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Brothers celebrate a quarter century of spectacular real estate results

Some of Ben and Dan Imrie’s fondest childhood memories were made during summers spent at their Acton Island cottage on Lake Muskoka. Born and raised in Toronto, the brothers found their family bond strengthened through these idyllic summers. “Looking back, it was those summers on Lake Muskoka that made the two of us so close,” Ben explains. Now, as principal real estate agents for the iMuskoka Team at Chestnut Park Real Estate Brokerage, they share their passion for the region with others.

“Muskoka is the best place to be. The rocks, the pine, my clients: I love the people,” says Dan.

This deep love for Muskoka and the cottage experience led the brothers to become realtors in 1999 at the young age of 21. They’ve now lived in Muskoka for over half their lives, raising their own families with the same values and appreciation they developed growing up.

Celebrating 25 years in the Muskoka real estate market this summer, Ben and Dan have achieved a rare milestone, especially for agents their age. “We’ve spent over half our lives selling real estate,” notes Ben. “And while so much has changed since we started, we still get satisfaction from seeing people spending family time somewhere special.”

“The cottage is a very important place to bond; one that you can’t get anywhere else,” notes Dan.

While Dan and Ben have worked side-by-side for a quarter of a century, the duo have grown their team along the way, with sales representatives Robyn Goodwin, Julie Dureen, and Jessica Kaye.

“We’ve expanded to serve our clients better, and offer a great customer experience,” says Robyn, who now also acts as Operations Manager to the team and their clients.

Leaning into innovationA large part of the customer experience is their use of ever-changing technological advancements, as a key to giving their clients the best results. “We’re continuing to innovate with new products and services each season,” says Robyn.

Digital options for real estate listings and transactions have been incredible tools through the course of the pandemic. As the world and marketing are changing and developing at a rapid pace, Ben notes that it’s important to continue to innovate and create the best user experiences they can for their clients.

“Tools like our 3D video tours let prospective buyers from outside Muskoka examine cottages without leaving their homes or offices,” says Ben. “The beauty of this user-friendly tool, which is included in the details for each listing on our website, is that the properties are recreated to scale in 3D, with important details labelled that buyers and showing agents may not be aware of.”

“We’re continuing to push the envelope,” Dan explains.

In addition to an exciting website update coming this summer, iMuskoka will also be integrating AI as a way to assist pricing each property with greater precision – analyzing greater comparative data to pinpoint where their clients’ property belongs within the marketplace.

Pricing realistically, Dan notes, remains paramount – you can’t just arbitrarily name a price. However, this can be difficult in Muskoka, given how unique each property is from another – from architectural elements to exposure, lot size and waterfront.

However with AI, Ben says this will all become much better using the right data. Today, iMuskoka’s team can pull comparative data from thousands of properties on the lake, and determine value differentiators to eliminate the human errors, and correctly value a property.

Understanding the marketIf you’re considering selling your cottage, you’re in luck. While Muskoka’s real estate market is shifting, the waterfront market is continuing to hold well. Through COVID, Ben notes, property values nearly doubled due to high demand and low inventory.

“Babyboomers have downsized their city residences and invested in winter getaways, while still holding onto their summers at the cottage. Until they feel the need to sell, the market will remain historically tight on inventory for the foreseeable future.”

That being said, there are still buyers dreaming of a cottage of their own, to make summer memories with their loved ones. If you’re considering selling, reach out to the iMuskoka Team and learn how Ben and Dan’s team approach can achieve your real estate needs.

www.iMuskoka.com

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