Harold Waddell
Harold Waddell

Harold Waddell, who purchased Realty World Canada in 1975 and expanded the company to 195 locations across Canada, died Oct. 4 in Vancouver. He was 89.

Mr. Waddell’s obituary says he began his real estate career in 1955 with the North Vancouver company Parr, Bragg and McPherson. He purchased the company a few years later and in 1961 renamed it H.L. Waddell and Associates. In later years it operated under the Realty World banner.

In 1975 he acquired the rights to Realty World in Canada and in Washington and Oregon states. He sold the Canadian rights to Royal LePage in 1997. His obituary says he “retired” in 1999 but always remained active with other personal business interests.
He was a Fellow of the Real Estate Institute of Canada and served as president of the North Shore Division of the Greater Vancouver Real Estate Board. He also served as a member of the Real Estate Council of B.C. and chaired the council’s Education Committee. He lectured on an ongoing basis for RECBC and U.B.C.’s continuing education programs.

His funeral, “small and private as he wished,” took place on Oct. 15, says his obituary.

In the December 2004 issue of REM, former columnist Marty Douglas wrote, “Are they making giants in real estate anymore? Those men who, through their sheer force of will, comforted by confidence in their skill and leadership and using their own money, forged local, national and international real estate organizations….Here’s to Harold Waddell – they don’t make them like that anymore.”


Harold Waddell



  1. I remember having a drink with Harold and the other younger Realty World agents at his last Alberta Sales Conference in Edmonton held at the Mayfield. This was right around the time he had sold Realty World to Royal LePage and Harold was constantly smiling. I could tell he was really enjoying that night. He was on a farewell tour of sorts, and well deserved after building and then selling a very successful company with an exceptional corporate culture. The friends I made from across the country during my time with Realty World continue on today. I agree Marty Douglas (another old Realty World vet) said it best when he called Harold a giant of the industry. That is a very good description of the man he was, but what was even more amazing about Harold was his personality. Harold was the nicest, most humble guy you could ever meet. Although we can all agree he wasn’t the best public speaker :)  Rest in peace Harold.

  2. Harold was a wonderful leader and a gentleman(in all senses of the word). His vision and commitment to the industry and those who worked for him was remarkable. He will be missed.

  3. An amazing individual and a great franchise leader!
    Present organizations don’t have the same family feel to them as he had instilled and created! I still value my old Realty World colleague connections, those old friendships are still alive and well thanks to Harold !

  4. I also remember Harold very well. A true professional in every sense of the word. I was a member of the Realty World team from 1979 through the sale to Royal LePage. He sent letters and signed all awards personally. He treated everyone with respect was genuinely interested in the well being of all the people that worked with him. I look back at my years with Realty World with pride. Thank you Harold for all you have done, you will be missed.

  5. I remember Harold fondly. Down to earth and humble. I was so impressed watching him at the Realty World national conferences greeting hundreds of people by name, even rookies like myself at the time. Marty was right. They certainly don’t make giants like Harold anymore.

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