Grey County, ON Real Estate News

By Fox Bloggers, Get to know the Ontario Real Estate Market
You are a first-time buyer who has just purchased a condo for sale in Owen Sound. You’ve got your keys, and it is now time to unpacked all your belongings, you may feel a bit of panic.How will all of this stuff fit? You may have to purge some items to make your new space work. However, organization is a magical practice—you will be surprised how much extra space you’ll gain when everything has a place of its own. Here are some tips for downsizing and maximizing storage in your small space.Utilize Your Existing Closet SpaceOftentimes, condos in Owen Sound aren’t designed with enough closet space and there may also be a den that doesn’t have a closet at all. Before you get everything out and it ends up all over the floor, consider a trip to the hardware store to get some shelves and brack...
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By Marg Scheben, Edey - Collingwood, Ontario
(RE/MAX four seasons realty limited)
I once listed a house for sale in Collingwood where a suspected murder had taken place.  I consulted with two lawyers about disclosure requirements and got two answers:  one was to follow the instructions of my client and the second was more of a question:  would want or need to know this and, then make my decision from there.  I'll tell you what happened later. In an interesting seminar that I attended earlier this year, the instructor neatly categorized property stigmas into three categories: 1.  Pure Stigma where a property has been psychologically impacted by a suspected or actual event such as haunted homes or, properties where a murder, suicide or death occurred 2. Physical Stigma where a physical problem has affected the property such as UFFI, mold, asbestos, lead-based paint or ...
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By Marg Scheben, Edey - Collingwood, Ontario
(RE/MAX four seasons realty limited)
My favourite photographic contributor is at it again.  E.H. Scott,  a client of mine who lives atop the Niagara Escarpment to the south of Collingwood, sent these two photos he took on March 27th.  The first was taken at 20:53 in the middle of Earth Hour and, the second at 21:45, after Earth Hour had finished. You can clearly see that after Earth Hour, the glow in the sky from Collingwood - Blue Mountain is much greater.   According to the president of Collus (our local utility provider), Collingwood's consumption dropped 5.6% compared to 9% last year.  This could be due to a number of factors since the same trend was seen across Ontario.  For example, it was cold that day.  It could also be due to lower consumption patterns become a norm on a regular basis thereby lessening the impact ...
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By Marg Scheben, Edey - Collingwood, Ontario
(RE/MAX four seasons realty limited)
Even with the new proposed regulations surrounding their installations, the debate about wind turbines continue to rage in Ontario and certainly here in the Blue Mountain area. A recent column by Bob Aaron in the Toronto Star caught my attention as he described the case of a taxpayer who challenged the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC) in September, 2008. (How did we miss that!?)  This case set a landmark precedent attaching a dollar value to potential impacts of industrial wind installations on surrounding land owners. A fellow by the name of Paul Thompson of Amaranth Township in the Shelburne area, appealed the assessed value of his home on the basis that it was located opposite a hydro substation that served an area wind farm.  His appeal was not actually based on the ...
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By Kathy Clulow, Trusted For Experience - Respected For Results
(RE/MAX All-Stars Realty Inc. Brokerage)
Craigleith Station Re Opened in September of 2008 as the Craigleith Heritage Depot The Station originally built in the 1870's has been lovingly restored by the Town of Blue Mountain staff, and many volunteers. It is now a museum containing a lot of local history and information. The old rail line is now a bike / walking path that runs from Collingwood to Thornbury and beyond. A great day trip destination You can read more about it here at mycollingwood or here from the railroad guy There are many exhibits of the fossils found in the black shale of the area including braciopods, graptolites, and cephalopods as well as local history and information.    
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By Marg Scheben, Edey - Collingwood, Ontario
(RE/MAX four seasons realty limited)
Collingwood, Blue Mountain and Area Real Estate Prices Rising Again First, a disclaimer:  Statistics can be dangerous things if they are not carefully and accurately assessed.  For example, our MLS® system uses average sale prices rather than median sale prices.  Neither is an exact science but when used comparatively, it gives us a general sense of trends only.  For example, the absence or presence of very low or very high-end sales can dramatically alter averages within small sampling groups.  Now having said that, I think we have a fairly safe picture emerging.  I've taken a look at the average sale prices of residential properties in six areas including Blue Mountain, Clearview, Collingwood, Grey Highlands, Meaford and Wasaga Beach.  Using the MLS® data provided for those areas by t...
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By Sheri Hill
(ROYAL LEPAGE RCR Realty, Brokerage)
A little update.... Here in Markdale, we have seen two devestating events late this summer that will have long lasting effects on our community.  First was the Tornado then the Chapman's fire.   The Tornado was expensive, both to our friends and families and to the Municipality.  Those involved will not soon forget the personal and financial toll any time soon. George St Markdale Cemetary   The fire at Chapman's carried a hefty community toll.  With so many in the area directly or indirectly employed here, the ripple effect will be astounding.  With the Chapman family's quick response to rebuilding, many breathed a sigh of relief, however, nothing happens overnight.    Things are bound to change.  Our daily lives are proof of that.  We are resilient and will pull through with flying col...
