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Thursday, November 27, 2008

Where Would You Choose To Live--Toronto Or Winnipeg?

By Dane Masters

This is a true story of a family that relocated from Toronto to winnipeg, some three years ago. Real estate was booming in Toronto. So people opting to sell their houses ensured a tidy sum for themselves! When our family decided to sell our town home, prices were sky high; we ended up with a reasonably good profit margin. More than that actually, since we were able to shell down hard cash for a wonderful four-bedroomed house in Winnipeg. The new house is large and exhibits character, plus demands no mortgage. Though parting from friends and family was difficult, the change was well worth it!

Coming to the house itself, the property seemed almost double in size with a sprawling house in the center! If one could speculate how much such a house would have fetched in the Toronto real estate market, probably $300,000. And if it was renovated and placed in a popular location, the sale would have been close to $500,000. We had to shell out just $65,000 for this house as it needed some repairs. But with the estate prices going up by 20% year after year, should we decide to sell it, our profits are going to multiply manifold! Yes, a few repairs had to be carried out; some are still pending. Our plans include installing a brand new hardwood flooring for the entire living area. Whatever it may be, these are just minor problems, considering the size of the house and how less we paid for it!

Toronto prices have shot up so much that people who want to buy a house have to shell out $250,000! Others have to forget about settling in a nice neighborhood or a place with good amenities, the condition of the place, etc. They can only live in town homes or condominiums. The house could be in any condition--the price would not change. The real estate listings of the city of Toronto therefore prove to be quite mind-boggling for someone who is not prepared for it!

Imagine the thrill of living in a place where commuting to and from office is peaceful. No gridlocks to battle through, no evidence of road rage. Anyone who wants to live here can afford a house since it is only $100,000. There are umpteen houses to choose from, in a variety of neighborhoods. If you wish to put up new windows and high efficiency furnaces along with your fixer-upper, Manitoba Hydro offers loans at low interest rates. So there is no need to worry. The town homes and condominiums up for sale demand a maintenance fee; but this is only a fraction of what one would have to pay in Toronto.

Winnipeg truly has something for everyone. Our housing prices blow Toronto real estate costs out of the water... and that's just the beginning.

We have now made Winnipeg our home, probably for good. Yes, we miss our friends and family, but we still find ways to keep in touch and see each other on a regular basis. Our family is much happier with our slower pace, the kids love having so much space to run around, and we feel like we've made a smart decision for the long run.

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