Recently in Kingston Real Estate Category

The Elevator Bay waterfront site that was once touted for a massive $160 million condominium and marina project is in danger of being sold by the city for unpaid property taxes.

Elevator Bay Development Inc. accumulated $803,000 in tax arrears over the past five years for its undeveloped pier at 1102-1110 King Street West, according to city officials.

However, councillors are willing to give the owner one more chance to pay up. They've agreed to hold off on a tax sale of the property until May 30, 2013.

EMC Kingston Article here:

Despite many on the nay-sayers that seem to abound in Kingston, I believe this is a very good project, and most likely would succeed. I know that site well as I fished/mischiefed  at the Grain Elevator as a kid, and I was involved in the sale of the Townhouses by a previous developer (or lack thereof, it was tough times for Real Estate) in early 1990-1991.

Forrest Group Web Site is here:

PRESS RELEASE from The Kingston and Area Real Estate Association September 10, 2012

The summer months are usually a slow time for housing sales, and August was no exception with Single Family Residential Home sales totalling 234, a 24.5% drop from July, and 4.5% lower than August 2011 when 245 units were sold. Year-to-Date results continue to be strong. Sales for January to August this year total 2352 which represents a 7.3% increase over the same period in 2011. The average price of homes sold in the month of August was $272,727, while the 12 Month average price increased over the previous 12 month period by 2.7%, from $269,222 to $276,510.

As of August 31, 2012, there were 2,457 Active Listings in the Kingston area, of which 1,560 were Residential properties. Total Active Listings are up 2.7% from 2,392 this time last year.

The full Press Release is here ( PDF Download):

PRESS RELEASE from The Kingston and Area Real Estate Association August 9, 2012

Single Family Residential Home sales rebounded in July from the unexpected slower than usual June. Compared to July 2011 when 253 homes exchanged hands, sales of 307 units this July was up by 21.3% but down only slightly from June by 4.7%. Year-to-Date July, unit sales remain higher than the same period in the previous year by 8.6%. The average price of homes sold in the month of June was $282,503, basically at par with July 2011, while the 12 Month average price held at $275,215, an increase of 2.1% over the previous 12 Month period.

As of July 31, 2012, there were 2,538 Active Listings in the Kingston area, of which 1,630 were Residential properties. Total Active Listings are up 3.9% from 2,442 this time last year.

The full Press Release is here ( PDF Download):
July 24, 2012 - The average sale price for residential properties in Kingston and the
Municipal Property Assessment Corporation
surrounding area has risen by 16 per cent between January 1, 2008 and January 1, 2012, according to the first report on residential sale price trends published by the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC).

The average sale price for residential properties in Ontario has risen by 17 per cent during the same time.

NOTE: The blogging of this article should in NO WAY indicate that I agree with anything or anyone at MPAC. I personally think their assessments are inaccurate, and they are incompetent. But that's a blog post for another day. I suggest you Google fight MPAC Assessment and see what comes up.

The full report is here:

The previous wordmark of the Government of Ont...

It has been eleven years since Ontario's Condominium Act, 1998 came into force. In that time, the condominium market has changed dramatically in both size and complexity. The Ontario government recognizes that a comprehensive review is necessary to modernize the Act so it reflects the current and future needs of owners, residents and other stakeholders in the condominium community.

On June 8, 2012, the government announced that the Ministry of Consumer Services will launch a review of the Act through a public consultation to identify a comprehensive set of issues and long-term solutions.

The consultation involves working in a new way, through an innovative public engagement approach, with people from the condominium community.

The goals of the review are to:

  • engage and work directly with all condominium stakeholders, including condominium owners and residents
  • build on findings and advice from a broad range of individuals and organizations that have been studying the issues in the condominium sector
  • find long-term solutions that will work for everyone in the years to come
More information can be found here:

Single Family Residential Home sales cooled in the month of June from May (down 26.9%) and down 21.8% from June 2011. However, looking June Year-to-Date, unit sales are still higher than the same period in the previous year by 6.3%. Sales in the Month of June was 315 units, down from 431 in May, and down from 403 in June 2011.

The average price of homes sold in the month of June was $275,810, up 1.4% from June 2011, while the 12 Month average price kept steady at $275,216, an increase of 2.8% over the previous 12 Month period.

As of June 30, 2012, there were 2,522 Active Listings in the Kingston area, of which 1,670 were Residential properties. Total Active Listings are up 1.4% from 2,488 this time last year.

The full Press Release is here ( PDF Download):

This article has come very good advice concerning "Non-Resident" sellers of property in Canada and the tax implications that could delay or void a sale. The article is referring to offshore condo investors, which is not so much a large issue here in Kingston. We do run into this in the Recreation/Cottage property market, and mostly with our American friends.

Kingston-Frontenac Renovates program offers grants and loans for projects

KINGSTON, ONT. /July 3, 2012 - The Kingston-Frontenac Renovates program is offering eligible homeowners grants of up to $3500 to make their homes more accessible or interest-free loans of up to $10,000 toward emergency repairs.

