Sunday, January 29, 2017

Stay In Your Current Home And Renovate It

With the real estate market in the Georgian Triangle rising to new heights because of the demand for homes and the lack of homes that are actually for sale more and more people are opting to stay where they are and renovate their current home instead of trying to find a different home.

With all the costs associated with selling a home and then moving people are deciding to take that money and invest it into their current home.

In previous years the renovations we completed for a lot of people had an eye to resale so that they were limited to updating kitchens and bathrooms. But with people deciding to stay in their home for the long term there is a willingness to spend larger amounts of money to do whole home renovations that help the current home work better for the people that are living there.

Additions, outdoor space and garages are also being added while people try to maximize their current location as long as they can.

Money spend properly on your current home and done right should mean that your current home will be up to date and functional for you and your family for the next decade at least.

The larger renovation projects mean larger renovation budgets, these larger renovation budgets must be looked as a long term investment in your current home and not a short term bump in the home price. The added bonus of having low interest rates helps make that larger whole home renovation more affordable.

If your leery about entering the resale home market then maybe you should really think about staying where you are and investing in your current home.

If you are thinking about a renovation for your current home, send us an email at and we can see how we can help you.

Rob Abbott
Village Builders Inc.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Clearview Township Wants New Homes To Have Residential Fire Sprinklers

Clearview Township has decided to recommend to anyone wanting to build a new home in Clearview that they should install fire sprinklers. There was a movement on the council to try and make them mandatory but it was decided that it either wasn't the time or they didn't have the authority.

Regardless of what I think about residential sprinklers in single family homes what this shows is clearview councils complete lack of knowledge on the rising costs of building yourself a new home.

There have been so many changes to the building code in the last 5 years that the cost of building a new home has skyrocketed to the point where most normal people cannot afford to have a home built for themselves.

Here are some of the building code changes that have raised the cost of building a new home regardless of the size of the home, each change adds thousands of extra dollars;

  • Insulation. There have been several insulation changes not only in the walls but in the ceilings and the basement floors. The changes are scheduled to continue into the future with more changes happening over the next two decades.
  • Smoke detectors costs have doubled as the code changes require double the amount and they most have a strobe affect in them.
  • There have been several changes to the building code regarding electrical outlets and breakers that have raised the costs for the installation of the electrical system in a new home.
  • Septic upgrades have raised the cost of new septic systems
There have been 1000's of changes to the building codes in the last half decade, everyone of them has raised the cost of building new homes, there are more changes coming driving the cost up higher over the next decade or two.

Lets talk about the cost of installing a sprinkler system, the average cost in Canada is somewhere between 3 and 6 dollars a sqft. The average house of 2500 sqft that means that 7500 to 15,000 dollars! Those numbers only apply to homes that would be built IN TOWN, homes that would be hooked up to town water with town water pressure. 

If you were to build a home outside of town and you were on a well then you would have to spend a lot more money because you would have to install a holding tank system to be able to have enough water and water pressure to make sure that they functioned properly.

If you look at the building of new homes that happens in Clearview it's mostly happening outside of town as that is the only place you can find places to build as there is a complete lack of building lots. 

Lets now add in the increase to the building permits in the township to cover the losses the building department has incurred and you start to understand that all this does is make building new homes only available to the wealthy, 

There has been a lobby group working to force Ontario to amend the building code to force everyone to not only install them in new homes but also install them in all existing homes. At the moment it isn't law, maybe technology will make it cheaper in the future but at the moment the cost isn't something that we in Clearview Township should have to pay.

Rob Abbott
Village Builders Inc.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

2017 Residential Construction Forecast For Blue Mountain, Creemore, Collingwood, Mulmur, Wasaga Beach

2017 looks to be a banner year for residential construction.

No matter what area you are talking about in the Georgian Triangle the 2017 residential construction forecast looks to be a banner year.

You could be in Creemore, Town of Blue Mountains, Collingwood, Wasaga Beach or the township of Mulmur area and it doesn't look like its gonna matter when you look at the amount of permits that are being issued, applied for or inquired about is skyrocketing. Most of the permits that have to do with the building of new homes or additions are looking to start in the spring/summer time of the 2017 calendar year.

There are a lot of permits and non permit renovations that have started coming up this winter and look to continue throughout the entire year of 2017.

Most of the new home building looks to happen in the Town Of The Blue Mountains, Wasaga Beach and the town of Collingwood as these places have the most vacant lots or build-able land available to build new custom homes.

Here's what each area looks like;

  • The Town of Collingwood has the unique scenario that it has a down town core that has almost no available vacant lots, what they do have are small wartime homes that are not worth much more then the land that they sit on. Because of this there are a lot of people buying these homes and demolishing them to build larger newer custom homes. There is also a lot of older homes in Collingwood that are worth to much money or designated as historical buildings, that means that they cannot be torn down which means that they will require extensive renovations and sometimes almost complete rebuilds. To add space people are enlarging the homes with additions when they aren't able to remove the home to build a larger one.
  • The Town of The Blue Mountains looks to have probably the busiest year that it has ever had when it comes to the building of new custom homes and also renovations. With the hot real estate market people are buying places and then extensively renovating them. The township looks to be on pace to give out more building permits then ever. Quality contractors are going to be hard to find after the spring rush starts with many people either waiting till the following year to start their projects or trying it on their own. The bigger problem will be the availability of sub trades and the lack of them as most of the good quality sub trades will already be committed to the good contractors.
  • Creemore and the township of Clearview. Creemore is probably one of the slower places in the area as there is a complete lack of building lots in the township for people to build homes on. There is a will to build custom homes in the area but the lack of building lots, this forces people to either buy in a different area or buy an existing home and renovate it. Most of the custom homes that are being built in the area are large multi million dollar homes on large pieces of land in the hills surrounding Creemore. A hot real estate market looks to create more renovations as people move into homes that they settle for and then change to meet their lives.
  • Township of Mulmur. Mulmur is a mostly a rural setting, there is no major centre but the area looks like it will be busy with a lot of custom homes slated to be constructed on big and small pieces of property. The area has become a lot more popular in the last decade with its proximity to Toronto and the peacefulness compared to the hustle and bustle of Orangeville and Collingwood. With the hot real estate market a lot of properties have changed hands leading to many renovations needed. Finding good contractors will be challenging later in the year.
  • Wasaga Beach. Wasaga Beach looks to be busy like it has been in the past number of years. Wasaga Beach is one of the few places around that has many track home subdivisions still being constructed. This is one of the few places that an average person can still buy a nice home without having to break the bank. A lot of older homes are being sold and torn down to make way for newer larger custom homes, there are also a lot of renovations because of the number of homes in Wasaga Beach. The one thing about Wasaga Beach is that there are a lot of Contractors that live and work there ensuring that you will be able to find one when you are ready to do the work.
One of the main drivers in the Georgian Triangle area for construction is the ultra hot real estate market, as there is a limited amount of homes for sale they tend to sell quickly leaving little choice in the way of homes to choose from. People thinking about buying a higher priced home are choosing to instead build themselves a new custom home. The only thing restricting the building of more custom homes in a lot of area's is the lack of residential building lots. The average middle class person cannot afford to pay the high price for land and permits and then construct even a modest new home, they have to settle to buy a used home and renovate it to their needs. In the future a township that can create some usable land that people can build custom homes will do very well with a good tax base and permit generation.

The shortness of quality contractors has given rise to a lot of less qualified contractors in the area, don't be rushed into hiring someone that you can't trust just because you want the job completed right away instead of later.

Rob Abbott
Village Builders Inc.