The Chase: How this 20-something couple escaped to the suburbs

The Chase: How this 20-something couple escaped to the suburbs

“Our realtor urged us to separate emotion from economics”

Photo by Erin Leydon

The buyers: Noah Weisberg, 25, a strategy consultant for a transport logistics company, and Karin Lemelev, 25, a sales analyst at a packaged goods company

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The story: Noah and Karin moved in together in 2020, renting a one-bedroom condo at Yonge and Wellesley. Living downtown was a nice change from living in Vaughan, where they were both born and raised. But, when they were forced to work from home, their apartment felt too small. They decided they needed their own home offices. By the fall of 2022, they had saved enough for a down payment on a $1-million property, and they realized how much more house they could get if they left the core. So they set their sights on either a townhouse or a semi in Toronto’s northern suburbs.

Option 1: Samba Street, near Bathurst and King Road

Listed at: $899,900
Off the market

Toronto real estate

Noah and Karin started their search in Aurora, Newmarket and Richmond Hill. The first few places were rough: cracked windows, rickety kitchen cupboards and constricting layouts. In mid-October, they discovered this three-bedroom townhouse. The location was good, and they liked that it had a backyard, so they put in an offer of $1 million. The sellers had listed low to spark a bidding war but were unsatisfied with the offers and pulled the place off the market. “They wanted $1.4 million,” Karin says. “We were not ready to stretch our budget that far.”

Related: Under Asking: Three agents explain why they sold at a discount

Option 2: Ludwig Court, near Highway 48 and Main Street

Listed at: $838,000
Sold for: $1,023,000

In early November, Noah and Karin added Stouffville to their search area and instantly fell in love with this three-­storey, three-bed, three-bath townhouse. It was 2,000 square feet and open concept. Plus, they liked the city’s walkability and growing number of young families. And the home was listed well within their budget. They once again bid $1 million, but the owner chose a higher offer. They thought about going back with a counter-bid until their realtor urged them to separate emotion from economics. They agreed and moved on.

The buy: Langen Gate, near Highway 48 and Millard Street

Listed at: $889,000
Sold for: $1,000,000

Toronto real estate

About a week later, Noah and Karin found this two-storey, three-bed townhome with a finished basement and a backyard. They worried that the low list price would spark yet another bidding war, so they put in a bully bid of $1 million three days before the showing date. The sellers bit, and the couple moved into their new home in January. They’ve already converted two of the bedrooms into offices. Karin is happy they waited it out: “There was a time when people jumped at anything because the market was so hot, but we learned that it pays to be patient.”

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