Friday, December 12, 2008

Had Enough "Negative" News?

About this time last year, I took a two day media training course as part of my role as President of the Georgian Triangle Real Estate Board. The facilitators of this course were Fraser Kelly and Peter Feniak, two well known Canadian media personalitites. Both of these two men have extensive backgrounds in TV with CBC, Global TV, CTV and other media. They offer in-depth training to business leaders and others that are often thrust unsuspectedly into the "public-eye" whether you want to be or not. They made no bones about the fact that the media in general will focus on the negative as that's what sells and secondly that the media will attempt to put you on the spot and will twist and or distort the message you are attemtping to say.
There is certainly no shortage of negative fodder these days and one must question if journalists and other media types are having a much easier time of practicing their trade. The current issue of McLeans Magazine includes a second article pertaining to Canada's real estate market. Once again, author Jason Kirby is attempting to draw a parallel between Canada and the current real estate crisis south of the border saying it could happen here.
No doubt some Canadians are over-extended with their current mortgages but as has been noted before, Canada's financial system and lending practices have been more rigid than that of our neighbours to the south. Real estate in the Georgian Triangle has sold well over the past 4 or 5 years. Yes we have seen an increase in property values but nothing like the run-up in prices in markets such as Calgary and Vancouver. Buyers that are anxiously waiting for area prices to drop 10% or 20% may be disappointed. Year-to-date, the "average" residential price in our area has dropped just 2.9% stemming largely from the fact that higher-end home sales this year have fallen in excess of 20% over last year. Without significant unit sales of higher priced properties, the average price is not being articially propped up this year giving credance to the claim that prices in our market have yet to fall by any appreciable amount. For 2009 the Canadian Real Estate Association is forecasting a 2.1% decrease in the "average" home price nationally. Sure, some markets will see price reductions greater than that but given the fact that the number of homes for sale is predicted to drop creating a more balanced market combined with the ongoing demand for property in this area for retirement and or recreational purposes, I suspect that our market will not be one of them.

1 comment:

Ian Adams said...

Rick,

I have to say I take a lot of offence at the statement, "that the media will attempt to put you on the spot and will twist and or distort the message you are attemtping to say." As someone who has been a journalist for the last 20 years, I can honestly say I have never, ever done that, nor do I simply "focus on the negative." My job is to tell the 'whole' story, regardless of whether it is positive or negative. If you're being "put on the spot," it's usually because you deserve to be "put on the spot."

Also, "There is certainly no shortage of negative fodder these days and one must question if journalists and other media types are having a much easier time of practicing their trade." Guess what. No, we're not having an easier time - just like everyone else. I have to be concerned about paying the bills in this economy, too. I don't particularly find it 'fun' to cover these types of issues, because I'm affected, just like everyone else.

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Rick relocated to Collingwood from Toronto in 1985 through a transfer with Goodyear Canada. In 1987 Rick was recruited by a major client of Goodyear’s, managing their Canadian business based in Barrie before moving to Chicago in 1992 as Vice President of Sales & Marketing. Upon returning to Canada in 1996, Rick ran an industrial products manufacturing company in Stratford, Ontario. In 1998 Rick returned to Collingwood with his two children. Rick is a licensed real estate Broker with Royal LePAGE Locations North in Collingwood and holds his MVA designation (Market Value Appraiser-Residential). He is an active volunteer in the community serving several years on the Board of Directors with the Collingwood Chamber of Commerce as Treasurer, 6 years on the Board of Directors for the Southern Georgian Bay Association of REALTORS® of which he is the Past President (2008) and currently serves on a committee with the Ontario Real Estate Association. Rick is a diverse executive manager with extensive experience in strategic planning, manufacturing, finance, human resources and quality assurance management.