The Chase: A suburban couple searches for the perfect investment property downtown

The Chase: Downtown Investment Property
(Portrait: Erin Leydon)

The buyers: Sara Bannerman-Maxwell, 50, and her 53-year-old husband, Glenn, co-owners of the aviation manufacturing company Trinity Aerospace.

The story: The Bannerman-Maxwells have lived in the same sprawling Mississauga house for 15 years, close to the airport (where they often commute for work) and to three major highways. With the last of their kids on the verge of leaving home, they found themselves craving a lower-maintenance property—and a more walkable, urban lifestyle. Before picking up and moving, they decided to educate themselves about the Toronto market by purchasing an investment condo in the core—ideally a live-work space in King West that would attract a stable, long-term tenant. They settled on a budget of $600,000 and started scanning the listings on

Option 1

The Chase: Downtown Investment Property

Niagara Street (near King and Portland). Listed at $499,900, sold for $571,000.
This two-bedroom townhouse was the first place they viewed, lured by the low list price and its proximity to the King West strip. It was a relatively new building, which they liked, and there were great views from the rooftop deck, but they weren’t wowed enough to place an offer.

Option 2

The Chase: Downtown Investment Property

Stewart Street (near King and Bathurst). Listed at $569,000, sold for $570,000.
Friends of theirs who were also searching for an investment condo invited them to take a look at this two-bedroom townhouse in the Thompson Residences. They loved the brand prestige and the location, as well as the industrial aesthetic. Unfortunately, their friends had already scooped up the unit.

The Buy

The Chase: Downtown Investment Property

Stewart Street (near King and Bathurst). Listed at $578,900, sold for $570,000.
Four days later, an almost identical Thompson townhouse popped up on, and the Bannerman-Maxwells pounced. They submitted an initial bid of $560,000 and, after some back and forth, settled on the same price their friends had negotiated. They’ve since leased the unit to a chiropractor, and they’re already on the lookout for a second investment property in the area—and a three-bedroom place of their own. If all goes according to plan, they’ll be downtowners within the year.

House of the Week: $2.75 million for a Beach home with a fairytale turret

Address: 105 Pine Glen Road
Neighbourhood: The Beach
Agent: Mark Richards, Re/Max Hallmark Richards Group Realty Ltd., Brokerage
Price: $2,750,000

The place: A custom four-bedroom home, perched on a ravine and distinguished by its unusual turreted design.

The history: The house was built in 2015 on the edge of the Glen Stewart ravine, which is full of lush greenery and walking trails. The sellers chose a traditional aesthetic with lots of amenities: heated floors, a second-floor laundry room, built-in speakers, and under-staircase storage galore.

Big selling point: Each second-floor bedroom has its own ensuite bathroom, which should cut down on fights for shower time—and also eliminate the need for any expensive bathroom renovations, at least in the short term.

Possible deal breaker: Five bedrooms, including a turret nursery and an in-law suite, make this a good place for a growing family. But there’s only parking for a single vehicle, meaning the buyers might need to set aside a little extra cash for a minivan.

By the numbers:

• $2,750,000
• $5840,40 in taxes (2015)
• 3,090 square feet
• 7 bathrooms
• 4 + 1 bedrooms
• 4 sitting areas
• 1 office
• 1 parking space

The foyer.

The living room is at the front of the house.

The office is located in the turret, so it has wrap-around windows facing the street.

The house has a formal dining room, separate from the kitchen and living room.

The family room, located at the back of the house, has a gas fireplace with a stone surround.

The kitchen has a window-lined eat-in area.

There are three bedrooms on the second floor, all with their own ensuite bathrooms.

Here’s that bedroom’s ensuite.

This bedroom is in the turret, hence the many windows and dramatically domed ceiling.

And here’s that bedroom’s ensuite bathroom.

The master bedroom is at the back of the house.

The master ensuite.

And here’s the master bedroom’s walk-in closet.

This den on the third floor could probably be converted into a sixth bedroom.

And here’s the third-floor bedroom.

And that bedroom’s ensuite bathroom.

The basement is finished.

This basement room is currently set up as a rec area, but it’s a separate, walled-off space with an ensuite bathroom—meaning it could be used as a bedroom or nanny suite.

And here’s a view of the patio and the back of the house.

CENTURY 21 Urban Realty claims collaborative support niche in central Edmonton

CENTURY 21 Urban Realty has opened in Edmonton’s rising downtown core in the midst of new developments. Owners Doris Keung and Denis Lamothe, award-winning REALTORS® formerly with a local Coldwell Banker office, saw a wide-open niche for a different approach to real estate, one that succeeds through its dedication to “caring about people.”

“We help people reach their goals by completely taking them on as our own. The office lives by that when it comes to our clients, our team, the community, and the industry,” said Lamothe, owner, CENTURY 21 Urban Realty. “We go above and beyond to help people out, from start to finish. Our motto is ‘unparalleled, uncompromised service’ and we live by it.”

Their brand new office has already grown because of this philosophy. Seeing that REALTORS® often felt left out and unsupported, CENTURY 21 Urban Realty offers a team environment based on collaboration. Clients reap the benefits of the highest level of service, as everyone learns from each other and the whole team can assist on each transaction.

