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As 2023 drew to a close, a year marked by its unpredictability and transformative events, attention naturally shifted toward the emerging real estate market trends of 2024. The seasoned real estate agents from Fox Marin, intimate with Toronto’s changing market, Jessica, Ian, Jerome, and Reuben, offered their perspectives.
These real estate pros, who have weathered the complexities of the market, negotiated deals, and experienced the rollercoaster of highs and lows, bring invaluable insights into the intricacies of Toronto’s real estate market, ups and downs. Their expertise goes beyond surface-level analysis, delving into the nuanced realities of the market, both past and present. 2023 posed numerous challenges and presented surprising trends that even seasoned experts could not have foreseen. Their stories are narratives of individual success and reflections of the market’s broader trends.
Looking ahead, they explored the potential shape of Toronto’s real estate market in 2024. They discussed emerging neighbourhoods poised for growth and shared their valuable advice for buyers, sellers, and new agents stepping into the evolving 2024 market. Their predictions and guidance are not just forecasts but roadmaps for navigating the ever-changing terrain of Toronto’s real estate.
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The year was characterized by Jerome’s relentless pursuit of excellence in serving clients, a deep involvement in personal life, and an acute awareness of market trends and opportunities. 2023 also unveiled some unexpected trends in the real estate market. Despite a high interest rate environment, the sharp rise in property prices between January and April caught many off guard. The first quarter was marked by intense bidding wars and a sense of urgency among buyers, particularly first-time homeowners, who feared missing out on what seemed like a fleeting opportunity. However, the scenario shifted with two surprise interest rate hikes mid-year, bringing a new level of caution to the market.
The year was not just about market dynamics but also about the human stories behind each transaction. Real estate, in its essence, is about people and their lives. Each listing is not just a property; it’s a window into the lives of individuals and families, each with a unique story. Jerome’s role transcended beyond mere transactional duties, often becoming an integral part of these personal journeys.
Jerome shares his top pick for the up-and-coming neighbourhood in Toronto. His choice, Pape Village in East York, reflects a blend of appreciation potential and lifestyle benefits. This area, tucked between Pape and Donlands to the west and east and stretching from Cosburn to Mortimer in the north-south direction, may be limited in size, but its potential is significant.
In Pape Village, the opportunity to purchase a post-war bungalow, a remnant of 1950s construction, for just over a million dollars is still a reality. These homes, often featuring two or three bedrooms, sit on generous 30-foot wide lots, offering ample space for renovations or complete rebuilds. Jerome envisions the potential for transforming these bungalows into expansive homes of up to 3,000 square feet. A major transformative factor for Pape Village is the anticipated construction of the Ontario line. Although its completion might range from five to 25 years, its impact will be profound. He notes that the neighbourhood, currently home to an older demographic, has been undervalued for too long. Its potential for growth and appreciation in value is immense, especially considering the planned infrastructural developments.
Regarding market predictions, Jerome’s outlook for 2024 is cautiously optimistic. He anticipates a more robust market driven by factors such as the enduring influence of parental financial support for first-time buyers and the influx of financially capable immigrants. However, he also foresees challenges, especially for buyers needing to prepare for the market’s swift pace. For sellers, the return of demand is a harbinger of relief, especially for those who’ve felt the pressure of rising interest rates.
Jerome’s personal advice for buyers and sellers entering the 2024 market is nuanced and tailored. It emphasizes the importance of personal circumstances over market trends and the critical role of choosing a competent agent. Jerome’s counsel for new entrants in the real estate profession is equally profound: focus on honing skills and knowledge, and the business will follow.
In summary, 2023 was a year of balancing professional rigour with personal life, understanding and adapting to surprising market trends, and preparing for Jerome’s promising yet challenging 2024. It was a year that tested his resilience, demanded adaptability, and offered rich learnings, setting the stage for continued growth and success in the Toronto real estate market.
2023 was a year of significant challenges and surprising trends, navigated skillfully by Ian Busher, VP of Sales and a founding member of the Fox Marin family. His unique expertise, shaped by his Red Seal carpenter and licensed contractor background, brings invaluable insights to buyers and sellers. His reflections on the past year and expectations for 2024 provide a comprehensive view of the market’s dynamics.
