Mar 14, 2013 / 5:00 am
I know it is early but I have a good suggestion for a Father’s Day gift for good old dad. If your dad is a golfer it’s the perfect gift. It a book called “Moe & Me” written by the former golf writer for the Globe & Mail, Lorne Rubenstein. It is a wonderful book and a fine story about Canada’s number one player for many years, Moe Norman. I thought I knew a lot about Moe Norman, the Kitchener, Ont. golfer but Lorne gets the real story out of this legend of golf that people never understood and in so many cases didn’t understand the greatness of this man. I had trouble putting the book down.
Call Mosaic Books on Bernard Avenue because they may have to order a copy for you but it is worth the wait.
Viga Sigh, a very successful pro golfer over the years in a US Today interview said that Moe Norman was the best ever and when he hit the ball he knew exactly where it was going.
I met him once in Winnipeg at St. Charles in the parking lot. He was actually changing clothes out of the trunk of his blue Cadillac. He always drove a Cadillac. Bought them with cash all the time from money that in most cases was earned by teaching golf. I was working for the sponsor of the tournament and didn’t realize just who I was talking too. I would have asked for more time, but Moe wasn’t one of those people that liked to talk to strangers.
Moe died of a heart attack in 2004 but before that the people at Titleist, the golf ball manufacturer, made Moe an offer he couldn’t refuse - they offered to pay him $5,000 a month for the rest of his life. Moe asked what the company expected of him for the money, because he new he was sick and broke. They replied, “Nothing, just be yourself.”
Have a good read.
It was a couple of months ago that I wrote my first piece on the hostile takeover bid by KingSett Capital to buy all the shares held by Primaris Retail Real Estate and they put three billion on the table. The reason for the interest was that Primaris owned our Orchard Park in Kelowna, Aberdeen Mall in Kamloops and the Westbank Shopping Centre in West Kelowna. The deal was turned down and front and center came HR REIT who came to the table with a offer for $3.6 billion. Then it got quiet for a few weeks and all of a sudden a deal was made between all three companies to be involved in a consortium and KingSett Capital takes over all twenty-four malls across the country. HR REIT now owns the three B.C. malls which includes Orchard Park Shopping Centre.
I asked a question about the progress being made by Ledcor Construction with the Target store in Vernon. It is difficult to get news because the builders are signed to a secrecy agreement and it is impossible to get the facts. One of my readers in Vernon went over and looked through a rip in the paper covering the doors and windows and sent me this e-mail:
“Hi there. I read your story on March 7th about Target Kelowna opening in July and 24 stores opening the end of March. It looks like Vernon is one of the stores opening the end of March. I have driven by the Target store in Vernon front and back and the new loading dock is finished and you can see inside the store - it looks like they are going to be loading the shelves any day. They are painting the outside of the building that they have just renovated. There must be 200 people working on this project non stop. Anyway, that’s just my observations.”
We must always remember that when the construction is finished and the building has been inspected it takes a number of days to stock the shelves according to the Target design for that store. They are also working against the calendar because they don’t want stale dated food stuffs on their shelves.
Canadian retailer Canadian Tire is looking at smaller stores in the future. Today they are one of the leaders in big box retail operations in this country and have been for many years.
They believe there is a future in smaller stores in this retail climate, located in the right spot and that includes downtown in some cities.
For years I went to a small Canadian Tire store in Toronto that was a joy for the amateur Mr. Fixit to spend some time just looking for stuff and totally enjoyable. These new big box outlets have so much stock. Those were the days when Canadian Tire was the leader in so many categories.
Good move by the owners of The Bay to change their name back to the Hudson’s Bay. Without any warning last week out came an ad in the Globe& Mail saying this is the new name of the company and that day we received two catalogs from the company. Lord and Taylor the U.S. retailer who own The Hudson’s Bay Co. decided in their wisdom that 300 plus years of being established as one of the oldest retailers in the world was a positive step with all the competition coming to town.
This is becoming a new cooking experience for the chef at home as well as the marketplace. Fewer meals are being made from scratch and the shoppers have discovered new vegetables and new ways to incorporate them into meals.
Consumers are no longer just driven by price. The shoppers are becoming more and more aware of these new items and are asking questions so they in turn can tell the family what this vegetable is all about and how healthy it is.
We’re trying new stuff all the time and it is exciting with the new tastes and the fun finding ways to cook them.
In the list produced by BIV, Grey Monk Cellars in the Okanagan was named the second largest winery in B.C. producing 720,000 litres of wines for local and export sales. Another local winery, Cedar Creek Estate Winery, was placed in third spot. Red Rooster Winery in Naramata was fourth and fifth was Hester Creek Estate in Oliver.
The Krieg family at ReMax Kelowna put these numbers together for me every month.
Good news! Fantastic long term mortgage rates below 3% are making real estate more affordable!
We are noticing more showings on listings. We were showing homes in the $400K range the other day and at one of the properties they had two showings at the same time and at a different property had three showings at the same time!
It is also important to be realistic and the numbers are the numbers, if we like it or not. We are still very clearly in a buyers market with only 8.6% of the listing inventory of single family dwellings selling.
- Sales of Single Family Dwellings reached 114 in February which is 12% below February 2012 and below our 21-year average, of 155 sales.
- Listings show a slight decrease to a total of 1,320 which is 2% lower than last year’s February.
- Percentage of Listings vs. Sales. We are still clearly in a buyer’s market at only 8.6% of the listing inventory selling, which fell below February 2012 by 1%.
The average price here in Kelowna was $415,845 last month which is below last year's February by 5%, but Year to Date we are at $439,786 and up by 2.8% over 2012.
The MLS system shows that only two residential properties sold in January over $1 Million. These were: 1 Acreage and 1 Single Family Dwelling.
The signs are on the horizon and hinting to a strong spring market with fantastic mortgage rates and a booming Calgary market! This is a great time to buy real estate in Kelowna!
Read more John Thomson articles
- John Thomson's I Didn't Know That! Apr 25
- John Thomson's I Didn't Know That! Apr 18
- John Thomson's I Didn't Know That! Apr 10
- John Thomson's I Didn't Know That! Apr 4
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