Every home transaction has its own story, but for retired real estate agents Larry and Donna Young, one home purchase stands out from the rest.
It happened when a hermit with three cats wanted to buy a remote property.
The Youngs were able to find a place for him, in a secluded area off the Connector.
The man paid the $38,500 price in $50 bills and the couple had to take the money to the Summerland Credit Union to have it counted.
Then, Larry Young borrowed a truck to help the man move to his new home. Along the way, they stopped several times to check on the cats.
For the past 40 years, the Youngs have been working as real estate agents in Summerland and over the years, they have developed strong relationships as they have helped their customers.
They are grateful to the people they have dealt with over the years
Now retired, they are able to look back on the career they had and reflect on the times they have been able to spend with buyers and sellers.
Larry Young’s first love was hockey and after playing minor hockey in Summerland, he played for the Flin Flon Bombers in Manitoba and eventually played for American teams in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Iowa.
Although he later gave up his dream of becoming a professional player, he continued to play recreational hockey until he was 60.
After hockey, he got into carpentry and home construction, but because of back problems, he had to leave this work.
The move to real estate was a natural transition for him, and his knowledge of building trades provided him with an understanding of houses.
From the time they started working as real estate agents, Larry and Donna Young liked working together.
“It was always something we enjoyed,” Donna young said. “We always worked well together.”
Over the years, they have seen many changes in real estate sales.
The paperwork alone has become far more complex than it was when they started in 1979.
“When we started, a standard contract was one page,” Donna Young said. “When we ended, it was 16 pages.”
They began selling houses around the same time as the South Okanagan Real Estate Board was formed and they have watched the organization grow in the years following.
They have also seen other trends and changes, including the high interest rates of the early 1980s.
“The market went crazy,” Larry Young said, recalling the time when interest rates topped 20 per cent.
Trends continue to change and prices may fluctuate, but overall, the market value of a property will increase over time, the Youngs said.
“Try and find the home you’re happy to stay with,” Larry Young said.
They have followed this advice themselves, as they have been in their heritage home for the past 45 years.
Now that they have retired from real estate, the Youngs are taking time for themselves.
They have been able to spend time fishing and have taken more time visiting their children and grandchildren.
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