It’s no surprise that people are attracted to people, and such is the case with the ever-growing Exchange District. A hub of culture and life, the Exchange District attracts visitors and residents alike for its historic architecture, charming boutiques and shops, and endless array of food options – not to mention parks, Waterfront Drive, and the accessibility to everywhere including the Forks, the MTS Centre and downtown hot spots.
As a first time buyer entering the real estate ownership world, there doesn’t seem to be a better place in Winnipeg to invest. “When you’re looking to places with potential, to areas that are undergoing intense revitalization and have the most opportunity to flourish, look no further than the Exchange,” says Jessica Willis, Sales and Marketing Manager of StreetSide Developments. But recognizing potential and the future of the Exchange doesn’t mean sacrificing current enjoyment – the area is already overwhelmingly appealing and full of like-minded people with an eye on the future and an appreciation for the past.
First-time buyer Adam Sefton and his girlfriend Kim Neufeld found their home at StreetSide Developments’ District Condos 132 James building, and have been enjoying the area ever since. “There is always something to do or see whether it is in the Exchange District, at The Forks or any nearby area,” says Sefton.
The pair was originally attracted to the condo for its proximity to their workplaces downtown, and the esthetic of the building blew them away especially in light of its value. “We wanted something different and unique. We loved the beams and brick in the building, and the price was affordable,” he says.
Offering value and the stability of a reputable builder are only the icing on the cake when it comes to District Condos. “StreetSide has worked very hard to restore these buildings back to their original state, keeping the historic charm intact. New windows and modern finishes complement original brick walls and century-old timber ceilings, features that are a rare find in Winnipeg,” says Willis.
Moving from a single-family house to a loft condo at District meant downsizing for newlyweds Jenny-Lynn and Jason Sheldon, but it was worth it for the lifestyle change. “I consider the entire Exchange District our backyard,” says Jenny-Lynn.
“We really wanted a place that matched our lifestyles – and we have found it in the Exchange. I bike or walk to work most days and it is honestly the best part of my day.”
The pair found they were spending more of their time commuting than spending time at their house in the south end of the city, and now find they host more gatherings due to their central location. Plus, even without plans, they have a multitude of activities available to them nearby.
“I think the best thing about living here is feeling like we have so many good options for spontaneous activities,” says Jason. “We don’t need to plan excursions – we can just hop on our bikes and enjoy any number of activities within a few minutes.”
The Exchange District neighbourhood is already set to grow further, and with more residents in the area, even more amenities are bound to follow.
District Condos still has some incredibly affordable lofts starting at $143,000 including upgrades and GST, which with a 5 per cent deposit of $7,150 means monthly mortgage payments could be as low as $665 a month. After condo fees and property taxes, you’re still looking at a number comparable to rent, but you are paying yourself and building equity in a unique neighbourhood poised for even more growth.