Prince Edward Island

Prince Edward Island, is the smallest of the Canadian provinces both in size and population. While it is densely populated, it is not overcrowded. The Province is also called 'PEI', or simply 'The Island'. The capital city is Charlottetown.

They say that to be a 'true blue' Prince Edward Islander you must be born here. Otherwise, you're 'from away'. Despite this divine right to citizenship, Islanders adopt all who come to stay and its 1.2 million annual visitors. They come to the Island to enjoy its pastoral scenery, relaxing white sandy beaches and relaxing pace.


The 'Island way of life' is an often quoted and much discussed idea in Canada's small green province in the Gulf. For both Islanders and those 'from away' the quality of Life on this Island is the best. It is an ideal place to raise a family, to operate a business or to rejuvenate the mind. The way of Islanders and their lives are clearly expressed in its arts, culture and heritage. Everywhere you will find crafts, theatres, and festivals that celebrate life here on the Island.

Enjoy delicious lobster suppers, stroll uncrowded beaches, play golf on more than a dozen courses. Visit the places described in the story, Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery. PEI has something to offer everyone.

source: Prince Edward Island Official Website


Business, Thursday, June 1, 2006, p. B6
Demand for, value of cottages soaring



TORONTO - A Royal LePage report suggests many Canadians are willing to pay more for recreational properties than their homes.


Prices and demand for recreational properties continue to increase in most markets across the country, says the report released Wednesday.


The tight market conditions have been created by cottage owners staying put and young professionals, young families and baby boomers all trying to buy properties.


Almost one-quarter of those surveyed said they were willing to spend more on a recreational property than a primary residence. Over half this group would spend $50,000 to $150,000 more on a recreational property; 14 per cent would spend over $150,000 more.


Average price for a cottage is $413,694, the study says. Comparatively, national average price of a standard two-storey home is $340,956, says the Royal LePage survey of Canadian house prices.

Category: Economy
Uniform subject(s): Real estate industry
Length: Short, 123 words

© 2006 The Guardian (Charlottetown). All rights reserved.

Doc. : news·20060601·GC·0077

This material is copyrighted. All rights reserved. © 2006 CEDROM-SNi

MAD about Canada


Booyah! So says Jim Cramer several times a night on his manic, comic and — truth be told — completely bizarre stock market talk show, “Mad Money,” on CNBC. The perfect showcase for a man who seems to have the energy for not one, but perhaps six or seven normal human beings, the show provides the most revealing peek inside the mind of a trader, with its ruthlessness (“Go cry to your mother!”), its playfulness (“Are you ready, skee-daddy?”) and the trader’s unique ability to switch from a “Buy!” to a “Sell!” mentality in the blink of an eye. And that’s just his afternoon job, on top of a radio show, a column in New York magazine and a charitable trust he continues to steer after retiring from running his own hedge fund.>>> Not that Cramer blinks too much — even when he’s relaxed, his relentless intensity means that his eyes always seem on the verge of popping out of his head. Ask him what he thinks of Canada and he’s off and running again, talking about the absurdity of a one-time US67¢ loonie and why his fellow Americans are foolish to ignore investing opportunities across the 49th parallel. The co-founder and popular contributor to says he’s no expert on Canada, but it should come as no surprise that he has no shortage of opinion on the place. Financial Post Business sat down with Cramer in late March to find out what the hardest-working man in show business has to say about his picks and pans north of the border.


Q - The most important question first: Tim Hortons. Were you a buyer at the IPO? Yes, I was. I said, Buy it on the deal and sell at US$28 [on the New York Stock Exchange]. I rest my case on that one. That was a good call.
Okay, then we can step back a bit. Canada: Buy, hold or sell?


Buy, absolutely. Four years ago I went to Prince Edward Island for a two-week trip. That was when the loonie was at US67¢. I couldn’t believe how cheap it was. I tried to buy some P.E.I. land, but there’s some foreign ownership stuff that got in the way. In any case, it struck me as being absurd that Canada was so much cheaper than the U.S. And that’s across the board. You go buy $10 worth of candy and it’s like $40 worth of candy in New York. While I know it’s very subjective, the sense that people are honest and hard-working is also attractive. It seems silly and simple, but it struck me as a truly investable situation. I still think it is today. So are you moving to P.E.I. when you finally slow down?


I love how P.E.I. is so warm because of the Gulf Stream. I wanted 200 acres of beachfront property, but you need a Canadian partner to buy that land. It reminds me of Cape Cod in the 1960s, when if you had any money, you could buy great land.


What do you say to Canadians who can’t get CNBC to watch your show?
Well, they can listen to me on the Web. But what’s that radio station? CHUM? I asked whether we could get the show on there. My people told me not to even bother — that I’d never get on.


