By Brian Brown
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a lot of discussion surrounding moving outside of city centres. With offices shifting to a work-from-home or more flexible structure, individuals have been choosing to avoid the downtown premiums, and consider homebuying options elsewhere. And while this certainly can be appealing to a specific purchaser, as the Principal of Lifetime Developments, with more than 15 years of real estate experience who has witnessed and experienced ebbs and flows in the market, I firmly believe that you can’t do any better than investing in the core of Toronto.
What we’re dealing with in the market is a short-term unprecedented issue. We have seen a number of successful launches recently for developments outside of the downtown core. These are fantastic options… for a very specific purchaser, and as we’re seeing, typically an end-user. When it comes to meaningful and lucrative investing, we need to recognize that this pandemic is a short-term inconvenience (and a significant one), however, it is just that – short term. While rental rates and renter interest have slowed down during COVID-19, we fully expect a bounce back as soon as a vaccine is introduced to the general population.
This is not to say that COVID-19 won’t affect how we design and develop moving forward. At Lifetime, we’ve always been design-focused, both for the architecture and the interiors, and we are taking new ways of living into consideration to appeal to our target buyers. While we’re not overly focused on space distancing, we are considering how our lobbies are set up to handle/accept online orders, and how we can update our amenities to cater to individuals who are working from home and require office space outside of their unit, for example.
The reality is, despite all of the challenges we’ve faced over the past six months, demand still outpaces supply in Toronto. Our borders may be closed to immigration, but we fully expect the issue of under-supply will remain going forward. Toronto is an amazing city and offers so much to many different people from all different cultures and communities.
Attractive and viable
We’ve challenged our brokers and marketing teams to communicate that right now we need to sell through the value of Toronto. It’s not just about selling a unit with incredible features. As city builders, we are selling vibrant, multicultural neighbourhoods that feature world-renowned restaurants and chefs, an unparalleled entertainment scene, top-tiered sporting teams, and a strong economy and banking sector. Toronto will always be an attractive place to live and a viable investment.
With two new launches in 2021, Lifetime Developments believes in and is committed to the growth of our city. Lifeline, our charitable foundation with the mission to actively support and enhance the communities in which we build, is busier than ever, and has proudly raised more than $2 million to support some of the most vulnerable and at-risk communities in the GTA. At Lifetime, we are betting on Toronto, and think you should too.
Brian Brown is Principal of Lifetime Developments.