The Chase: a first-time buyer and two would-be landlords team up to find an income property

The Chase: a first-time buyer and two would-be landlords team up to find an income property

(Image: Homeowners by Erin Leydon)

The buyers: Michelle Iceruk, a 28-year-old graphic designer, her sister, Leanne Iceruk, a 31-year-old social worker, and Leanne’s husband, Richard Laszlo, a 34-year-old energy analyst.

The story: Michelle and Leanne’s parents are ­custom-home builders who schooled their daughters on the merits of owning property. But, at almost 30, Michelle was struggling to save enough for a down payment. She turned to Leanne and her husband, Richard, who were already owners and were thinking of buying a second property as an investment. The trio pooled their resources and set a maximum budget of $700,000, including the cost of renovating a house into multiple suites. Then they set their sights on the Bloor and Lansdowne area and started the hunt.

Lappin Avenue (near Lansdowne and Dupont).
Option 1

Lappin Avenue (near Lansdowne and Dupont).
Listed at $429,900, sold for $495,110.

Michelle, Leanne and Richard all liked this semi because the main floor and top level could easily be turned into one-bedroom units. Then they got to the basement: low ceilings made it unusable without excavating—a costly and time-consuming undertaking.

The Chase: Dupont Street (at Bathurst)
Option 2

Dupont Street (at Bathurst).
Listed at $599,900, sold for $578,000.

This semi was already split into a basement suite, a ground-floor space leased by a massage clinic and a top-floor loft that Michelle loved. Unfortunately, the owners had restructured the roof to create the space and one wall seemed to be slowly buckling. They moved on.

 

The Chase: Campbell Avenue (near Lansdowne and Dupont)
The Buy

Campbell Avenue (near Lansdowne and Dupont).
Listed at $569,900, sold for $626,000.

After touring nearly a dozen more duds, the trio found a house that was ideal for a triplex. The upper-level apartment, where Michelle would live, even had an attic with a roughed-in kitchen. The clincher: the basement had seven- and eight-foot ceilings. They offered $46,100 over asking—and still lost to one of three other bidders. When the winning buyer backed out, they upped their offer by another 10 grand to scare off any remaining suitors and got the house. The renovation should be done in time for Michelle to move in next month.