You’re in good company. Howard Stern has had trouble staying on the air in Canada for years.


If Stern has had trouble, there’s no way they’d take Cramer. B



article photo


Boomers drive boom in cottage prices

00:00 EST Friday, Apr 21, 2006
Waterfront recreational properties are in record demand across the country, thanks to a growing wave of retiring workers and cash-rich cottage buyers from Canada's resource sector.


"The boomers are starting to enjoy the fruits of their labour," said Elton Ash, executive vice-president with Re/Max of Western Canada. "This is a chance to live the dream and they are creating huge demand."


Buyers in the 50-plus age bracket are behind the increased activity in about two-thirds of the recreational property markets included in a national study of first-quarter activity released by Re/Max yesterday. Add to that mix resource workers from Western Canada with five-figure bonus cheques, and the appetite for a home away from it all has never been greater, Mr. Ash said.


" These are hard-working people. The economy is good. Now they have an opportunity to enjoy the outdoors."

Brian Wheeler and his wife, Kerry, are doing just that. The Victoria couple knew they wanted to live by the water in retirement and found their ideal seaside home last year.


It's located a short drive from the city on a small island off the coast near Sidney, B.C. " It's an absolutely incredible place," said Mr. Wheeler, 55, who retired from Canada Post Corp. on Valentine's Day after 31 years. His wife, a nurse, is still working and commutes each day in their boat back to the main island and her job as a community service worker.

Their two-bedroom home on the car-free island has its own sandy beach. At night, they can look north and see the lights of Vancouver.


" This was a dream we have always had," Mr. Wheeler said. "We raised our kids. We realized we were at a stage in our life when we were ready for the next step."
Getting to that next step is becoming an increasingly expensive proposition. The Re/Max study found limited supply and increasing buyer interest are pushing up prices in most parts of the country and prompting buyers to consider properties in more remote areas.


The increase in retired buyers is also creating more interest in larger homes that can be used at all times of the year. "You can't really call them cottages," Mr. Ash said.


Many older cottages in prime locations are being torn down and replaced with year-round homes, the study found. While prices are up across the country, the priciest markets are in Alberta and British Columbia. The starting point for a three-bedroom waterfront or slope-side single dwelling is now more than $800,000 in seven of the most costly markets: Whistler, Salt Spring Island, Shuswap Lake, Kelowna, Penticton, Sylvan Lake and Vernon.


The Bala-Port Carling area of Muskoka is Ontario's most expensive area: a three-bedroom waterfront property will run you at least $500,000. One of the most expensive vacation properties up for grabs in the country is located there -- a cottage on its own 42-acre island on Muskoka's Lake Rosseau, listed at $12-million.


Atlantic Canada remains the most affordable market, with $200,000 oceanfront properties in some locations, the study said.


High prices are forcing many buyers who want to stay in prime areas to look at other options, such as condominiums or homes back from the water, Mr. Ash said.


Mr. Wheeler said that back in his old Victoria neighbourhood, buyers are paying millions for waterfront houses and taking them down to rebuild. He and his wife, who are seasoned boaters, were quite willing to move to a more isolated spot without regular ferry service for their piece of shoreline. He doubts they will ever give it up.


" We're here for the long haul."
Soaring cottage prices


Starting prices for recreation properties*

Prince Edward Island    
South Shore, North Shore**
$60,000- $70,000
Nova Scotia
South Shore, Lunenburg County
$130,000- $150,000
Port Carling, Bala, Bracebridge,
Lake Winnipeg***
Sylvan Lake
British Columbia    
Salt Spring Island**
$600,000- $700,000

waterfront lot.
**Oceanfront property.
***Area expanded.


© Copyright The Globe and Mail


I am the basis of all wealth, the heritage and the wise, the thrifty and the prudent.
I am the poor man’s joy and comfort, the rich man’s prize, the right hand of capital,
the silent partner of many thousands of successful men.
I am the solace of the widow, the comfort of old age, the cornerstone of
security against misfortune and want.
I am handed down to children through generations as a thing of great worth.
I am the choicest fruit of toil; credit respects me. Yet, I am humble.
I stand before every man bidding him to know me for what I am, and possess me.
I grow and increase in value through countless days. Though, I seem dormant,
my worth increases, never failing, never ceasing.
Time is my aid and population heaps up my gain. Fire and the elements I defy,
for they can not destroy me. My possessors learn to believe in me; invariably they become envied. While all things wither and decay, I survive.
The centuries find me younger, increasing in my strength.
I am the foundation of banks, the producer of food and the basis of all wealth throughout the world. Yet I am so common that thousands unthinking and
unknowingly pass me by.



