How To Grow Your Real Estate Business: 5 Tips for Success

Real estate agent talking to a couple who is looking to buy a home

The real estate industry is a dynamic one, with trends and strategies evolving continually. Keeping your business ahead of the curve requires a proactive approach. Below are five critical tips to guide you to success.

Tip #1: Plan with Precision

Planning isn’t just about setting broad objectives; it’s about breaking them down into actionable steps and metrics. If you haven’t yet created a detailed business plan, now is the time to start. Your plan should outline the lead sources you want to target initially. Pick a source that aligns well with your skills and interests, and then devote your energies to mastering it.

Data-driven decisions are crucial for modern real estate businesses. This means analyzing which of your strategies yield the best ROI and adjusting your plans accordingly. Don’t be quick to abandon your strategies; consistency is vital. Give yourself enough time to gather meaningful data before making any sweeping changes.

Tip #2: Make Yourself Known

In real estate, your name is your brand. Being an excellent salesperson or marketing expert is just half the battle; you also have to be your own best advocate. Consider optimizing your online content for search engines to capture the attention of potential clients who are looking for real estate advice or listings.

The first few months or years can be particularly challenging for new agents. During this time, it’s crucial to experiment with various ways of making your name known—be it through social media advertising, open houses, or even old-school networking events. While doing this, establish key performance indicators (KPIs) to gauge the effectiveness of your different strategies, fine-tuning them as you go along.

Tip #3: Seek Constructive Criticism

Networking with other real estate professionals can open doors to mutual growth and learning. Consider joining real estate forums, online communities, or local meetups to connect with people who share your professional interests. These platforms offer a treasure trove of insights and can serve as sounding boards for your ideas and strategies.

Additionally, don’t underestimate the value of feedback from your social circle and existing clientele. These are the people who can provide candid opinions about your business. Show them your marketing material, ask if they’ve seen your latest listings, and solicit feedback on what you can improve. Constructive criticism can be a catalyst for positive change.

Tip #4: Don’t Shy Away from Referrals

While the notion of asking for referrals may conjure up images of aggressive sales tactics, the reality is quite different. In a world dominated by online reviews and social proof, a personal recommendation goes a long way. You can start by asking satisfied clients if they know anyone else who could benefit from your services.

Develop a schedule for when and how to ask for referrals, whether it’s after the successful completion of a sale, during a holiday check-in email, or another appropriate time. A well-placed referral can open doors to new opportunities and serve as a strong testament to your professional credibility.

Tip #5: Forge Beneficial Partnerships

One of the secrets to becoming a trusted real estate expert is offering more than just buying and selling services. Imagine if you could also point clients to reliable mortgage brokers, home inspectors, or even plumbers. Collaborate with professionals in related fields to offer a complete service package to your clients.

Co-marketing is another significant advantage of having a network of reliable partners. For instance, you and a local interior designer could team up for a home staging event, sharing both the costs and the audience. Partnerships like this allow you to deliver added value to your clients while also broadening your professional network.

Final Thoughts

The path to growing a thriving real estate business involves more than just hard work and a basic understanding of the industry. It requires strategic planning, personal branding, a feedback-oriented approach, robust referral mechanisms, and a supportive professional network. Implementing these five tips diligently will set you on the right track toward long-term success in the ever-competitive real estate market.

Unraveling the High Cost of Living in Toronto

Sign of Toronto with the city in the backround

If you’re reading this, chances are you’re already cognizant of Toronto’s high living costs. Whether you’re considering an investment in the city’s real estate or seeking an explanation for its inflated property prices, you’ve come to the right place for answers.

Is the high cost of living in Toronto a bubble, or is it sustained by underlying factors? According to my observations, this trend has been consistent for a few years and shows no sign of abating. This post aims to delve into the key elements that contribute to Toronto’s exorbitant living expenses.

The Expense Spectrum: A Look at Living Costs

The cost of living in Toronto can be quite staggering compared to other North American cities. For a family of three, expect to shell out around $4,950 monthly. Individual expenses vary, ranging from $1,500 to $2,500 depending on your housing situation. Beyond housing, Toronto’s public transit isn’t exactly a bargain, with a monthly pass costing $156—making it the third most expensive in North America.

