Sharon Hunter Aiken, winner of the 2020 Gairdner Award
2020 Gairdner Award

We are proud to announce that Sharon Hunter Aiken is a 2020 recipient of the J&D Gairdner Award, presented in recognition of exemplary sales performance and success in real estate at Johnston & Daniel.

“Congratulations on your achievements in a most unusual and challenging year,” said Johnston & Daniel VP Business Services Corporate Brokerages, Debra Harris.

“I am so grateful for all of my wonderful clients whose continued trust, referrals, and heartfelt testimonials truly mean the world,” said Sharon. “Thank you also to my colleagues and to the entire J&D staff and leadership team for all of your hard work and support. Last but not least, thank you to George, Donna and Trish. This is a team effort and I truly appreciate all you do for Muskoka Getaway. Here’s to 2021.”

The awards were presented at a virtual ceremony in February 2021.

Picture of dock with bubbler on Shaw Island, Lake Muskoka
Shoreline Bubbler Lights — Make Them Blue

We are very pleased to see the debate on the best colour for bubbler lights cleared up once and for all, with the excellent article presented jointly by Muskoka Ratepayers Association and the Muskoka Lakes Association in the Winter 2021 edition of Muskoka Lakes Association’s Shorelines (PDF, opens in a new browser tab).

A Shaw Island dock with a bubbler

Blue is Best — Here’s Why

The short story is this:

  • Red is dangerous because a red light can easily be confused with a snowmobile brake light, thereby leading a rider into open water.
  • Amber is not ideal for visibilty, and that colour can be mistaken for the interior of a cottage light and so is not recommended.
  • Blue is the universal colur of warning and emergency used by snowplows and the OPP, plus, it performs best in low visibilty conditions.

We encourage you to check out the original article here (PDF, opens in a new browser tab. Article is on page 4, but the entire issue is excellent). Below is a picture of the article.

Join the MRA and the MLA

If you do not already belong, we encourage you to join the Muskoka Ratepayers’ Association, an oversight and advocacy group that represents member taxpayers’ interests in local government, property taxation, economic development, and environmental issues; and the Muskoka Lakes Association, whose mission is to promote the responsible use, enjoyment and conservation of the unique Muskoka environment.

Certainly, a group of concerned citizens can accomplish more by working together than any individual can on his or her own. Thanks so much to MRA Director Jim Boyd and MLA past president Lawton Osler for putting this bubbler light issue definitively to rest.

Ovelooking Lake Muskoka from Huckleberry Rock, January 16, 2021
COVID-19 Update for 2021

January 2021 — Let us raise a toast as we close the door on 2020. (Here’s-your-hat,-what’s-your-hurry?) It certainly was a year for the history books, and all kidding aside, a difficult one for many.

We send our condolences to all of you who have experienced the loss of a loved one or who have become ill or suffered setbacks due to the pandemic. The arrival of the vaccine brings with it the promise of hope and a return to better times.

While Ontario continues under a COVID-19 State of Emergency, real estate has been designated an essential service, with important provisions to bear in mind. Below is a link to a statement from our professional association.

State of Emergency Update: What You Need To Know

Ontario Real Estate Association, published January 12, 2021

Accordingly, the Johnston & Daniel office in Port Carling is open, but as much as we’d love to see you, unless there is an urgent need to meet in person, this is not the time.

Other Ways To Connect

If you have been contemplating making a change, buying or selling waterfront real estate in Muskoka, there is much that you can do, prepare, and discuss without meeting in person.

Let’s make good use of all the virtual tools that we’re fortunate to have at our disposal. The web, virtual tours, Zoom, Facetime, WhatsApp, Teams and our favourite, the good, (relatively) old fashioned cell phone.

Call Sharon at 705-646-3116 to discuss how you can prepare and position yourself for success in an uncertain future.

Stay well. Stay safe. We look forward to speaking with you, and beyond that, to meeting in person as soon as it is safe to do so.

Lake Image

We hope this finds you and your family safe and healthy. This is to update you regarding Muskoka Getaway and the Covid-19 situation.

On Monday March 23rd the Government of Ontario ordered all non-essential businesses to close the following day. While real estate agent services are among the businesses considered essential, our professional body has clarified that the only real estate activity allowed is that which permits transactions to close.

So this is not business as usual. Real estate agents are only permitted to engage in new business if the Seller faces “dire and immediate” financial consequences if they cannot sell their property. And for Buyers, only if they have no place to live if they cannot purchase a home. Furthermore, our work must be carried out using digital and virtual methods wherever possible.

The Muskoka Getaway team has moved to remote work. Therefore, we are unable to engage in any face-to-face business. That includes open houses, in-person showings, meetings or public office hours, until further notice.

For listings that continue to be active, we advise the following;

  • We have been advised that it is inappropriate to promote active listings to any great extent at this time
  • In-person showings are unlikely

If you are a buyer, we advise the following;

  • Exhaust all virtual and digital viewings
  • In-person showings are unlikely
  • Appraisals and home inspections may not be available
  • Consider an offer with a condition on a later date

We encourage you to contact us to discuss your options.

Our focus right now is to follow the advice of public health professionals to the letter so that we may return to normal as soon as we responsibly can. In the meantime, please continue to minimize social contact and exercise best practices. Don’t get discouraged. We will get through this.

Sharon, George and the Muskoka Getaway Team

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