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In Conversation With … Morris Atamanchuk – Oct2015

In Conversation With ... Morris Atamanchuk - Oct2015

There’s a lot to be said about Regal Crest Homes’ 50 years of excellence but the president of the company is a man of few words.

With its humble beginnings to its prominent position as one of Ontario’s finest home builders, Regal Crest Homes has many reasons to celebrate its 50 years of building homes throughout the GTA and beyond, providing luxurious, quality homes one brick at a time.

In 1965, a group of 18 tradespeople with a shared dream realized that with hard work and a commitment to excellence, they could become one of the most distinguished homebuilders. As time went on, those 18 tradespeople evolved to two determined men: the late Marco Muzzo and Morris Atamanchuk, who is now the president of Regal Crest Homes.

With this significant milestone, Regal Crest still endeavours to provide leading-edge designs, as well as customer service and building quality to surpass everybody’s expectations, says Atamanchuk.

As an industry leader, Atamanchuk continues to look positively into the future, proactively anticipating the needs of the marketplace.

HOMES Magazine: Tell me a little bit about your background and history.

Morris Atamanchuk: I was born in 1942 to Ukrainian parents and was raised as a farmer’s son in Bradford. I quickly went into construction as a framing carpenter where I realized and developed a love for construction. I got married and had six children. In 1965, I started a housing company called Outlook Investments and I quickly turned the company name over to Regal Crest Homes.

HM: What inspired you to join the building and development field?

MA: My brother introduced me to the business and I also met up with Marco Muzzo, who pushed me into the construction industry. We created our own building company with 17 other tradesmen.

HM: What have been the strongest influences in your professional life?

MA: My friendships and the relationships I have with our trades people. They are the backbone of any successful building company. I also give a lot of credit to my very strong and loving wife who has stood by my side through thick and thin. We have six kids!

HM: When you entered the industry, did you have someone you would consider a mentor?

MA: Norman Black (now deceased), and Sam Lehdin Zeldin of Consolidated Building Corp., and, most recently, the late Marco Muzzo, perhaps the most influential visionary.

HM: There have been a lot of changes in the industry over the years. With the province’s Places to Grow policy and the Greenbelt restrictions, where do you see the real estate and housing market going?

MA: Lowrise housing will always be in demand. People still want a piece of Toronto at the ground level. It’s getting tighter and tighter every year so our market is changing from lowrise to midrise and eventually we’ll do some highrise. Regal Crest plans on changing with the times. Our family structure is in place to continue our growth from within.

HM: Known as a quality builder of complete communities, do you see Regal Crest branching out into other types of building forms? Will the approval of six-storey wood-frame building change some of your offerings?

MA: Absolutely, we will adapt to the change in demand based on rising prices and THE introduction of new product.

HM: What is the biggest challenge you have faced in your professional career?

MA: Fluctuations in the market, especially in the 1980s when interest rates rose to 24 per cent and market crashes when hundreds of homes could not close due to lack of funds. Now, a lack of developable land is forcing us to source smaller pieces of land. All in all, we have pulled through!

HM: What are the biggest challenges that builders and developers encounter today?

MA: Government restrictions, development charges and lack of services to raw land.

HM: What is your pet peeve? Development charges, the Greenbelt, Places to Grow, transit issues?

MA: All those mentioned and the deteriorating work skill within the labour force.

HM: Regal Crest has a great reputation for not only building quality homes, but for being community builders. How does that align with your business and philanthropic philosophy?

MA: Communities are about people and multicultural communities thrive the best. We strive to understand each community in its making and provide the public with their demands. We have contributed to the construction of churches and homes for the needy.

HM: You build communities and are very involved in those communities. Why do you go above and beyond and what sense of satisfaction do you get from it?

MA: I can’t release a home to a purchaser unless it passes my standards. What are my standards? If it isn’t good enough for me, then it’s not good enough for the purchaser. I am very proud driving through a completed community and still recognize purchasers from the past.

HM: What has made you proudest?

MA: Watching my children grow in this industry. I know what the industry has given to my family. Now, I am able to watch them grow with their families and the industry.

I must also say, I am very proud to be a part of the Muzzo family of companies. There is no better group of people to work with than the Muzzos.

HM: What do you do for fun?

MA: I enjoy taking time off and travelling to Florida with my wife. My wife is the most wonderful woman in the world and we have been happily married for 62 years. We love going to Florida, as it’s special time to reflect on family, business and life in general.


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