Wow, it has been a while since my last post. But what can I say, lockdown in the Canadian winter was bleak!
I’d been casually following the GTA real estate trends since last summer, observing (and secretly judging) the exodus of people leaving the core for the suburbs and exurbs in search of greener pastures. Originally, I thought that those who were leaving were crazy to do so, as the core is where the action is at, and where it will always be at. I confidently thought that we could ride out the pandemic in the condo, as we had enough room for a separate home office and all the tools to work from home.
However, as time dragged on, the condo and the downtown environment began to feel more and more constricting. Even socially distant outdoor activities became severely impacted by COVID restrictions. Outside of work, we had very little to do except to overdose on enough digital entertainment at home to last a lifetime.
Was it time to get out?
Shops and businesses that had defined the financial and entertainment districts were closing for good, with over a third of the storefronts on Queen Street boarded up. The PATH, previously packed with commuters, became eerily silent and void of traffic. The downtown neighborhoods, usually bustling with activity, felt like a ghost town.
Slowly but surely, I began tracking the real estate market with fervor.
By the fall and winter, the Toronto condo market was flooded with inventory. Rents were down double digits, and nobody wanted to buy a condo in the city. One of our neighbours, two floors up, with the exact same floor plan as ours, decided to list their unit for sale at the beginning of fall. What great news! We thought. We could use our neighbours’ sale as a comparable figure to gauge our unit’s value.
And so we waited. And waited. And waited.
And they waited. And waited. And waited.
Christmas, and then New Years rolled by. And it was crickets in the condo market…