"This assistance will help home-owners afford to keep their homes accessible, safe, healthy and comfortable," says Lanie Hurdle, Commissioner of Community Services.

The funds, being offered through the Consolidated Municipal Service Manager (CMSM) serving the City of Kingston and the County of Frontenac, are being made available to homeowners who:

1. Require accessibility upgrades, such as a ramps or lifts. These applicants may be eligible for a grant of up to $3500.

2. Have homes that are at least ten years old and require emergency repairs that fall into one of the following categories. These applicants may be eligible for interest free forgivable loans up to $10,000:
- Health & Safety renovations to ensure fire safety, get rid of mold, improve water quality, etc
- Accessibility renovations to install a lift or ramp, or make a structural change (these projects may also be eligible for grant).
- Structural repairs to ensure the integrity of a home's roof, foundation or other supports.
- Energy efficiency installations to ensure the cost-effective comfort of a home. This would include furnace, insulation or window replacement.

Eligible applicants include persons with disabilities, seniors and family households with incomes ranging from $26,500 or less (for a one-person household) to $61,500 for households with five or more people. Funding will be allocated on a priority basis to ensure that households with the greatest need of assistance are served first. Some households of more than five people with incomes of $61,500 to $73,500 may be considered if sufficient funding is available.

Eligibility requirements and download an application online at: 

CMHC logo
Spring 2012

  • Kingston's existing home sales will moderate in the next two years to levels that are considered more sustainable and in line with historical norms
  • Kingston's existing home average price to increase by 3.4 per cent in 2012 and 2.0 per cent in 2013. This growth rate is less than the average seen in prerecession years, as the number of new-listings outpaces the number of sales. 
  • At 715 units in 2012 and 670 units in 2013, Kingston's total housing starts are expected to fall gradually to a level consistent with changes in household formation. Rising mortgage carrying costs and reduced spill-over demand from the existing home market will dampen residential construction activity 

The full report is available on-line here (pdf):

scary tale of an oil leak in an Ottawa-area home provides a valuable lesson for homeowners whose homes are heated by oil."

Yes, Oil tanks are becoming a problem in the sale of Real Estate. Underground oil tanks are out and out impossible. Walk away.

Aboveground Oil tanks are the norm, and simply put, Insurance companies do not like them. If you read the article you will see why. The problem I have, is that most home owners with oil tanks are not aware of the "new regulations".

Here is the section that applies:

It is a legislative requirement prescribed by Ontario Regulation 213/01, "Fuel Oil". Section 7 of the Regulation states:

Section 7 of the Regulation
"7. (1) No distributor shall supply fuel oil to a container or tank system that is connected to an appliance or work unless the distributor is satisfied that the installation and use of the appliance or work comply with this Regulation and,
    (a) Unless the distributor has inspected the appliance or work at least once within the previous 10 years".
"7. (2) A distributor shall prepare a report on each inspection made under subsection (1) and shall retain the report until the next inspection and report are completed".

"7. (3) An inspection shall be carried out by a person who is the holder of a certificate for that purpose".

Additional Information:
  • This is a mandatory inspection and therefore you must not refuse the inspection service being arranged by a fuel oil distributor.
  • Inspection service refusal will prevent fuel oil delivery.
  • A person who is the holder of a certificate for that purpose shall carry out the inspection. I.e. An oil burner technician (OBT).
  • The certified oil burner technician (OBT) may not necessarily work for the fuel oil distributor but may be an agent or sub-contractor of the Fuel Oil distributor.
  • You may contact a fuel oil distributor who is different from the one you currently deal with if you are not satisfied with the service being provided.
  • Each distributor is responsible for the inspection performed on their client's heating systems. When you switch to a new distributor you may be required to undergo a new inspection. If you change distributors and the new distributor agrees with the previous inspection report, a new inspection may not be necessary. Check with the new distributor to see if they would accept the previous inspection report.
  • Both TSSA and fuel oil industry representatives have developed specific checklists that outline minimum inspection requirements.
  • There are also inspection requirements for propane systems and natural gas systems.
  • See also Comprehensive inspections - Cost considerations and Comprehensive inspections - Disagreeing with results.

Imagine the home owners surprise when they sell their home with an Oil Tank, for which they have been receiving oil, and the Buyer/Home Inspector/Realtor informs them that their tank "might not" be up to code and we need a TSSA certificate. Imagine their further surprise when they find out the tank and lines do not pass, and they need to be replaced at a cost of approx $1,000. They are now upset with the Buyer/Home Inspector/Realtor, for something that this legislation clearly says is the  fuel oil distributors responsibility.

Didn't we see the TSSA's name mentioned in the Propane explosion in Toronto? Are they maybe passing more laws than they are capable of enforcing?

Here is a link to Bob Aaron's article in the Star. The hole in the tank was the size of the tip of a pen...


The Kingston Real Estate blog is published by Richard Potter of Re/Max Realty Concepts. Richard is a licensed real estate associate in the province of Ontario.

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