Thursday, June 25, 2015

The Town of Blue Mountains

The Town of Blue Mountains was formed on January 1, 2001, and includes Lora Bay, Thornbury, Clarksburg, Slabtown, Camperdown, Loree, Victoria Corners, Heathcote, Craigleith, Swiss Meadows, Banks, Ravenna, Redwing, Castle Glen, Gibraltor, Kolapore, Duncan, Little Germany, Osler, and Pretty River Valley. The town’s economy is centered on tourism, a large part of which comes from Blue Mountain Resort, Craigleith Ski Club, and Alpine Ski Club. The Town of Blue Mountains also sees a lot of Summer time traffic. The Bruce Trail runs through portions of the town for hikers and there are great mountain biking and rock climbing opportunities, too.

Beaver Valley Community School is the closest elementary school in Thornton, but there are other elementary school choices nearby in Collingwood and Meaford. High school choices for students in The Town of Blue Mountains are also in Collingwood and Meaford. There is a medical center in Thornbury, as well as nearby in Collingwood and Owen Sound, which are also where the closest hospitals are located. There are several churches in Thornbury, such as Grace United Church, St. Paul’s Presbyterian Church, First Baptist Church, and more. Not far from Thornby there are also many choices in Collingwood, Meaford, and Owen Sound.

Blue Mountain Resort is one of the largest resorts in Ontario and has seen a lot of growth and development over recent years. Jozo Weider and his family began development of Blue Mountain Resort in 1941. The resort began with one small chalet, a lift that ran on the ground powered by a truck engine, and 3 runs. Blue Mountain Resort has grown exponentially and now includes many more ski runs, lifts, and chalets, night skiing, several Summer time recreation opportunities such as mountain biking, zip lining, and a private beach on Georgian Bay, accommodations and spa, a village full of restaurants, cafes, and retail, an exciting night life, conferences, weddings, concerts, festivals, and the list goes on!

Beyond the resorts, there are lots of outdoor recreational opportunities at the provincial parks, recreation centers, beaches for swimming and wind surfing, biking trails, hiking trails, camping, parks, and more! There are many fantastic restaurant choices in the many smaller communities that make up The Town of Blue Mountains, including those that have dishes or entire menus focusing on local ingredients. There are also apple orchards throughout The Town of Blue Mountains that, along with other local businesses, are a part of the Blue Mountains Apple Pie Trail.

The Blue Mountains Apple Pie Trail offers tours and adventures for everyone, from outdoor activities to cooking classes, everything in between, and combinations of both! There is a lot to see, do, and taste all year round in The Town of Blue Mountains, for both visitors and local residents. It’s The Town of Blue Mountains lifestyle!!

Click here for more information about the Town of Blue Mountains.

Click here for more information about Blue Mountain Resort and the activities they offer.

Click here for more information about The Blue Mountains Apple Pie Trail and their adventures and tours.

Friday, May 22, 2015

The Right Professional For The Job - ASA Designated Professionals

For anyone who doesn't already know, I am an Accredited Senior Agent (ASA). I have been doing some reading and came across an ASA article about hiring not only a real estate professional, but the right real estate professional for you. Selling or buying a home as a senior is much different than at other stages of your life. There are many new and different priorities and elements to consider, and ASA designated professionals have the knowledge and expertise to guide you through the process. Take a look at this article explaining why you should hire an ASA designated real estate professional, such as myself! If you have questions about the ASA designation or about real estate in general, please give me a call or email: Direct 705-733-5821 or

The Right Professional For The Job

By Barry Lebow

When it’s time to sell your house, you wouldn’t hand the job to a doctor or an accountant or an engineer. Chances are you’d pick a Realtor ®: someone, perhaps, who comes highly recommended by your friends or relatives; someone who knows his subject and your neighbourhood; someone with strong negotiating skills; someone trustworthy. In other words, a real estate professional.

“Real estate agent” and “professional” in the same sentence. Who are we kidding? But the truth of the matter is that Realtors® are committed to their profession and their clients just like doctors, accountants and engineers. And not unlike these other professionals, Realtors® have to complete a comprehensive program of study, plus two years of articling to become licensed. He or she must achieve 75 percent or more in an 18-month education program through the Real Estate College, operated by the Ontario Real Estate Association. To stay licensed, Realtors® are required to upgrade their skills through more than 65 continuing education courses.  These focus on areas such as environment and legal issues, taxation, communications and professional standards and ethics.

Experienced agents can further specialize, taking additional courses to qualify them as specialists in commercial real estate, for example, or, as in the case of Accredited Senior Agents (ASAs), older adults. The Accredited Senior Agent program, obtained through the Toronto-based Real Estate Academy, prepares Realtors® with more than three years experience to become experts in responding to the housing-related needs of older adults. The designation is not only timely – One in seven Canadians was over 65 in 2006, compared to one in 14 in the 1950s,  and 23 percent of Canadians will be 65 or older by 2016 – but much needed, as more and more housing options are developed in response to downsizing baby boomers. It can be confusing and the ASA’s job is to help seniors navigate the environment, whatever is involved. That means everything from house-hunting to obtaining valuations and dealing with auction houses to staging the home for sale and handling the move.

