The Truth About Our Market – The Hangover…
Part 1 of a 10-Part Series
What question do I get asked most in my life, besides, “Why do you think you’re so smart?”…Well the only one I get asked more, and several times a day, is the classic, “How’s the market?” Always a great one, especially in the hockey dressing room, at Crossfit, or at a dinner party, when I’m trying to enjoy the company of my friends, and the last thing I want to do is talk about real estate…
The problem is, once people ask me this question, they usually don’t have time for this 10-part series, and often scatter, realizing they’ve run into someone who wants to give them a realistic answer aside from, good, bad, slow, up, down, or any other generic response that would fall into the category of idle chatter.
It’s hard for me to even know where to start or end, in describing this incredibly unique and diverse market; from Collingwood East, Central, to West, Blue Mountain East, Central, and West, proximity to ski clubs, proximity to water, old, new, big, small, awkward, etc. So I’ve decided to start with the most sobering aspect of the market…the Hangover. When I say Hangover, it relates to the overinflated bubble created with the arrival of Intrawest and the Village at Blue in the early 2000s, which led people to believe somehow the Niagara Escarpment would grow to heights found at Whistler and Tremblant. It is a bubble that was first created by Intrawest and overinflated to a ridiculous level, with the surge in housing prices throughout the GTA and the growing perspective that if you buy a property, you’ll make a ton of money in a short amount of time.
The Hangover was realized with the rude awakening, as a softening real estate market in the area began to surface in 2008, and the deep pounding headache that ensued with the collapse of the world economy in Fall of 2008.
So here’s the truth. This area is still in its infancy. It’s still not even close to as well-known as other cottage areas found north of Orillia or east of Peterborough. Its growing popularity is based on the incredible 4-seasons activities and growing… active, youthful, healthy, exuberant, organic, natural, athletic, nature-loving, 9-5 hating, ageless…(I couldn’t choose an adjective, so I jammed in a bunch) economy/lifestyle in the area. This popularity has been spread by word of mouth, usually by someone who knows someone who knows someone who bought at the height and has lost money on real estate here, or has a property that has not grown in value since purchase. This hangover has tempered the demand with caution, tentativeness, and uncertain buyers. Buyers looking for the right investment and not realizing that this investment is in lifestyle, not large monetary gain.
These are just the very basics of what makes the market in this area unique and uncertain for many buyers and sellers without the knowledge needed to be empowered to make the right choice, for the right reasons. And that’s what this blog series is about. In short, knowledge and perspective.
Stay tuned for the remainder of this 10-part series. I will share my knowledge and perspective on the area, outline what you need to know if considering buying or selling here, and attempt to keep you entertained in the process 😉