Category Archives: Home Du Jour

The Aristocats of Craven Estates

Feral living on Craven Road

I wish I could swing both ways….not in the way that you think, although I admire that too. You double your chances for a date on Friday night and double your wardrobe while you’re at it. No, I mean being a Dog Person versus being a Cat Person. Where I come from, you’re either one or the other. How can you have more than one type of animal living in your house? How does the dog know not to eat the cat food or the kitty litter for that matter? Cats are waaay easier to take care of than dogs but they sneak around and skulk on your counter tops and God knows what they are thinking half the time. Dogs are simple (feed me, pet me, walk me) but they are higher maintenance. They require more emotional energy. In my Golden Years, rather than becoming a zany cat lady, I will have a cranky lap dog or two. I figure one overfed chihuahua is equal to 3 cats on the gage of crazy.

Lately, though, I have been warming up to cats. We have one that lives on our street, literally. Here she is taking a nap in the middle of the road, don’t worry, she knows when cars are coming:

Tombo of the Triangle

Everybody within 3 blocks knows Tombo the cat. She sleeps on porches, on top of cars, and she sneaks into houses. Once she appeared my living room and got into a brawl with Betty, scratched her nose then slid back outside. You have to admire the chutzpah.

Yesterday, the Toronto Star had an article about some of the tiniest houses in Toronto. They are on Craven Road, just west of Coxwell between Dundas and Gerrard. I know this stretch of the strip well, I use it to go into Little India because it’s a one way north and also I love this street. The west side is all fence and the citizens have put up artwork all along the side. That part of the street between Dundas and Gerrard is full of feral cats. People get all funny around wild cats…”oh, poor kitties!” and yet Tombo from my street has a perfectly loving home but she likes to be a street cat, it’s her modus operandi. The houses are all on the east side and they are shockingly tiny, they’re known as “Craven Estates” (real estate humour, so funny). There was a time when the block looked a little worn down but now there are a lot of renovations going on and it is a really sweet street. Everything I know about the real estate game, I learned from playing Monopoly as a wee child. Put your first hotels on Baltic and Mediterranean and build from there, the cheap properties will build your wealth. The same goes for the homes on Craven Road. Even a couple of years ago, you could easily find a house for under $200,000 and now the same ones, fixed up, are fetching close to $400,00.

The fence side with art gallery.

This home is currently listed at $384,800

To read the article in the Toronto Star, click here.

To look at some active listings on Craven, click here.

Kristin’s Pick

Sweetness at $597,00


This is a 3 bedroom fully renovated with parking and a finished basement that could be easily turned into an in-law suite if you were so inclined.  The backyard is fantastic and the whole house is clean as a whistle.  Who doesn’t love that?  The best part is the neighbourhood.  There is a little secret pocket in the beach hood that is north of Dundas St E and east of Coxwell.  It’s quiet and treelined and the streets are curvy so there is not a lot of traffic.  Right across the street there is a ravine perfect for kids and dogs.  In fact, I used to walk my two shiba inus there but now I have a chihuahua/pomeranian mutt with super short legs and she would become a mud belly there.  Anyway, this is a great starter house  (without work!) in a great location!  Please email me for the full listing:

P.S. Speaking of shiba inus, click on this for some live cuteness:

Home Du Jour

75 Lyall Ave

Some homes lend themselves to those embroidered pillows that say “Home Sweet Home” and a Cocker Spaniel sleeping in front of the fireplace.  This is one of them.  I love this house.   It’s a beautifully renovated Victorian home with modern elements.  It has 3 bedrooms and a finished basement.  The show piece is the main floor with the kitchen that’s open to the rest of the living space.  The floors are stained dark and the kitchen is shiny and new.  It’s in a great upper beach neighbnourhood, kitty corner from Malvern High School.  Now I know what you’re thinking and I have had many clients wary of purchasing near a high school as they look at teenagers with a combination of fear and disdain.  But the modern high school student is a different bird then back in the day.  They have lots of stuff, yes, cell phones, i-pods, game systems, they get their mani pedis bi-weekly and their eyebrows professionally groomed (we chewed our own nails and painted them with marker while we listened to “Frampton Comes Alive” on a hi fi).  Consequently the modern teenager knows the value of a dollar and will work hard for their money.  One summer I flagged one down and he assembled all my Ikea furniture for $10 an hour and then he came back every week and mowed my lawn!

If you’d like to see more of this house, email me at and I can send you the complete listing.