In Ontario, all real estate salespeople -- experienced Realtors® or newbies -- are subject to the Real Estate Council of Ontario’s (RECO) Code of Ethics. RECO is the licensing body that governs the profession on behalf of the Ontario government. It is charged with protecting the interests of the public in dealing with real estate brokerages, brokers and sales representative, and investigates complaints against the profession. As with other professional governing bodies, RECO is your assurance that  you will be dealt with fairly as well as your recourse when you feel you aren’t.

As with other professions, technology is changing the way real estate salespeople conduct their business. To the public’s benefit. Everything from Blackberrys, integrated databases, GPSs and virtual house tours make it easier for a Realtor® to price, promote and sell your house. Still, nothing compensates for the depth of understanding, the network of contacts and the negotiating skills of an experienced professional.

And, like other professionals, Realtors® are subject to severe pressures, including tight deadlines, long working hours, difficult clients and difficult market conditions. It’s not a job many take lightly and few real estate professionals would describe it as an easy job. Nevertheless, it can be personally rewarding just as other professions can be.

So whether you’re looking to buy or sell or obtain a consult when you’re facing  a myriad of housing options, consider the professionals. And call a Realtor®.

This information is brought to you by your Accredited Senior Agent, a specialist in the housing needs of older adults. Your ASA is an experienced real estate professional who has graduated from a special education program focusing on the needs of seniors. For information, please visit or contact Chris Newell President, The Accredited Senior Agent, providers of the Accredited Senior Agent designation, 647-865-8197 

Friday, February 27, 2015


There is no such thing as failing a home inspection. Especially if the home inspector says so!! It is not for him/her to decide. It is not a home inspector's job to advise the buyer to buy or not buy, that is the Realtor's job. The home inspector is there to determine how the home is functioning and if there are any safety issues. The home inspection is a very important part of the sale of a home. The inspector will help in determining if there are any major or minor issues with the home. He/she may even advise the buyer if there may be any costly repairs to be made or major maintenance required. This is good advice to follow. The only person involved in purchasing a home that decides if a home inspection is a valid reason to back away from a deal is the Buyer. 

Every buyer is different. Some buyers get cold feet over very minor issues. Other buyers could care less if the house is falling down, if they intend on doing extensive renovations anyways. One of the biggest concerns that buyers have is flooded basements. This could be a valid reason to walk away from a deal, but it does not mean that you have to. There are many ways to deal with this sort of thing, if you like the rest of the home and property. I have personally bought a number of homes that were flooded or wet. I was not afraid of a project. Now, that being said, it is good advice to fix this particular problem right away. Do not let a wet basement simmer. It is a health concern waiting to happen, as it could produce mold. Always, when dealing with issues you are not capable of properly fixing yourself, get a few quotes from contractors that know what they are talking about. Ask the contractor to explain what they will do and what their warranty is. Also have the home inspector back to check out the work, this may make you feel more comfortable with the end results. 

 A wet basement is just one example of a home not functioning well. This may make you decide to walk away. But before you do, take into consideration all the other things that you may love about the home or property. If you don't want to walk away, then this is where you will find out how good your Realtor is. They may have to start thinking outside of the box to get the deal done. For example, you could get a few quotes for the work to be done and then ask for a price reduction from the original offer price. You could also split the cost with the home owner or get the home owner to have it fixed and have your inspector come back to have a look. In some situations, neither the buyer or seller have the resources to fix an issue. So here is an idea: find a contractor who will do the work and then submit the bills to the lawyer for payment on closing (there is more to this than I can explain here, so call me for more details!). There's more than one way to put a deal together for a seller that is motivated to sell and a buyer that likes the home or property.

I would very much like to hear your comments, or if you have any questions feel free to email or call me. 

Thank you for stopping by to read this. Happy selling and buying!!!

Monday, February 9, 2015

So . . . Why Are These Folks Selling?

I am asked this question all the time, especially in the winter months. There are many reasons why folks would be selling. A lot of buyers think if a person is selling their home in the winter, they are desperate or must sell. This probably isn't true.

There are so many reasons why folks sell:
A seller may be moving for a new job or to get married. Maybe they want to be closer to family. Perhaps the family has outgrown their home because baby number 7 is on the way. Maybe their home has become to big or has too many stairs. Some people are looking for a change of pace and would like to move into the city or out to a rural area. We also see folks selling their vacation home because the kids are too busy with sports in their home town to make a cottage worthwhile.

A client’s motivation for selling doesn't necessarily impact the home’s market value. Every seller has a number in mind, that they can not or will not go below. If you are a buyer,  it is my job as your Realtor to help you determine what a property is worth to you, not to someone else. If the home exceeds your value, then we move on, regardless of why the folks are selling.  I would never push a buyer into making a purchase they are not comfortable with. I give you all the facts that I am aware of and leave the decision in your hands.

So there are many reason why people are selling at all times of the year. If you are interested in buying a home this winter, we would be very happy to have a consultation with you, and educate you on the Real Estate market, with no obligations.

Winter can be a great time to buy. Want to find out why? Check out our blog and website* or call or email us today. We would be very happy to help you make an informed decision.

Thank you for reading this blog. I would love to hear your comments and I look forward to serving you this year!!!


PS. if you are interested in selling your home this winter, in the Collingwood, Wasaga Beach, Stayner or Creemore area, call us today find out what we can offer you, when selling your home. 

* Visit today, or call for your Free Guide to Buying Your Home in the Winter. 705-733-5821