Where the Top Buyers Shop

Did you know that international buyers are willing to pay more for a home (especially a second home) abroad, but the location has to be just right? It’s true! World cities like Toronto, London and even New York are considered prime, recession proof locations – plus the chance for appreciation is that much better.

“No Safe Place Like Home”

When it comes to buying luxury homes, buyers need to know that they have liquidity – buying desirable homes in the top locations means that if they need to sell they’ll be able to. Even 5 years ago at the height of the recession, desirable homes were able to sell. But it’s not just about hard investing, it’s also about homes being a status symbol.

What Are They Looking For?

It depends on the buyer, say experts. Russian buyers, for example, are looking to expand their portfolio outs of the country. They may already have a home in Moscow, a home in the country to retire to on those long, sunny days – but a second home just outside of Toronto could be a real status symbol.

The same goes for international buyers hailing from China. Many have exhausted their local options – with a domestic market that’s slowing every day, a currency that’s not only rising in value but rising in favour, a second home in Canada is a great status symbol. These buyers may be motivated by culture to pick addresses with lucky numbers (and adversely avoid those that contain unlucky ones!), but they’re still searching for a status symbol.

India and buyers hailing from the Middle East are also on the rise. With Canada’s growing profile, many professionals are attracted to the success and want to establish permanent homes here. Buyers streaming in from the US and Latin America, in much smaller numbers than the other groups, are the upwardly mobile. They’re searching for luxury properties in high interest areas, willing to pay top dollar for them.

Highly Motivated Buyers

A recent survey of international buyers showed that more than half tend to buy regionally, especially in their own countries. The other half, the half that’s motivated to go out of their country or region to buy a home, are the ones you’re most likely to encounter when buying or selling a home. They will drive home sale prices up for the right property, and since they’re usually in town just to buy they’ll go through the circuit to find the home that’s right for them.

If you’re buying or selling a home in the Greater Toronto Area (especially Oakville, one of the GTAs fastest growing communities), you’re going to have a lot of contact with international buyers. We can show you how to get them interested in your property, and we can show you how to get the property you want when it comes time to buy. Buying a luxury home is stressful enough – why make it harder than it has to be? Contact us today and see what we can do for you!

Would You Buy a Haunted House?

With Halloween recently behind us, some of us still have spooky stuff on our minds. Every area has a home that people believe to be haunted – but it’s no surprise that most buyers won’t consider buying a haunted home. A quarter of buyers would consider it for the novelty factor, but 74% of buyers would either be on the fence or flat out refuse: where do you fall? Are there any tricks in a realtor’s tool kit that helps them sell these homes? Let’s check it out!

Spooktacular Savings

Okay, that one was corny and we’re big enough to admit it – but if you were buying a “haunted” house, how much savings would you expect to see? According to those polled:

  • 12% would be willing to pay market price or MORE for the privilege of living in a spooky home.
  • 34% would expect a slight discount of 1%-30%
  • 22% would expect a large discount of 31% to 50%
  • 19% expected a humongous discount of 51%+

That’s a huge range of people. But what constitutes a “haunted house” anyway?

The Happening

So just about anything can constitute a haunting, but here’s a rundown of “too creepy” things that will deter homebuyers:

Levitating Objects: 75% Wouldn’t Buy Does your home have a history of things floating in the air? You’re going to have a hard time selling the home – but you could make a decent go of it with tours around Halloween!

Objects Moving Around: 63% Wouldn’t Buy We’ll chalk this one up more to forgetfulness than frightening spirits, but this is one of the top reasons people won’t buy – if only to avoid the pain of not being able to find their favorite coffee mug or car keys.

Ghost Sightings: 63% Wouldn’t Buy Yes, even if it’s just a rumor, 2/3rds of home buyers will avoid a home with ghost sightings.

Weird Noises: 60% Wouldn’t Buy Most of this can be chalked up to older homes settling… or homebuyers trying to get a nice little discount off a squeaky older home!

Selling a Haunted House

Let’s just say, as a thought experiment, that your home was perceived as haunted. What can you do to sell it?

Focus on the Interesting Architecture: Older homes usually have interesting features that you just don’t find in newer ones! Sure, there may be some strange noises as the home settles more and more into the foundation, but all of that natural charm can draw interest from a dozen directions!

Focus on Historical Significance: How long as your home stood the test of time? If these walls could talk, imagine the stories that they would tell. Keeping in mind that homes aren’t just four walls and a roof, that they’re representations of status and stages in life, you can turn it to your benefit.

While we don’t have any haunted homes to show you, we can help you sell or find the home you’ll love. Contact us today and see what the Goodale Miller Team can do for you.

What would you find “haunting”? Chime in below!

Fall into Fall: Ontario’s Top Romantic Destinations

Fall is finally here and with real estate season going into high gear, it’s time to start thinking about getting away! You don’t have to book a flight to Paris or NYC to have a great time away from home – all you have to do is choose your destination, grab your partner and go! Here we’re going to talk about some of the top romantic getaways that are just around the corner, so let’s get started!

Helpful Tip: You’re aiming for luxury, not pretention. You’re looking for the entire package. Your destination needs to have the best meals, beautiful guestrooms, spa services and maybe even some activities (or lack thereof – if that’s what you’re going for!) that you’re interested in.


Taboo on Lake Muskoka is a beautiful place for couples to be close to the water all year long, go skiing and spend time together. It boasts a 5,000 square foot spa, a restaurant with multi-course tasting menus and even a culinary theatre where you can watch the chefs at work! While this isn’t a pretentious resort, you will have to dress up for dinner.

Langdon Hall

Here you’ll find the star treatment and the signature Old World beauty of Langdon Hall. Winner of numerous awards online and in prestigious publications, here you’ll be able to indulge yourself without the guilt! With King sized featherbeds, 1600 bottles of wine to choose from, haute cuisine that runs the gamut, free wine tastings on Saturday afternoons and even cooking demos on Sundays – there’s so many reasons to stay the whole weekend through.

Millcroft Inn

One of the best vintage boutique hotels hands down, the Millcroft Inn offers a beautiful rustic experience year round. Best visited in the fall and winter, you’ll have your choice of distractions. Choose romantic, antiqued quarters or rustic chalets – but almost every room has wood burning fireplaces and some come equipped with their very own private, outdoor hot tubs. With a 9,000 square foot spa, executive chef, and a stunning 180° three quarter view of Shaw’s Creek Falls at the fantastic Headwaters Restaurant.

This is the perfect time of year to relax and reconnect with your partner – just make sure that the destination that you choose is the one that’s right for you! While some may relish an environment that shuns TV and mobile phones, it may not be the best for those of us who are workaholics and vice versa. Always do your research, explore your options and know what you’re getting into.

While we can’t help you book the perfect hotel, we can make the hunt for the right home that much easier. Want to make the buying or selling process for your luxury home that much easier? Give us a call today and experience the difference that the Goodale Miller Team can make.