House Shopping Through a Pandemic

Boy, sure has changed within a few short months. Our way of living has vanished right before our eyes, leaving us standing with our mouths wide open...and, alone.

New words have been thrown into our vocabulary...
Novel Coronavirus, Covid-19, social distancing, physical distancing, TP Hoarding, global pandemic, flatten the curve, plank the curve, state of emergency, quarantine, self-isolate, community transmission, death toll, outbreak, stay-at-home, halt-the-spread, The Quarantine Act, War measures.


Contrary to popular belief, this is REAL. This is NOT the flu. What it is is a Respiratory VIRUS that can be deadly. (Look up the movie Contagion, the 2011 film with Matt Damon, Jude Law, Kate Winslet, Gwyneth Paltrow, Laurence Fishburne & Bryan Cranston, to name a get an idea of how a virus spreads.) It is not #fakenews. Covid-19 is serious!

Not that long ago, new measures came into play....all businesses were to shut-down except those deemed essential. And,......This is where my story begins!

Back in Autumn of 2019, we decided to list our house on the market. My partner, aka the guy, was gearing to retire in the Spring of 2020. We planned on retiring mortgage-free in the Maritimes. Well [long drawn out]...SO MUCH has changed since we listed!
We knew it would take a few months to sell....and, it did exactly that! An offer came in at the end of January. Little did any of us know just how crazy, upside-down our world would become.

Let’s back-track on how it started (or, first came to light):
“On 31 Dec 2019, the WHO China Country office was informed of cases of pneumonia of unknown etiology detected in Wuhan City, Hubei Province Of China. “ - quoted from the Infection Prevention & Control Canada website.

Now.....let’s fast-forward to March 2020. The buyer of our home firmed-up, the SOLD sign went up, and we now had pressure to find a new home to settle into or face being homeless.

You is stressful enough to find a home to move to, as it is. Throw in low housing inventory, then add Covid-19 to the mix (a highly contagious virus that becomes a global pandemic.) EEK! You can just imagine the scenario!

“So what? Just rent a place...”, you say. Hmm! Well. Not that easy. There isn’t much to rent in Owen Sound at the moment, especially with 2 large dogs in our lives. What are we going to do? (Don’t check your blood pressure, Donna. Just don’t!)
We did what we always do....we contacted our Agent at Brand Realty Group & began our frantic search for a new home....around Owen Sound. The Maritimes would have to go ‘On Hold’ for the time-being.

We had a criteria to meet for our next home. We needed space to Reno a Granny-Suite, along with enough room/yard for our 2 monsters. Um,....I mean, dogs. Obviously, we would need time for the possibility of renovations before move in, as well. So.......
BRANDON VANDERSCHOT........HELP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
[Enter the Theme song from Peter Gunn]

Oh, me....I have heard it all!
Why are you looking for a home now?
Thought you were moving out East?
Will people let you into their homes? Is Real Estate essential?

Our home sold, we don’t want to be homeless.
We decided that we would eventually move the guy’s Mom in with us.
And, we don’t know. For us, extremely essential!


Reality was,...nobody knew what the future would hold, including our Agent.
It came across to me that someone felt that Real Estate should not be considered an essential. Normally, I would think...yeah...People in and out of houses equals spread of virus. But, what about those, like us, who would have been caught in limbo? Purgatory Covid-19. The statement actually upset me!


This is why: three people would have possibly ended up homeless during the peak of this pandemic. (My one son lives with us, and is currently looking for an affordable apartment.) Two dogs, who are considered family to us, would have had an uncertain future. And, with no place to go, we could have been exposed to a virus that could potentially kill us. (Both my son and I have asthma, and I have scarring on my lungs. May sound dramatic to you, but reality is...we fit in that category.

On top of all those reasons, we have 2 very important people in our lives that are in their late 80s. His parents. My In-Law’s. Both have compromised immune systems. We NEED (and WANT) to be around to care for them. And....let me add that fact that we can’t be the only ones in this situation...needing to find a new home. Sooooo, say that Real Estate Agents should not be considered essential....I beg to differ. I guess, it really is a matter of opinion. For me, I am damn lucky that my Real Estate Agent continued, and continues, to work diligently through-out all the uncertainty that is taking place in our world.

We did, in desperation, have an emergency plan in place. The guy roles his eyes at me....but, facing the possibility of being homeless, I figured that he could stay with his parents and I, and the dogs, would temporarily move in with my Mom in the Maritimes. Not ideal, but at the time, do-able.

Lo and behold, Brandon Vanderschot answered my cries for help & with a written promise to a homeowner or two that we indeed have not traveled recently AND that both of us were healthy, we embarked on our journey of hand-sanitizing-do-not-touch-anything tour of potential homes. To our surprise, we finally FOUND one! One that could meet all our check points. One with minimal renovations needed. One with a beautiful yard in a great neighbourhood. One that my mother-in-law approved. No longer homeless.

There you have it. Amongst a new way of living (hopefully temporary) of physical distancing, quarantining, and hand-washing/sanitizing.....we found a new HOME. Stress levels back to normal. Oh wait. Now we need to line-up a mover. Ack!!!!!!

Seriously, I could not be happier to have Brandon as our Agent. He has always been by our side in every adventure we have taken on. Thank you, Brandon Vanderschot....thank you from the bottom of my heart. You & your team at Brand Realty Group are truly step above the rest.
Thank you for being our Agent!!!!

About this global pandemic. Here are a few websites that you can check out for information:

When I started this blog a couple of days ago (March 29), the numbers were like this:
199 countries affected
663,740 positive cases Worldwide
30,039 deaths Worldwide
5655 positive cases in Canada
By the end of the day, 63 deaths in Canada

As I finished this blog (Tuesday, March 31), the numbers have changed to this:
840,000+ cases Worldwide
Over 41,000 dead Worldwide
8505 cases in Canada
1966 cases in Ontario
101 deaths in Canada

This numbers are changing rapidly.
Nearly 1/3 of the World is living in lockdown or restrictions.
Be safe!

- Donna