When it comes to real estate, we seem to pay a lot of attention to trends. It makes a lot of sense. Home buyers want to ensure that the home they are buying will retain its value, and what's more valuable than something that's in demand? Trends seem to determine what is in demand and what isn't.
Real estate professionals also keep an eye out for trends. It helps us determine where we should concentrate our efforts. Our paycheques depend on this.
It seems to me that the zeitgeist of this particular real estate era centres around the concepts of downsizing and simplifying. This is pretty natural since the North American population is aging and a great number of people are experiencing financial uncertainty. It's also pretty trendy in a Zen sort of way to have the desire to carry less burdens on our shoulders.
This isn't true of everybody though. I come across a lot of people in the Quinte area who have done the exact opposite. Some are refugees from the busy Toronto and Ottawa lifestyles. While they relish the slower pace of life here, they are also positively delighted at how much further their real estate dollars can go in this area. They had no desire to buy a smaller home, in fact, they often buy a much larger home and many of them are enjoying their large country lots or wilderness acreage that they could easily afford with the equity they had accumulated in their Toronto or Ottawa homes. You can often see them grinning from ear to ear sitting atop their riding lawnmowers doing a terrible job of cutting their lawns. More time, more toys.
One of the benefits of this area is that Toronto is only a 90 minute drive down the 401, so they don't feel cut off from their previous social lives. These people are getting the best of both worlds. This area is well known for its multitude of recreational activities as well as many trendy small town businesses and organizations. Buying a dream home to retire to doesn't necessarily mean buying a smaller house or a condo in some bland section of a large city, it can often mean buying a larger home to expand into while still minimizing financial obligations.
If the thought of living in a smaller home or condo does not appeal to you, take heart, you can still downsize your monthly payments while expanding your lifestyle. Just check out the real estate market in the Quinte area.