Mercer’s 2023 Survey: A Canadian Perspective

According to Mercer’s 2023 Cost of Living Survey, Toronto reigns as Canada’s most expensive city, outpacing Vancouver, Montreal, Ottawa, and Calgary. Despite all Canadian cities falling in global rankings, Toronto still claimed the 90th spot as the most expensive city worldwide. On a brighter note, Toronto continues to appear on lists of the world’s most attractive cities.

Understanding the Real Estate Puzzle: The “Why” Behind the Costs

Surge in Popularity and Population

The city’s tech sector, often referred to as the ‘Silicon Valley of the North,’ has experienced tremendous growth. The increasing job opportunities and cultural diversity make Toronto a hot spot for immigration, thereby driving up the demand for housing.

Urban Living: Convenience Comes at a Cost

Living in downtown Toronto places a multitude of amenities at your fingertips, from international cuisines to arts and culture. While this eliminates the necessity for a car, the premium for such convenience is palpable, especially when compared to the costs and time spent on suburban commuting.

Supply and Demand Imbalance

Toronto’s housing market is severely strained by its rapidly growing population. As a result, demand for single-family homes and condos has soared, further inflating prices.

Rising Construction Costs

Over the past five years, construction costs in Canada, and specifically in Toronto, have escalated significantly. Legislative changes, such as increased developmental charges, have only added to the burden, impacting both buyers and renters alike.

Spiraling Costs in the Condo Market

In Toronto’s pre-construction condo market, the escalating costs create a domino effect, making each new development more expensive than the last. As demand increases, developers wait to launch their projects at higher price points, perpetuating a cycle of inflation.

The Rental Conundrum

Toronto’s low vacancy rate of around 1% has led to a sharp rise in rental prices. Legislative measures intended to protect tenants have actually deterred developers from building purpose-built rental properties, exacerbating the scarcity and inflating rental costs.

Beyond the GTA: A Trade-off Between Cost and Convenience

Many prospective homeowners are exploring regions outside the GTA as a potential solution to the high cost of living. However, the price reductions are not as significant as one might hope, especially within a 100km radius of Toronto.

Conclusion: Weighing Your Options

The high cost of living in Toronto is indisputable. However, the city offers a range of lifestyle options, amenities, and opportunities. The decision to make Toronto your home will ultimately depend on what you value most.

If you need more guidance, we’re just a phone call or text away!

Ontario Real Estate: Predictable Market Returns

Buildings by the river and sidewalk with canada flag in the backround

A Return to Predictability

The Ontario real estate landscape was once predictable. Busy springs led to quieter summers, followed by active falls. But the past decade disrupted that cycle. With the advent of the pandemic and low interest rates, the market went into overdrive.

Lately, however, things are changing. According to Robert Hogue from RBC, the market is showing signs of cooling down. Some realtors believe that the predictable cycles are returning. “The market seems less volatile,” notes Kitchener realtor Tony Johal.

Seasonal Patterns Reemerge

Realtors in different cities agree on the return of seasonal trends. Nick Kyte, an Ottawa realtor, mentions the slow summers due to vacations. “People usually return to the market in the fall,” he says. Similarly, Toronto saw a quiet summer but listings have picked up in September. “It feels like activity is resuming,” says Toronto realtor Brendan Powell.

Interest Rates and Their Impact

Last year brought rising interest rates, which changed the game. Hamilton realtor Rob Golfi expects some boost in fall sales but warns it won’t match the spring’s activity. “Higher interest rates are affecting the market,” Johal concurs.

Experts are cautious. Future rate hikes could sideline first-time buyers. “Affordability is becoming a big hurdle,” warns Hogue. He even notes that the Canadian economy is entering a mild recession, which could impact buyer confidence.

Strategies for Sellers

Sellers need to be mindful of pricing. “Getting the price right is crucial,” advises Kyte. Some sellers might adjust prices to attract buyers, while others might withdraw listings and wait for a busier spring market.

