Latest Posts

June 1, 2013

Setting the Bar Low

By the age of 10, I was the only sibling of five remaining in the family home…located just beyond the reach of Rogers Cable. Rabbit ears mounted atop our 21 inch black and white RCA delivered three channels on a consistent basis, (another two and a half on exceptionally clear days) one of which was usually showing Gilligan’s Island reruns. As I was effectively the only child of two middle aged working parents during these years, I had to learn... View Article

June 1, 2013

Guelph’s Changing Rental Landscape

This past month the Ontario Municipal Board granted approval for an 1100 room facility at the corner of Gordon street and Stone road on the  site of the current Best Western. At first blush, the ruling may appear to be a game changer for the student rental market in the City of Guelph. With many of the recent medium density, mid-rise accommodation buildings sprouting up in the south end of the city having been snapped up by investors and parents... View Article

May 1, 2013

Keep On Picking

PHOTO CREDIT: NENUSKA My uncle used to lament ‘too soon old and too late smart’ when I was too young to appreciate how true the words were. That’s the paradox of youth – when you’re young – you think you’re smart. Gradually, life changes both and you begin to realize you’re not so young, and not so smart. The wonderful thing about real estate ownership, is that you don’t have to be too smart to acquire it, and just smart enough... View Article

April 1, 2013

Short Arms. Deep Pockets.

At least twice a month my father and I meet for breakfast at Eggcetera after I have dropped my kids off at school. It’s something of a luxury of self-employment to afford the time required for our bi-monthly routine, and one that I thoroughly appreciate. My dad keeps a little paper notebook in his breast pocket where he keeps phone numbers, a record of appointments and most importantly a log of who paid for the last breakfast. In the same pocket, he... View Article

April 1, 2013

A Rising Tide

A good friend and sometimes business partner of mine is, like myself, a second generation Canadian born into a real estate family. Mark’s father, like mine, turned to Real Estate to forge a better life for him and his family. Years ago, (beginning in the early 1990’s) when life did not seem nearly as busy as it does today, I used to tag along with Mark as he had coffee with his father at the old Co-op Diner on Speedvale... View Article

March 11, 2013

Crab in the Bucket Story

One time a man was walking along the beach and sees another man fishing in the surf with a bait bucket beside him. As he drew closer, he saw that the bait bucket had no lid and had live crabs inside. “Why don’t you cover your bait bucket so the crabs won’t escape?”, he said. “You don’t understand.”, the man replied, “If there is one crab in the bucket it would surely crawl out very quickly. However, when there are... View Article

February 1, 2013

Just Be Nice

My wife, during her career as a teacher, used to comment to me about the importance of a good school secretary in maintaining a smooth running school. She had experienced several, in her particular case, all female. A good one could be the benevolent caring motherly type one moment, and Margaret Thatcher the next. Staying on her good side was well advised whether you were a teacher or principal0. Circumvention was a strictly ‘at your own risk’ proposition. Businesses I... View Article

January 1, 2013

Pennywise

    Justified or not, I bear a reputation for frugality. My wife feels it is justified…I feel it is not. In any case, I will admit that I have, at the very least, a dichotic relationship with money- or more precisely – parting with it. I generally think little about the price of menu items when at a restaurant, yet I will agonize over purchasing Campbell’s chicken broth instead of the no-name variety that might save me 50 cents.... View Article

December 12, 2012

Twitter Me This

Change comes reluctantly to me. If people have tendencies, mine has been that I am a slow adapter – the slightly indignant cousin of slow learner. I bought my first stereo – the kind that played records – about the same time that CDs came out. Today I own a CD player but not an ipod. I bought a great SLR camera together with rolls of Kodak film several years after digital cameras hit the market and my current cell phone has... View Article

December 1, 2012

The New Face of Guelph

In mid 2012 Katherine Mclaughlin of Thomasfield Homes presented to the the Guelph Developers Association a startling report on land availability.  We presented the report to our office and it’s entirety is available to CBN members in our online library, but I will summarize it for you as follows: The subdivisions of a decade ago are a thing of the past – there will be no more predominantly single family home subdivisions created in the City of Guelph. Whether that... View Article