| What you loved and loathed last month

Toronto Life - - Contents - Please email your com­ments to letters@toron­to­life.com. They may be edited for ac­cu­racy, length and clar­ity.

Home Truths “The Young Buy­ers Club,” our roundup of 20-some­things who scrimped to buy a house in this near-im­pen­e­tra­ble mar­ket, in­spired some read­ers and an­noyed oth­ers. In that or­der…

“Re­spect! Good for them!” —ju­lian_­valentino, In­sta­gram

“Smart kids, I salute them. Also, I don’t con­sider liv­ing rent-free as a handout from Mom and Dad, as it has zero fi­nan­cial li­a­bil­ity on the par­ents yet it al­lows the kids to save for a down pay­ment—it’s a win-win if the kids are will­ing to sac­ri­fice. Big achieve­ments of­ten re­quire sac­ri­fice.”

—Karl Itos, Face­book

“This is the way. They made the sac­ri­fices needed. I did it, my par­ents did it, and my grand­par­ents did it. It can be done. Life is not easy. Never has been, and it is fool­hardy to be­lieve oth­er­wise. I ap­plaud these young peo­ple.”

—Cori Gould, Face­book

“I know many young peo­ple liv­ing in Toronto. What most of them have in com­mon: 1) they are orig­i­nally from out­side the GTA and had to move where the jobs re­port­edly were; 2) there­fore they couldn’t live at home while they saved up; 3) most are in shared rental spa­ces work­ing full-time or more than one job; 4) they’re ed­u­cated. I dis­cov­ered the hard way that one has to have ei­ther money or deep roots in the GTA to get ahead at all now. In­stead of cheer­ing on the ex­cep­tions, let’s ac­knowl­edge there is a prob­lem and do some­thing about it. Go­ing ‘home’ is not an op­tion.”

—Laura Beeby, Face­book

“It’s un­re­al­is­tic to ex­pect to buy a nice starter home in the core of a ma­jor city like Toronto is now be­com­ing. If you make a mid­dle­class salary, you should ex­pect to make sac­ri­fices to your bud­get for sev­eral years (limit va­ca­tions, live with room­mates, do your own cook­ing, etc.). That might get you a de­cent starter home a 45-minute com­mute from the core. Not ev­ery­thing on your wish list, but you’re on the prop­erty lad­der. If you don’t have the con­vic­tion to save, not go­ing to hap­pen.”

—Larry Pa­trick Zolob, Face­book

“They didn’t beat the mar­ket. They en­tered it at the right time, were for­tu­nate enough to have well-above-av­er­age-pay­ing jobs right out of school, or lived rent­free with Mom and Dad for many, many years. They were 1) lucky and 2) re­source­ful. In that or­der.”

—Teresa Har­ris, Face­book “I don’t hate you because you own your own house in Toronto, I hate that any­one would need to work 100 hours a week to be able to af­ford to buy a home .... ”

—as­saultonau­dio, Red­dit

“The re­al­ity of what is be­ing sug­gested here is hi­lar­i­ous: work two jobs, live at home, lose all your friends because you don’t see them for six(!) months, bor­row from your RRSP for a down pay­ment. All this sac­ri­fice and what do you get? A $450k pre-con­struc­tion town­house in STONEY CREEK! Don’t hate us because we paid half a mil­lion dol­lars for a half-built town­house 20 min­utes from Hamil­ton. This ar­ti­cle re­ally high­lights the mad­ness of the hous­ing mar­ket.”

—Com­radeCave­man, Red­dit

“How ex­actly is liv­ing rent-free at home not equal to help from the Bank of Mom and Dad?!”

—Ali­cia D’Aguiar, Face­book

Many read­ers (rightly) com­plained about the dearth of women in the pack­age—par­tic­u­larly sin­gle women who own their own houses.

“Lit­er­ally no sin­gle women on this list; what’s up with that? (Not an ac­cusatory state­ment, @toron­to­life, but I’m gen­uinely cu­ri­ous why you don’t have any. Is it because sin­gle

men are more driven to buy? Or because women make less money? Or was it an over­sight?)”

