Welcome to Southern Georgian Bay Carriage Trade Properties

The southern Georgian Bay region is renowned for its natural beauty, the Niagara Escarpment, crystal clear blue water, the world’s longest freshwater beach and unparalleled recreational amenities from boating to private ski clubs and world class golf courses. Long known as the ski capital of Ontario, southern Georgian Bay has been transformed into one of Canada’s premier four season recreational playgrounds offering the coveted lifestyle sought by many luxury home buyers seeking the relaxed sophistication reflected in the ultimate recreational or retirement residence.

Real estate Broker Rick Crouch with Royal LePAGE Locations North Realty represents discriminating buyers and sellers in their quest to buy and sell premium properties around southern Georgian Bay including Collingwood, Wasaga Beach, the Blue Mountains, Grey Highlands and Clearview.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Luxury Home Sales On Pace For a Record Year in 2015

As is the case with the local real estate market overall, luxury home sales across southern Georgian Bay have been very strong in 2015 and we appear headed for a record year.

  MLS® sales for properties priced over $750,000 total 47 units to the end of June compared to 34 sales during the first six months of 2014. As indicated in the accompanying graph, the majority of upper end sales in our area fall within the Blue Mountains.  Through the end of June, 32 properties or 68% of sales in our area over $750,000 fall within that municipality. Many affluent buyers for our region are members of the area's private ski clubs and or golf courses and there preference is often to be close to those amenities.  Developers have responded to this demand by developing plans of subdivision such as Nipissing Ridge, Windrose Valley, Lora Bay and the Georgian Bay Club that are in close proximity to the likes of Craigleith, Alpine and Osler Bluff Ski Clubs or golf the Lora Bay and Georgian Bay Golf Clubs.

  As with other price segments of the market, we have also seen a reduction in amount of available inventory in the upper price ranges.  The current level of inventory stands at 127 active listings priced over $750,000  Based on the current rate of sales this represents approximately 16 months of inventory. Once you get over $1 million however the situation is quite different.  Of the 127 active listings over $750,000, 104 of those or 82% are priced over $1 million.  With year-to-date sales of 21 properties above $1 million the current number of active MLS® listings over $1 million represents almost 30 months of available inventory.

  Many of the sales over $1 million have taken two or three years to complete some even longer. Pricing these properties is of paramount importance to attract a willing buyer, taking the "comparable market analysis" approach in most cases just will not work. When listing higher end properties I take a three pronged approach looking at multiple factors to arrive at an appropriate listing price.

  If you have an upper end property that you are considering selling, please contact me for a confidential, no obligation consultation as to how my expertise combined with the strong market presence of Royal LePAGE in this segment of our market can serve and benefit you with the sale of your luxury property.  In the meantime to learn more, please visit the luxury home page of my personal real estate website.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Special Properties - Warrant Special Marketing

  Marketing your luxury home, condo or cottage is not a process to be taken lightly.  Most properties at the upper end of the real estate market are unique.  Many have been lovingly designed and created by their owners and as such, they appeal to a select group of buyers each motivated by their own specific and often particular tastes.  
  Higher end luxury properties typically take longer to sell.  Buyers in this realm of real estate are obviously are not as prevalent as those looking for a $300,000 or $400,000 home and it is not at all uncommon for a $2 or $3 million property to be on the market for a year or two before attracting a worthy buyer.  Simply pounding a For Sale sign in the front lawn is not enough and doing nothing more will result in frustration for the seller(s) and listing REALTOR alike.  There are many initiatives that can be implemented to effective market a luxury, high-end property and I will share some of them in upcoming posts.  One however that I would like to touch on herein is the use of aerial photography.  

 Traditionally, taking aerial photos required engaging a photographer and a pilot with a plane or a helicopter to circle a subject property for the purpose of taking photos.  These were typically somewhat distant shots given the ceiling restrictions that exist for conventional aircraft.  All that has changed however with the advent of small unmanned drones with cameras and video recorders that can capture photos and video footage from a few feet above the ground to as high as 400 feet or more.   

 I started using this photographic technique back in 2012 as did some of my Royal LePAGE colleagues.  The quality of the photos was and is superb and the fact that they are captured at a relatively low altitude makes them even more unique.  The drone in the accompanying photo is the latest generation of these devices and was used to take the photos of this waterfront property that I have just brought to market.  The operator is a very skilled pilot who has shot hundreds of photos including homes, cottages, condos, gold courses and more.  He is licensed and fully insured should something go wrong.  

  This type of photography not only goes a long way in highlighting the features of a special property from a unique perspective literally, but also serves to give potential buyers a glimpse of the surrounding neighbourhood or area.  Online photos play a huge role in attracting buyers.  Many times, the properties that a buyer(s) selects to view first hand is determined by the number and quality of photos they view looking at listings online.  As such, I am fussy about the photos taken of my listings both inside and out which is why I am committed to using drone photography wherever it is appropriate. 


  Exterior photos is not the only area where advancements in  technology have had an impact.  In my next posting I will cover what we are doing with respect to interior shots that best serves to show our seller clients homes in their best light.

  If you are thinking of selling your property and would like to discuss how photos of the type shown here could be used highlight your home and property, please do not hesitate to Contact Me.  As always I remain committed to "Redefining Your Real Estate Experience."  

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Upper End MLS® Home Sales Up 42% in 2015

  As in prior years, upper end, luxury home sales continue to play a significant role in driving total MLS® dollar sales throughout the Southern Georgian Bay area in 2015 with sales up 42% over the same time last year.

  Through the end of May there have been 40 sales reported though the MLS® system of the Southern Georgian Bay Association of REALTORS® above $750,000 compared to 28 sales in the same period last year.  The Blue Mountains continues to be the hot bed for luxury upper end home sales with most buyers having a strong preference to be located close to Blue Mountain and the area's private ski clubs.  Collingwood, and the Municipalities of Grey Highlands and Meaford are the other three areas where upper end home sales are currently the most prevalent.  Sales in the $800,000 to $900,000 range are the most active this year with 12 sales through the end of May representing a 140% increase over the same period last year.  Sales between $1 and $1.5 million total 9 properties year-to-date up 80% from the 5 sales in the first 5 months of 2014 while sales between $700,000 and $800,000 are up 50% year-to-date

  As with other segments of the market, we have seen a reduction in the number of new MLS® listings coming onto the market for upper end properties.  As of this posting, there are 185 listings currently active on our local MLS® system above $750,000,  This represents approximately 23 months of inventory based on the current rate of sales and clearly illustrates why upper end properties take longer to sell.  By comparison, 100 of the current 185 listings over $750,000 are priced over $1 million.  With $1 million plus sales currently running at a rate of just three per month, the currently inventory level represents 33 month supply of properties to be absorbed in the $1 million plus category.  While recently pricing out a luxury high end waterfront property which I have just listed for sale, I viewed several relevant sales in excess of $1 million and noted that days-on-market for these properties often stretched from 1 to over 3 years.  As such, no where is the element of accurately pricing upper end homes more important.

  In my next post I will talk further about the issue of pricing high end properties in order to attract a willing buyer.