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Publisher’s Page: The quality and value you deserve

I grew up with this magazine you’re reading. Literally.

My dad, Heino, launched this humble publication 29 years ago, and as a result I’ve had the good fortune of spending nearly my entire life surrounded by some the biggest names in Canadian real estate. I’ve watched a generation of dramatic developments happen in this industry, and the rapid technological changes that contributed to them.

Believe it or not, I can remember a time without the internet, smartphones and social media. I remember what my life was like before these incredible discoveries became absolute necessities.

In the past, it took generations to feel the impact of technological shifts like the printing press and industrial revolution, and yet we’ve witnessed just such a change in less than half a lifetime.

There have been powerful and startling consequences for the real estate industry as a result. Previously unimaginable digital platforms for sales and marketing, more exact and demanding expectations from buyers and sellers and a faster-paced environment for real estate professionals.

For our magazine, too, there have been significant consequences.

Newspapers and magazines are facing an ongoing existential crisis, as more readers move online, where they expect the same quality of content but now for no cost at all. REM is no exception to this trend. Our readers, like your clients, have extremely high standards and expectations. But quality journalism, like a quality real estate salesperson, doesn’t come for free, and even if you expect exceptional service at half the cost, you’ll find you only get what you pay for. I’m sure you tell your clients this all the time: There’s a real value to what you do. You should be proud of that.

In journalism today, like in real estate, it’s easy enough to go it alone. When searching for what’s happening our industry, you might hop around between cheaply produced news sites with less than reputable sources, the same way a For Sale By Owner seller might think that they don’t need an agent they can trust because they can consult with questionable Russian websites and YouTube videos to learn about buying and selling real estate.

Do you believe that online listings have made all real estate agents unnecessary and out-of-date? I bet you don’t. You understand that, while many things have changed, there’s still a great value in the services you offer. No technological advancement can change the need for quality service from someone you can trust.

Personally, I still believe in the value of quality journalism, and I don’t believe a new kind of media technology must mean the end of everything that came before it. Radio didn’t kill newspapers, and television didn’t kill radio. Instead, after each of these generational changes, the medium survived through transformation and adaptation.

In the same way that there’s a value to Realtors, there’s value in quality journalism and analysis. That is what this magazine has provided for the past 29 years, and it’s what we will continue to do for the next 29.

This industry deserves to have a trusted news magazine like REM to provide in-depth insight and analysis of the many dramatic changes that impact Canadian real estate.

Any website or blog, produced by someone overseas or some major conglomerate with little actual understanding of this industry, can reproduce superficial headlines and wire stories. But that’s not the quality news and analysis you deserve.

What REM provides, as a fully independent and 100-per-cent Canadian news magazine, is a dependable, well-respected source for in-depth reporting and analysis of Canada’s real estate industry.

We will continue to adapt to and embrace new technology, but we will never go back on that promise.

Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, to all those who have wished my father a happy retirement and myself the best of luck with this new era we now embark on at REM.

I look forward to our next 29 years and beyond, together.