House of the Week: $2.4 million for a grand old Victorian near Christie Pits

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Published on: October 26, 2016

Address: 646 Euclid Avenue
Neighbourhood: Christie Pits
Agent: Errol Paulicpulle and Blair Alexandra Laursen, Harvey Kalles Real Estate Ltd., Brokerage
Price: $2,399,900
Previously sold for: $862,000, in 2006

The place

A Victorian with major curb appeal—oh yeah, and a turret.

The history

At some point in its history, the home, originally built in 1906, was converted into a legal duplex. It has two separate units with two separate entrances. Although the interior has been extensively renovated, some original touches remain, like the stained glass windows in the main floor bedroom and living room:


Here’s the main-floor kitchen:


There’s also a bedroom on the main floor, with a bit more stained glass:


There’s plenty of storage in the basement:


The basement sitting area:


And there are two more bedrooms in the basement. Here’s one of them:


And the other:


There’s also an office that could probably be pressed into service as another bedroom:


The basement bathroom is covered in trendy subway tile:


The duplex’s second unit takes up the second and third floors. Here’s one of the second-floor bedrooms:


The second-floor master bedroom. Gotta love that fireplace:


And the second-floor kitchen:


There are two more bedrooms on the third floor. This one has a sliding door that leads to a rooftop patio:


And this bedroom has a cool exposed brick wall and a ladder to nowhere:


The third-floor bathroom:


And here’s the patio:


Big selling point

The home’s classic Victorian style is so grandiose that it could easily be a setting in Murdoch Mysteries.

Possible deal breaker

Right now, the property doesn’t have any tenants, which would make it easy for the buyer to move in. But anyone looking for immediate rental income would have to set their own rent and find their own renters.

By the numbers

• $2,399,900
• $8,375.17 in taxes (2016)
• 110 years old
• 7 bedrooms (three in one unit, four in another)
• 4 bathrooms (two in one unit, two in another)
• 2.5 storeys
• 2 parking spaces

The Hunt

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Sale of the Week: The $2.6-million Roncesvalles mansion that shows why unconditional offers rule the day

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Published on: October 24, 2016

Address: 22 High Park Boulevard
Neighbourhood: Roncesvalles
Agent: Greg Makin and Monte Burris, Keller Williams Referred Urban Realty, Brokerage

The property

An Edwardian mansion that’s going to get major TLC from its new owner.

The house still has much of its original woodwork:


There’s an office area on the main floor:


A living room with a fireplace:


A dining room with a built-in bench:


The family room has been converted into a bedroom:


And here’s the main-floor kitchen:


There are three more bedrooms on the second floor:


Here’s one of them:


And another:


And another:


The second floor also has its own kitchen:


There are three more bedrooms on the third floor of the house. This one has a mint-on-mint colour scheme:


Another third-floor bedroom:


And the final third-floor bedroom:


The third floor has yet another kitchen:


And here’s the lower level, which has a kitchen and bedroom of its own:


The history

The massive house, built in 1923, has been in the same family since the 1960s. It wasn’t exactly a rooming house, but the owner had various friends living in different sections of the place for years. When he passed away, his family decided to sell.

The fate

The house closes in November, and the buyer will spend a little time revamping the inside, which is full of well worn wall-to-wall carpeting, dated kitchens (four of them) and dilapidated bathrooms. Then, the extended family is moving in: parents on one floor, buyers and their children on the other floors.

The sale

There were five offers, and they were all close to one another. The two highest were for the exact same amount, but one was conditional and the other wasn’t. The sellers accepted the unconditional offer.

By the numbers

• $2,575,000
• $8,978.05 in taxes (2016)
• 4000 square feet
• 1400-square-foot lower level
• 7 bedrooms
• 7 days on MLS
• 4 bathrooms
• 4 kitchens

The Hunt

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Condo of the Week: $950,000 for a Mimico suite near a butterfly preserve

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Published on: October 21, 2016

Address: 59 Annie Craig Drive, Unit 803
Neighbourhood: Mimico
Agent: Maz Ekbatani, Sutton West Realty Inc., Brokerage
Price: $948,800
Previously sold for: $597,342, in 2014

The place

A lakefront condo across the street from a butterfly habitat.

