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My name is Derek Lobo, and I am the CEO for ROCK Advisors Inc., a boutique apartment brokerage that is an Ontario-based commercial real estate firm with an exclusive focus on apartment brokerage services. We take a unique approach to buying and selling apartments, we cooperate with other brokers, we leverage the Internet and technology, and, we focus on buyer representation and seller representation depending on the client's needs. I have been a leading Apartment Marketing Specialist across North America for over 20 years. I am available to consult and speak and I have spoken at Real Estate Forums, PM Expos, Ontario Real Estate Association, Multi-Housing World, the National Multi-Housing Council and at trade shows and conferences across North America. I offer practical strategic solutions and proven industry specific techniques for increasing occupancy and asset value in the multi-residential industry.
Continuing from last week's article investigating the apartment opportunities in northern Ontario, no such study can be complete without considering Sudbury. Here's what we had to say about this city in the ROCK Apartment Report.
As I've mentioned before, the strength of the apartment marketplace in northern Ontario was one of the bigger (and most pleasant) surprises we encountered when we crafted the ROCK Apartment Report. Here's what we had to say:
As CEO of ROCK Advisors and DALA Group of Companies, I have toured and studied many rental apartments in Canada and often find that landlords and building owners don't realize the true value of the assets in their hands, and what they could do with them. Here are five things that landlords should know, given the state of the marketplace:
Closing out our examination of the opportunities in the purpose-built apartment industry in northern Ontario, consider Sault Ste. Marie. It's a border town and its a resource town, but like the rest of northern Ontario, the economy and the local apartment industry has picked up thanks to the rising commodities sector. Here's what we had to say in the ROCK Apartment Report
It's generally known that housing prices have gone through the roof in Canada, especially in the hot markets of Vancouver and the Greater Toronto Area, but until you see some of the items on sale, this doesn't quiet hit home.
DALA often hears from industry operators that it’s hard to get a good return from rental apartments given prices these days. In other words, it costs so much to buy apartments for investment that returns typically only 5%, little better than GICs. So, why buy new apartments? Why not spend money on what you already own?
Well, a lot of it is about Ottawa, but there are other centres worth investing in. In the ROCK Apartment Report, we devoted a few pages to the opportunities that existed in Eastern Ontario. Here's what we had to say by way of introduction...
I've been proud to campaign for my son-in-law Garnett Genuis in the upcoming Albertan election. And I'm not just saying that because he's married to my second daughter, Rebecca, though that's important too. I have been impressed at Garnett's skill and dedication. He has been campaigning as the Wildrose candidate in Sherwood Park for the last eight months and has, I think, knocked on over 22,000 doors. That's the way to reach out to the people. I was there earlier this year, I helped him knock on doors, and the response was phenomenal.
Like many real estate brokers, we at ROCK Apartment Advisors subscribe to RealTrack. Information is the life blood of this business, and RealTrack provides us with a valuable and ongoing window on the sales activity going across the province. This information, along with other sources, helped us to put together the ROCK Apartment Report and the upcoming ROCK New Construction Report.
As I reported earlier, Eastern Ontario has two major markets. Everybody knows about Ottawa, and it's no surprise to find activity there quite heated, especially in the furnished apartment niche. But Kingston often surprises people. In spite of its size, it has a substantial market, and in spite of its market, vacancy rates are among the lowest in Ontario. The presence of a large student market only tells part of the story, I think. Here's what we said about Kingston in the ROCK Apartment Report: