Grammy Winner Pharrell Williams gets into Toronto real estate big-time with new project

Toronto’s real estate market is a hugely attractive proposition for home buyers at present, particularly for the widespread economic growth that the city has witnessed and the steady influx of migrants for professional purposes. With rising employment levels and demand for housing, there has been a condo boom in Toronto. In spite of overall market fluctuations earlier, demand continues to be extremely strong for condominiums throughout the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). The city has become a major hub for technology companies and this has also spurred widespread growth through mixed-use and premium commercial developments. Sales figures and prices have both been increasing steadily in Toronto over the years and this has drawn several investors to its property market.

The latest big investor in Toronto is music icon Pharrell Williams. The well-known entrepreneur, mega-producer and youth icon, has joined hands with two real estate developers for Toronto for a new venture which is slated for an opening next year.

More about Pharrell Williams’ new project in Toronto

Williams is a Grammy Award winner and has collaborated with Westdale and Reserve Properties, two of Toronto’s leading real estate developers, for conceiving a residential project slated for a launch in early 2020. The project will be encompassing a couple of residential towers along with a joint podium and there will be 750 units in all. The total amenities will cover 30,000 sq. ft. approximately as per reports.

The whole concept is based on building a residential lifestyle and environment which highlights universalities of every space. The Chief Operating Officer at Reserve Properties, Shane Fenton, has opined that the philosophy and idea behind the entire procedure focuses on getting to the core design components instead of unnecessary addition and subtraction. He has opined that buyers will receive spaces in harmony with their surroundings and lives instead of having to adhere to an imposed lifestyle.

Williams has offered his inputs on the vision for the project, the materials used for the structures, the layout for the interiors and also choices in terms of furnishings. The Happy artiste has already emphasized on how he has a great team to collaborate with for their openness and their desire to be pushed towards solving uncomfortable problems and issues he classified as on the other side. Williams has previously confirmed the project by sharing a video on his Instagram account and this was broadcast simultaneously at the Yonge-Dundas Square in Toronto on large screens. He was seen standing in front of a white background, talking about living with freedom from the limitations of a name/title. Williams talked of how living one’s life untitled means not having to live up to something or perform beyond a standard. He also added that For the standard to literally be just this beautiful matrix that allows people to create their own world.  He also asked how designers could ensure that the basics are emphasized upon and superbly provided while being delivered in a manner that leaves a lot to the imagination of the occupants of any space.

Why Toronto is an attractive canvas for Williams

Toronto’s real estate industry has been thriving for quite some time now and Pharrell Williams is not the only brand interested in its future prospects. Several leading developers and investors have been eyeing prime property ventures in the city over the last few months. The booming market has already drawn Williams, an iconic music industry producer, singer and fashion entrepreneur and his dual-tower condo project will be an ambitious bet on a market that is gathering steam at the moment.

Williams has talked about his evolution into designing a real estate project from fashion and footwear to even music and collaborations with visual artistes. He talked of how he is venturing into a whole new world, particularly at a commercial level. The housing market in Toronto has been witnessing steady growth over the last few months after buyers adjusted to several regulations and the impact of taxes over the last 2-3 years. Benchmark pricing of homes increased by 5.8% in October 2019 for Toronto to touch C$810,900 or approximately $616,325. This is closer to the record level accomplished in the year 2017 and lower by just C$4,300 as per reports.

The two towers at this project will be linked at the intersection point of Broadway Avenue and Redpath Avenue in midtown. This area is called Eglinton and Yonge and has witnessed swift development for quite some time now. RioCan REIT has pumped in high investments for this neighborhood, coming up with big-ticket projects fusing office spaces, condo units, retail spaces and rental units alike.

Luxury real estate continues growing steadily in Toronto

What will probably infuse more wind in the sails for Williams is the strong performance of the luxury real estate segment in Toronto and other parts of the GTA (Greater Toronto Area). Between January and 31st October, 2019, year-to-date sales volumes for condos and freehold properties priced over the $5 million threshold, touched 100 units. This indicates 8.5% of growth as compared to 94 units in sales volumes in the same period last year as per studies.

Average prices of freehold property have touched $6,517,143 in this segment which is still slightly lower than levels touched last year. 2019 has witnessed greater value creation in the real estate market in Toronto as per experts. Home buyers are more active across almost all the price segments and market categories.  There is higher sales activity in the $2 million and $5 million price bands as a result. Sales of properties priced above $2 million have increased by around 9% while sales volumes have gone up by 8.5% for properties priced above $5 million. Sales volumes are expected to go up further, particularly for luxury condo developments.

Freehold sales figures have increased by a whopping 26% for properties priced above $5 million in proper Toronto. Coveted neighborhoods in this category include Rosedale and Forest Hill along with the York Region. Demand has touched the roof for condos, apartment units and town homes in higher price bands with more empty nesters and baby boomers looking at downsizing options. Demand has outstripped overall supply levels for condominiums, particularly in the downtown core region, leading to skyrocketing property prices.

Williams will also take heart from the record-low levels for unemployment along with comparatively affordable rates of interest, a high-performing economy and good stock market returns. Affluent home buyers in the local market are once again making their presence felt and this may augur well for Pharrell Williams’ new project when sales start next year. The housing market is steadily shifting back into making a strong recovery with increasing luxury home sales figures, more stable prices and higher demand as per experts. Global investors from Mainland China are also increasing their transactions in this space in spite of limited funding avenues and the non-resident speculation taxes. Chinese buyers accounted for more than half of home purchases in the $6 million+ price band in the years 2016 and 2017 as per reports. The number of HNWIs will also increase next year in Canada while immigration should also keep housing demand strong across the luxury, premium and mid-range categories alike. Hong Kong buyers are also showing higher interest in investing in Toronto real estate as per several studies and this should lead to higher sales figures in the future too.