Pavel’s Story

In 2008 I made the decision to move to Toronto from Halifax, so I began the exciting affair of looking on MLS for a property to buy. I wanted to live in a spacious condo downtown and I was also looking for a beautiful view and a good area. I was still in Halifax at the time as I was in a commitment, so I messaged several real estate agents when I found some properties that I liked and inquired about them.

I was receiving very few responses from agents – either because they weren’t checking their emails or they weren’t interested very much in me as a client, even though the asking prices for the condos I was looking at were well above the half-a-million territory. My assumption is that they were either too busy (but remember, it was during the very depth of the 2008 financial crisis), or they thought that I might not be very serious writing from Halifax.

Anyway, there still were a few agents who responded and one of them was Shawn Venasse. His response was the most detailed, intelligent, and, I would say, caring. So I chose him as my agent to find a good condo apartment in downtown Toronto. He was sending me property listings on a daily basis and I was picking those which I wanted to view. When I came to Toronto to choose a property and met Shawn in person, he showed me several beautiful condos, told me about many important specifics of condominiums in the city, answered all of my questions, and was very knowledgeable, polite and friendly. It was actually quite a fun process choosing a property with him.

I had very little time on hand, so I had to move on quickly. The condo that I chose was a spacious 1400 sq. ft. apartment located in a modern building right on Queens Quay, with a SW exposure overlooking the lake in the south and the city in the west, two balconies, one of which was huge at 400 sq. ft. When I finally selected the property to buy, the regular process of negotiating with the seller began. Because it was the time of the financial recession, I felt I could bargain a much better price. My initial offer was considerably less than the asking price, but the seller declined it, and offered another price.

We sent him a counteroffer for 10% less than the asking price, and the seller declined it again, saying that he would not accept the price I specified in my offer. Shawn honestly suggested to me that given the current market circumstances, the price I was giving was fairer than the seller’s final lowest price, and that I should think whether or not I should buy the property at all. I liked the condo so much that I decided to buy it even at a price somewhat higher than what I was initially going to give.

We closed the deal successfully; the deal went very smoothly, it was like a breeze. I came back to Halifax to finish my commitments, Shawn couriered me my new keys, and in March 2009, I finally moved to Toronto and into my beautiful and spacious condominium.