The Leaside real estate market has been very active thus far in 2012 with 74 homes having sold, already this year. The breakdown on these sales includes 50 detached houses, 16 semi-detached houses, 5 bungalows, 2 townhomes and 1 multi-plex apartment building. In addition to the aforementioned totals; there have also been a combined total of 14 condominium apartment and townhome sales. The brisk real estate activity in Leaside does not surprise Richard Byford, Broker, Vice-President at Bonnie Byford Real Estate Ltd.,Brokerage who has been selling real estate in Leaside since 1977. Byford is quick to offer the following insight as to why so many homebuyers choose this neighbourhood: "Leaside is the epitome of village life right in the centre of Toronto."
South Leaside (south of Eglinton Avenue) was developed largely in the 1920s and 30s with North Leaside largely developed post 2nd World War. Byford provides the following real estate history of Leaside: "Starting in the early 1980’s, a limited number of bungalows became the target of young families as they added a 2nd floor to accommodate their expanding families. The last 10 years have seen an explosion of building activity as those bungalows, and more and more of the 2 storey homes have attracted builders and developers. In the last year we have seen bungalows selling up to $1M and detached 2 storey homes up to $1.4M for land value alone! Three bedroom, two storey semi-detached homes are selling consistently in the $700+ range; 2 bedroom, 2 storey semi-detached homes in the $600K range and detached, 2 storey homes from $800K - $2M+."
If you are planning on looking for a home in Leaside you can expect competition with multiple bids on many new listings producing a lofty 106% average list to sale price ratio. And you better be prepared to act quickly as the average Leaside home takes just 8 days to sell. So what are the selling features that make this neighbourhood so desirable ? Byford offers the following explanation: "People are attracted to Leaside for many reasons. Its location within the City is of prime importance. The financial district at King & Bay is just 15 minutes by car, utilizing the Bayview Extension; or about 30 minutes using the TTC. With the Leaside 88 bus winding its way through South Leaside, the Bayview 11 bus servicing Bayview Avenue and the constant flow of buses that run along Eglinton Avenue, public transit is always close by."
While Leaside certainly has location going for it Byford also points out the following neighbourhood attractions: "The Rolph Road, Bessborough and Northlea public schools, St. Anselm’s Catholic School and Leaside High School consistently rank in the upper echelon of schools in the GTA. Northlea offers a French Immersion program." Outstanding parks and recreational facilities found throughout the neighbourhood are also big pluses. In particular Byford points out: "At the corner of Millwood and Southvale you will find the very popular recreation complex comprising the Leaside swimming pool, curling club and hockey rink. A second rink has been approved and construction should be starting soon. The north east boundary of the neighbourhood is Serena Gundy/Sunnybrook Park. This is a very special place that is a favourite of joggers, dog-walkers, nature lovers and anyone looking to escape city life. Once in the park you can explore the walking trails, sports fields, off-leash dog park and there is even a horseback riding school."
Leaside has also emerged as a shopping destination with boutique shops and restaurants lining Bayview Avenue and an excellent selection of big-box shops recently added along Laird Drive. Sunnybrook Plaza located on the north-east corner of Bayview and Eglinton Avenue is another Leaside shopping destination. With all the shopping and recreation options available it is no wonder condominium developers have targeted this neighbourhood in recent years with low and mid-rise boutique buildings rising along Leaside's main arterial streets. The 1 bedroom units range in price from $250,000-$300,000 while the 2 or 3 bedroom units are selling for between $350,000-$550,000. Byford explains: "These buildings appeal to the first time buyers inching their way into Leaside, and the empty nesters who are ready to leave the family home but not ready to leave the family neighbourhood."
Byford has witnessed first hand Leaside's emergence as a preeminent Toronto neighbourhood. "We have been fortunate to have lived in Leaside for about 40 years and operated our business, Bonnie Byford Real Estate Ltd. since 1977. It has been an absolute joy to help many generations within the same families – from the parents in our early years and now their children as they start families of their own. Leaside never seems to lose its attraction. Family homes in the area are always in high demand!" Leaside certainly has all the hallmarks of an excellent neighbourhood, so the strong sales in 2012 really should not be a surprise to anyone. You can be sure Leaside will be one of the neighbourhoods leading the charge as Toronto continues to emerge as a world class city with world class neighbourhoods.
* Leaside neighbourhood insights provided by Richard Byford, Broker and Vice-President, Bonnie Byford Real Estate Ltd., Brokerage. Richard Byford can be reached at 416-483-4444
(24 Hour Pager) or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org The website is http://www.bonniebyford.com
** The information provided herein is compiled from source data obtained from the Toronto Real Estate Board. It is presented here for information purpose only. All data are subject to updates and revisions. The author assumes no responsibility for the accuracy of any information shown.