GTA housing buoyed by parents helping young buyers
‘Gift letters’ have become a common form of currency as young buyers struggle to save down payments
Helping out the kids with a home purchase is not new. But the amounts being signed over have reached staggering heights in the GTA, say mortgage industry observers. CANADIAN PRESS
Toronto mortgage broker Jake Abramowicz sees so many first-time homebuyers armed with major money from Mom and Dad, he actually has a little pep talk for those going it on their own.
“I tell them: You guys are really doing something special. It’s really hard to pay rent in Toronto, pay off student loans and save money for a down payment for a home. You should be very proud of yourself.”
For almost a decade now, Abramowicz has specialized in helping first-time buyers get mortgages. During that time he’s seen house prices soar, lending rules tighten and more buyers — now at least 75 per cent of his younger clients — armed with “gift letters” or tens of thousands of dollars from their baby boomer parents.
“How else do you think someone in their 30s can afford a Leslieville semi?,” asks Abramowicz, 36.
“I see deals where parents are contributing $50,000, $100,000, $400,000. The Mom of one of my best friends sold her farm for $2.5 million and gave him $450,000. He bought a condo in Liberty Village for cash.
“He works very hard and he knows he’s extremely fortunate.”
Helping out the kids is hardly new. Nor are gift letters — the disclosure documents parents sign as part of the mortgage approval process that details their contribution to their kids.
But the amounts being signed over have reached staggering heights in the GTA where skyrocketing house prices have made baby boomers richer than they could have ever imagined, while leaving their kids struggling to get a toehold in a market that continues to climb into the stratosphere.
Rea More @ http://www.thestar.com/
In Toronto, condo construction is more important than public access: The Fixer
The city allows developers to close lanes on streets around condo sites, if they pay for lost parking revenue.
JACK LAKEY / TORONTO STAR Order this photo
A developer has a permit to barricade part of Lillian St., next to an Eglinton Ave. condo construction site, which was obtained by paying the Toronto Parking Authority for lost revenue from closed parking spaces.
Condo developers are masters of the local universe, with rights to occupy precious public space that can be bought for peanuts.
On Oct. 17 we reported on a Roehampton Ave. condo site where pylons were improperly used to close the curb lane, to create exclusive parking for construction workers.
We asked readers to tell us if they saw the same thing elsewhere, and got several tips, including a note about barricades next to a large condo project on Lillian St., just south of Eglinton Ave.
We went there Tuesday and found concrete barriers running south from Eglinton for nearly 100 metres in the curb lane of Lillian, along the east side of the construction site.
The only thing there to justify the barriers was a garbage dumpster and an SUV parked behind it. A guy jumped into the vehicle and started to drive away, so we stopped him and asked why part of the street is closed.
The developer has a permit from the city, he said, offering to show it to us. We looked closely and found that it authorized hoarding along Eglinton, but said nothing about barricading Lillian.
When we said as much and asked if we could shoot a photo of the permit, he got into his SUV and took off, saying we should go to a trailer on the job site, where other people could provide more information.