15 03, 2019

Do you know who pays your real estate agent?

2019-04-01T12:32:47-04:00

We’ve recently had this discussion with buyers and feel that it’s important to fully understand the buying and selling process. We’re completely transparent in our process and aim to fully educate our buyers and sellers to ensure that they’re comfortable throughout every transaction. Reach out if you have any questions! Who pays your real estate agent? Apartment Therapy outlines the process below:

White wooden sign post with text: SOLD OVER ASKING! Thurston Olsen Real Estate Team Ford Thurston and Chris Olsen, Sales Representatives. Who pays your real estate agent?

Buying a home is expensive. Selling a home is expensive. This is common knowledge. Something I recently learned is not common knowledge? Just who pays the buyer’s real estate agent once a house sells (and who pays the seller’s, too).

It’s likely you haven’t really thought about this ever. For expediency’s sake, the answer is “the seller.” Yes, the seller pays their listing agent and the buyer agent’s commission.

And if that isn’t what you thought, you’re not alone. Just in the past month, I’ve seen two surveys showing that this is a common misconception. The first was in a new report from Clever Real Estate, an online platform that connects buyers, sellers, and agents. They did a recent survey, asking 1,000 homeowners selling their houses in 2019 a couple of questions about the home selling process. One of the questions they asked was, “In most real estate transactions, who pays the buyer’s agent commission?” Almost half (45.5 percent) responded that the home buyer did.

Side note: It’s a little weird to think that people who once bought a home didn’t know that they didn’t pay their buyer’s agent. But that might be because closing costs are so expensive and include so many fees, buyers just assume that their agent’s commission is somewhere on that closing statement.

“I think it’s one of those willful amnesia things, where you kinda forget how it all works and then are surprised by having to pay for both,” posits Dabney Frake, our Projects editor who recently went through the selling process.

So just why do people not know this? Maria Koziakov, a real estate agent with Luxury & Beach Realty in St. Petersburg, Florida, says that most people know that real estate agents work on commission and that someone has to pay that commission. But, just like other things in life, most will assume the one seeking representation (e.g. hiring an agent) will be the one to pay for it.

But in real estate, it works a little differently. The seller pays because they’re the ones who are actually hiring their agent to sell their house: “The listing agent and the office are truly hired,” Koziakov says, meaning that there is an actual contract signed when one works with a seller’s agent. The contract, known as a listing agreement, specifies the commission, any fees, and the time period.

The more you know!

source: Apartment Therapy

Do you know who pays your real estate agent?2019-04-01T12:32:47-04:00
12 03, 2019

JUST LISTED! 272 Scarboro Crescent – Cliffcrest

2019-04-04T12:10:03-04:00

Welcome to 272 Scarboro Crescent in Cliffcrest, Toronto

With two levels of exquisitely renovated and extended living space, 272 Scarboro Crescent is situated on a gorgeous 50 ft lot! A true gem where every detail was meticulously addressed.

Impressively landscaped, the front garden features 5 tonnes of Armour stone and creates a distinguished introduction to this property. The elegant front portico and nicely finished exterior welcome one to the open concept main level of the home that is enhanced by the warm hue of stunning wide plank fumed white oak floors.

Stylish with lovely natural light, the living room is a delightful space. It is slightly separated from the formal dining area, stunning gourmet kitchen and family room. The latter two spaces being part of the addition completed in 2014. The kitchen cabinetry, appliances, marble countertops, subway tile backsplash and fireplace surround are designer selected and above and beyond expectations. There are four skylights, a sun tunnel and double doors to the back deck and garden adding the beauty of natural light to these finishes and the main level overall.

On this level there are also two wonderful bedrooms and an incredible bathroom with heated floors that was renovated in 2018. It is breathtaking and features an elegant soaker tub and top of the line fixtures.

On the lower level there is a spacious media room, a games room, a gym, an office, a light filled bedroom, another washroom and a separate laundry room. The washroom features a stunning double glass shower, heated floors and similar top-drawer fixtures. Everything has been finished to perfection and what is below the surface is ever so impressive as relates to insulation and overall comfort.

The fully fenced in backyard features more fabulous landscaping and an impressive shed ideal for the gardener in the family or as a workshop! There is also a gas line for a barbeque on the back deck.

This neighbourhood is sought after for good reason. Chine Drive School is very highly regarded as an elementary school. It has excellent standards and is very personalized. The area boasts many walking trails and parks including the Scarborough Bluffs Tennis Club and Bluffers Park Marina – a full-service marina as well as the overall feeling of a close-knit community of supportive families and Cliffside Village retailers.

Move in and enjoy this exceptional home!

