Location, location, location! Choosing where to live is one of the most important decisions when buying a home. From club districts to beautiful hiking trails, Toronto and the GTA has an array of eclectic neighbourhoods. With more than 140 in Toronto alone, it can be difficult to decide which area to call home. Whether you are a City Slicker or a Suburban Dweller, below are 5 key factors you should take into consideration before you begin looking for a new condo in Toronto and the Greater Toronto Area.
1) Neighbourhood Life Cycle
Growth, maturity, decline and renewal, these are the four phases of a neighbourhood’s life. During a neighbourhood’s growth it becomes well established and in turn increases the public’s demand for the area. There are exciting new possibilities like malls, schools and restaurants. Web based search tools, like this one from condonow.com allow you to easily find new and upcoming developments all over the GTA.
2) Transportation Options
Public Transportation & Walking: Public transit plays a large role in the decision making process, especially for people who don’t drive or have a car. Keep in mind that public transit tends to be more frequent in cities than suburbs. You should pay attention to bus timetables as well as the distance to work and other amenities.
You can search CondoNow based on a condos Walk Score & Transit Score!
Want to accomplish your daily needs while getting in all your steps for the day? All these GTA Condos have a Walk Score of 90/100 to 100/100: Condos with a Walker’s Paradise Score
Sit back, read a book, and ride public transit basically everywhere. This is a list of GTA Condos that easily connect you to the whole city with a Transit Score of 90/100 to 100/100: Condos with a Rider’s Paradise Score
The CondoNow map search also outlines the major transit lines so you can see exactly where your future home will be.
Highways: Accessibility to major highways can be a huge bonus. Whether you are going to work or traveling for the holidays, being close to a major highway will shed minutes off your travel time and possibly increase the value of your home. However, highways can be tricky business; if you get TOO close, the value decreases and you might be dreaming about cars all night.
3) Amenities & Stores Nearby
A great way to decide if you like the area is by taking a visit! Take a walk or drive around the neighbourhood and take notes as to what’s around. Ask yourself, is there a grocery store around here? Where is the nearest hospital? Is there a grocery store or movie theatre? Do I want to spend more than 30 minutes driving or walking to these places? An awesome bonus to CondoNow is that in every project page, there’s a neighbourhoud tab that shows you a map and tells you all the amenities that are around. Here is an example of how you can see the neighbourhood amenities for Theory Condos
Buying a home is a huge investment and no one ever wants to make the wrong decision. If you are in your twenties and love to party, a neighbourhood where the majority of people are retired might not be your scene. If you are thinking about starting a family, you may want other young families around so your children will have friends to play with. Neighbours can become your lifelong friends and you certainly don’t want them to turn into your enemies! Some other factors to consider are religion and average income.
5) School Rankings
If you are a young couple looking to settle down or are a family who is expecting/have kids, schools can be a deal breaker. The location of the school is important, as you may want your child/children to be able to walk to and from school. Your children’s learning experience is very important to you so having a good education and foundation is crucial. To check out school rankings, you can go to www.compareschoolrankings.org to compare different schools around the area. You may also want to research the types of schools that are available, such as religious, private, public, and French immersion.
There is no simple answer on how to find the perfect neighbourhood.
Sometimes it’s hard to check off all your boxes yourself and understand exactly what you need. Working with a realtor can often make your search easier! That’s why CondoNow has provided a list of qualified and experienced real estate agents that can listen to you and help guide your condo search. But as always in Real Estate, every home and neighbourhood has its own distinctive features. By evaluating different factors and exploring necessities, you can make a comprehensive decision on which neighbourhood is the right fit for you.
Keep in mind with pre-construction condos and townhomes it usually means that new amenities are coming soon to the area like shopping plazas and grocery stores. There may be new transit options like LRT lines planned for the future that will increase your Transit Score or it could be the whole neighbourhood is going through a redevelopment which leads to huge changes for the future. The more you research and know before hand, the better your decisions and the happier you’ll be in your new home.
Happy Condo Hunting.