Get It In Writing

Residents near Stonebridge Golf Course are not happy. They’re really not happy. Having paid a premium to have a lovely large house overlooking a golf course, they don’t want to have any other single-family homes fall in their sight lines. The developer, it seems, promised–promised–that no other development would occur. To the surprise of no one else, a real estate developer was less than totally honest:

Jay McLean, who lives at 553 Sandgate Ridge, near the course’s fifth hole, wanted his current home so much that he slept outside for two nights when Monarch sold the lot he now lives on.

“It’s a great community and we played a premium for our view and our privacy,” he said, adding the lot premiums for residents on Sandgate ranged from $75 to $100,000.

Last December Monarch submitted an application to build 11 single family homes across from his property. The new homes would be 43 metres away from his backyard – less than half the minimum distance of 85 metres elsewhere on the golf course, McLean said.

When the residents moved, Monarch assured them there wouldn’t be any more homes built on the plot of lands with the municipal address of 3700 Jockvale Rd, McLean said. but there’s nothing in the purchase and sale agreement to back up that claim.

Now, no one likes to be lied to. And many of us developed feelings of ownership over things we really have little claim, so I can understand why current residents are less than happy about the planned development, and I understand why they would want to fight it, but regardless of promises and wishes, there is rarely a guarantee that one can move into an area and then, zap, freeze everything perfectly in time. Development happens. Cities grow. People move and build. Life happens.

If you really want to stop all this–and I have about zero sympathy for those who do, because they put an unreasonable burden on the rest of us–you should really get it in writing. You see, all these “promises” that were made weren’t actually in any sort of contractual agreement. It’s quite clear why the residents have no real claim here.

And, as just about anyone could have guessed, the development was approved.

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