Friday, April 26, 2013

Wind Turbines Reduce Property Values


 Across the Province there has been widespread opposition to proposed wind turbine installations which has given new meaning to the term “not in my backyard.”
  Earlier this week an Ontario court ruled that property owners located near established or proposed wind farms have suffered diminished property values.  A lawyer for such landowners say that this recent decision will open the door for legal action against both wind farm developers as well as those parties that lease their properties out to such developers.  This of course has drawn criticism from wind power proponents claiming that the evidence heard was speculative.
  The decision was in fact made relative to a proposed wind farm development here in the Collingwood area.  A group of local landowners had sued WPD Canada Corp as well as a farm corporation that had signed a lease agreement with WPD for a proposed wind farm along County Road 91 west of Stayner in Clearview Township.
  The claim against the defendants was dismissed given the fact the wind farm has not yet received environmental approval nor has it been built.  However, the Judge presiding over the case ruled that damage to the plaintiffs had already been done in that diminished property values had resulted by the mere fact the wind farm project was announced.
  Just how much a neighbouring wind farm diminishes property values remains to be seen.  Some estimates put the number at 20% to 50%.  As a REALTOR® in direct contact with Buyers, I would argue that the  acceptance of and or the willingness by a Buyer to purchase a property near a wind farm is a far greater issue than price.  Some Buyers would not even remotely entertain purchasing a property next to or perhaps even within sight of a wind farm no matter how good a deal it was.  As a Market Value Appraiser I believe it may prove impossible to put a number on how much a property’s value diminishes with a wind farm close by.  This is certainly a subjective question and one that will vary from Buyer to Buyer.
  Needless-to-say, this will not be the last we hear on the controversial issue of wind turbines and I invite you to take my poll on the matter.

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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.