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The Globe and Mail

Fear of bidding war in Leslieville kept buyers at bay

Done Deal, 36 Larchmount Ave., Toronto

36 LARCHMOUNT AVE., TORONTO

ASKING PRICE $549,000

SELLING PRICE $565,000

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PREVIOUS SELLING PRICE $290,500 (2006)

TAXES $2,800 (2010)

DAYS ON THE MARKET seven

LISTING AGENTS Brennan Aguanno and Anna Kemp, Sotheby's International Realty Canada

THE ACTION: Last year, agent Brennan Aguanno sold a semi-detached house on Larchmount Avenue for $632,000 – $107,000 more than the asking price – in a bidding war between 14 buyers.

When Mr. Aguanno listed this property – which is nearly identical except it only has one bathroom and laneway parking – over 100 buyers arrived for showings and open houses, but many feared the same level of competition. So only one buyer made a bid on the date offers were reviewed, while others waited in the wings in case that deal fell through.

WHAT THEY GOT: This century-old house is set on a 16- by 100-foot lot on a family-oriented street, just steps from parks, shops and galleries.

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After four years of extensive renovations, the three-bedroom house now offers pot lit entertaining areas on the main and lower levels, from a combined living and dining area with hardwood floors to media and play rooms with bamboo flooring.

The kitchen was designed with stainless steel appliances, an island and a rear mudroom with a walkout to the private patio and landscaped garden.

To increase indoor comfort and cleanliness, there is built-in storage, a water purification system and a new steam washer and dryer, as well as updated windows, furnace, plumbing and wiring systems.

THE AGENT'S TAKE: "We had a similar amount of interest and showings to what we had last fall with 72 Larchmount, but there was an obvious difference in the number of people willing to get involved in a bidding war," says Mr. Aguanno.

However, this property still fetched a premium. "Leslieville is very hot still," says Mr. Aguanno, whose wife, Anna Kemp, staged all areas of the property to enhance the recent makeover. "When a house looks like a model home, the market reacts better to it."

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