The owner installed an electric fireplace in the living room:


There’s a small den area with a view of the lake:


The kitchen countertops are quartz. The fridge and dishwasher are concealed by cabinetry:


Here’s the guest bedroom:


And the hallway bathroom:


The master bedroom’s en suite bathroom:


The balcony and the view:


The story

The owner bought this two-bedroom condo pre-construction in 2014. He hired a designer and dumped nearly $100,000 into outfitting the place with custom lighting, new cabinetry and a built-in bed frame:


After all that work, he decided to sell the place and move closer to the city’s core.

Big selling points

Every room (except the bathroom) has a dazzling view of the lake and the distant city skyline. And, thanks to the Humber Bay Butterfly Habitat across the street, there’s little chance of a new condo tower popping up and blocking the vista. The building’s amenities include a rooftop patio with barbecues, an indoor pool, a gym, a jacuzzi and a steam room.

Possible deal breaker

TTC access isn’t great. It takes about five minutes to walk to the 501 Queen streetcar, which is notoriously unreliable during the weekday morning commute. It’s about an hour by streetcar to Union Station. Another possible drawback, for those who aren’t charmed by the bed frame: it’s pretty well attached to the wall and ceiling, and removing it could be tough.

By the numbers

• 1,095-square-foot interior
• $601.91 in monthly maintenance fees
• 125-square-foot balcony
• 9-foot ceilings
• 2 bedrooms
• 1 bathroom
• 1 parking space

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The Chase: A 26-year-old flees her Trinity Bellwoods rental after her housemate is arrested for robbing banks

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Published on: October 21, 2016

The renter: Megan Reynolds, a 26-year-old event coordinator for Baro, a Latin American restaurant on King West.

The story: Reynolds was sharing a house near Trinity Bellwoods with four other people in 2014 when a police officer knocked on the door. One of her housemates, a 26-year-old chef named Brandon Michael Smith, was facing charges related to a string of 16 bank robberies across Toronto. Reynolds was shocked. The roommate, who went by “Mike,” was a polite and chatty guy who sometimes went out of his way to make food for the house. As detectives scoured the apartment for clues related to the “Mummy Bandit” heists—so-called because Smith would often disguise himself by wrapping a scarf around his face—Reynolds took it as a sign and moved out within three days. (Smith was later convicted and is now serving time.)

She headed west to Parkdale, where she sublet a room in a condo at Queen and Dufferin. With a year before the sublease was set to expire, Reynolds casually perused Craigslist in search of her own place—ideally a bachelor or one-bedroom on Queen West for around $1,200. Her biggest concern was finding a safe, independent living situation.

Option 1

Bachelor loft near Queen and Lansdowne, listed at $1,500 per month

This loft had no photos in its listing, but it caught Reynolds’ eye because the landlords mentioned that they worked as interior designers. Unfortunately, the space was big on style but slim on square footage. The loft was drenched in sunlight and located in her target neighbourhood, but she decided she wasn’t willing to stretch her budget to live in a fashionable shoebox.

Option 2

One-bedroom apartment near Dovercourt and Davenport, listed at $1,600 per month

The prices along Queen West were beginning to seem outrageous, so Reynolds widened her scope. She visited this one-bedroom in a converted house near Wychwood Barns that was advertised as having a spacious kitchen and a full backyard. In reality, the place was even smaller than some of the apartments she’d seen on Queen West. Plus, the backyard was shared with three other tenants in the house. She figured the unit was only worth about $1,000 per month. Rather than haggle, she decided to pass.

The choice

One bedroom in a two-bedroom apartment on Elm Grove Avenue (near King and Dufferin), for $900 per month

By the time her sublease ended, Reynolds still hadn’t found a one-bedroom apartment, so she decided to give shared living another try—but this time with someone she knew well. She moved into a ground-floor apartment in a Parkdale house with her best friend (and her friend’s mutt, Prince). The space is bigger than what she could afford on her own, and it comes with air conditioning, en suite laundry and a private backyard. Her share of the $1,900 monthly rent is small enough that she has now has a bit of spare spending money. The walk home at night can be sketchy, but rooming with her best friend is, at least so far, more comfortable than living in an episode of CSI.

The house is a Parkdale Victorian:


Here’s the living room, with a cameo from Prince:


The kitchen:


There are two bedrooms. Here’s one:


And the other:


And here’s the backyard:


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