When Barbara Lawlor first joined Baker Real Estate, a Toronto firm that markets and sells new condo developments, over two decades ago, selling a condo unit without an accompanying parking spot was a Herculean feat.
Today, only about a quarter of Baker’s clients are looking to buy parking spots.
“It’s an enormous shift in the buyer’s attitude,” says Lawlor, who is now Baker’s president. “People don’t want parking as much as they used to.”
Parking spots are falling out of favour with many condo buyers, thanks to the proliferation of car-sharing services and a greater emphasis on transit and walkability by city dwellers.
“If you’re on a really good transit route, you would certainly think twice about whether you need to buy a parking space,” Lawlor says, noting that a parking spot in a downtown Toronto development can cost around $50,000.
Louie Santaguida, president and chief executive of Stanton Renaissance, had planned to build up to four levels of underground parking at his On The GO Mimico project, a condo development under construction in the west part of Toronto.
However, Santaguida says most buyers snatching up the units pre-construction aren’t keen to shell out for parking, given that one of the building’s selling points is that it’s situated right next to a GO Train station that can transport residents downtown in minutes.
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