The website Walk Score grades neighbourhoods on how much of the daily grind—commuting, grocery shopping, latte sipping—can be done without a car. These four homes each get at least an A-.
MIMICO: 28 Daisy Ave. (pictured above)
The price: $464,900
Last sold price: $300,000 (2010).
The draw: Access to parks, the lake, Humber College, and the Queen streetcar earn this three-bedroom house an 82 Walk Score. The super-cute bathroom has a skylight and a clawfoot tub worthy of its 1850 build date. Big side and front yards.
The catch: The master bedroom is about 112 square feet, with low ceilings and a tiny closet; storage space is an issue throughout, including in the kitchen. Hot water radiators look charming, but won’t keep the place as warm as a furnace.
DAVISVILLE VILLAGE: 413 Hillsdale Ave. E.
The price: $529,000
Last sold price: N/A.
The draw: A stellar location, sandwiched between Bayview and Mount Pleasant, with access to shops, schools, and the subway, give this two-bedroom semi a fantastic 97 Walk Score. The lot is a long 144 feet.
The catch: “You’re going to have to gut it down to the walls and start again,” says agent Linda Wallace. Owned by the same couple for 34 years, the home needs new wiring, heating, and plumbing, just to start. The neighbourhood justifies the investment—Wallace sold the house next door, too, for $1 million.
SOUTH RIVERDALE: 60 Allen Ave.
The price: $449,900 (Sold for $462,000)
Last sold price: N/A.
The draw: The big master bedroom in this newly renovated, three-bedroom semi has crown molding and a private balcony. Proximity to Riverdale Park, Gerrard Street’s Chinatown, the bars of Riverside, and streetcar give it a Walk Score of 85.
The catch: The backyard is cute but small, since the lot is just 75-feet long. The third bedroom is just 90 square feet, with no closet. The closest bit of Broadview is still pretty dreary—not much hipster action just yet.
ANNEX: 212 St. George St., Unit 105.
The price: $348,000 (maintenance fees $572)
Last sold price: $250,000 (2006).
The draw: This 800-square-foot unit is in a 1907 mansion not five minutes from U of T, the subway, and sushi: The 93 Walk Score is no surprise. It has a private 400-square-foot patio, laminate floors, and stainless-steel kitchen appliances.
The catch: The condo conversion really just preserved the façade—the interior is more 1988 than Queen Victoria, with low popcorn ceilings, a beige-on-beige washroom, and hideous light fixtures that must be changed immediately.