Trudeau government's federal budget enters housing fray with tax on foreign owners

The federal Liberal government is planning to intervene in Canada’s red-hot housing market with a new tax aimed at foreign owners of underused residential real estate and with additional efforts to increase the supply of affordable places to live.


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On either side of the south end of the Burrard Street bridge, a new mega project on Squamish First Nations land is in the works. 

Seventy percent of the condo homes being built will be rentals, and some will be designated for First Nations occupancy. Developed by Westbank on 12 acres at the eastern edge of Kitsilano, this project will provide much density and affordability to Vancouver.

For a more details of this project, read an in depth article:

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Currently we have a small garden suite for sale in a brand new triplex. Above is a 2 story unit, and out back is a coach house.

A potential Buyer wants to know if the owner of the garden suite will own 1/3 of the land, as one of the 3 owners of the triplex. Division of ownership, and also division of strata fees (if there are any) are based on the size of each unit. Therefore the owner of the largest unit owns the biggest share of the land but also pays a greater portion of the insurance, strata fees...

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Most co-ops in Vancouver can be found in the Westend and in the Oakridge area.

However, my buyer found this gem in South Granville. He was able to purchase a 965 square foot one bedroom home for only $575,000. The impediment for many people buying a co-op is the required 35% minimum down payment. As well, the lesser known ownership style confuses people (you are buying shares in a company that owns the building and the land), and so they pass over even looking at co-ops.

They are generally concrete...

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Neighbourhoods like Point Grey, Dunbar and Kitsilano are losing small businesses, young families and vibrant community energy.

Douglas Todd from The Vancouver Sun stipulates why. One of the reasons is that young families have been priced out of the market. I have first hand experience of this with a lovely young family looking for a newish home in one of these neighbourhoods but having to pay over $3.3 million. They love the area and love the fact that their is room in the schools for their young...

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As a native Vancouverite I have always loved South Granville. Officially it is part of FAIRVIEW, which stretches from the shores of False Creek all the way up to lower Shaughnessy.

Most of my homes in my 20's were 3 story walk ups in South Granville. The buildings were old but had large rooms with beautiful original hardwood flooring, lovely vintage tiling in the bathrooms and kitchens, undersized appliances, laundry in the basement and no elevators. But I loved them - especially the ones with no...

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Funky 1 bedroom 1 bathroom condo in the lovely westend of Vancouver!

I have lived in Vancouver almost my whole life (now 58 years old!) and I have never really explored the WESTEND until my daughter moved there last year. She rents a lovely apartment in a quaint 1950's building a block from Stanley Park. 

You almost forget you are downtown because of the tree lined streets and quick access to the ocean and park. It feels like a residential neighbourhood, feels like home. 

I was happy to...

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HOME SALES and NEW LISTINGS were at near record levels in OCTOBER 2020 across Metro Vancouver.

Greater Vancouver Sales:

Up 29% over October 2019

Up 1.2% from September 2020

Up 34.7% above 10 year October average

Metro Vancouver benechmark price for a detached home is $1,045,100.


*potentially a focus on the importance of home due to the pandemic, for work and safety

*pent up demand from a slower spring market due to the pandemic

*low interest rates

Is it a good time to BUY?

It depends on what...

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Below is a link to our latest Greater Vancouver Real Estate Board (REBGV) stats for August 2020. 

Here are some highlights!

Top 3 areas for the most sales for DETACHED homes in August:

East Vancouver - 118 sales

Sunshine Coast - 155 sales

North Vancouver - 103 sales

Prices up 6.6% over August 2019

Top 3 areas for the most sales for CONDOS in August:

Vancouver westside - 343 sales

East Vancouver - 155 sales

Richmond - 141 sales

Prices up 4.5% over August 2019

Top 3 areas for the most sales of...

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Many sellers ask me if they should renovate before lisitng their home for sale.

It depends.

If the entire home is in original shape, and you don't intend to renovate top to bottom, I would leave it as is. That provides the buyer with full rein to choose all new colors and textures for every room - which also creates a cohesiveness throughout the space. If you just renovate one room, like a bathroom or bedroom, the stark comparison to the rest of the home makes it look worse - and more work.


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Every month, our real estate board publishes the listing and sales activity for all municipalities in the lower mainland.

Below is a link to the Vancouver report!


Here are some Vancouver westside highlights about how July 2020 compares to July 2019:

Houses - fewer listings available, down 25%

               sales down slightly by 3.8%

               prices up slightly...