Further photos & info: www.272ScarboroCres.com

list price: $1,225,000

MLS #: E4404136

JUST LISTED! 272 Scarboro Crescent – Cliffcrest2019-04-04T12:10:03-04:00
4 03, 2019

Toronto home prices by subway station

2019-03-04T16:25:09-04:00

Owning a home “steps from transit” certainly has its perks and can command a pretty penny on its sale price. Whether or not a home is within walking distance to the closest subway or Light Rail Transit stop is a top consideration for Toronto home buyers who lead a pedestrian lifestyle, or simply wish to leave the car at home on their commute. But what exactly is the cost of a home or condo by each TTC subway stop?

Christie Subway Station Toronto Ontario

To find out, the average 2018 sold prices for houses and condos within 800 metres (roughly a 10-minute walk) of all 75 TTC subway and LRT stations were collected. Sold prices were sourced from the Toronto Real Estate Board for the period between January 1 and December 31, 2018.

House Condo Price by Toronto Subway Station 2018

The 5 Most Affordable TTC Stops for Houses

  1. Ellesmere (Line 3): $708,489
  2. Midland (Line 3): $716,813
  3. Lawrence East (Line 3): $725,813
  4. Finch West (Line 1): $741,891
  5. McCowan (Line 3): $761,074

 

The 5 Least Affordable TTC Stops for Houses

  1. York Mills (Line 1): $3,426,020
  2. Museum (Line 1): $3,002,150
  3. Summerhill (Line 1): $2,932,837
  4. St. Clair (Line 1): $2,888,106
  5. Sherbourne (Line 2): $2,870,130

 

The 5 Most Affordable TTC Stops for Condos

  1. Kennedy (Lines 2 & 3): $329,530
  2. Lawrence East (Line 3): $364,656
  3. Ellesmere (Line 3): $382,752
  4. Victoria Park (Line 2): $388,953
  5. McCowan (Line 3): $420,572

 

The 5 Least Affordable TTC Stops for Condos

  1. Summerhill (Line 1): $1,242,618
  2. Rosedale (Line 1): $1,172,898
  3. St. George (Lines 1 & 2): $1,141,827
  4. St. Clair West (Line 1): $1,090,897
  5. St. Clair (Line 1): $1,078,285

 

Methodology

Sold prices of individual properties were sourced from the Toronto Real Estate Board from January 1, 2018 to December 31, 2018. Sold condo prices includes sold condo apartments and condo townhouses. Sold house prices includes sold detached, semi-detached and attached houses. The boundary used for sold listings was a 800m radius from each subway stop. All calculations by Zoocasa.

Curious about the average price in your neighbourhood? Check out Toronto data here and reach out for your specific hood! Toronto Real Estate Update 2018

source: zoocasa

lead image by Doug Estey

Toronto home prices by subway station2019-03-04T16:25:09-04:00
28 02, 2019

JUST LISTED! 7 Juniper Avenue – The Beach

2019-02-28T17:28:05-04:00

Welcome to 7 Juniper Avenue in The Beach, Toronto

Click the arrow to scroll through photos of 7 Juniper Avenue

This classic Beach home is absolutely stunning with a professionally landscaped front garden leading up to a lovely glass enclosed porch – ideal for enjoying a morning coffee and watching the awakening of Spring.

The spacious foyer features a grand staircase and French doors opening into the beautifully appointed living room. Substantial wood trims and impressive engineered hardwood floors flow throughout the entire main floor.  With abundant natural light, the south facing formal dining room is enhanced by traditional pocket doors. For easy entertaining in all seasons, it also includes a pass through to the recently renovated and very stylish eat-in kitchen and a walkout to the deck and lushly planted back garden.

The upper level of the home features 3 nicely appointed and spacious bedrooms all with large windows, closets and new broadloom. With a beautiful bay window and built-ins in the closet, the master is very comfortable. The washroom on this level has been recently updated featuring neutral décor, new flooring and a charming clawfoot tub. Perfect for a relaxing soak at the end of a busy day.

The lower level includes an impressive rec room with pot lights and trendy polished concrete floors.  Ideal space for movie time, child play or some quiet time with a good book. For added convenience, this level also features a 3-piece bathroom and separate laundry area.

The backyard is a delightful oasis right in the heart of the city.

With it’s south facing perspective and no homes directly behind, there is ample sun for the enjoyment of the family gardener and plenty of privacy for gathering with family and friends. This home also includes 1 car parking!

Juniper Avenue is a quiet street tucked away in the Beach neighbourhood. It’s a very short distance to the recreational delights of the area including the boardwalk, beach, bicycle path, tennis courts, abundant parks and ravines! It’s also a short walk to the cafés, restaurants and shops on both Queen Street and Kingston Road.