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By Kathy Clulow, Trusted For Experience - Respected For Results
(RE/MAX All-Stars Realty Inc. Brokerage)
If your ever up in the Bruce peninsula area there is a wonderful old mill dam and waterfalls in the little Hamlet of Walters Falls that make a side trip well worth while. Walters Falls is one of seven waterfalls on the 150 kms Grey County's Waterfall Tour.   You just never know who you will run into on a road trip. After talking pictures of the Falls we drove around town a little and stopped at the corner gas station / general store / restaurant for a soda The sign caught my eye so I started taking pictures. This caught the attention of the proprietors Carl and Cathie Eno. Their web site claims they are not easy to find as ... "... our roads tend to turn you around a bit.  the locals love to watch lost tourists drive by slowly. the favourite sport is predicting how long it will be befor...
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By Marg Scheben, Edey - Collingwood, Ontario
(RE/MAX four seasons realty limited)
One of the things I've enjoyed most about being part of the Active Rain family is connecting with REALTORS® from all over the continent.  There's a dynamic, intelligent and caring community of people in our business and, I've always learned or been inspired by the posts I've read. Two of the people I've had a chance to meet on a couple of occasions now are Kathy Clulow and her hubby Barrie from Uxbridge, Ontario.  Last week they made the very good decision (shameless plug alert) to  have a mini-vacation in the Collingwood - Blue Mountain area and we were able to get together for lunch.   I always learn something from our conversations and very much enjoy the time spent together. Kathy shared a few photo's with me from their recent trip.  The first was taken at Northwinds Beach in Craigl...
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By Marg Scheben, Edey - Collingwood, Ontario
(RE/MAX four seasons realty limited)
  One of my clients sent me the most beautiful picture a few weeks ago and I'd like to share it with you. These folks immigrated to Canada from the U.K. in order to improve their quality of life.  They bought a lovely rural property on the Niagara Escarpment just south of Collingwood in the stunning, Pretty River Valley.  Now, they take the time to smell the roses so to speak and, they notice things others may take for granted. Case in point:  on a walk down their country road one night a few weeks ago, they took this picture which looks north from their home toward Georgian Bay.  You can clearly see the yellow glow of lights over Collingwood and the white hues over the night ski runs at Blue Mountain. Of course, you can't help but notice the stars.  My client  wanted to take the same p...
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By Marg Scheben, Edey - Collingwood, Ontario
(RE/MAX four seasons realty limited)
A few weeks ago, I learned a lesson in the obvious.  It was a lesson about how easily we can sometimes take things forgranted. While showing properties in Blue Mountain to some buyers who were here from Asia, one of them asked me what the difference was between a cottage and a chalet.  It seems that in our discussions and in her research about Ontario real estate, the two terms came up at different times and she was curious. It got me thinking about how I intrinsically just know the difference but it was challenging to explain in a way that made sense when I said it out loud.  So, since then I did a little homework on Google and interestingly, the terms have different usages in different parts of the world. Generally speaking, Webster's Dictionary defines a chalet as "A wooden dwelling ...
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By Marg Scheben, Edey - Collingwood, Ontario
(RE/MAX four seasons realty limited)
I know that statistics and charts can be a bit mind numbing.  On the other hand, they are the story that we need to know telling us where we've been and where we might be going.  I like to watch certain stats in particular:  the number of new listings, the number of sales, the number of price reductions but most of all, the sales to listing ratio.  That is perhaps one of the better indicators of what is going on in the market. Let me explain this little ratio thing.  It's calculated by dividing the number of sales by the number of listings.  It gives us a snapshot of what percentage of the listings on the market are selling.  We look at them both on a monthly (or weekly) basis and also year-to-date.  Although there are divergent opinions, generally speaking, a sales-to-listing ratio of ...
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By Marg Scheben, Edey - Collingwood, Ontario
(RE/MAX four seasons realty limited)
After you have established the right asking price, have prepared and staged your luxury home, it's time to begin marketing the home for sale. Remember the question most sellers ask is "Will you advertise my home in the Globe & Mail?"  Let's think about that.  What we want to find is a suitable buyer.  Less than 5% of buyers can afford an upper-tier home and even fewer (less than 1%) of buyers in South Georgian Bay buy a property valued at over 1 million dollars.  Where are those buyers and how do we find them? I can hardly imagine someone sitting down to read ads of out-of-town properties for sale unless they have some interest in the topic.  Secondly, if they do, I doubt they suddenly discover South Georgian Bay for the first time and I doubt even more that any ad, usually 30 words or ...
