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April 17, 2011

Ah... Muskoka, land of filthy rich!

CANADA - If you live in Muskoka you might be a millionaire.

In fact its pretty much a statistical average. Probably some overpaid executive from Toronto, a celebrity (Canadian or American) and you probably think you're better than everyone else.

And what is strange is how so many people in Ontario (especially the Greater Toronto Area) seem to think Muskoka is the ideal place to go on vacation. Probably because all the rich yuppies go there and brag about it and this therefore creates a sense of envy for the rest of us.

Well, not me, but only because I hate over-crowded mosquito infested land on the ever shrinking Georgian Bay. To me going to Muskoka would be a horrific experience due to a combination of too many people despoiling the natural beauty of the region, a constant reminder that climate change is causing the lake to dry up, and I really, REALLY don't like mosquitoes.

Go camping up north, fine. Sounds like fun to me. Bring the Muskol, the tent and the marshmallows...

Muskoka on the other hand... well, let me put it this way... Ever been to Yorkdale and seen all the really expensive shops there? You know, the ones with $600 shirts. Or how about Toronto's financial core with the underground tunnels and the maze of expensive shops? They all stink of cash, capitalism and greedy capitalists sucking on lattes while bragging about how much they're cheating on their wife. You get the idea.

Its the kind of people who would NEVER use buy second hand items, wear someone else's used clothes, or a printable coupon because they would be sooooo embarrassed! They take pride in their belief that they're better than everyone else and would never lower themselves to the standards of commoners.

Muskoka has been bought up by developers selling resorts and millionaire "cottages" which look like huge mansions, but have been designed to look more 'woodsy'.

A Muskoka cottage will set you back a couple million easily. You'd have to be as rich (and possibly as corrupt) as Conrad Black to buy one. [Note: Conrad Black isn't rich any more, his wife squandered most of his money and his legal bills have practically bankrupted him.]

Which means 99.99% of people can't afford a 'cottage' in Muskoka. And it should be noted that even the cheap resort packages cost at least $700 for a mere 2 days-2 nights for 2 people.

What it makes you realize is that Muskoka is basically a big waste of money just for bragging rights.

Indeed, the big wigs of Muskoka have apparently been trying for years now to convince the University of Waterloo (the highest ranked university in Canada) to set up shop for its Environmental Department in Muskoka. It would no doubt costs millions and millions to do so. University of Waterloo officials eventually rejected the proposal because...

It was too expensive.

“We would never have been able to afford a building like that,” said Mark Seasons, interim dean of Waterloo’s Faculty of Environment.

It was a wise move on the part of the university.

Muskoka is also rife with real estate corruption. For example realtors there often ask people to sign "buyer agreements" before they will show them any properties. This they say is a formality, but in reality what it is is a contract stating that you agree to ONLY buy via that real estate agent. It gives that agent exclusive right to your money if you want to buy a cottage... and the agreement locks you in for 6 months or longer.

Note to Self: ALWAYS READ THE FINE PRINT!

If you are really stinking rich you could also "rent an island" in Muskoka... ooooh la la!

The Moffat Dunlap Real Estate Ltd. specializes in properties on the Georgian Bay islands. But they're not cheap.

The Byng Inlet rental offers a 32-acre island with a 5,000-square-foot lodge and two guest cabins for $6,300 a week.

The Spindrift Cottage offers nine acres, one cottage and a protected cove on Sans Souci Island for $2,000 a week.

Cottage Country Travel Services (cottagerental.com) has a few rental properties on the Georgian Bay shore. Prices are around $1,600 a week during the peak season. See also desmasdons.com, atthecottage.com, spiritofthenorth.com.

Heck, just renting a basic aluminum fishing boat with an outboard motor runs $100 a day or $600 a week. A nicer fibreglass boat with a bigger outboard motor is $300 a day or $1,800 a week. Boaters are required to have a Pleasure Craft Operator Card, which is basically a license (cough cough, tax) you have to pay for in advance.

I'd like to go back to the topic of cottages now...

If its not made of logs, its not a cottage or a cabin!

If it is connected to the electricity grid it isn't a cottage or a cabin either.

Okay, if you build a place out of wood or logs, and if you have electricity from solar panels or a windmill I can look the other way on that... but if you have a big screen high definition TV, a fully decked out kitchen and leave the lights and AIR CONDITIONING turned on all the time! Well... you're delusional if you think that is a "cottage".

Okay, sure, you might be able to experiment a bit some of the building materials by using commercial roofing or metal panels during the construction process, but the majority of the building should be made of wood and it certainly should not be attached to the electricity grid. If it is then it is a house like any other. It just happens to be near a lake.

In which case, why didn't you just buy a house in Toronto in the Beaches area?

See Also
Building a Cabin
Muskoka Cottage Prices are Ridiculous!
The Toronto Real Estate Market
The Housing and Mortgage Industry

1 comment:

  1. Love it. We go wakeboarding on Lake Muskoka every summer and I can't wait to do it again this July.

    ReplyDelete

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