Observations of Life and Real Estate on PEI
Article by Robert Parker
Wondering what it would be like to live on PEI? If you are willing to put up with a little Canadian winter, there is a laid-back lifestyle and those great PEI real estate investment opportunities to consider.
Well the summer is coming to an end and cottagers and summer residents are closing up the summer homes and thinking about going back to their normal lives. It has been a good summer on PEI and the markets are coming back to life for PEI real estate, not that we really experienced that much of a slump and certainly nothing like the US or even parts of Canada.
PEI really has something special to offer both the resident and the visitor. PEI is a safe place to holiday or to raise a family and is certainly an inexpensive place to do either. The lower prices for real estate here also make it a great place to retire. Overall PEI is the place to relocate to – it is the “gentle island” and the name says it all.
PEI has a large coastline for such as small place and therefore there is a lot of waterfront PEI real estate. The prices as such are much more reasonable than in other waterfront areas. Perhaps because of this and in no small measure because island families often have retained the old family homestead, islanders may typically have both a country home for their summer play and a winter home in the city to accomodate life here in the winter.
The winters can be a little rough for someone who comes from Canada’s banana belt like me – that’s Vancouver if you are wondering. I remember my first winter here on PEI with piles of snow 6 feet high and several blizzards. However you soon get used to it and quite frankly if you come from the northeastern states or most other parts of Canada it’s really just the same here as you would normally experience at home.
However it is important to realize that if you plan to live here year round your first home purchase should probably be in the city. You will need a winter base from which to be able to get to work on a consistent basis as well as shopping etc. If you are thinking about a country home that will provide comfortable year round living you should make sure that the road it is on is plowed, as some smaller roads aren’t in the winter and you should also check to see that the driveway where you are thinking of buying is winter accessible and doesn’t fill with snow. You could check with neighbors for this inforamtion if you are house-hunting in the summer. I believe that you are probably better to look at country homes in the winter however when you can see conditions for yourself. You simply have to ensure yourself that the driveway is not filled regularly with snow drifts – I have seen this happen with some PEI properties.
It is also important to ensure that the home that you are considering buying is all-season. Some cottages are not insulated and therefore are only good for summer while some homes are insulated well enough to be considered 3-season homes but are not realistically livable in the dead of winter. With the price of oil not likely to drop, it is important to ensure that all homes are well insulated.
Whether you are relocating here to live and work or to retire or alternatively you are looking for a place for the summer, PEI has a lot to offer and PEI real estate makes an excellent investment and should be on your ‘must see’ list. Call a local island realtor for more information on PEI and island living.