The Pipestone Villas phase one apartment building in Moosomin, opened in September. The second phase, including another 24 units, will be constructed immediately to the east of this building.

Pipestone Villas ready to begin phase two

December 31, 2012 9:04 am
Adam Wightman

The shareholders of Pipestone Villas in Moosomin decided at a recent meeting to begin initial preparations to build a second 24-unit, three-story apartment complex.

It will be immediately east of their Wright Road complex opened in September.

The second complex constitutes phase two of Pipestone Villas' three-phase plan.

The plan is to eventually have three 24-unit apartment complexes, more or less identical in structure, built in a horseshoe pattern, with the one opened in September serving as the centre building. While there is no age-restriction for tenants, it was modeled as an adult living facility.
Those living in the first phase are mostly 60 years of age and older, said Bill Thorn.

Before the construction of the second phase can begin, Pipestone Villas needs to have people committed to leasing 15 of the 24 units, by making a $1,000 non-refundable deposit. They haven't yet done much marketing for that, Thorn said.

"We haven't had anybody that has committed to renting an apartment, but we've had a lot of people who have asked about it," said Thorn.

When 15 apartments have a deposit placed on them, construction will begin on the building, expected to cost roughly $6.5 million.

As was the first Pipestone Villas apartment building, construction of the second one will be financed by funds provided by the company's 15 shareholders, all but two of whom are from the local area; and each tenant will be required to make a second deposit of $65,000 when construction begins.

The tenants will receive three per cent interest on that deposit for every year they live at the complex, and if a renter decides to vacate, they will get their money back within 90 days.

Thorn said that the company shareholders are aiming to get construction started on the second phase by the end of 2013.

"Like any investment, you have challenges getting the product marketed, but it's nothing that we can't handle. We think we're in a really good location and have a really good product. We've learned a lot from dealing with phase one, and we think we'll do a better job in phase two," Thorn said.

Pipestone Villas property manger Judy Bood said that there are five people on the waiting list for tenancy in the phase two building, and seven on the list for the phase three building.

"As soon as I get the chance, I'll contact those people to say that we're moving forward with phase two and let them know that they can make the deposit on an apartment if they like," Bood said.

Pipestone Villas was incorporated around two years ago by locals who saw a need to have an adult living complex in Moosomin. Thorn said that he expects that the need for adult-living apartments in town to only increase in coming years.

"There are a lot of things happening around, and we think the timing is good on it, of course. We anticipate that when the new permanent jobs open up at the mine, there might be a little spike in the real-estate market, so people might be thinking about downsizing and relocating
when they can maximize their personal real estate," he said.

The contractor that Pipestone Villas has hired to build the three phases of the is Bridge Road Developments, a construction company based in Winkler, Man. The developer is also one of the 15 shareholders of Pipestone Villas.

"We adopted the Bridge Road building model conceptand molded it to our own needs," Thorn said.

The residents of the Pipestone Villas apartment building on Wright Road are a mix of locals and those from outside of the area.

"It's about half and half, about half locals and half out of-towners. We've got a couple from Redvers, some from Rocanville, Welwyn and Virden," he said.

Thorn said that, with most of the occupants being seniors, many of those living in the building were attracted by the lower maintenance for those apartments compared to their old homes.

"They want some freedom to travel, and now they can just walk out and lock the door and you don't have to have someone to look after the place. It's a pretty easy way to live," he said.

He said that the residents have been mostly satisfied with the apartment complex, and the new complex will be slightly different to incorporate needed adjustments.

"It's a good community there. The people in there are quite happy with it. There is the odd thing that we'll tweak for phase two, but, for the most part, it will be the same as phase one," Thorn said.