The last affordable beach house

Surf, sand, salt air and a price under $500,000. You can still find it all in these special places.


NEW YORK (MONEY Magazine) - Making fast friends over sand castles...Lying in the surf as the waves wash over you...trying to keep up with Mom or Dad as you comb the shoreline for shells. There's something about the beach that makes childhood memories fonder.


For many people, those mental snapshots are more than just happy moments. They're personal touchstones -- symbols of what good financial planning and a little luck might someday afford them. For the one thing that so many of us want most in life (at least in the material realm) is a home on the beach.


You know the one. It's a cedar-shingled cottage built high on white sandy dunes. There's a weathered walkway to the shore, an outdoor shower on the landing. It's the place where the ocean's sounds waft through open bedroom windows. It's a retreat for family and friends -- where Mom and Dad might someday retire. Above all, it's where children and grandchildren can make sweet memories of their own.


Trouble is, too many people have the same dream. Nearly two-thirds of vacation home shoppers say they'd like to be near an ocean beach, according to Combine that demand with a fixed supply of coastline, and the result has been beach house prices that are truly stratospheric.


"We're nearing the point where the dream of owning a beach front home is simply not achievable for an average upper-middle-class American," says Van Davis, a onetime vacation home broker who now heads the East Coast realtor Foxtons.


Actually, we're well past that point in most locales. In Destin, Fla., for instance, the average asking price for homes on the beach is $2.1 million, according to data compiled for MONEY by It's $3 million in Bar Harbor, Maine, and $6 million in Malibu, Calif.


"We get calls all the time from people who say that all they want is a little house on the beach, nothing too fancy." says Patty Slater, an agent with Kinlin Grover GMAC Real Estate in Cape Cod, Mass. "It's heartbreaking, but the problem is that even those homes come with a fancy price tag."


Is the great American beach house dream truly dead? MONEY spent several weeks scouring North America for what at first seemed an oxymoron -- an affordable beach house (our definition of affordable: under $500,000).


We consulted with dozens of brokers as well as noted beach expert Stephen Leatherman, an environmental studies professor at Florida International University and author of "America's Best Beaches."


We narrowed our search to five regions that on paper offered the best beach for the buck: the Oregon Coast, North Carolina's Outer Banks, Florida's "Forgotten Coast," the south coast of Texas and Canada's Prince Edward Island. (We passed on Mexico, where homes north of Puerto Vallarta can go for $300,000 to $400,000, because foreigners legally can't own coastal land there; the property must be purchased through a Mexican bank trust, which is renewable every 50 years.)


Then we traveled to each area, and we're happy to report that you needn't be a CEO or a cardiologist to afford a home on the ocean. We saw beachfront houses, townhouses and condos priced from $100,000 to $500,000.


While you won't find perfection in this price range, you can still find a good enough home base to start digging for sand crabs and making future family memories.


By Jon Birger, MONEY Magazine. Additional reporting by Sarah Max.



A waterfront cottage only a dream for most Surveys show the starting price of dipping your toe in the water from your own dock or beach is $500,000 in many markets across Canada, James Rusk reports

Only the very rich can dream of a prime waterfront property close to a major urban centre in most of Canada, according to two surveys of the recreational real-estate market published yesterday.


The starting price of dipping a toe in the water from your own dock, beach or rock has reached $500,000 in a number of markets from the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia to Ontario's Muskoka lakes, according to a Re/Max survey of the Canadian recreational property market.


Yes, demographics, life cycles, and life styles all point to an ever expanding demand for recreational property over the coming years. The issue for this market will not be on the demand side – it will be about supply.


"The waterfront is becoming an exclusive retreat for affluent purchasers," said Michael Polzler, executive vice-president of Re/Max Ontario-Atlantic Canada.


John O'Rourke, a Royal LePage agent in Muskoka, agrees that waterfront property on the best lakes north of Toronto -- Muskoka, Joseph, Rosseau and Lake of Bays -- has now become a game that only the affluent can play.


"It generally is, because when you look at the starting point for even a small cottage, the majority of people who live in the GTA [Greater Toronto Area] will never be able to afford a cottage. We have probably said that for the better part of 14, 15 years now," Mr. O'Rourke said.


The priciest market in Canada is Salt Spring Island in the Strait of Juan de Fuca between Vancouver and Victoria, where saltwater at the doorstep starts at $700,000.


For $1-million, "you would get a little point of land on the waterfront with a view that is, like, 270 [degrees], all-day sunshine. It would have started life as a cottage, but it would have become fixed up in some fashion. It would be very appealing but it would not be a big house," said Li Read, a Re/Max agent on Salt Spring Island.