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If you are buying a condo in BC, I would highly recommend that you buy one that:

1. was built before the leaky condo period (1980's, 1990's)

2. has already been rainscreened

3. is a newer build

4. you work Monday to Friday 8-4 pm you are not home while they jack hammer the concrete off the side of your building right out side your home office!

It is a noisy, messy process that generally takes up to a year depending on the size of your building. Yes, it will increase the value of your investment...

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Steady increases in home sale and listing activity continue

Home buyers and sellers have gradually become more active in each month of the COVID-19 pandemic. In June, home sale and listing activity in Metro Vancouver* returned to more historically typical levels.

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential home sales in the region totalled 2,443 in June 2020, a 17.6 per cent increase from the 2,077 sales recorded in June 2019, and a 64.5 per cent increase from the 1,485...

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Almost every offer I write for my Buyers these days, there are othe Buyers who want the same property at the same time! Especially for condos.

This really changes how I approach writing their offer. With the Buyer in agreement, there are steps you can take to prepare to win. prior to the offer presentation time.

1. For Condos, read all the documents you receive from the listing realtor. There are a lot of them! But if you read everything, as I will too, ask lots of questions, get professional opinions...

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When you scroll through the myriad of real estate websites, there are always properties that really catch your eye. It could be the velvety green sofa or the mid-century modern teak dining room table or funky art on the wall.

It most certainly is NOT the close up of the toilet seat up or the pile of dishes next to the kitchen sink! Yes, first impressions are critical, and for real estate websites selling your home, all photographs posted online are first impressions.

That is why, before the photograher...

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Recently, a client of mine, a lovely young lady and first time BUYER, purchased a one bedroom and one bathroom condo at 989 Nelson Street in downtown Vancouver. Prior to the late 1990's, this was the BC Hydro Building - an office tower.

I had never been in the building before and was really impressed with the successful conversion to condos. This unit faces the Wall Center and has an extra city view in its reflection! At only 496 square feet, the great layout made it feel more spacious.

This building...

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Since the BC government has reopened all our public spaces and various businesses, we have seen a real increase in the number of people listing their homes, and as a result more sales.

We have now had almost 4 months of learning how to do real estate in a safe and productive way, with our masks, gloves, hand sanitizers and social distancing ( which is a bit tough in some of those small 1970's elevators!).

The busiest market is the condo market which is where home purchasing is still most affordable...

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Renovating your home?

Start small with one of the smaller rooms in your home - the bathroom!

Here are the top 10 trends for bathrooms this year. Which style do you like?


“In bathrooms, we’re incorporating more exposed shower plumbing. The industrial look pairs beautifully with a white, modern marble.”

See the other 9 great ideas:

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Michael Geller, a contributor to the Vancouver Courier re: real estate/housing issues, always has a clear and calm view of the situation.

Six False Creek affordable housing lots still empty after three decades: Vancouver Sun front page story March 10, 2018

While I didn't write this story, I feel partially responsible for it.
     During the recent debate about the forthcoming North-east False Creek development, much was made of the city's promise to include significant affordable housing. This prompted me to comment that this was a noble goal, but before getting too excited about these units, what about the 6 empty social housing parcels lying fallow along the North Shore of False Creek?
     I knew about these parcels because I was given a tour of them by Concord Pacific during the 2008 municipal election. Furthermore, I was involved as an expert witness in a lawsuit over them a few years ago. Following my comments, Lori Cuthbert contacted me. I happily put her in touch with Cameron Gray, who was the City's Housing Director, and while not directly involved in the acquisition of these sites, knew why they remained undeveloped.
     I told Lori that I thought it was outrageous that these sites remained undeveloped, not as a criticism of Concord Pacific, but rather of the city, province and feds who could have come up with a strategy to see these parcels developed with affordable housing, even in the absence of deep government subsidies. Enough said.
The data relating to real estate on this website comes in part from the MLS® Reciprocity program of either the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV), the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board (FVREB) or the Chilliwack and District Real Estate Board (CADREB). Real estate listings held by participating real estate firms are marked with the MLS® logo and detailed information about the listing includes the name of the listing agent. This representation is based in whole or part on data generated by either the REBGV, the FVREB or the CADREB which assumes no responsibility for its accuracy. The materials contained on this page may not be reproduced without the express written consent of either the REBGV, the FVREB or the CADREB.