The City of Cambridge is planning on dramatically reducing the red tape for homeowners and investors who wish to construct a secondary suite or unit on their property. Recently, during an interview with the CBC, the deputy manger of City Development Hardy Bromberg announced that Cambridge will look to amend zoning by-law to allow duplex construction via building permits and zoning allowances. Currently, the procedure can take up to six months and involves holding a mandatory public meeting along with an official city planning process. This type of lengthy planning can be a serious deterrent to duplex construction.
The City of Kitchener already has a similar duplex conversion process that’s been in place for some time. Benjamins Realty has worked with many investors to assist in acquiring properties that benefit from duplex construction in the City of Kitchener based on the ease of acquiring a permit and clear guidelines from the city.
Homeowners or investors who are considering duplexing their properties will want to consider a few things.
- Is the secondary unit going to be in a personal residence or an investment property? If it’s your personal residence, you may want to consider added privacy measures including sound proofing.
- Is the property a good candidate for duplexing? i.e. will the floor space adequately support two units? Is there enough parking?
- Is the location tenant friendly and is there a good tenant pool nearby.
- What will the potential costs be to duplex, some properties are more efficient than others ie. a bungalow with a secondary entrance leading to the basement is easier to convert than a two storey.
Benjamins Realty specializes in duplex conversion and we also have personally invested in the Waterloo Region via conversion of existing housing stock to duplexed properties. Talk to us today to find out how we may be of assistance in locating a duplex investment property or conversion target. As Cambridge finalizes their LRT plans for phase 2 construction, it may be poised for strong investment potential along the corridor.