Re/Max surveyed 49 markets from coast to coast, and only 16 offered waterfront properties at starting prices of $200,000 or less.


The costliest markets were in British Columbia and Ontario., the report found.


"By far the most expensive waterfront markets were found on Salt Spring Island, Vernon, Muskoka, Penticton and the Sunshine Coast -- where starting prices exceeded $500,000 -- and Wasaga Beach," the Re/Max survey said.


There are less expensive markets, and cheaper cottages, to be sure.


Farther from Toronto, in the Kingston or Pembroke areas, starting prices are $140,000 and $110,000 respectively.


Prices in Atlantic Canada and most of the Prairies are still well below those in the hot markets in Ontario and British Columbia, and the lowest-price market in Canada is eastern Newfoundland, where a starter cottage was only $69,000, according to the Re/Max survey.


Even if prices have not reached the stratospheric levels of the top markets in British Columbia and Ontario, the market has been hot in a number of locations across the country.


In its survey, Royal LePage notes that realtors in the Eastern Townships of Quebec have waiting lists of buyers and that, for instance, in the exclusive area of Lake Brome the price of a standard waterfront cottage has jumped to $300,000 this spring from $250,000 last year.


Similarly, Royal LePage notes that a standard waterfront cottage at Lake of the Woods, east of Winnipeg, often sells within 10 days of listing and is expected to reach $275,000 this season, up from $250,000 last year.


Royal LePage estimates that, for the country as a whole, the average price of a standard waterfront cottage will be a hair under $200,000 this year, up 10.3 per cent from last year.


What is driving the market, Royal LePage said, is that more people want to buy a cottage than want to sell one.


According to a national survey, "in 2004, there will be seven Canadians in search of recreational properties for every two cottage owners who plan on selling," said Phil Soper, president of Royal LePage Real Estate Services.


Carl Garcia, real-estate economist with the Royal Bank, said three underlying factors point to a market for desirable waterfront properties that is likely to stay strong for some time.


Demographically, there are a number of people between the ages of 50 and 64 who have high earning power and net worth and who are interested in owning a recreational property.


Mortgage interest rates, particularly for variable-rate mortgages, remain low, and are not expected to increase greatly this year.

And there is strong demand for top recreational properties from foreign buyers for whom Canadian prices are still quite low compared to the United States and Europe.


These factors make waterfront locations "a preferred property type, and given that there is such a limited supply, you are going to see those prices continue to move up," Mr. Garcia said.


Costly cottage property

Recent surveys have established that even starter cottage property values are too high for most Canadians to afford. A few examples:

Location 2002 2003 2004
Shediac Bay, N.B. $150,000 $150,000-$155,000 $225,000-$300,000
South Shore/North Shore, PEI $60,000-$70,000 $80,000-$150,000 $200,000
South Shore, Lunenberg County, N.S. $130,000-$150,000 $175,000-$250,000 $175,000-$250,000
Port Carling/Bala, Muskoka, Ont $450,000 $450,000 $500,000-$550,000
Wasaga Beach, Georgian Bay, Ont $320,000 $350,000 $500,000
Innisfill to Oro, Lake Simcoe, Ont $290,000-$320,000 $320,000-$340,000 $390,000-$450,000
Sylvan Lake, Pigeon Lake, Alta $400,000 $400,000 $430,000
Salt Spring Island, B.C. $600,000-$700,000 $1,000,000 $700,000-$1,000,000
Ucluelet, B.C. $155,000 $159,000 $450,000-$500,000
Sun Peake, Thompson Valley, B.C. $199,000-$385,000 $225,000-$425,000 $250,000-$500,000


By James Rusk
Tuesday, May 18, 2004


Recreational Real Estate
Solid in the Short Run
Solid in the Long Run

The demand for recreational real estate ------which is used for a lot more than just recreation now — will experience explosive growth over the coming decades.

With the increasing density of urban communities in North America, there will be a matching increase in demand for places to get away from it all. With the aging of the big second half of the baby boom generation into the family raising stage of the life cycle, there will be a matching increase in demand for places to take the kids to spend week-ends and summers in the cottage next to the lake, stream, forest, ranch or farm.

With the aging of the front edge of the baby boom into the pre-retirement stage of the life cycle, there will be a matching increase in demand for places for the relaxation, contemplation and recreation that opting out of the workforce – and releasing all that equity by selling the city place – brings. And with the ever broadening band of electronic commuting, there will be a matching increase in demand for places chosen for the life style they offer rather than for their freeway access.

