Frances Bula header image 2

Olympic village set to launch, already generating big interest and a little controversy

February 16th, 2011 · 23 Comments

Tomorrow is the official announcement but I went down to the sales centre on Sunday, which was hopping. All kinds of people had driven down on a whim to take a look and then parked their cars once they found out they could tour the four presentation suites available. (In contrast to the picture I’m posting here of the sales centre, the gawkers were a very diverse crowd.)

Shierley Chelliah and her parents were scouting them out while I was there. They said they hadn’t even bothered checking the village before, because they thought the prices were too high for them. They — along with quite a few others I stopped and spoke to — had been enticed to take a look by news that units would be 30 per cent lower than before, on average, with some up to 50 per cent.

Those kinds of discounts weren’t in evidence with the four suites being shown off, though there were discounts of up to $350,000. That was on the two-bedroom that was previously $1.3 million. (Picture of the living room posted below.) A larger one bedroom (862 SF) was being listed at 599,900 instead of $695,000 and a smaller one-bedroom (812 SF, with a bedroom not large enough for a queen bed) was $539,000, down from $684,900.

For amateur presentation-suite hounds, the four units have all been decorated by different firms and are very lovely. Wouldn’t look like that if I moved in, is all I know.

Some realtors are disgruntled with the pre-launch activities, though. One called Jeff Lee at the Sun (his blog post and story here, with Mr. Rennie in full flight) and one called me.  Apparently Rennie Marketing invited down some people from the list of interested buyers they’ve been maintaining and gave them a chance to buy in advance on the weekend.

I’m told this is a practice in the development industry used to pre-test prices and make sure they’re pitched right to attract people. That’s what Rennie said he was doing, by getting 25 buyers committed in the four price categories they’re marketing.

But a few realtors were mad because they lost clients and commissions, as a result. The one who phoned me said that, although he’s used to that kind of thing on other developments, he thought a city-owned project would be more above-board.

Just goes to prove my theory that anything that happens at the village becomes news when it wouldn’t be news on another development.

That’s all the bits and pieces of news for today. I’d be interested to hear what people thinking of the prices and suites, if they visited already or visit tomorrow.

Categories: Uncategorized