obtained by another Spring Realty insider (April 15th) it seems as though the address will be 1321 Gerrard St East (100% confirmed as of April 16th btw)! This document outlines the proposal for 31 stacked TH style units with underground parking. From the preliminary renderings they look  to be quite an improvement from the current state of the old Coffee Time site. The two building complex will contain 31 residential units with a number of underground parking spaces. There should be a variety of suites but we’ll know for sure in the coming weeks. The suites will have roof terraces and plenty of green space to enjoy. At approximately 1:30pm on April 16th another Spring Realty Insider contacted us with the name of the developer!!!!

Most locals are familiar with Abode Lofts and the Leslieville Lofthouse Project on Colgate Ave just North of Queen off Carlaw. Well, George Popper (Urban Fabric Development) is at it again with 1321 Gerrard. Taking it to a new level, building a contemporary stunner in the East End. Now that I know George is behind this, I’m even more confident it will be a massive success. Can not wait for this! Spring Realty will have floor plans before anyone else and we will  get you in the door first.

View Larger Map

In the mean time, it is very important that you Contact Us to register for this project. Please use East Village Leslieville as the subject line. We will keep you updated the instant we get more information.

For real time updates please follow us on Twitter (@aramamourian, @springrealtyinc) or Visit our Facebook Page.