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 

Monday, April 27, 2015

Creemore's History

The Creemore area was settled in 1842 by William Nalty, and the village itself was founded 3 years later in 1845 by Edward Webster. The name Creemore has an Irish origin and comes from the Gaelic phrase “cree mohr”, which means “big heart”. Edward Webster, as the founder, named the streets of Creemore after his family: Louisa, Wellington, Francis, Caroline, Elizabeth, Edward, and George. These streets all still exist in Creemore today.

Creemore’s close proximity to the railway built in the 1850’s brought jobs as the timber trains began running to Toronto in 1861. In 1955 the Creemore railway station burned down and the railway closed in 1960.

During the 1860’s, hotels became a big part of the village. A couple of hotel buildings that are still standing are the Sovereign at 157 Mill street, and the Matchett Hotel at 113 Mill street, which is now the Mad River Pottery.

The weekly newspaper in Creemore, called the Creemore Advertiser, was started in 1886. The name of the paper was changed a few times, starting in 1889 to the Mad River Star, then in 1903 to the Creemore Star, and finally, to the Creemore Echo, which is the paper’s name today.

Creemore experienced many firsts leading up to the 1900’s:
  • A saw mill and flour mill were built by March 1844
  • The first post office in Creemore opened in 1851
  • Creemore’s first school was organized in 1854, just outside of the village on the 5th Line
  • The first church built in Creemore was the Anglican Church in 1855, with the St. John’s United, First Baptist, and St. Andrew’s Presbyterians Churches following within approximately the next 20 years
  • Creemore’s First doctor, Dr. George McManus, arrived around 1865
  • A telephone line was built in 1892 from Glencairn to Creemore and anyone could make a call for 25 cents in Corbett’s Drug Store
  • Electricity came to Creemore by way of a steam plant in 1895

Here is a video of photos and clips from Creemore’s beginnings.

For more information about Creemore's History, check out our source here.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Stayner's History

Stayner was born with the opening of the railway in 1854. The first settler in Stayner was Andrew Coleman, who built the first hotel, which is now the TD Bank. Another one of the first settlers was Gideon Phillips, who was appointed a Justice of the Peace in 1857 and also built a sawmill in Stayner. At this time in 1857, the village was called Dingwall, after a local lumberman. It was later named Stayner in 1864 in honour of a Deputy Postmaster General, Thomas Stayner.

The first school was built around 1860 and held students for all grades. In 1861 Stayner Collegiate Institute was built on an old farm for the older high school students. When the school opened, the barn was still standing, which was used by students who decided to skip class as a hide out, until it was removed that Spring.

Stayner grew and became a more attractive place to settle. Five churches were built in the village as it became more popular: Centennial United Church, St. Patrick’s Roman Catholic Church, First Baptist Church, Good Shepherd Anglican Church, and Jubilee Presbyterian Church. Stayner also attracted Reinhart Vinegars, which moved from Nottawa in 1910 to its current location in the town.

Take a look here at this video of Stayner’s early days.

For more information about Stayner's History, check out our source here.