“The most rewarding thing is being part of an office where you can achieve your greatest potential,” said Keung, owner, CENTURY 21 Urban Realty. “That’s why we’re hosting open career seminars in the new year to welcome new and experienced agents. We’ll help them establish effective plans to reach their goals and can show exactly how our office will support them.”

Keung started in real estate 25 years ago and achieved her broker’s license this past fall. She’s won awards for her sales records, including the prestigious Coldwell Banker International Diamond Society award. Keung keeps involved in the industry as a member of the Asian Real Estate Association of America, a non-profit that promotes sustainable homeownership opportunities in Asian communities.

Lamothe has been embedded in the community for 35 years. He’s a well-known businessman in a variety of local industries, attributing his success over the years to helping others succeed. He supports the industry and brings regulatory knowledge back to his team by volunteering on the local MLS arbitration committee.

“Collaboration drives success through the shared knowledge and loyalty it creates. This award-winning team has claimed a niche in Edmonton that is bound to attract clients and REALTORS® alike,” said Brian Rushton, executive vice president, CENTURY 21 Canada™. “A warm welcome from the entire CENTURY 21® family, coast to coast!”

The office expects Edmonton’s real estate market to grow gradually in the upcoming years, with investment opportunities emerging and condo purchases on the rise. The team offers residential real estate services as well as dedicated commercial specialists to serve that market.

Drop by the new CENTURY 21 Urban Realty office at 11220, 119 Street West or visit their website to discover the CENTURY 21 difference. 



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Media contact:

Ashley Lockyer

Communications Marketing Strategist

CENTURY 21 Canada 



About CENTURY 21 Canada:

Work with the most recognized name in real estate. You’ll gain the support of the world’s largest residential real estate sales organization, with a unique Canadian history supporting entrepreneurship, marketing innovation, and homeowner education.

The CENTURY 21 family creates extraordinary experiences by providing proven training, management, and technology for its approx. 6,900 independently owned and operated franchises and over 100,000 members in 78 countries and territories worldwide.

We reward clients as the exclusive sponsor of the AIR MILES® Reward Program in the real estate industry. Only CENTURY 21 offices can offer customers reward miles on real estate transactions.

We’ve proudly supported local families living with disabilities through Easter Seals Canada since 1979. Since 2009, Canadian offices have raised nearly $3 million for Easter Seals and the Kids to Camp program: providing over 1000 children with the joy and independence of fully accessible summer camp experiences.

®/™ trademarks owned by Century 21 Real Estate LLC used under license or authorized sub-license. ©2015 Century 21 Canada Limited Partnership.

The trademarks REALTOR®, REALTORS® and the REALTOR® logo are controlled by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify real estate professionals who are members of CREA. Used under license.

Condo of the Week: $1.97 million for a decked-out bachelor pad near King West

Address: 20 Niagara Street, Unit 604
Neighbourhood: King West
Agent: Janice Fox, Hazelton Realty Inc., Brokerage
Price: $1,965,000

The place: This place may be the mythical “ultimate bachelor pad.” The living room, kitchen, dining room, office and terrace are on the light-filled first floor, there’s a sexy master suite on the second floor, and a library with rooftop deck access on the third floor.

The history: A plastic surgeon bought this place seven years ago and turned his meticulous eye to beautifying every inch. He had the office and dining room decked out in Brazilian sycamore, lined the kitchen with Calacatta marble so heavy it needed to be hoisted by crane, and lined his bedroom walls with custom zebra-wood cabinets. Just when he got it all exactly the way he wanted it, he found out there was a baby on the way. C’est la vie.

Big selling point: This 20-year-old building is on what is arguably the best plot of land on King West, just west of Victoria Memorial Square Park. With the park as a buffer, this unit’s sweet skyline views will probably never be blocked by another condo tower.

Possible deal breaker: The second bedroom is currently used as a giant walk-in closet and the master bedroom is open to the main floor below, so guests might need to book a hotel room. Thankfully, the Thompson is right next door.

By the numbers:

• $1,965,000
• 1,880 square feet
• $1,423 in monthly maintenance fees
• 370-square-foot rooftop deck
• 230-square-foot first-floor terrace
• 18-foot-high wall of windows
• 2 bathrooms
• 2 bedrooms
• 2 ethanol-burning fireplaces
• 1 library
• 1 den
• 1 parking space

The unit has two terraces: one down here and another on the third level.

The Calacatta marble panels in the kitchen are so big and heavy that they had to be hoisted up to this penthouse with a crane. And yup, that’s a signed Charles Pachter print in the background.

The rug here was designed by Jurgen Dahlmanns. It’s supposed to evoke a pastoral field.

No condo like this one would be complete without an Eames lounge chair.

Here’s the dining room. The panelling is Brazilian sycamore.

There’s also a small office on the first floor.

Also on the first floor: this dressing room. There’s a Murphy bed in here, concealed behind a couple of these closet doors—so this space can serve as a guest room in a pinch.

The main-floor bathroom.

The swanky master bedroom is on the second floor.

The bedroom has a shower for two, complete with steam jets.

There’s a slim library up on the third floor, with doors to the rooftop deck.

The building is next to a park, so the view is relatively unobstructed.