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House of the week: 145 Dunn Avenue

Posted by Staff / September 10, 2013

145 Dunn Avenue TorontoThis is a house after my own heart. It's an ivy-adorned red brick Victorian filled with character details from the 1890's, including preserved wood floors and restored radiators. You'll find plenty of high-end features in the spots where they really count — check out that spacious kitchen. And then there's the large and impeccably landscaped backyard, complete with a pool and pool house. A pool in Parkdale is a rare jewel.

Yes, Parkdale, a fact that, depending on your perspective, is either a selling point or the final blow. This house is in the south end of the neighbourhood, where its history as one of Toronto's well-to-do settings is still obvious, even as it's less desirable as it once was. It's close to the lake and closer still to the Lakeside Long-Term Care Centre located directly across the street: guaranteed quiet. Is this a plus?

10-foot ceilings provide an excellent backdrop for period details including stained glass windows, crowned door frames and high wooden baseboards. A sweeping staircase, complete with a light feature on the first finial, links all three levels of the house together. There are more than enough bedrooms to suit any family's needs — 6 — and there's an office in addition to the living spaces on the main floor.

145 Dunn AvenueSPECS

  • Address: 145 Dunn Ave.
  • Price: $1,150,000.00
  • Lot Size: 26.33 ft. x 165 ft.
  • Bedrooms: 6
  • Bathrooms: 3
  • Storeys: 3
  • Parking Spaces: 2
  • Taxes: $6,540.36 (2012)


  • In-ground pool and pool house
  • Carved fireplace
  • His and Hers closets
  • Porcelain sinks in the kitchen and bathrooms

145 Dunn AvenueGOOD FOR

A west end enthusiast looking for a house full of space, quality and history — 145 Dunn Ave. has all three by the boatful. The house is a beautifully restored example of Parkdale's stately and luxurious past (see more here) — and, really, you're not that far away from the 501 streetcar, drinks on West Queen West and tacos at Grand Electric, should that be your thing. You get a lot of bang for your buck in Parkdale. You get a lot of tacos.

145 Dunn AvenueMOVE ON IF

You just can't get past the location — your loss. Also, look elsewhere if what you really want is a modern, turn-key property. Due to the age of this building — and the looks of some of those older light fixtures — a house inspection is a must and some renovations might be required pre-move-in to keep everything up to snuff.


145 Dunn Avenue145 Dunn Avenue145 Dunn Avenue145 Dunn Avenue145 Dunn Avenue145 Dunn Avenue145 Dunn AvenueWriting by Leslie Bank



TJ / September 10, 2013 at 08:42 am
Yeah its parkdale. Semi-updated house. No finishing/room/material that is mid or even high-end (maybe the pool is an exception). Looks like a haunted house from the outside. $1.15mil. Ouch but it is perfect for someone who wants "charm" and "character".
bob / September 10, 2013 at 08:45 am
well, this is the ONE.
Skye / September 10, 2013 at 09:01 am
The front is begging for some landscaping. But OH, that pool!
Fanny / September 10, 2013 at 09:12 am
There are hardly any pot lights. I only saw two.
E. Toby Coke / September 10, 2013 at 09:35 am
Neat house, in a classic Toronto vernacular. I wonder if this is one of EJ Lennox's designs?

Landscape the front, fix that sad former balcony up top, then spend your $$$/time forever maintaining the old place (what's up with that ghetto patch on the slate roof?).

No pot lights needed!

Rob / September 10, 2013 at 09:36 am
Apart from its location, this is AMAZING.

Note to all other House of the Week subjects: this is tasteful decor
Sigh / September 10, 2013 at 09:42 am
Love it, everything about it! Love old homes, love the neighbourhood, I even love the way the current owners have it decorated!
Chris! / September 10, 2013 at 09:47 am
I'm not sure anyone who would buy this house is interested in going for beers at the Rhino or tacos at Grand Electric. But this is the frame of reference you get when you have 20-somethings try to review million-dollar homes, I guess.
Lazar / September 10, 2013 at 10:14 am
It isn't just a long term care, but also a rehab centre that is directly across the street.

I used to visit a friend that lived on Dunn, closer to Springhurst. There are also at least 2 halfway houses on that street. I remember seeing some guy just sprawled out on the front lawn, completely out of it.

However, that was a few years ago, and the house does obviously have some charm.
Moneesha / September 10, 2013 at 10:18 am
Yes please!
Laura / September 10, 2013 at 11:24 am
Wow, this is a stunner. *love*
Stu / September 10, 2013 at 11:38 am
You really shouldn't judge a house by the front of it. Wow.
Sigh replying to a comment from Chris! / September 10, 2013 at 11:47 am
You'd be very surprised. Don't assume that $$$$ = snob. Even rich people like beers and beef cheek tacos ya know.
Hazel replying to a comment from Sigh / September 10, 2013 at 12:06 pm
Agreed. And I'm 50-something. I dont' know even we're even talking about $$$. Million dollar homes are not a rarity around here any longer. Neither are 30-somethings with huge mortgages, who need mucho cheap tacos.
IliveattheVerve / September 10, 2013 at 12:26 pm
"Due to the age of this building — and the looks of some of those older light fixtures — a house inspection is a must and some renovations might be required pre-move-in to keep everything up to snuff."
= Botox on a 90-year-old, when they shoulda got a heart transplant.