The most formidable challenge Ian faced in 2023 was managing client expectations in an unpredictable market. The absence of a crystal ball made it difficult to predict future trends, requiring a more collaborative approach with clients. Tough conversations became a recurring theme, necessitating honest and factual dialogues about the market’s realities. Ian emphasized the importance of not shying away from these difficult discussions, as they are crucial in navigating a market devoid of certainties and ensuring clients are well informed and prepared.
Contrary to predictions of a real estate apocalypse, the Toronto market demonstrated remarkable resilience. Fire sales were almost non-existent despite buyers seeking deals and expecting sellers to be disadvantaged. The market experienced a slowdown and softness, but it wasn’t the catastrophic downturn many anticipated. Instead, buyers found value and time for due diligence, affirming the market’s underlying strength.
Looking ahead, Ian is bullish on certain Toronto neighbourhoods. He predicts significant growth in areas like Eglinton West of Dufferin and St. Clair West of Dufferin, thanks to improved connectivity from the LRT and other developments. He anticipates these areas gradually heating up, reaching a peak by early 2025. Ian foresees an upward trend in buyer confidence, coupled with decreased inventory and dropping interest rates. He expects these factors to catalyze the market’s growth in 2024, predicting a gradual acceleration leading to a robust year-end.
For sellers, Ian suggests a ‘wait and see’ approach, advising them to carefully time their entry into the market. Conversely, he urges buyers not to delay, emphasizing that 2024 presents a crucial window of opportunity.
Ian is most excited about the return of confidence among buyers and sellers. He looks forward to a year marked by decisiveness and enthusiasm from clients, which he believes will invigorate the market and create a positive cycle of confidence and success.
In summary, 2023 was a year of navigating unpredictability and resilience in the Toronto real estate market. Ian’s insights, stemming from vast experience and a unique skill set, paint a picture of a continually evolving market. As 2024 approaches, there’s a palpable sense of optimism and readiness for the opportunities and challenges it may bring.
Reuben Labovitz, a dynamic member of the Fox Marin team, brings a wealth of experience to the table despite his relatively short tenure in the real estate industry. With three and a half years under his belt, Reuben has encountered market conditions and challenges that many seasoned agents might only experience over a much longer career span. His unique perspective, especially resonant with a younger demographic, adds a fresh and wise voice to the team.
The most notable surprise for Reuben in 2023 was the market’s resilience in the first half of the year despite soaring interest rates. Contrary to expectations, the market demonstrated remarkable strength. This resilience is a testament to the robust fundamentals of the Toronto real estate market, which has withstood various challenges, including policy changes, economic shifts, and even a global pandemic.
Professionally, his greatest triumphs were his clients’ successes. He takes pride in having helped multiple clients purchase move-in-ready freehold houses in Toronto for under a million dollars – a feat he believes will soon be a rarity in the city. Even in a sluggish market, these successful transactions underscore his ability to find exceptional value for his clients.
When asked about the next up-and-coming neighbourhood in Toronto, Reuben casts his vote for the Dufferin Grove and Bloordale area. He cites its prime location, tucked among vibrant communities like Little Italy and High Park, and its proximity to transportation links like the UP Express. The neighbourhood’s ongoing gentrification, coupled with its walkability and community vibe, makes it a prime candidate for growth.
As 2024 approaches, Reuben observes a burgeoning trend in the freehold segment, with increasing competition over entry-level homes. He anticipates a market surge driven by changing buyer mentalities and potential decreases in interest rates. He advises buyers to be ready yet patient, emphasizing the importance of being well-prepared to act swiftly when the right opportunity arises. He suggests waiting for sellers, as the market in late spring or early summer might be more favourable than in the early months of the year.
For new agents entering the business in 2024, Reuben stresses the importance of hard work and the value of surrounding oneself with knowledgeable and supportive colleagues. He believes that mentorship and camaraderie are crucial for growth and success in the real estate industry.
