The Annex, the Fashion District, and University are three neighborhoods in downtown Toronto. They are all generally regarded as expensive places to live but to varying degrees. You won't find many condos around here, if that is the type of real estate property you are searching for. This area, especially the Annex and University, is known for large suburban row houses and student apartments. Unless you are extremely wealthy or supported by massive student loans, this area is not a feasible option for most people, though a small amount of housing not already set aside for either purpose is available if you're really set upon moving here. But you won't see the same deals as you'll get with Whitby real estate.
The Annex is one of Toronto's most expensive neighborhoods. You won't find many blue collar workers slugging away their days in a factory making round slings coming home to a place in the Annex. It is over 100 years old and has survived the proposed planning of a freeway that would have cut it in half. The area is almost exclusively residential with quiet, tree-lined streets that admit only local one-way traffic. The houses themselves are large Victorian and Edwardian houses and mansions built at the turn of the century, some of them with lawns. These features, plus its proximity to the University of Toronto and its reputation for being the home to well-educated famous people like Margaret Atwood and David Suzuki makes it one of the most sought-after neighborhoods in Canada. This popularity often leads area realtors to extend the neighborhood's borders into nearby Seaton Village and University to increase sales.
Also prevalent in the area are University of Toronto professors and students; people with netmotion on their laptops, spending hours in coffee shops finishing all-important papers.
This gives the Annex and surrounding area a high rate of seasonal turnover. Because of this trend, it is much more feasible to buy or rent a property there between April and September, while the much less populated Summer Term is underway. Businesses in the Annex are primarily Hungarian run, as the neighborhood became a popular destination for Hungarian refugees during the ill-fated revolution of 1956. Their descendants still run and live in these businesses to this day. The quality of the shops and entertainment offerings in the Annex cater to the university crowd. There are a lot of coffee shops, internet cafes, copy shops for brochure printing online, electronics stores, bars and liquor stores.
The Fashion District is close by as well. It takes its name from the many clothing designers and high-end fabric stores that were located along that corridor. Although there are some clothing stores still present in the area, most have gone elsewhere. Apart from its history, the neighborhood is now not really distinguishable from any of the other combined retail/residential neighborhoods in downtown Toronto. You will find stores selling sweaters and organic diapers but won't find any factories making things like a pneumatic conveying system.
is the neighborhood bordering on the Annex to the West, and parts of it are sometimes referred to as the West Annex or South Annex in order to sell houses in the area. This neighborhood is dominated by the main University of Toronto campus, which is considered a separate entity rather than an actual part of the neighborhood.
The University of Toronto does however own most of the property in the area for its assorted colleges, residences, and affiliated housing projects. 66% of residents of the University neighborhood rent rather than own their home, and the vast majority of them cite UofT as their landlord. This enclave of students, attending bars and working on online project collaboration, drags down the average population of the neighborhood, since over forty percent of residents are between twenty and thirty-five.