FAQs.

FAQs.

01

What do I actually own?

You co-own the suite you live in and no longer need to worry about a landlord knocking on the door and giving you 60 days' notice. If you decide to move, you can do so with only 75 days' notice.
 
When you move after the first year, you'll get all your investments back plus your portion of how the value of the suite changed while you lived there. If you need to move in your first year, depending on where you are living there's a 5-10% penalty, so it's best to know you want to live in the suite for at least one year before you become an Owner-Resident.
 
Key's innovative model saves the hassles and a minimum of 6% of the costs involved with buying and selling traditional real estate.

02

Where does Key operate?

We launched in Toronto in December 2020, and our first 42 Owner-Residents now call their Key suites home. We are continuing to add to our portfolio in Toronto and have expanded into Edmonton. Key will also enter into other Canadian and American cities. 

03

Can I ever own the whole suite?

Yes, Owner-Residents can decide to take on a mortgage and buy the suite after the end of their 3rd year, but there is no obligation. You can continue to stay a co-owner if you prefer. Either way, you are building home equity.

04

What’s stopping other investors from buying units and renting them at a higher rate?

Our strict social policies ensure that Key Suites do not become secondary income properties for people simply looking to buy in order to rent out. Everyone who lives in a Key suite is an Owner-Resident, like you.

05

What’s the minimum initial contribution if I want to move in?

Each building will have a different initial contribution starting from 2.5% of the suite’s value to become an Owner-Resident. You can find this information on the suite listings.
 
So, if you're interested in living in a suite valued at $600,000, your initial 2.5% home equity investment would be $15,000. If the suite is $500,000, your initial investment would be even less ($12,500). And you don't need to commit to a mortgage.

06

Can I contribute more to start?

Absolutely. And the more home equity you own, the less you pay to live in your gorgeous suite each month, plus your equity can grow faster since it’s based on your ownership.

07

Does my monthly payment add to my equity?

Yes. Every month a portion of your monthly payment will go towards growing your home equity with Key. This starts at $50 and is dependent on the building you are living in. The rest of the monthly payment covers important things like maintenance costs, shared building expenses, and property taxes.

08

Can I contribute more on a monthly basis?

Yes, and we encourage it. You can roll in a monthly contribution, adding it to your monthly payment. Even a little extra each month goes a long way over the years.

09

Are dogs allowed?

Only the cute ones. So…all dogs, yes.

10

What does my monthly residency payment cover?

Since you own a portion of the suite, the monthly payment covers rent for what you don't yet own. The majority of this payment covers the typical costs of living in your home -- important things like maintenance costs, shared building expenses, most of the utilities, and property taxes. The amount you pay is reduced based on your initial investment. Each time you invest more equity, your monthly residency payment is reduced.

11

How does Key make money?

Key makes money a few ways, including through asset management, professional property management and by driving greater efficiencies in how the suites are managed. Plus, longer term, Key is developing a digital exchange and curated marketplace that will benefit our Owner-Residents.

12

 How many co-owners are there per suite?

As an Owner-Resident, you are the sole co-owner of the suite and the only resident of the suite. You co-own alongside Key’s investors or property owners. This provides an opportunity for you to build equity in the real estate market years sooner.

13

What are the closing costs involved with co-ownership with Key?

Key's innovative model saves the hassles and a minimum of 6% of the costs involved with buying and selling traditional real estate. After the first year, Owner-Residents can leave at any time with just 75-days notice and they will get their investments plus their portion of how the value of the suite appreciated while they lived there. Key’s fees are only 1% of the Owner-Residents invested equity (as little as 0.025% of home value).
 
If an Owner-Resident does decide to take on a mortgage after three years, the Owner-Resident will pay the costs associated with buying and selling real estate. First-time home buyers can take advantage of tax refunds and other incentives.

14

Can we benefit from leverage with Key? What is the Co-financing Benefit?

Key offers a Co-financing Benefit to help you build home equity faster. For every $1 you invest, you will also receive another $1 in leverage. Unlike a mortgage, you don't actually have to take on this debt in order to enjoy the benefit of leverage. The only cost to you for this benefit is a small interest charge.
 
The $1 to $1 Co-financing Benefit applies up to when your home equity reaches 25% of the Suite value. After this point, it is applied at a lower ratio. You have the option not to participate in the Co-financing Benefit, if preferred.

15

What happens to my initial investment?

Your initial investment grows with the value of your suite. As with all real estate investments, you are taking on the risk of your suite depreciating with the market. When you’re ready to move out, after your first year, you just need to give us 75 days’ notice and you’ll get your initial investment and any appreciation back, plus the appreciation on the Co-financing Benefit.

16

What happens to my additional equity contributions?

Like your initial investment, the value of your equity contributions will also grow with the value of your suite. Plus, they will also be matched with $1 in leverage through Key’s Co-financing Benefit until your home equity reaches 25% of the suite value. After this point, it is applied at a lower ratio. 

17

How is this different from renting?

Co-owning enables you to grow equity from day one and live in the suite as your personal residence without needing to qualify or commit to a mortgage. With Key, your monthly payment goes down as your equity increases. Plus you have the flexibility to buy on your own schedule. After three years of co-ownership, you can choose to purchase the suite and take on a mortgage, or you can continue to co-own and build equity on your terms. It’s up to each Owner-Resident.
 
Key’s mission is to make it possible for everyone to prosper from real estate by removing the need to qualify for a mortgage or save for the traditional 20% down payment.

18

Who is Key right for?

Key is making homeownership accessible to all the people currently locked out of owning. Our Owner-Residents range in age from early 20’s to early 50’s and include singles, couples and families across a wide range of professions. We have tech and finance industry professionals, architects, nurses, teachers, entrepreneurs, food service workers, and newcomers to Canada who are now building equity and enjoying the social and financial benefits of homeownership with Key.

19

As a co-owner are you on title?

Owner-Residents co-own their unit with the property owners. They have all the benefits of home ownership including growing home equity, security of occupancy, and the ability to customize. They also have the flexibility of renting, with lower monthly cash outflow, the ability to leave on short notice, and the flexibility and financial freedom of not being attached to a mortgage with high selling costs and break fees.
 
The property owner initially remains on title, which enables Owner-Residents to save on the typical costs associated with buying and selling real estate and provides them the freedom to move with short notice.
 
For Owner-Residents who aspire to be on title, they have the unique option with Key to take on a mortgage and purchase the home outright after three years of co-ownership if they’d like to. They can also continue to co-own and build equity on their terms – the choice is completely up to them and what works best for their stage in life.

20

How are the values of Key suites calculated?

Suite values are determined based on the suite size and fair market value.
 
We use a third-party automated valuation model that has been validated and stress-tested for precision, reliability and consistency of valuation results.
Certified appraisers confirm or adjust the automated valuation when an Owner-Resident is moving out.
 
If an Owner-Resident chooses to take on a mortgage after three years of co-ownership, the price is again verified or adjusted by an appraiser. And the home equity that the Owner-Resident has built up goes against the purchase price.
 
The Key app tracks market value of the Owner-Resident’s suite, so they have visibility into how the value of their suite and investment is performing on a monthly basis.
 
With Key, prices are transparent to all parties, so there are no bidding wars or blind offers, none of the high costs and hassles associated with typical real estate transactions, and everyone is treated fairly with alignment of interests.

Learn more about building home equity with Key.