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In Conversation With… Johnathan Schickedanz, General Manager, FarSight Homes

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In Conversation With… Johnathan Schickedanz, General Manager, FarSight Homes

In homebuilding, foundations are obviously critical, for if not for solid grounding, homes simply can’t stand the test of time. The same can be said for homebuilders, the very companies that construct the quality homes and condos GTA residents demand.

At FarSight Homes, built by three generations of the Schickedanz family, foundation is everything. We spoke with General Manager Johnathan Schickedanz, incoming president of the Durham Region Home Builders’ Association, for his thoughts on all this and more.

HOMES Magazine: How’s 2019 shaping up for FarSight Homes, and how does 2020 look?

Johnathan Schickedanz: It has been a slow start for FarSight in 2019 on the sales front, but we are not alone. As the market is finding its resting spot from the recent rise, fall and pause in home pricing, consumers are sitting on the sidelines to see where the floor is.

It looks like change is in the air, though. Over the past few months, traffic has picked up at our Alliston sales office, where we are marketing our newly released Beeton Creek at West Country project. Consumer confidence seems to be returning to the north GTA market, and sales numbers are on the rise. FarSight is optimistically looking forward to 2020 as an all-round better year, as we continue to sell and build in Beeton. Also, the hope is that we will be bringing our new Alliston site, an infill site located in the heart of Alliston, to market. It’s a condo project that will offer a more price effective option to the local market.

HM: FarSight Homes has some great communities in areas outside the GTA core, such as Beeton, Alliston, Bowmanville and Pickering. Why these locations?

JS: FarSight is a family owned and operated business that has benefitted from generations of knowledge and expertise on knowing how to select developments that will not only offer value to our customers, but be a great investment for our purchasers.

HM: Where do you see the next opportunities for lowrise homebuyers?

JS: The future is looking good for future homebuyers of lowrise product. The provincial government is committed to seeing growth in the housing market to assist with the ever-increasing demand. It has also placed an emphasis on the industry to look into options on how we can supply more varying housing types and styles. So, future projects will likely be comprised of a greater mix of housing styles and price points to meet the needs of the different byers.

The other interesting policy piece is the ability and support the province is offering for the development of secondary suites. This will bring the opportunity for homebuyers to gain revenue off a portion of their home they wouldn’t otherwise, providing multi-generational housing where families can live together.

HM: You were just honoured by the Durham Region Home Builders’ Association (DRHBA) at the President’s Ball. What does this honour mean to you?

JS: It’s a truly humbling moment to be honored as the 68th president of the DRHBA. This association is rich in history and many presidents who have preceded me are people I look up to in the industry. I look forward to the year ahead and can honestly say that I have little to be worried about. This is due to the support I have from both the board of directors and DRHBA staff. With this much expertise in one place, only great things will be accomplished. Also, I am thankful to be able to give back to an industry that has provided so much for me and my family. I am a third generation builderdeveloper, and I and can say there is no other business that I could imagine being involved in.

Photo: Sabrina Byrnes

HM: In your view, what qualities and characteristics did DRHBA honour you for?

JS: Hard working, and a commitment to the association and industry.

HM: What have you learned from growing up in a family of developers that led you to where you are today?

JS: The market is cyclical and it will go through ups and downs, so be prepared.

The best way to learn about the business is a hands-on approach from the bottom up. I wasn’t handed an office position right out of school, but was challenged to learn as many trades and skills as possible. My family believes that the best leaders lead by example.

HM: What’s next for FarSight Homes?

JS: FarSight has just completed its first “Savings by Design” workshop, sponsored by Enbridge Gas Distribution. In this program, the coordinator brings together the trades, suppliers and the building scientists in one room where we are able to discuss opportunities for FarSight to build better-than-code homes. Through this program, I was made aware of the new developments in insulating products and air barrier systems that will allow us to build next generation homes. Also, this program has provided us the road map on the required steps to take our homes from where they are and to get them to net zero ready. Over the next year, we are looking to implement numerous new practices into our building program and are committed to building better-than-code homes for our purchasers.

AND ON A PERSONAL NOTE…

HM: Your uncle Bob is the new president of the OHBA. How exciting is that for the family?

JS: It has been an exciting time for our family! Today, we have three generations involved in the development and building business in Toronto. And now that Bob has been elected as the latest OHBA president, it has allowed our family to start to give back to an industry that has given so much to us.

In 1951, my grandfather and his cousins opened Schickedanz Brothers Ltd., with the goal of developing exceptional communities and quality homes. And now three generations later, we are still following the same dreams. Having Bob now meeting with industry leaders around the province gives testament to the dedication our family has to this industry and the betterment of communities and homes for the future generations.

HM: What are you doing when you’re not at the office or on a development site?

JS: I’m an outdoors and cottage kind of person and look forward to time spent with my wife, two daughters and dog.

I have my pilots licence and enjoy time in the air.

I also usually have a number of projects on the go that involve metal fabrication and welding, fibreglass and paint work or mechanical repair and/or restoration.

I’m a true do-it-yourselfer. Never afraid to get my hands dirty and take on a project.

I enjoy travelling to different places to see different types of architecture – preferably warmer places!