Located in the catchment area for the highly regarded Malvern Collegiate, Williamson Road Junior Public School and Glen Ames Senior Public School, it offers many academic options. It’s also an easy commute to the downtown core by either public transit or vehicle.

Move in and enjoy this wonderful Beach home!

Further photos & info: www.7Juniper.ca

list price: $1,249,000

MLS #: E4369499

JUST LISTED! 7 Juniper Avenue – The Beach2019-02-28T17:28:05-04:00
21 02, 2019

3 Packing Mistakes to Avoid

2019-03-04T15:58:05-04:00

You’ve chosen your moving company and booked the movers, but there’s one thing that still needs to be done before the big day: packing up your belongings. Before you get too excited and begin stuffing your boxes with all your stuff, make sure that you’re setting yourself up for a smooth and efficient move. Mindless packing can end up taking a lot of otherwise unnecessary time and energy to fix—a combination that could cost you, as you’re most likely paying for the movers by the hour. “Sometimes people will complain and not tip the guys because it took so long,” says Cezar Iordan, owner of Moovers Chicago, “They don’t realize that it took so long because of the simple mistakes they made.”

Red brick wall with a stack of moving boxes on a hand cart being pulled.

So what are these mistakes? Here, Iordan reveals the three most-common packing blunders he sees, as well as the quick fixes to make your moving day as painless as possible.

Packing Books in Large Boxes

Why it’s a problem: We understand—you want to keep your beloved book collection in just one or two boxes. But Iordan says that this strategy slows the process down as huge, heavy boxes are incredibly difficult for movers to lift and carry—not even their trusty moving straps make it easier.

What’s more, Iordan says people often don’t tape these hefty boxes properly—they’ll usually put only one line of tape on the bottom of the box. “They have 100-pound boxes they want us to move and have them in perfect shape when they’re dropped off,” he says. “When you have a huge, large box full of books, the bottom of it will collapse and everything will fall out.”

The fix: Pack books in small boxes and reinforce with multiple strips of tape. While you may have more boxes, it’s easier for the movers, who can carry several smaller boxes with their moving straps.

Not Labeling Your Boxes Clearly or Correctly

Why it’s a problem: Reusing those old boxes from your last move? That’s fine, but make sure that any and all labels from previous moves be removed or covered—multiple labels make it difficult to know exactly in which room it should be placed. “Imagine you’re holding the box and asking a client where they want the box to go, but they don’t know what’s inside so they have to open it up and see what’s inside,” he says. “It will drag the duration of the move out.”

The fix: Cover or cross out all previous labels and put one very clear label on the side of the box, not the top. “Since we use dollies or straps, we carry four or five boxes at a time which makes it impossible to see the top of every box,” Iordan says.

Not Packing Your Fragile Items Properly

Why it’s a problem: “People will put all of their fragile items in a box without any kind of bubble wrap, paper, or peanuts, and expect the items to be in perfect condition after the move,” Ioran says. “That’s just impossible.” The good news? Many professional moving companies (like Moovers) will refuse to move the precious cargo until it’s properly wrapped (but this adds a lot of time onto the actual move).

The fix: Wrap your fragile items with care while packing. “Always, always, always wrap anything made of glass in bubble wrap to ensure that nothing gets damaged,” he says. You’ll thank yourself for putting in the extra time when moving day comes, and the movers will thank you, too.

 

source: apartment therapy

3 Packing Mistakes to Avoid2019-03-04T15:58:05-04:00
12 02, 2019

JUST SOLD! 51 Cranberry Lane – Aurora

2019-02-12T12:00:05-04:00

51 Cranberry Lane is located within the prestigious Highland Gate development in Aurora on a premium lot with 65′ frontage. Congratulations to our buyer clients on the purchase of their new home overlooking the park! The south facing backyard oasis offers ultimate privacy with a stunning Gunite pool by Todd Pools and hot tub with waterfall surrounded by a stone deck and patio. The basement retreat features custom oak wainscotting, a wet bar, fireplace (1 of 3!) and unique lighting. Overall, a beautiful home loaded with charm and character, they’re sure to love it for years.

51 Cranberry Lane, Aurora just sold by Thurston Olsen Real Estate Team Toronto

JUST SOLD! 51 Cranberry Lane – Aurora2019-02-12T12:00:05-04:00
29 01, 2019

Thurston Olsen Toronto Real Estate Update Jan-Dec 2018

2019-02-01T15:59:12-04:00

We hope you’re keeping warm and safe this winter! In an effort to keep you up to date and informed, we have prepared your Toronto Real Estate Update for 2018. Below you will find Toronto sales information for January – December, 2018 compared to 2017.

Do you want the stats for your neighbourhood, or have a question about a specific sale on your street? Reach out and we’ll gladly give you all of the info! info@thurstonolsen.com

Are you curious to know what your home is worth? Give us call at 416.465.7850 and we will be happy to provide you with an opinion of value.

