Anchored Here: Bill Laidler
Raised in Anmore and Port Moody, Bill Laidler is a seriously hardworking millennial that has dedicated his career to growing Port Moody.
He graduated from Moody Middle and Gleneagle Secondary and grew up playing lacrosse for the Coquitlam Adanacs and Burnaby Lakers. Bill then went on to complete a double major in Finance and Economics at Bishop’s University in Quebec, where he played Lacrosse and Rugby for the Varsity teams. After graduation, Bill moved to Cairns Australia where he played representative rugby and completed a Law Degree.
Now, Bill has put his business and legal training to work as a local real estate agent. Bill specializes in detached residential home sales and development properties and sees many people moving to Port Moody each day. After living all over the world, Bill has stuck with his Port Moody roots and now runs the top producing RE/MAX Real Estate Team in the Tri-Cities, ranking as the number five producer in RE/MAX Western Canada. We understand how after learning about his dedication to growing the next generation of families that live in Port Moody.
It seems that Bill has cast many anchors in Port Moody. He also is committed to giving back to the community by sponsoring local events including Port Moody Minor Hockey, the Port Moody Summer Concert Series and Ruben's Shoes, and sitting on the Board of Directors for the Port Moody Foundation. Maybe it's all the team sports, but Bill sure has the “We” attitude we all need to support and make our community better, together.
We sat down with Bill to learn why he is so anchored here.
1. How do you contribute to the social development of Port Moody?
“A big portion of what I do in my day-to-day job is helping Port Moody’s existing residents sell their properties to downsize or upsize. In many cases, with all the changes [in real estate] lately, I assemble single-family homes with their neighbors to sell to developers as multi-family properties, so that new families can come and live in the area. With all these changes coming in, I see that change is hard for some people and it is not always welcome with people that have lived here for a long period of time. I try to show the benefits of what the younger generation is able to bring if they're able to purchase in the area. A majority of what I do is working with the younger generation who want to work and live in Port Moody. I believe we're bringing new faces to Port Moody and that’s important for growing the next generation of people who will raise their families here.”
2. What values should we stand for as a community?
“I think it's really important now to use all the technology we have to allow everyone to live a decent life - to live, work, and play in their City. Before, developing land (urban sprawl) destroyed the surrounding nature that preceded these houses. But now, we don't need to do that and we can start building up instead of building out. By building up, we can start bringing jobs in to the suburbs, too, instead of having people drive to other city centers for jobs. We're in a transition from urban sprawl. Now, small urban pockets in Port Moody (i.e. Suterbrook and Newport) are sustainable and allow for people to live in a walkable area. This is what we want more of. We want to protect the environment while enhancing the natural beauty of Port Moody, and still create housing that is affordable for everyone by building up around the transit stations.
More people in Port Moody means that the jobs stay in Port Moody. Technology is changing and the way that we live has to change with it.”
3. Describe the most authentic moment you’ve witnessed during your time here.
“I don't know of one specific authentic moment... but as a real estate professional, I have the benefit of witnessing major milestones in people’s lives. My job allows me to become a part of my clients’ lives for a three to six month span. Whether it be helping them downsize from their lifelong homes, or assisting families in moving into their first home, these transitions are really touching.
Recently, I had a client move from a small one-bedroom condo in a 1960s building, to a newer two-bedroom condo in Klahanie. She took the keys with tears in her eyes, knowing she’s moving into a new community. It's a big milestone. You see it happen step by step.”
4. What kind of legacy do you intend on leaving behind?
“I think Port Moody is one of the most stunning cities in the world and I would really love to see Port Moody open itself up to the world instead of people here saying they want to keep Port Moody for the people that live here. Let’s find a way to share Port Moody with everyone, including people all across canada, or those immigrating here from other countries that want to live a better life.
I believe Port Moody is so unique with its location - its proximity to Vancouver, the water/inlet, and natural beauty of the lakes and trees. I believe that we have so much to offer here, and we could embrace all the potential investment - enhance all the parks, host more restaurants - and develop Port Moody so people can really live, work and play here. Make it so there is no need to go anywhere else - your job is here, you can go to restaurants here, you can raise your family here. It all starts with embracing the people. If we can’t accommodate more people, then we will never grow, restaurants won’t be able to survive, and office buildings won’t fill up.
I’d love for Port Moody to be a world class city in 40 to 50 years. There is even a huge difference in what there is here today [from five years ago]. I believe that where we are located and what we have to offer here gives us the potential to do so. I want to be a part of that.”
5. What ultimately anchors you here?
“Everything that we talked about before - the nature and people we have here, and my family.”