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Why Toronto Bungalows Are the New Big Thing

Why Toronto Bungalows Are the New Big Thing

Author: Tracy Ruddell

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They’re catching on like Toronto Real Estate wildfire. The small but might bungalow. Once shunned in favour of two- and three-storey houses, the humble bungalow was thought by most to be something only your grandparents would own, a post-war Toronto housing market craze that has long been surpassed by a sea of McMansions.

If you’re looking at houses for sale in Toronto that will be a good investment and haven’t considered bungalows, we’ll let you in on this not-so-secret news: a bungalow may just be your best bet not only for a comfortable and affordable family home in the here and now but for above-average value appreciation come re-sale down the line. Here’s why.

Why Toronto Bungalows are Small but Mighty

Market Size

Bungalows are a great investment because they have a larger market size than many property types which is something you should keep in mind for re-sale in future. They appeal to downsizing empty-nesters, pegged as the fastest growing market over the next decade, young families looking for affordable condo alternatives and builders / investors looking for a tear-down or a property that they can add a second-storey to.

 

Land Value

The most expensive part of a property purchase isn’t the house. It’s the land. The more land in a good neighbourhood that you can get for you dollar, the better. Remember, you can change the house but you can’t change the lot or the location. Bungalows tend to be on extra-wide lots and that additional land space offers not only more privacy but options for building either an extra-large detached home or two semi’s down the road, if you, or the next buyer, decide to go that route.

If there’s any doubt of how valuable bungalows have become for their land value, liaise with one of our Property.ca PROs. We can show you sales of bungalows in neighbourhoods like Todmorden Village and East York near O’Connor along with Woodbine-Lumsden around Woodbine and Mortimer where it’s not unusual to see original-condition bungalows sell for top dollar. Almost all of these are being snapped up by developers and investors who are tearing them down in favour of new build, three- and four-bedroom custom homes.

 

Condo-Alternatives

Despite access to some of the lowest mortgage rates in decades, skyrocketing house prices are making it increasingly difficult for young buyers to buy their first house, even when sizing up from a condo. When you’re already in the housing market, it’s much easier to keep moving up but that first rung is tough, not only when it comes to saving a down-payment but also buying in a hot market. Because of this, bungalows offer a great option for first-time buyers and young families because prices are often comparable to condos and there’s not always the same amount of competition.

 

Family-Friendly Neighbourhoods in Transition

“Family-friendly” isn’t exactly synonymous with Toronto neighbourhoods in transition. Typically, when we think about up-and-coming areas we think of gritty, industrial streetscapes, low-amenities and a lower-income demographic. There are neighbourhoods in Toronto that are still gentrifying, however, that have a much more mature vibe than hipster havens like The Junction Triangle, for example. Some of these mature neighbourhoods are filled with affordable bungalows on tree-lined, tranquil street, near great schools and in safe, friendly environments it's just that the houses aren't as grand as what we see in prime neighbourhoods and the lower prices reflect that.

Often, seniors still live in the same homes they raised their families in. These houses tend to be lovingly-maintained with large yards and gardens. As populations age, young families are moving in to these mechanically-sound homes that are just in need of simple, cosmetic updating and so area demographics are changing.

Some great, family neighbourhoods with a high-density of bungalows to consider are East York, with its prime position near Playter-Estates and The Danforth, and Caledonia-Fairbank near the Castlefield Design District–the Eglinton-Crosstown LRT is coming soon and is sure to raise property values.

For those looking for investment purchases, check out the modest bungalows in Birch Cliff and Cliffside just east of The Beach, as close to the Lake as your budget will afford. We think prices will skyrocket here in the next few years.