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By Marg Scheben, Edey - Collingwood, Ontario
(RE/MAX four seasons realty limited)
Many people who own secondary properties in vacation country like to rent them out from time to time to cover overhead costs associated with owning such a property.  That may get a little more difficult soon. The Town of the Blue Mountains has been discussing the issue of short term rentals for some time now and earlier this year, they enacted an interim control by-law to allow some time for the study of this matter. This week, a staff report came out with recommendations governing the licensing of short term accommodations and, from what I read, it will be VERY tricky to get approvals in most residential zones if this is approved.  I'm not saying that I disagree with the direction.  If you own a home in a residential area, you want your investment to be protected from commercial uses t...
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By Marg Scheben, Edey - Collingwood, Ontario
(RE/MAX four seasons realty limited)
Just a few years ago, it was pretty rare to see a home sold for over a million dollars in South Georgian Bay.  Today, there are 1-2 luxury home sales each month and we're starting to see homes topping two and three million dollars.  One property in the area is listed for far more. Luxury homes often take more than a year to sell even in a strong market.  Currently in our area, there are 34 residential properties for sale ranging in price from $1,000,000 to $9,985,000.  In the last six months, there have been 8 sales so, at the current rate, there is better than a two year supply of "inventory" of high-end homes not including the vast number of custom and new homes available as well. As a REALTOR®, taking a listing for a high-end homes requires careful thought.  Yes, commissions on luxur...
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By Marg Scheben, Edey - Collingwood, Ontario
(RE/MAX four seasons realty limited)
My first real estate advisor was my Dad.  He used to say that when you buy a home, make sure it's one that "first your foes lived in, then your friends and then you."  The idea was that a new house has deficiencies that can cause frustrations while subsequent owners add to and perfect a home.  I admit these lessons coloured my viewpoint.  While sometimes a new home is suitable for certain buyers, I generally think a resale home offers less risk and more benefit in most cases.  A few years ago, I had a client who insisted on buying one of the first 3 homes to be built in a brand new subdivision.  I cautioned her that there was a risk in doing so.  What if the developer sold off the land to someone else who had an entirely different vision for her neighbourhood?  What if their work crews ...
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By Marg Scheben, Edey - Collingwood, Ontario
(RE/MAX four seasons realty limited)
I remember the very first time I came to Collingwood sometime in the early 1980's.  I came in from the west and as I rounded the bend on Huron Street near where the museum is located, I caught my first glimpse of Blue Mountain. It was early evening on a clear winter day and the lights marked the runs on the ski hills.  It took my breath away.  On my right was that massive expanse of Lake Huron called Georgian Bay.  It was truly love at first site.  Blue Mountain is much more than a ski hill.  It's part of the Niagara Escarpment (NEC) which in 1990, UNESCO designated as a World Biosphere Reserve naming it as an internationally recognized ecosystem. The ridge is the most dominant topographical feature of Southern Ontario and it stretches 725 kms from Niagara to Tobermory.  The ridge was f...
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By Marg Scheben, Edey - Collingwood, Ontario
(RE/MAX four seasons realty limited)
With spring fast approaching, we're getting more enquiries again from people who are looking for vacant land on which to build their new home now or at some point down the road.  After 19 years in this business, I've seen both winners and the losers in the building game.  There are those who built something that subsequently had a higher resale value within a few years and, there are those who have far more into their dream home than they'll get out for a very long time.  The difference between winning or losing at the building game is made up of a number of different factors:· location· the property · the design· the quality of construction· the quality of the finishes• again, the LOCATION You'll notice, I didn't say, the price.  The cost is derived from all of these other factors and ...
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By Marg Scheben, Edey - Collingwood, Ontario
(RE/MAX four seasons realty limited)
Would you like to have instant access to MLS® listings of properties for sale in the Collingwood - Blue Mountain areas?  Chances are that many of the people reading this will answer yes.  Statistics show that most people who visit a real estate blog or website for the first time are mainly interested in one thing: information on area listings.  If you are one of those people, then I have some good news for you.You can easily surf around MLS® listings on your own by visiting Canada's MLS® listing web portal at www.mls.ca or by visiting my website portal to area listings.   It's useful but really,  the information is a bit limited and it can be somewhat tedious to wade through everything just to see what is new.There is a better option.  You can now have your very own private website wher...
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By Marg Scheben, Edey - Collingwood, Ontario
(RE/MAX four seasons realty limited)
Things sure can change fast.Last month, hardly anyone around here was talking about the economy.  Environment, yes.  But economy?  No.  Suddenly, the economy has risen to the top of our consciousness and everyone seems a little on edge.  That's as true here in the Georgian Triangle as it is everywhere in the country and naturally, this raises major questions when it comes to real estate strategies.  Should I buy now?  Should I sell now?  What will happen in six months?  Will prices go up or down?  These are all valid questions and ones that I imagine most REALTORS® are being asked daily.First, I stand by my predictions for growth in the market in 2008.  I won't be swayed by the fear mongers.  Let me stray for a moment to give you a classic example of how any fact in open to interpretati...
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Grey County, ON Real Estate Professionals