Real Estate: The Value Buyers
September 1, 2009
Jonathan and Katie Snoek were seeking to buy their first home and take possession after their August wedding. These long-time renters were okay with renos and updating if the price was right. “Good value” was the main criterion. Two-bedroom condos or townhouses, ideally in Kits, possibly in Fairview. Or one-bedroom units below their price range.
Price range: $450,000 to $500,000
Properties considered: 40
Weeks spent looking: 8
The agent: Keith Roy, Macdonald Realty
Option 1: 684 W. Sixth Ave., $489,000
The neighbourhood and the asking price were favourable, but the patio felt cramped and traffic noise was a problem. Says Jonathan: “It was almost tiring to sit in the living room.”
Option 2: 204-3727 W. 10th Ave., $439,800
The brand-new condo had a townhouse feel, with its own front door and high ceilings. They offered $444,000. A bidding war with eight other parties ensued. They were given a chance to make another offer and passed. The place sold for $502,000; the Snoeks were relieved. “Whoever won that war is now paying a mortgage on a place that is maybe not worth it.”
The Buy: 2427 W. Sixth Ave., $515,000
Jonathan found this townhouse in a converted heritage structure on Realtor.ca. It was bright, spacious (over 950 square feet), had a wood-burning fireplace, and was in the area they loved. Both felt it was a sound investment. After two viewings, they offered $508,000; the sellers countered at $523,000. Three rounds later, they settled at $515,000.