Gail McCormack, the owner of Kawartha Waterfront Realty, recently shared her observations about this year’s cottage market in the Kawartha Lakes with Tess Kalinowski, a real estate reporter for the Toronto Star.
Here are a few interesting insights from the article:
- Ontario resort areas are feeling the effects of the GTA’s hyper-heated real estate market. From Prince Edward County to Collingwood, picturesque landscapes are being dotted by high prices and multiple offers.
- The lust for luxury, a tradition in Muskoka, is migrating to sleepy, lower-priced areas such as the Kawartha Lakes.
- Sales are up, but listings are down significantly.
- In the Kawartha Lakelands (including Lindsay, Bobcaygeon, and Fenelon Falls) the average home sale price for April was $312,765. The difference in average selling price compared to April 2015 was 17 per cent (Canadian Real Estate Association).
- Gail McCormack barely recognizes long-familiar lakefront homes from the previous autumn when she takes her pontoon boat out in the spring. New owners have built lovely year-round homes that would be near or over $1 million if they were to go on the market.
- People who have recently bought properties are either tearing down the existing structures or taking on major renovations.
- Although 2015 was a good year, McCormack anticipates that 2016 will be even better for the real estate market in the Kawartha Lakes.
- There have been some demographic shifts, too. A couple of years ago, buyers were mature couples at or near retirement. Their kids were going off to university. Now, the buyers are younger professionals.
- Younger purchasers have inherited money, or they have bought a second home secure in the knowledge that their city residence is worth a considerable sum.
- When members of this younger demographic purchase a rural property, they want a rural setting. They don’t want to spend weekends mowing the grass.
- Increasingly, people are buying places to live in year-round. Lindsay, Bobcaygeon, and Fenelon Falls offer social opportunities, activities, and diverse services.
- With the expanded road network, including Highway 407 opening this spring, it will be easier to zip up to the Kawartha Lakes
- McCormack pointed out there are a variety of ways to get to the Kawartha Lakes, including scenic country roads.
- Most buyers put a two-hour time frame on their travel to cottage country.
- Spending less than $1 million isn’t an option if you want to own a piece of waterfront in Muskoka – especially on the big lakes of Joseph, Rosseau, and Muskoka.
Here’s the link to the Toronto Star article of May 23, 2016: