Have you ever walked down the street, spotted a super cool building, and wondered, “what’s in there?” If you’re like us, then yes. It probably happens every day!
Toronto is overflowing with incredible architecture, beautiful buildings, and fascinating history. Even if you spend your entire life living here, the city still has its mysteries.
One of the most historic neighbourhoods in Toronto is The Annex. Close to the University of Toronto and home to some of the most prestigious historic buildings, trendy eateries, and incredible amenities, The Annex attracts a diverse population and it’s a truly iconic Toronto community. Locals know!
But behind the crawling ivy and historical plaques, The Annex is also home to some of the nicest boutique loft conversions in the city. The best part? Most of these lofts are completely hidden from public view.
Do you love cool loft conversions? Us too! Let’s talk top-secret lofts in The Annex!
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Get that Authentic NYC Loft Vibe at the Button Factory Lofts
Located at 200 Clinton Street in The Annex, the Button Factory Lofts is a 100-year-old hard loft brick conversion. You might be tempted to say the lofts are as cute as a button, but that would be cliche and incorrect since this swanky loft conversion features some of the biggest loft suites you’ll see in the city. Each unit is over 1,200 square feet, with some of the suites featuring two or more floors.
If you didn’t know it was there, you’d likely walk past the building none the wiser, since the building itself is hidden from street view, covered by beautiful pine trees. One feature that truly sets Button Factory lofts apart is the fact that every unit has its own balcony, which is another super rare thing to see for a hard loft conversion.
Educate Yourself on the SchoolHouse Lofts
This loft conversion is not hard to find, but it is hidden in plain sight. If you didn’t know what you were looking for, you’d likely miss it. Why? Because it looks like a school! Formerly the Loretto College, an all-girls private school, SchoolHouse Lofts maintained the original facade, so when you’re walking up to the building, it feels like you’re walking through a quaint school garden.
Located at 391 Brunswick, SchoolHouse Lofts is a prominent landmark on one of Toronto’s most historic streets. No joke, there are so many buildings in the immediate vicinity that have historic plaques.
One of the most interesting aspects of SchoolHouse Lofts is that it is a loft conversion done in a more contemporary style. So if exposed ductwork, brick walls, and cement floors are not your aesthetic, SchoolHouse Lofts could be for you!
The Ultimate Toronto Hard Loft Conversion: Croft Lofts
You’ve probably heard a lot about the new phenomenon in Toronto of laneway houses. They’re basically a way for homeowners to build a second home on their property, hailed as a great way to help ease the housing crisis and improve housing affordability. They became officially legal in Toronto last year, but did you know that the very first laneway house was actually a loft conversion going as far back as the 80s?
The OG laneway house was Croft Lofts. Converted to a loft in 1987, Croft Lofts began its life over 100 years ago as a tire manufacturer, an ice cream factory, and eventually the location of the Eastern Rug Company before turning into one of the most sought-after loft buildings in the city.
Since it’s located on a laneway, Croft Lofts is incredibly unique. With a line of garages on one side, the units resemble townhouses more than anything. The building itself gives us strong art deco vibes with beautiful red brick and dreamy ivy crawling up the sides. With only 5 units, Croft Lofts is the epitome of Toronto loft conversions and exclusive living.
Looking for more Toronto loft content? Read these blogs next:
- Top 5 Affordable Lofts in Toronto
- Toronto Loft Lingo and Who Actually Buys Them!
- The 411 on Tip Top Lofts
But Do You Even Want to Live in a Boutique Loft?
If the first half of this post has you dreaming about moving into your dream loft, hold the phone! There are a few things you need to know about living in a loft conversion.
We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again, living in a loft is a lifestyle–and you have to truly love that lifestyle to make it work.
Here are a few things you should consider:
- Lofts are unique, and most loft conversions only have a handful of units. As a result, upkeep and maintenance are a little harder. Special assessments, maintenance fees, and unexpected repairs are split between a much smaller group of people than say, a giant condo with hundreds of units.
- Loft conversions also tend to need more repairs. Remember, these buildings are not purpose-built for residential. They were commercial buildings, warehouses, factories, you name it. The conversion is part of the appeal, but there’s a lot that could happen that would require significant repairs.
- These special assessments and unexpected repairs also mean that when it comes to selling your loft conversion, you might be selling to a smaller pool of buyers. Many people dream of the loft life but snap back to reality when they remember the maintenance that goes into owning one. It’s almost like owning a freehold.
- Lofts are also lacking in another aspect. If you’re looking for a condo building with amenities, a concierge, a gym, a pool, a games room, etc., you probably won’t find that in a loft.
Read our top 5 loft turnoffs you may not have considered to find out what else you need to know before buying a loft. Read more here.
That being said, Toronto lofts do tend to hold their value, since there are so few of them and they are always in demand despite these downsides we just listed!
We always say “Loft Livers and Loft Lifers.” Many people who buy Toronto lofts end up living there for many years, which is why you really need to be sure that you want to live in a loft–you might be waiting for your dream loft for quite a while!
Thinking about buying or selling a loft next year? I’m happy to offer my expertise! Give me a call or text me at 647-973-8392.