Yes, demographics, life cycles, and life styles all point to an ever expanding demand for recreational property over the coming years. The issue for this market will not be on the demand side – it will be about supply.

David Baxter
The Urban Futures Institute
Research on Population, Community Change and Land use.


The island is getting used to visitors wanting to stay.


The heavy northeast winds that blow on Prince Edward Island are legendary, and when I turned in the drive and first spied Butter Cottage I noticed a wall of chipping yellow paint on the north side of the old house I had purchased months ago, sight unseen.

Like many others, for years I had toyed with the romantic notion of buying a stone cottage ruin in rural France, fixing it up and then writing about it like Peter Mayle did in A Year in Provence. I had even been perusing French property for sale. My husband was taking French lessons.

But then life took a twist when a friend called and asked if we'd like to be partners in the purchase of a 120-year-old farmhouse near the north shore of Prince Edward Island. The idea enchanted me and after a quick glance at pictures and too many bottles of wine, I acted on impulse I'd long been nurturing.

Now, after a tiring journey, I am standing in front of this sweet old house with a growing sense of excitement.

Butter Cottage was somewhat dilapidated but charming. The name was in honour of its yellow painted wooden shingles, and like many homes in Anne's Land, it was trimmed with gingerbread. Behind the house, the red dirt was striped with long lines of emerald-green potato plants stretching up over a hill. On the other side of the property was a lovely old barn, also covered in chippy shingles but in better condition than the house. The place was unkempt but the lupines didn't mind as they waved their colourful spikes from little groups around the property.

The view over the countryside was spectacular, and when I climbed the next hill down the road I was rewarded with the sight of blue and red dories snoozing in the shallows of New London Bay. By the time I was inside unpacking my suitcase I knew I had fallen in love.

Prince Edward Island knows all about people like me, those of us vulnerable to the seduction of a place. The destination has been named the No. 1 island in North America by Travel and Leisure magazine. P.E.I. is quite used to visitors pulling up a chair to stay awhile.

I discovered my neighbour in nearby Malpeque, Anne Murray (no, not the singer), is one of those. A schoolteacher from Halifax, she first say the breathtaking spread she has on Malpeque Bay about seven years ago. "After I saw it, I immediately went home and sold everything and bought this chunk of land and another nearby. It was so beautiful."

Now, she spends her summers running Malpeque Bay Kayak Tours. Visitors can tour the warm shallow waters where famous oysters are within arm's reach
and deserted islands that play host to flocks of migratory birds.

But it's not just the beauty that's so compelling; there is something else at work here. I feel it at the old white church in Springbrook, where the ladies are serving up homemade ice cream; when I watch a horse and buggy go by in the early morning mist' and at the Ceilidh's (kay-lee), music festivals, where families fiddle and the ladies serve tea and biscuits. It's like a place from a childhood dream, only this is for real.

Freelance illustrator Ben Stahl's romance with the island began in 1988, when he was living in West Port, Conn., and was asked by Bantam Books to paint the covers for the Lucy Maud Montgomery series of Anne books.

"When I first got off the plane, I just started grinning. I used to vacation in Wisconsin in the 1930s when I was a boy and it reminded me of those days, as if time had stood still." Mr. Stahl returned to the island months later with his wife and within two days they had bought an 1847 farmhouse with "bay windows galore" and yes, green gables. He has lived on the island ever since, even though change is coming fast.

"I see it is becoming a place where wealthy people from anywhere are coming and buying up the best parts of the island," he says. "It's sad, but it's happening."

Real estate prices are on the rise. The average waterfront property has soared 12.9% in the last year to $115,000.00 according to a Royal Lepage property report. But everyone has a story of private land deals from non-residents that know no bounds.

"They are just saying 'what do you want for it' and they're paying," says former lieutenant governor Marion Reid, who is now chairwoman of the L.M. Montgomery Land Trust. The trust has been busy buying up the development rights on the important ocean vistas on the north shore. "It's so beautiful, but what would it look like if it were all development? We know we can't protect it all, but some of the important vistas should be saved."

I understand her as I drive the coast on Route 20 and pass through the Lake of Shining Waters, one of the vistas the land trust wants to preserve. It is stunning.

A few kilometers along, I cruise into Malpeque Harbour and stop at the Oyster Barn and order the house specialty, pan-fried. Like the view, the flavor leaves me speechless and after ordering another plate I grill the owner, Terry Oatway, about the recipe. She confesses she made it for the Americans who, unlike islanders, like their oysters pan-fried and gives me the details with a promise not to print it.

The next day I made it for myself at Butter Cottage, but I won't break her trust. Although I "come from away," now I'm an islander at heart, and some things just aren't for sale.

National Post