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April 15, 2015

An Acceptable Form of Payment

A farmer, whose land holdings grew ever closer to the boundaries of an expanding metropolis, patiently waited for the right time to sell his land. When that day came, he and his family became instant millionaires. Set for life, he placed his money securely in the bank, and, true to his disciplined demeanor, did not touch it. Within five years through the wonders of inflation (in this case, hyperinflation), the sum he had received for his lands and which he... View Article

March 11, 2015

Look After the Pennies & the Dollars Will Look After Themselves

On my commute from work one day last month, I caught the tail end of a story on CFRB about a recently deceased gentleman who left the majority of his life’s fortune to those who provided for his care in his final days – in this case, the local hospital. The public interest component of the story is not so much the amount of the fortune, but rather assumption of the local town folk in Brattleboro Vermont that Mr. Read... View Article

January 21, 2015

I Am Little Johnny’s Mom

When newspapers have small empty spaces to fill, and have failed to sell the space to an advertiser, they fill the space with a humorous human interest story. One such piece caught my attention. Although the story was clearly intended to demonstrate the ridiculousness of the situation, it struck a nerve with me for another reason. To paraphrase the story: Little Johnny’s mom hosted a birthday party for her five year old which included a ski outing at a cost... View Article

December 30, 2014

Smarter People Than Me & Real Estate Investment

My first job in real estate, had nothing to do with listing or selling houses-rather I was the eight year old office cleaner at my fathers small brokerage; Herb Neumann Real Estate. His office at the time was located on the corner of Woolwich and Cardigan street, in an old house that sat on what is now an empty parking lot. Early on Saturday mornings I would come into the office, vacuum, dust and empty the trash cans of all... View Article

December 16, 2014

Get In Line – No Thanks!

These are turbulent times in America and indeed much of the world. The scene outside of Northline Mall in suburban Houston on December 14th, would leave little doubt chaos and unrest were at hand. There were reports of shots having been fired, though thankfully no one was struck. Store windows had been smashed by some in the crowd, estimated to be in the hundreds. The following day, garbage and debris lay strewn about the property. With all that has transpired... View Article

December 1, 2014

A Different Mindset

In 2008, a former colleague of mine attended a real estate conference in the United States. He returned convinced, and eager to convince the rest of us, that Canada was on the precipice of a massive Real Estate correction – just like the one that had enveloped our southern neighbour. It was a gloomy forecast, and as someone who had hitched his livelihood and financial well being to the real estate wagon – not one I enjoyed listening to. His... View Article

November 24, 2014

A Different Mindset

In 2008, a former colleague of mine attended a real estate conference in the United States. He returned convinced, and eager to convince the rest of us, that Canada was on the precipice of a massive Real Estate correction – just like the one that had enveloped our southern neighbour. It was a gloomy forecast, and as someone who had hitched his livelihood and financial well being to the real estate wagon – not one I enjoyed listening to. His... View Article

October 28, 2014

Nothing New

The local real estate market, by any measure, has been on a strong bull run for well over a decade now. Not surprisingly, some people might begin to worry about the security of their real estate investments, and those of us on the front lines of selling those investments ( for the purposes of this article – all forms of real estate) ought to be confident that the product we are helping our clients acquire are indeed good investments. Nobody... View Article

October 1, 2014

Habits of Success

Steven R. Covey, in his book “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People” -a book first published in 1989- outlines a guide for living an effective life. He does not necessarily say an effective person, is a successful person, but most readers would reach that conclusion on their own. With apologies to Mr. Covey, I have condensed seven habits into two. Giving advice can be a dicey matter. By the very act of being willing to give it, you run... View Article

September 19, 2014

TRUST + TRUST = BUSINESS

At a family gathering celebrating my parents 60th wedding anniversary last month, my aunt recalled their days as new immigrants to Canada. As opportunities to gather seem to become more and more seldom, I found myself listening more intently than I may have in the past. One particular story, and more specifically one phrase, struck a chord. As was, (and is) common amongst new immigrants, families often pooled their resources to purchase their first homes. In our families case, my... View Article