Martin Slofstra • Toronto Sun • September 7, 2019 – While affordability is key, so too is quality of life.

As all the surveys say, home ownership remains a goal for many Canadians, and affordability often dictates a decision to relocate. 

For others though, as important in the decision to move to a new city or town is quality of life. Case in point are new home buyers George and Laureen Cole, who settled on a new home in Stayner, Ont. at a site called Nottawasaga Station built by Macpherson Builders. 

“We are coming from the GTA area,” says George. “And one of the things for both us is peace and quiet, somewhere relaxed and to get away from the hustle and bustle.” 

Sitting down with them at a restaurant in Stayner, I found their story particularly compelling because their choice of Stayner came after a rather long and exhaustive search. 

The Coles say they looked at sites in Bolton, Waterloo, Paris, Brantford, Georgetown, Milton, Caledon but couldn’t find anything. 

It was while “driving around” by herself that Laureen stumbled upon Stayner including a random visit to the Nottawasaga Station new home site. She was impressed, prompting a call to her husband (on business in Niagara at the time) to meet back at their Mississauga home and immediately head north. That same day, the couple made it to the sales office and put in an offer. 

The Coles became proud owners of the Laurier model, a 2486 sq. ft. unit, on a pie-shaped lot adjacent to the storm water management pond which Laueen says is great for its view of the water. 

“This is our forever home, where we want to be at this stage of life, and where we will want to retire,” she says. 

There is also something to be said for moving to small-town Ontario. The couple is already on a first-name basis with the mayor, and through open houses and events, have met many of their new neighbours. (Occupancy is scheduled for Spring 2020.) 

It helps too that Stayner is in a beautiful area. The couple say they spent a lot of time driving around, visiting nearby Wasaga Beach and Blue Mountain, and are convinced that a place that offers four-season activity is just perfect for them. “We fell in love with everything,” she says. 

As for the home itself, Laureen says “short of building a custom home, this has met almost all our wants and needs. We did not have to do a lot of upgrades, and a lot of the finishes work with our plan.” 

For example, as an incentive, the builder offered hardwood in one room of choice which the couple decided to extend to the rest of the floor. A gas fireplace and appliance package helped seal the deal. 

Dealing with the sales and office staff at Macpherson, she describes as amazing. “This is not a short process. You are spending a lot of time with these folks, plus you keep coming back to visit. But you can tell, we are always welcome.” 

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