In conclusion, Reuben Labovitz’s journey through 2023 has been a blend of professional rigour and personal milestones, marked by significant achievements for his clients and himself. His insights into the market’s resilience and optimistic outlook for 2024 reflect a deep understanding of Toronto’s real estate dynamics. As he steps into the new year, he focuses on growth, learning, and leveraging his unique perspective to benefit his clients and the team.
Jessica Spillas Rubash, VP of Sales at Fox Marin and affectionately known as the “Queen of Acquisitions,” brings a unique and seasoned perspective. Starting as an assistant and evolving into a top-tier real estate broker, Jessica has witnessed the transformation of Fox Marin from its inception. Her journey reflects a deep understanding of the market from multiple angles, making her insights particularly valuable for forecasting trends in 2024 and reflecting on the rollercoaster year that was 2023.
The most significant challenge Jessica faced in 2023 was the hesitance of buyers to capitalize on the market opportunities. Despite more favourable purchase prices and increased leverage, convincing clients to seize these opportunities proved more difficult than anticipated. Jessica noted that those who adopt long-term thinking and act boldly will likely see impressive returns.
Jessica was particularly struck by the market’s resilience in the face of multiple interest rate hikes. Despite these economic headwinds, the Toronto real estate market remained robust, showing appreciation in most asset classes. This resilience was a surprise, especially considering the context of significant global inflation.
Jessica predicts the Corso Italia-Earlscourt Park area will be the next hot-ticket neighbourhood for the coming year. This area offers great value with its excellent transit access, parks, and vibrant community life. Jessica anticipates that more people seeking high-quality living at reasonable prices will migrate to this area, further driving its gentrification and community spirit.
Jessica forecasts that 2024 will see a drop in interest rates, leading to increased buyer activity and confidence. This shift is expected to bring more inventory to the market, reigniting competition and bolstering home prices across all asset classes in Toronto. She advises buyers to act now, before this anticipated market surge.
For buyers, Jessica suggests acting swiftly to capitalize on current opportunities before the market shifts. On the other hand, sellers should prepare to pivot to take advantage of the changing market quickly. This preparation includes having their properties ready to list at short notice to capture the best-selling conditions.
Looking ahead to 2024, Jessica is eager to continue working with Fox Marin’s clientele, providing advice and education through what promises to be another year of significant market shifts. She looks forward to being a guiding force for both new and existing clients, helping them navigate the always-dynamic Toronto real estate landscape.
In conclusion, Jessica’s insights into the Toronto real estate market, reflecting on 2023 and looking ahead to 2024, offer a blend of practical advice and astute predictions. Her experience and perspective underscore the importance of understanding market trends, being prepared for rapid changes, and the value of collaboration and solid teamwork!
Our “Toronto Real Estate: A Year in Review and What’s Next in 2024” offers a comprehensive and insightful real estate market analysis from the unique perspectives of Fox Marin’s seasoned Brokers. The past year, 2023, presented challenges and surprises, highlighting the market’s resilience in the face of unpredictability and economic shifts. With their distinct backgrounds and experiences, each FM expert provided valuable insights into the evolving Toronto real estate landscape. As we look ahead to 2024, their predictions and advice paint a cautious but optimistic picture. The forecast includes emerging neighbourhoods poised for growth, anticipated market trends, and practical guidance for buyers, sellers, and new agents. This blend of expert analysis and forward-looking forecasts serves as a roadmap for navigating the ever-changing terrain, emphasizing the importance of adaptability, informed decision-making, and the crucial role of experienced real estate professionals in achieving success.
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Kori Marin is a Toronto Broker & Managing Partner at Fox Marin Associates. For high-energy real estate aficionado Kori Marin, a well-lived life is achieved by maintaining an “all-in” attitude that realizes every last ounce of one’s full potential. This mindset has driven successful results in every aspect of her life – from her corporate sales and account management experience to her international travels to her years of fitness training and leadership – and is the hallmark of the exceptional work that she does on behalf of her clients in the residential real estate sector in downtown Toronto.