Property virgins share their tales. This week, 29-year-old communications coordinator Simon Yau buys a bungalow off the Danforth.
Who: Simon Yau, a 29-year-old communications coordinator.
What he wanted: A house off Danforth Avenue with parking and a finished basement to rent out for supplementary income. Fixer-uppers were not in the running. His budget was $550,000.
Highlight: “I always felt a bit ridiculous checking MLS as obsessively as I did, but in my case, it actually ended up paying off,” says Yau. Just as he was about make his first offer, Yau decided to take one last look at new listings. A house very similar to the 1950s bungalow he was about to bid on had just been put on the market, but at a significantly lower price. He arranged a viewing for that same night, and liked the place much more than the house he was planning to try for.
Lowlight: Bidding against three other buyers was a daunting process for the first-timer: It was hard to focus on his own budget instead of wondering what others thought the house was worth. In an
awkward twist, Yau spent his time waiting to see how his offer was received by having dinner at the same restaurant as another bidder. “It was at Lick’s, and I totally judged the dude based on his homeburger toppings,” he says.
What he got: A small, detached, fully renovated bungalow for $545,000. Walking distance to both Pape and Donlands subway stations, the home has a basement apartment with a separate entrance and a single-car garage in the back. “It pretty much checked off all the points on my list,” says Yau.