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The Publisher’s Page: REM’s print edition returns

Our prime minister wanted his Liberal Party to control a majority of seats in the House of Commons, so that his government could get back to passing legislation without needing to consult or compromise with the other parties in the House.

So, he told the Governor General to dissolve Parliament and send Canadians to the polls.

On September 20, Canadians gave him their answer: If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it! Sometimes change is necessary. When change comes, though, it should be for the right reasons.

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced REM to change in many ways. One of the most significant changes for us came when we had to suspend the production of our print magazine last year.

Our magazine is delivered primarily to real estate offices across Canada. However, if all of those offices are closed because everyone is isolating at home, that’s a big problem for us. If we have no one to deliver our magazines to, then how can we justify the cost of printing them?

So, when the pandemic forced us all into lockdown, we pivoted. Overnight, REM became an online-only news publication.

Our last issue was in April 2020, just as the reality of the pandemic was starting to set in. At the time, no one knew how long this was going to last. It seems like a lifetime ago now.

We hoped it wouldn’t be long before we were back to business as usual, printing and delivering magazines. We believe being a real print publication carries with it a level of credibility and authority online-only sources can’t usually claim to have, so getting back to print became a top priority for us.

By the end of summer last year, it seemed as if there might be light at the end of the tunnel. Case numbers were going down, and the rollout of a vaccine was not far on the horizon. We used the opportunity to work on an exciting redesign of our publication and proudly unveiled it with our October 2020 issue, with the hope that it would be the first of many in the near future.

But sadly, it was not meant to be. Case numbers shot up over the weeks we were preparing to go to print. Lockdowns returned. It became clear we were not out of the woods with the COVID-19 pandemic yet.

Over a year has passed since that issue. Throughout it all, REM struggled, like everyone, but we survived. Our goal over that prolonged hiatus stayed the same: To return to print in whatever form we could as soon as it was safe to do so.

That’s why we are immensely proud to say that the time has finally come for that return. Our Fall 2021 issue, out now, is our first in over a year, and only our second to feature the new and improved design.

This will be our only issue in 2021. That said, we are already making plans for a full return to regular print issues in 2022.

Many things at REM have changed over the course of this pandemic. Many things have likely changed for you, too.

What hasn’t changed is REM’s commitment to independent news and analysis of Canada’s real estate industry. It’s a commitment we make to you, Canadian real estate professionals, to deliver insightful and reliable information you can’t find anywhere else.

REM is still the publication you know and love – the same REM that has covered this industry since 1989. We have adapted when and where it was necessary, just as you have had to do, too. Yet, our guiding principles of journalistic integrity and independence have not changed and won’t be changing any time soon.

After all: If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!