A More Balanced Market

One significant change is the return of conditional offers, says Powell. This indicates a more balanced market. Bidding wars haven’t disappeared, but they’re less frequent. Pricing strategy is now more critical than ever. “Overpricing can deter buyers,” Johal warns.

Buyer Caution on the Rise

Buyers are more cautious than before. “Real risks exist,” Powell emphasizes. Many now prefer making conditional offers. Golfi suggests that those seeking a deal might find December and January to be the best months for buying.


Is the Ontario real estate market becoming more predictable?

Some experts believe so, citing less volatility and the return of conditional offers.

How are rising interest rates affecting the market?

They’re slowing down sales and making affordability a concern, especially for first-time buyers.

What’s the best time to buy a house in Ontario?

December and January are considered good months for buyers looking for deals.

Are bidding wars still happening?

Yes, but they are less frequent. Pricing strategy is key.

What impact will a mild recession have?

It could reduce buyer confidence and affect the market stability.

Final Thoughts

The Ontario real estate market is showing signs of stabilizing. Predictability and caution are making a comeback, although challenges like rate hikes and affordability issues linger. Whether you’re a buyer or a seller, it’s a market that demands careful consideration.

Canada’s 7-Year Housing Goal: An Unrealistic Target

canada flag in front of a bridge with boats on the river

The chief economist of Desjardins Group, Jimmy Jean, has bad news. Speaking recently, he declared that Canada can’t build enough homes fast enough. The goal? To solve the housing affordability crisis within seven years.

This warning came at a Toronto event. It was organized by the Economic Club of Canada on September 12. Jimmy Jean compared the current situation to the past. He stated it took Canada 30 years to build 5.8 million homes.

Soft Market, Hard Challenges

We’re seeing a shift in the market. It’s becoming softer, favoring buyers more than before. However, there’s a catch. Although house prices are lower, other costs have gone up. Interest rates have risen. This has made monthly payments more expensive.

If you own a home, this is good for you. Your property value will likely stay stable. But for buyers, the market is still tough.

Realistic Expectations and Timelines

Jean brought up an alarming point. He questioned the feasibility of building millions of homes in just seven years. “You can’t squeeze 30 years of construction into seven years,” he told the crowd.

Last year, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. (CMHC) had a projection. They said Canada would need 5.8 million new homes by 2030. This would make housing more affordable. To meet this, 3.5 million additional homes would have to be built.

The agency revised these numbers on September 13. They lowered the projected number of homes to be built by 2030. Yet, the supply gap remains nearly the same, around 3.5 million homes.

Immigration and Housing

The federal government has plans too. They aim to admit 500,000 permanent residents annually by 2025. They believe this will fix labor shortages. However, Jean raises a question: Can the housing supply keep up?

Interest Rates and Impact

On September 6, the Bank of Canada kept its benchmark interest rate at five percent. This has offered some relief to the housing sector. Yet, the raised rates are affecting new home financing. Investors are becoming hesitant.

Dawn Desjardins, another economist, said something interesting. We’re 18 months into the rate hikes. The full impact is starting to show. She predicts lower interest rates might return by 2024.

Policy Suggestions

  1. A mortgage deductibility program should be considered. This would aim to help people affected by high-interest rates. It would lower their monthly payments and let them build financial equity.
  2. A special mortgage rate for first-time buyers should be introduced. It should start 200-400 basis points below current rates. Over 5-15 years, it should then rise to current rates. The aim? To help first-time buyers and stabilize the market.


Q: How long will it realistically take to solve the housing crisis according to experts?
A: According to Jimmy Jean, chief economist at Desjardins Group, it could take up to 30 years.

Q: What are the federal government’s plans for immigration?
A: The plan is to bring in 500,000 permanent residents annually by 2025.

Q: Are interest rates expected to go down?
A: Dawn Desjardins predicts that interest rates may decrease by 2024.

Q: What policy changes are suggested to alleviate the housing crisis?
A: Two key suggestions are a mortgage deductibility program and a special mortgage rate for first-time buyers.