Mona Kennedy chose Westport first. Then she discovered the house. Now she’s found her home.
A year ago Mona sold her house in Picton and moved to a rental in the charming village of Westport. Living in the picturesque cottage town would put her near her family and friends. She knew the area well because she had lived and worked there. In many ways it felt like coming home.
Mona loves living by the water and shopping at the kind of small retailers who learn your name. She craved community. Everything pointed to Westport except there was no house that fit.
One evening, she heard Steve Rolston, the founder of Watercolour, present at a town council meeting. He talked about building a walkable community. He talked about wanting to see people reconnect with each other and with nature. That night, she had a sense she’d found her home.
Mona put down a deposit almost right away. Walking the empty property with a friend became part of her exercise route. She became friends with the construction crew and with Steve. She said he calls her “Mona the Brave” for being the first to buy at Watercolour.
“I bought this home from my heart,” she says. “However, it was the practical aspects of what Land Ark homes has to offer that sealed the deal.”
She bought this house not knowing all the technical innovations. She has since learned that it’s those features that will keep her heating bill incredibly low or give her the peace of mind that fresh, clean air is being silently, mechanically circulated through her home 24 hours a day.
Mona looks at the whole package – the new house and the town of Westport. And put together, it’s that this community is where she belongs. This is already home.
“What appealed to me most was the design features like the wide front verandah and the fact that you can host guests without feeling like you’re tripping over each other,” she says, “And the development doesn’t look like a typical rabbit warren of identical, cookie-cutter houses. Here each house is different. And they’re beautiful.”
One of the favourite features in her new home are the large windows. It feels like light is pouring in everywhere. The windows in the rear of the house catch the morning sunrise. And then she sits on her veranda in the evening watching the sunset.
Watercolour homes are built with JELD-WEN triple-paned windows, one of the many technical features that make these homes net zero ready – features Mona points out to visiting guests. In the evenings, when the temperature drops, the house stays cozy warm. She can’t feel any draft or temperature difference when she sits inside near a window.
“These homes are beautiful,” she says. “What’s standard is hardwood floors, the triple-paned windows, curved corner beads… I could go on and on. You’re already starting at a higher level without even adding any extras.”
The development doesn’t slash its way through the land like a typical bulldozed development. Instead, Watercolour has become a part of it. Mona says the mantel is from timber cut from the old Rice property where Watercolour now sits. It grounds the place – keeps history alive even while something new is created.
Mona walks with a friend every morning. They use the nature trails that crisscross the property, surrounded by trees and wild birds.
Mona walks to the grocery store, library and post office. In the afternoons, when she has time, she stops for a coffee in one of the local shops. Or she walks the .7 km to Sand Lake Beach when her grandkids stop by for a swim.
At night, as she puts the house to bed, she knows she has absolutely done the right thing by investing in Watercolour.