Location, location, location! Yes, it's true - location matters. The location of your property will often directly impact the amount of appreciation and the tenant profile. But how do you know which location is the best investment for you? In this Top 3 Winning Locations guide, we break that down for you and more!
A large part of any real estate investment decision comes down to the location. Which area will make you the most money? Are there certain pockets in Toronto that are worth considering more than others?
Investing in the right location also impacts the type of tenant you will have. Don’t get stuck with a bad tenant in a bad neighborhood! Here are my Top 3 Winning Locations in Toronto to consider for your next investment.
#1 Winning Location: Downtown Toronto
Location Defined: South of Bloor, West of Jarvis, East of Bathurst and North of Lake Ontario.
This first location should be fairly obvious and familiar to most people. There is so much happening in Downtown Toronto:
- Crazy access via multiple subway stations
- Tons of jobs with international companies headquarters downtown
- Scarcity of new land
- 2 university campuses, satellite university locations and a college
- Highway access via Gardiner
- Tons of amenities from parks
- Restaurants, and entertainment
It’s fairly obvious that Downtown Toronto has a lot going on and it’s no wonder that it tops this winning locations list. If affordability of Downtown Toronto is within your budget, then it is the most sure-fire investment in the long term.
Pro Tip: My favourite pocket of Downtown Toronto has always been the Entertainment District. This area is surrounded by a ton of amenities but the price is a tad lower than the neighbouring areas.
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#2 Winning Location: Midtown Toronto at Yonge & Eglinton
Location Defined: North of Chaplin and Davisville, East of Avenue, South of Blythwood and Glencairn and West of Mount Pleasant
Similar to Downtown, Midtown Toronto has become a highly dense and populated area with tons of demand. When the LRT is complete, transit access will go through the roof. There are actually a lot of office buildings in this area and the Yonge & Eglinton Centre is expanding as well.
Yonge & Eglinton has the upper hand on freehold properties, as compared to its Downtown counterpart which is lacking in inventory for this segment of the market. The detached homes in the Midtown location are also highly sought after. All of this means that investing in Midtown gives you many options, from condos to freehold properties, unlike Downtown which is largely centered around condos.
#3 Winning Location: North York at Yonge & Sheppard
Location Defined: North of the 401, West of Senlac, South of Empress Walk and West of Bayview
I’ve always been very fond of Yonge & Sheppard even before it became what it is now. You have easy access to the 401, more office buildings here than at Yonge & Eglinton, great schools, and some of the nicest houses in the Willowdale neighbourhood. The amenities are also well-developed and there is double subway access via Line 1 Yonge-University and Line 4 Sheppard.
You’ll notice that all of my Top 3 Winning Locations are situated between 2 subway access points and have tons of office buildings. Access to public transit and level of employment opportunities are 2 of the main factors that I always look for in up and coming neighbourhoods.
BONUS! If the 3 top winning locations are out of reach for your budget, then here are my Top 3 Value Neighbourhoods. These areas are up and coming or are already here, depending on your definition of “up and coming”.
#1 Value Neighbourhood: Corso Italia
Location Defined: The main artery runs through St Clair West, but I would suggest the following value pocket – South of Rogers, West of Oakwood, North of Davenport and east of Caledonia.
This location pocket above is a bit smaller and older but it is developing quite well. Transit-wise, it has the St. Clair West streetcar that runs in the middle of the street, similar to Spadina, for less traffic congestion. You’re also fairly close to St. Clair West Station and there is a budding retail scene along St. Clair West. Builders are slowly starting to intensify the intersection at St. Clair and Bathurst, at the time of writing.
One of the best selling features about Corso Italia is that you can still get a detached home in this area for less than $1,000,000 (which is getting increasingly rare in Toronto these days). When you can own a detached home in Toronto for under $1M, in an area with developed transit access and has increasing condo density, that’s a WIN in my opinion.
#2 Value Neighbourhood: The Junction
Location Defined: North of Annette, East of Runnymede, West of the UPE train tracks, South of St. Clair.
The Junction has been redeveloped with lots of amenities along Dundas St. West, has a good mix of property types from condos to freeholds and is just a short drive to High Park. Although the Junction is quite hard to access via car due its highly congested streets, one of the secrets of the Junction is its convenient UPE access which can get you downtown in just 15 minutes! As a result, this is where a lot of young professionals have moved to for space while maintaining a short commute time.
#3 Value Neighbourhood: Midtown at Don Mills
Location Defined: Small pockets just South of Lawrence – West of the DVP and East of Leslie (i.e., the area surrounding Shops at Don Mills); and South of Eglinton – West of DVP, East of Bayview and North of the DVP bend.
There are very developed communities near this neighbourhood such as Thorncliffe and Leadside, but there is a lot of growth happening in the areas just a bit further north. Some of the best features of this growing value neighbourhood include:
- Future Eglinton LRT will end at the Science Centre
- Easy DVP access just east of Don Mills
- Lots of corporate offices around Wynford Drive, including Home Depot, Bell and Mcdonald’s headquarters
- Tons of amenities at Shops at Don Mills and other large plazas with big retailers along Don Mills
With all factors considered, we will see some pretty significant density around Eglinton and Don Mills in the near future. Right now, you can still have some freehold properties in this area for less than $1,000,000!
The Wrap – So those are my Top 3 Winning Locations that will bring you sure-fire success as a real estate investor as far as location goes. The Top 3 Value Neighborhoods are great bets if your budget is a bit lower and/or you’re looking to invest in the up and coming areas. If you are looking to secure a great property in any of these locations, make sure you give me a call and we’ll set you up right!