Toronto real estate update 2018 Thurston Olsen Real Estate Team
  • 29,863 homes sold throughout Toronto in 2018
    • 26.5% were detached homes
    • 8.6% were semi-detached homes
    • 54.6% were condos
    • 10.4% were other home types
  • The average price of a detached home decreased 7.1% from 2017 to 2018
  • The average price of a semi-detached home increased 1.0% from 2017 to 2018
  • The average price of a condo increased 8.7% from 2017 to 2018
  • Homes were on the market an average of 20 days in 2018. This increased from 16 in 2017.

Click here to view our Toronto Real Estate Update from Q3 2018.

Thurston Olsen Toronto Real Estate Update Jan-Dec 20182019-02-01T15:59:12-04:00
13 12, 2018

Winter Colour Inspiration

2018-12-13T09:11:08-04:00

Sherwin-Williams Paint Palette

Greys and cool whites continue to predominate in our palette for Winter 2018, but sparked with accents of deep, rich hues like gold, teal and darkest blue. Try using these confident, sophisticated colours leavened with lots of white or grey, as we did with our Lush Velvet Quilt in Golden Oaks mixed with a white jacquard duvet, grey channel-tufted headboard and barely-grey Reflection on walls. Craving a bolder pop of colour? Try Real Red or Goldfinch as an accent colour on the back of bookshelves, highlighting a front door, or in a smaller or lesser-used room like a foyer, powder room, dining room or library. Not dying to go that deep? We’re loving Mellow Coral as a flattering, slightly peachier update of millennial pink.

 

 

Tips for choosing colours like a pro:

  • Use different shades of the same colour to create depth. Instead of standard white, try painting trim a deeper shade of the wall colour, or use the same hue in a high-gloss finish.
  • Try a satin finish on walls instead of the typical flat finish paint. It gives darker or richer colours more depth, looks more polished, and— bonus points—is easier to clean.
  • In a small, dark room, don’t assume you have to go with white or light colours. A darker hue can visually enlarge the space because it makes corners disappear and furnishings pop.

SOURCE: westelm.ca

Winter Colour Inspiration2018-12-13T09:11:08-04:00
19 10, 2018

5 Things you can do today to increase your home’s value

2018-10-19T10:07:55-04:00

Paint Supplies in a paint tray. 5 ways to increase your homes value

Start Rollin’

One of the simplest, most cost-effective improvements of all is paint! Freshly painted rooms look clean and updated. When selecting paint colours, keep in mind that light neutrals appeal to the greatest number of people, therefore making your home more desirable. On average, a gallon of paint costs around $25, leaving you plenty of money to buy rollers, painter’s tape, drop cloths and brushes. So buy a few gallons and get rollin’!

Get Dirty

The power of curb appeal is real. Keep your lawn looking good with regular mowing and clean-cut edging. Low-maintenance landscaping saves you money now and adds value when you sell. It’s no question that shrubs and colourful plants will add curb appeal to any home, but when shopping at your local garden center, make sure that you “think green.” Purchase plants that are native to our region or plants that are drought-tolerant; these require less water and maintenance, which means more savings to you and more green in your wallet.

Garden tools leaning against a wall. 5 ways to increase your homes value
kitchen back splash being updated with white subway tiles. 5 ways to increase your homes value

Swap ‘em Out

Kitchen and washroom renovations can easily cost thousands, so focus on the smaller, more manageable projects. Consider painting your old cabinetry to instantly brighten the space. Replacing the hardware will also make your cabinets look newer and more modern. The backsplash is another design feature that resonates with buyers. When choosing tile, stick with neutral tones and an unfussy design — white subway tile is classic for a reason.

Set the Mood

Nothing kills a mood faster than bad lighting, and if you want to show your home in the best light you will have to do exactly that! A quick and affordable fix is to install light-control dimmers on switches. Not only does this add drama and ambiance in areas such as the dining room and bedrooms, it is also good for energy efficiency. Lighting is particularly important in the bathroom, where it should be warm and bright. Keep lighting even around mirrors to prevent unwanted shadows when you are shaving or applying makeup.

dimmer light switch. 5 ways to increase your homes value

Clean Up, Aisle 5

It seems obvious, but one of the most important things you can do to boost the value of your home is to clean it up. Remember that potential buyers want to see a blank canvas and picture themselves in it. Do a hardcore decluttering session and divide everything you truly don’t need or use into “donate,” “toss” and “sell” piles. With your “sell” items, throw a yard sale or post items on Kijiji to make some extra cash to fund your home improvement projects.

5 Things you can do today to increase your home’s value2018-10-19T10:07:55-04:00