Buy Real Estate in mixed use areas
Take a walk in the Financial District on a Friday between 7-10 pm. It’s hard to believe that an area with such a great walkscore isn’t more vibrant.

The reason is simple: It lacks the sufficient uses in the evenings and weekends to bring people there.

Being the corporate centre of Canada, having an area full of offices may seem to be efficient, but when you look at it, if no one is using the streets during evenings and weekends, its actually pretty inefficient.

This is why buying into a mixed use area will yield extra appreciation.

A mixed use area is a place where there are more than one primary uses sharing an existing area. Examples of different primary uses are:

  • Office
  • Residential
  • Entertainment
  • Education
  • Recreation/Tourism
  • Museums/Galleries

It’s important for these uses to be proportional to one another (can’t have 100 residential units in a 100,000 person office area) and that they share the same place (can’t have segregated space).

A great example of an area that has experienced great appreciation as a result of the mixing of primary uses is The Residences of Maple Leaf Square. Maple Leaf Square  (residences) is at the crossroads of the Telus Tower (office), The Air Canada Centre (recreation), and the Hotel LeGermain (Tourism).

In 2006, Maple Leaf Square launched at $450 per square foot (psf), today, units are going for north of $700psf.

Other buildings at the time were selling between $420-$440psf and are now just above $500psf.