For $1.15M? PASS!!!
Danny / September 10, 2013 at 12:27 pm
That window placement in the bathroom would drive my OCD mental.
Fiona Williams / September 10, 2013 at 12:32 pm
Love the house, but not a fan of that kitchen sink. It's not original by any means - that type with the built in drain boards are usually 1940s. Had one in the upstairs kitchen of a house I used to live in. Would have been nice to see a true old farm kitchen sink with the high back and double taps here. Or go modern to match the appliances.
Ryan / September 10, 2013 at 12:34 pm
Just because it has a nice back yard beautiful pool is probably hiding problems. you got to take a look at other factors like its an old home that's done with brick. Make sure it's not falling apart because that's an expensive fix. Plus matching the colour of the older brick to new brick. Radiator heating is cleaner but you have a boiler system that's expensive to fix if broken or breaks and if you go with newer ways of heating your home that's a big renovation, plus hows thenair conditioning if theres no vents. Also where there is a window there is a radiator. They are hot in winter so for children to touch they can burn them easily. Beautiful home but too many possible problems to want to fix with already paying a million plus for this home. Also if the home is a historical home good luck with any renovation.
John Labatt / September 10, 2013 at 01:24 pm
Looks kinda old looking nice job on the photography to clean it up
wjir / September 10, 2013 at 02:35 pm
Wow, price aside, people in Toronto are really spoiled these days. Can't have anything less than perfect to live in.
Sigh replying to a comment from John Labatt / September 10, 2013 at 02:42 pm
Well duh. 1890 IS OLD. It's an old Victorian and that's part of it's charm for those of us who like that kind of thing.
Sigh replying to a comment from Ryan / September 10, 2013 at 02:42 pm
So you're out then? Good, less competition for me!
jude / September 10, 2013 at 03:04 pm
That's a very unassuming front entrance... Could use some updating and landscaping but everything else is my kinda abode! Excuse me while I collect my winnings from the lottery and pay for this.
elle / September 10, 2013 at 05:55 pm
This house is in need of major reno, talking about almost price of another home. Went to the open house to be nosy and couldn't believe the difference between photography and reality. Forget a bout pot lights if you move in that is the least of your worries, everything has to change inside. This old beauty requires ton of work
Alvin replying to a comment from Skye / September 10, 2013 at 09:09 pm
That pool is amazing, in the heart of the city it is an oasis of tranquility. Walk to great restaurants, clubs, everything.
seanm / September 10, 2013 at 10:51 pm
If I won the lottery, this is exactly the type of house I'd buy. Detached Victorian, they built what may be the most attractive residential buildings in Toronto's history; well, the Georgian stuff was more refined, but sadly it's nearly gone.

Sure it requires some fixing up and modernizing/restoration/whatever, but you own a piece of history. There's a huge commitment required to buy a heritage property, but if you have the money it's worth it. Very little new homes come close to delivering the character and warmth this has, apart from extremely expensive architect design homes (see examples like KPMB's Ravine House, or Integral House by Shim-Sutcliffe).
BA / September 10, 2013 at 11:29 pm
It's a gorgeous home! Everyone is always super negative about Toronto real estate for some reason - I think everyone is bitter they can't afford it (I am, a tiny bit!). But this is a lovely home! I'd much rather spend 1.1 mil on this charmer than the same on something brand new with updates. i think it does have a lot of updates. The bathroom looks new and I love how the original hardwood floors look like they have been kept. The kitchen is odd, but it's not terrible outdated. And who gets to have a pool in the city? I love it!
Michael / September 11, 2013 at 12:38 am
I would rather this than a $500,000.00 800 sq. ft. Condo any day of the week !!!
Julie Osland / September 11, 2013 at 02:18 pm
It really is a spectacular home. The owner is just as amazing! He does hang out at the local taco spots and has done a great job of restoring some of the homes's original features. I have way too many great things to say about this place, but I think my #1 is how amazing the neighbours are...
I am the listing agent for this property and can answer any questions for any lucky lottery winners or hard-working people who may be in the market for a home like this.
Offers are being accepted Thursday Sept 12th at 7pm. If you're interested, you can contact me directly at
Thanks! And Thank you to Leslie for choosing this home :)
Unimpressed / September 11, 2013 at 03:50 pm
"You just can't get past the location — your loss." I think this is the worst part of this whole listing. Good way to speak to people. You might as well have kept going, "The light fixtures need work, don't like it? Screw you!"
Karen / September 11, 2013 at 11:10 pm
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