August 2018

Found 39 blog entries for August 2018.

The signs are subtle so far, but they may represent the first downdraft in Metro Vancouver’s multi-family apartment building market after years of record-snapping demand and prices. And yet, multi-family investment insiders remain confident of future performance.

The signs are subtle so far, but they may represent the first downdraft in Metro Vancouver’s multi-family apartment building market after years of record-snapping demand and prices. And yet, multi-family investment insiders remain confident of future performance.

The warning signals include a rush of new purpose-built rental buildings, an increase in rentals due to a housing sales slump that has shoved more rentals on the market and extremely skinny capitalization rates. And, of course, upcoming changes to the B.C. Residential Tenancy Act that many believe will tilt regulations in favour of tenants.

If a correction is coming, however, it has yet to show up in sales and prices of apartment buildings that have continued a sizzling pace this year.

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Vancouver Development – the Really Big and Spiffy New Oakridge

A bold-looking mixed-use Oakridge Centre is rising in the city, on 28 acres, at the site of a Canada Line transit station. Henriquez Partners Architects have designed something that is billed as the largest development in Vancouver’s history. Completion date looks to be 2025, costs somewhere around $5B, with 2,548 new residential units, and two 40+ storey towers among 12 other buildings. And it’s right in the middle of a predominantly single-family residential area, with rising density nearby.

Part of the design rationale is, however, specifically to generate density at an important transit hub.  Mission accomplished, it seems to me.


Of the 1,965 market housing units, 84% will be 2 or 3 bedrooms. Of the 580 rental and social units, 249

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What Airbnb really does to a neighbourhood

Millions of people use Airbnb when travelling but its popularity sometimes puts it at odds with locals. So, how do short-term holiday lets really affect a neighbourhood?

In the decade since it was launched, online home rental platform Airbnb has amassed millions of rooms worldwide.

But it has also found itself entangled in disputes with authorities from Tokyo to Berlin to San Francisco.

Similar issues recur:

  • the number of nights each year a property can be rented out
  • the hiring of entire homes
  • licensing
  • tax requirements
  • how rules should be enforced

Short-term rental restrictions around the world

  • Amsterdam: Entire home rentals limited to 60 days a year, set to be halved
  • Barcelona: Short-term rentals must be
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Last week, for the first time in Canada, the general public could see exactly what any home sold for through the Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB), but that information remains a guarded secret in B.C.‘s Lower Mainland.

Home selling prices still secret in B.C.

The release of sale price data in Toronto follows a Supreme Court decision August 21 in favour of a Competition Tribunal order that allowed publication of home sales price information. The decision forced TREB, which has been fighting against the ruling for seven years, to make the information available.

A number of real estate companies and listing services immediately put the data online through password-protected sites. All someone has to do is register and provide a password to access the information.

In a BIV scroll

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A spike in imported steel prices, higher lumber costs and rising labour rates could threaten the speculative building that dominates Metro Vancouver’s development industry.

Price spikes hit commercial construction

It is already being partially blamed for the shutdown of three residential condo towers.

Of the 25 major industrial projects underway across the Metro region, all but three are speculative plays, and the majority of the developers are trying to pre-sell rather than lease the space. Of the 10 biggest office projects planned for downtown Vancouver, half have no space sold or leased and only two are fully booked.

Due to new U.S. tariffs, the price of steel rebar, a key building component in concrete construction, had increased 58% as of August compared with a year earlier,

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The Great Real Estate Investment Debate: Multifamily Properties Vs. Single-Family Rentals

What type of investment property is best? This question comes up more than any other from long-term buy-and-hold investors. Which is the best investment for your hard-earned dollars, multifamily properties or single-family properties? I never answer this question because the right answer is different for different investors, as there are advantages to both.

Advantages Of Single-Family Properties

For the purpose of this article, single-family means one unit owned and one tenant (or family) living in the unit. It could be a condo, townhome or detached house.

• No tenant-tenant conflicts: The problem I have run into with owning apartments is that eventually the tenants won’t get along. When this happens, it is common for the landlord to get a

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Angus Reid survey suggests owners in both cities think costs 'unreasonably high'

Angus Reid survey suggests owners in both cities think costs 'unreasonably high'

A survey of residents in two of Canada's hottest housing markets suggest that even some homeowners in Toronto and Vancouver think housing has become too unaffordable and prices should drop. 

The Angus Reid Institute's "Pain Index" scores people's answers to questions about housing and transportation. While responses in each city differ somewhat, the majority of respondents in both saw housing as the paramount concern residents are facing. 

In Toronto, housing affordability stole the top spot from transportation and traffic concerns, which dominated when Angus Reid last gathered responses on the same topic in 2015.

"So it is a progression of pain for both

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Tides have turned for Greater Vancouver and Fraser Valley, finds study

Metro Vancouver now Canada’s second-least competitive real estate market (INFOGRAPHIC)

Once Canada’s most fiercely competitive real estate market and famed for its bidding wars, Greater Vancouver is now the second-least competitive housing market in the country, according to a new study by real estate website Zoocasa.

In its analysis of nationwide listings and sales data, Zoocasa found that, of the major real estate markets, only Newfoundland and Labrador was in a true buyer’s market, followed by Greater Vancouver and the Fraser Valley.

The website used sales-to-new-listings ratios to determine the state of the new market (as opposed to sales-to-active-listings ratios that are reported monthly by real estate boards). With this measure, a buyer’s market is

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B.C. Real Estate Association forecasts 21 percent fewer residential property sales this year

Tough new mortgage rules are being blamed for a sharp drop in the number of housing sales across the province.

Today, the B.C. Real Estate Association predicted that residential sales would fall 21 percent by the end of 2018—from 103,768 units last year to 82,000 this year.

That would take a big bite out of commission income for B.C. real-estate agents.

“The B.C. housing market is grappling with a sharp decline in affordability caused by tough B20 stress test rules for conventional mortgages,” BCREA chief economist Cameron Muir said in a news release. “While these rules have had a negative effect on housing demand across the country, the impact has been especially severe in B.C.’s large urban centres because of already strained housing

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It looks like foreign buyers have all but disappeared from the Metro Vancouver real estate market – if you believe the latest data.

The latest property transfer data from the B.C. Ministry of Finance, compiled at the end of July, suggest that foreign buyers have pulled back dramatically from buying in Metro Vancouver. 

According to the numbers released, just one per cent of all real estate transactions in Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley Regional District during the first six months of this year involved foreign nationals, down from three per cent in the same period a year ago.

Burnaby, however, still leads the pack.

According to an article in Business in Vancouver,“Burnaby, Coquitlam and Richmond were the top destinations for

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