Portfolio

  • Beeton Creek at West Country, Beeton, Now open
  • Greenfields, Alliston, Now open
  • Timber Trails, Bowmanville, Coming soon
  • Forest Creek, Pickering, Coming soon

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FarSight Homes

Let country roads take you home to the unbeatable value of Beeton Creek by FarSight Homes

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Let country roads take you home to the unbeatable value of Beeton Creek by FarSight Homes

Conveniently located in the village of Beeton, just a stone’s throw from neighbouring Tottenham and Alliston, award-winning FarSight Homes invites you to discover its newest residential neighbourhood, Beeton Creek at West Country.

Surrounded by protected greenspace, pathways and parklands, this very special corner of the world is the perfect setting for those looking to make their move to a community that offers the laid back charm of small town living, yet is just minutes from an endless offering of family-friendly amenities and attractions.

When home is at Beeton Creek, you’re close to quality schools, recreation, shopping and dining, and with a location just west of Hwy. 400, between Hwys. 9 and 89, you’re just more than 30 minutes to Barrie and cottage country beyond, and under an hour to the GTA!

Closer to home, you can enjoy an order of wings and a pint at the ever popular Muddy Water Hotel, catch the latest production at the Blackhorse Village Players Theatre or travel back in time aboard the South Simcoe Railway’s historic excursion train. Together, with Tottenham, Alliston and Bradford at your door, the choice of year round activities, whether it’s enjoying local fairs and festivals or sports and leisure, is endless.

The residences of Beeton Creek at West Country will showcase an outstanding collection of single-family home styles carefully crafted with an inviting mix of family-friendly designs available in a choice of three impressive exterior façade stylings, including Traditional, Craftsman and Victorian.

It’s the elegant details and exceptional design influences that define each residence at Beeton Creek and create welcoming streetscapes that set the family friendly tone of this exceptional residential enclave.

Within, open concept gourmet-inspired kitchens include breakfast bars that are perfect for meals on the run, sun-filled breakfast nooks with handy patio door rear yard access and welcoming Great Rooms with available gas fireplaces that are ideal for casual day-to-day living as they are for formal entertaining.

Second floors feature convenient laundry rooms, spacious bedrooms with plenty of closet space and private master bedroom retreats complete with large walk-in closets and relaxing spa-inspired ensuite baths featuring double his and her vanities, inviting freestanding tubs and gorgeous separate glass enclosed showers.

Beeton Creek at West Country invites you to enjoy life to its fullest in a neighbourhood that offers you and your family space to grow and room to breathe.

Beeton Creek at West Country Park and Ravine Singles on 33-, 40- and 45-ft. lots from the high $500,000s.

For a limited time, a $15,000 Decor Credit is available with the purchase of a new home in Beeton Creek at West Country. See sales representative for details.

FARSIGHT HOMES
Beeton Creek at West Country

Visit the sales centre, located at 197 King St. S. in Alliston. The sales centre is open from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. weekends; weekdays by appointment only.

705.250.0949
Toll free 1.855.299.7929

beetoncreek@farsight.ca


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Local Focus: Bradford West Gwillimbury & New Tecumseth

Bradford West Gwillimbury and New Tecumseth ripe for growth

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Bradford West Gwillimbury and New Tecumseth ripe for growth

If you’ve ever driven north on Hwy. 400 heading towards cottage country, perhaps you stopped off, the outlet mall at Cookstown. On summer weekends, anyway, the area might not boast the lightest traffic, but head off the beaten trail and into surrounding communities such as Bradford and New Tecumseth, and you’ll find a lot more than a few bargains to keep you coming back.

Maybe even permanently.

Bradford West Gwillimbury

Indeed, Bradford, which in 1991 amalgamated with the former Townships of West Gwillimbury and Tecumseth to form the Town of Bradford West Gwillimbury, is beloved for its fertile lands and rich soil. Resplendent with lush farmland, including the Holland Marsh – “the carrot capital of Canada” – forests and rivers, this area is an agricultural hotbed in Ontario.

The Marsh, itself, comprises about 21,000 acres. Development in this area centres around sensitivity to such natural wonders.

With financial and social responsibility in mind, Bradford West Gwillimbury says its administration encourages public participation in the decision-making process for development, to make the area a desirable place to live, work and play.

And, it appears to be happening.

This area, believe it or not, is one of the fastest growing municipalities in Ontario of at least 5,000 residents. According to the 2016 Census, the population of Bradford West Gwillimbury grew 25.8 per cent to 35,325 from 28,077 in 2011 – good enough for 11th in the province.

New Tecumseth

Located in Simcoe County, New Tecumseth comprises the communities of Alliston, Tottenham and Beeton.

These three vibrant urban centres enjoy prosperous activity in agriculture, honey production, manufacturing, transportation and warehousing. Proximity to the 400 series highways and Hwy. 50 affords easy access to the GTA to the south and Kitchener-Waterloo to the west, among other areas, which is all conducive to business growth.

Given such prosperity, people are moving here to live and to do business. According to the town’s economic development office, 35 per cent of residents have moved here within the last five years. Housing development naturally follows, and several builders have projects underway here.

Location, location, location

Bradford West Gwillimbury
Population 35,325
78 kms north of Toronto

New Tecumseth
Population 34,242
87 kms north of Toronto

Select upcoming housing developments, Bradford West Gwillimbury

Dreamfields by CountryWide Homes, detached homes

Dreamfields by Aspen Ridge Homes, detached homes

The Forest by National Homes, detached homes

Select upcoming housing developments, New Tecumseth

Willow Glen by Brookfield Residential, townhomes

Greenridge by Flato Group, detached homes and townhomes

Beeton Creek at West Country by FarSight Homes, detached homes

 

 


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