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Love It or List It star loves Barrie

David Visentin calls Barrie home with no plans to "list it."
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David Visentin, of the hit show Love it or List it, is pictured on the Barrie waterfront. Sue Sgambati/BarrieToday

David Visentin admits he could live anywhere.

The affable co-host of the smash W Network and HGTV (U.S.) show Love It Or List It has travelled to many major cities since becoming a television star.

But Visentin chooses to live in Barrie.

"Barrie is just one of those cities that gives you everything you need and gives me proximity to real estate, which I still do."

The veteran realtor says Barrie has culture, theatre, great restaurants and bike trails. 

His family real estate business, Country Living Realty, is located nearby along with both his and his wife's family. 

It was the city's beautiful waterfront that prompted Visentin and his wife to list their home in Toronto's Beach neighbourhood and move north in 2007.

"I just love being by the water.  I love the sound of it.  I love seeing it from my house.  I love running around the lake. I use the boardwalk and I love to swim, although Simcoe is bloody cold and it doesn't warm up for a long time."

Almost a year to the day Visentin and his wife moved to Barrie, he auditioned and won co-hosting duties on Love It Or List It with top designer Hilary Farr.

Love It Or List It is a real estate and renovation show that pits Visentin and Farr in a competition. 

Visentin aims to find homeowners their dream home while Farr renovates their current home in a bid to convince them to stay.

The original Love It Or List It was based in Toronto and Visentin contemplated moving back.

He decided to stay in Barrie, in part because he didn't know how long the show would last.

Visentin got used to the drive to work and says he loved living in Barrie.

Now eight years later, the show is a massive hit.

The successful concept has led to several spinoffs including the latest called Love It Or List It Vacation Homes currently being filmed in Collingwood, Muskoka and Prince Edward County. 

Visentin has no plans to list his Barrie abode.

He loves old houses and lives with his wife and young son in a century home near the waterfront.

Visentin is not a huge fan of new subdivisions but says Barrie has done a good job of integrating new neighbourhoods with greenspace and trails.  

He has a passion for running and often participates in local triathlons.

Among his favourite restaurants is Il Buco on Dunlop Street.  

He likes the wine list and enjoying a plate of seafood pasta on the restaurant terrace with an expansive view of Kempenfelt Bay.

His commute to work grew considerably in 2014 when the show began filming in North Carolina.

If he's away for more than a week, he takes his family with him.

But he always returns to the growing city of Barrie.

"It's an interesting place to be."