—@Lau­renPel­ley, Twit­ter

“7:2 male to fe­male ra­tio! Wow.” —Melissa Dor­gan, Face­book

“As a young woman I was in­ter­ested in ‘The Young Buy­ers Club.’ How­ever, when I came to the end, I re­al­ized ev­ery home­owner was a man ex­cept the two young women who co-owned with their male part­ners. Is it re­ally only young men who are in­de­pen­dently suc­cess­ful? Is your ar­ti­cle a re­flec­tion of the sex­ism in­her­ent in our so­ci­ety? I am con­fi­dent there are plenty of young, suc­cess­ful women who own homes, because I know them. Does Toronto Life strive to rep­re­sent the diver­sity of Toronto? If so, this ar­ti­cle failed to hit that mark.”

—Zoë Ne­gru

“Hey, are we not try­ing to find a woman who owns a home? I’m over here. And not only did I have zero help from the Bank of Mom and Dad, I moved out when I was 20. I went to univer­sity for four years, grad­u­ated with hon­ours. I was 26 when my home was be­ing built, 27 when I moved in. I also have a tod­dler. And a car. And stu­dent debt. It’s pos­si­ble, but it takes se­ri­ous dis­ci­pline, and stick­ing in one job for 2+ years in or­der to qual­ify for a mort­gage. No­body needs the lat­est Yeezys, ex­pen­sive av­o­cado toast, daily Star­bucks.”

—ad­ven­tur­ous­ray, In­sta­gram

Death in the Fam­ily

“House of Hor­rors,” Michael Lista’s true-crime piece about the bru­tal and sys­tem­atic murders of Bill, Brid­get and Caleb Har­ri­son over a four-year pe­riod, had read­ers in a state.

“Such a sad story—and the true vic­tims are the kids.” —Get back to work peo­ple, toron­to­life.com

“Here is a truly ex­tra­or­di­nary/ unbelievable/ex­treme case of mur­der aris­ing from a cus­tody/ac­cess dis­pute. The amaz­ing thing is that the killers seem to have thought they were some­how pro­tect­ing their kids! Shows how skewed per­cep­tion can be.”

—@sheard­law, Twit­ter

“A very sad story. Michael Lista re­ally knows how to cap­ture a story and hold the reader. I look for­ward to all his ar­ti­cles.”

—Donna Rae, Face­book

“‘The co-worker kept re­peat­ing Caleb’s name, putting his fin­gers to his friend’s neck. It was as cold as clay.’ Re­ally ex­cel­lent crime writ­ing by @michael­lista over at @toron­to­life.”

—@Ja­sonGuriel, Twit­ter

“One has to won­der how in­cred­i­bly nar­cis­sis­tic, stupid, ig­no­rant peo­ple have to be to think that mur­der­ing some­one is the an­swer.”

—@MVantroy, toron­to­life.com

The Life Aquatic

In “Water­world,” Jonathan Fo­rani pro­filed five fam­i­lies who live in the so-called “float homes” of Scar­bor­ough, a quirky hid­den com­mu­nity of, well, float­ing homes, in Bluffer’s Park Ma­rina at the foot of Brim­ley Road. The piece gar­nered a cultish fol­low­ing, with com­ments like “How cool are these?” and “I want one!!” and…

“Can we move here with our dogs??” —cathy­daw­son, In­sta­gram

“I’ll just swim over to your place!” —lindz­cava, In­sta­gram

“Very cool, not so se­cret now though :D”

—Peter Kal­pakis, Face­book

“Wish I could live here.” —Mom­taz Baluch, Face­book

“What?! I’ve been in the city more than 15 years and where the heck did these come from?”

—mat­t_hy, In­sta­gram

“When you live in #Toronto your whole life and you’re still learn­ing new things.”

—@ElainaFal­cone, Twit­ter


Our col­lec­tion of over-the-top soft serve in the city had Toron­to­ni­ans com­pil­ing bucket lists and ex­pats pin­ing for home:

“So many to try!” —Rita Kee­han, Face­book

“I need all of this.” —alykatj, In­sta­gram

“I lit­er­ally want them all!” —the­ath­leisureteacher, In­sta­gram

“Man, I re­ally miss #Toronto after read­ing this. Es­pe­cially to­day. ”

—@Cop­perBronzed, Twit­ter

“Love the gold wrap.” —spaser­vices­fa­cials, In­sta­gram

The lone naysayer…

“I’m sorry, but some­one has to say it. Eat­ing gold leaf is re­ally stupid.”

—jim­sonbbb, In­sta­gram

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