February 21st, 2023 | Selling

Leaving Toronto? A Guide to Selling, Relocating, and Downsizing

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Toronto is one of Canada’s most highly coveted cities for many people. Single professionals, young families, career-minded folk, and retirees come for the many conveniences, entertainment options, and opportunities for new experiences. The sights, the sounds, the excitement! For the right person, Toronto couldn’t be more perfect.

However, no living situation is a one-size-fits-all, and preferences can vary. Some Toronto residents are ready to say goodbye to big city life in favour of fewer crowds and a more laidback lifestyle. No matter what your circumstances, packing up your life and leaving everything behind is a lengthy process. A clear, actionable plan can significantly reduce stress and help you enjoy a seamless transition to your next chapter.

Why Move Now?

There’s no question that Toronto life is exciting! However, it can also be expensive. The cost of buying or renting a home has risen dramatically over the last few years. By selling your home and moving to a smaller city, you will have excess funds to save for a rainy day or enjoy right now.

With so many cities and towns within commuting distance of the GTA, you won’t have to miss out on any of the attractions or events you’ve grown to love. And sometimes, a change of scenery can do wonders for your body and soul. Life is full of adventures, and relocating allows you to meet new people and experience the wonder of a brand new neighbourhood.

Whatever the reason, the time is right for you. And fortunately, the current real estate market is in your favour.

Did you know that a few savvy downsizers invest in real estate as part of their retirement plans? Here are some helpful resources if you’re thinking about joining them:

Create Your Plan

Relocating involves numerous moving pieces, and hiccups can and will happen. Having a plan in place stops you from stressing out and allows you to get back on track quickly. Countless minor details go into a successful relocation. However, each will likely fall under specific categories, so there is no need to feel overwhelmed. Keeping the following checklist handy will help.

  • Begin as early as you can. The more time you have to pack and prepare, the smoother the process will be.
  • Start decluttering now. This is often the most dreaded part of moving. Starting early allows you to tackle the job in small increments rather than all at once. 
  • Find a local real estate team that can guide you through your transition, preferably one with relocation experience.
  • How far away from Toronto do you want to live? Make a list of potential locations to research before deciding on your new home.
  • What type of home do you want? A condo, a detached home, or a townhouse?
  • Choose whether to sell your home or purchase your new one first. Your real estate agent will help you decide depending on the market.
  • Start a list of all correspondence you will need to change. 

The Art of Selling a Home in Toronto

If you own a home in the GTA, relocating can help pave the way to a bright financial future. Toronto real estate is a hot commodity. Even with the recent market slowdown, the average house price is still over $1 million. 

Maximizing the results of your sale will put you in an enviable position when relocating to a less expensive city. Here are some of the steps you can take to sell your house successfully during any market conditions:

  • Prepare your home to make it look like a million-dollar listing! You don’t necessarily have to invest a lot of time or money. Sometimes, minor updates are all it takes to capture the attention of qualified buyers. Cleaning, decluttering, painting, and staging can all have a profound effect on the results of your sale.
  • Price your home competitively for the market. Your real estate agent can help by performing a CMA (Comparative Market Analysis) to see how many similar properties have sold in your neighbourhood and for how much. This information enables you to set an attractive price that makes buyers notice your listing. With the increased demand for Toronto houses, a strategic price could generate multiple offers.
  • Market your listing to obtain maximum exposure. Professional photos are a must for your MLS® listing. In addition, your real estate agent can use social media, online advertising, and printed materials to bring your home to the attention of the most likely buyers.

Need more ideas for a positive downsizing experience? You’ll find plenty of valuable tips in the articles below:

Should You Buy or Rent Your Next Home?

By now, you probably have an idea of where you want to go after selling your Toronto home. Still, you have some important decisions to make. Should you buy or rent your new place? There are advantages and disadvantages to both options.


Buying keeps you in the real estate market and allows you to continue to build equity. As your new house grows in value, so do your net worth and purchasing power. And there’s nothing quite like the feeling of owning your own home. Over time, you can remodel and renovate it until it feels like it’s fully customized to your needs and wishes. 

On the other hand, owning a house comes with a lot of responsibilities. Plus, purchasing requires a bigger commitment that may take longer to find the right situation.


The downsides to renting are obvious. Since your name isn’t on the title, you’re limited in what renovations you can make. Most of all, you’re not building equity. These disadvantages can mean renting may not be the best solution when you’re young and just starting out.

However, the story can be different when it comes time to downsize or retire. Your home may be fully paid off. 

At this point, you may decide you no longer want the hassle of homeownership and prefer a carefree lifestyle where you can pick up and go whenever you please. If you’ve just sold a house in Toronto, you’ll have enough cash to cover your rent and other retirement dreams for a long time. The equity you have built over your lifetime leaves many doors open to you. 

Is a relocation around the corner for your life? We work with homeowners in the GTA from all walks of life and are happy to help you plan for success. The first step is a quick conversation to clarify your goals. You can book a complimentary meeting with us below with no obligation.