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Month: January 2008

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Tax Burden High for Homebuyers

by Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist

How would you like to pay your provincial income tax three times this year, just so you can buy a home? Unless you’re a first time buyer, that’s exactly what’s in store for you. BC’s property Transfer Tax (PIT) is payable on the purchase price of all real estate transactions in the province. The tax rate is l% to $200K and 2% on remainder

Government revenues from the PIT will approach $1 billion this fiscal year. In the last 5 years, PIT revenues have doubled. High unit sales and rapidly rising prices have been a financial boon for the government. While overall gov’t tax revenues increased at an annual compound rate of 4.2% since the 1999/2000 fiscal year, PIT revenues ballooned at a rate of 21%. during the same period, the contribution of the PIT to total tax revenue has increased from l.8% to 5.2%, making homebuyers an increasingly important – if not critical – source of revenue.

Much ballyhoo has been exerted promoting BC as having one of the most competitive personal tax regimes in the country. Indeed, the province has the lowest tax rate in Canada for a working couple earning $40,000 a piece. The merits of higher or lower taxes will forever be a topic of public debate but, supposing lower taxes are better, BC is certainly on top of its game  or is it?

So it shouldn’t be a surprise that potential British Columbians assess both the advantages and the pitfalls of “the best place on earth”. Alberta seems to have no trouble attracting eight times as many inter-provincial migrants as BC’s water, trees and mountains do. In fact, real estate sticker shock is commonplace for migrants arriving in BC’s large cities. BC’s nation-leading home prices certainly have the potential to sour the cream that is low personal tax rates.

And then there’s the PIT. BC may have the most competitive personal tax regime in the country, but it also has the dubious distinction of the least competitive real estate transfer tax. In fact, if that couple earning $40,000 apiece bought a home priced at the provincial average, their combined income tax and PIT would equal three income tax returns instead of one. Now, suppose they moved every 5 years, as many households do: their total combined tax burden would average 40% higher each year than their personal income taxes alone. This scenario would make BC far less attractive from a tax perspective than either Alberta or Ontario.

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

The Yale and Cecil Hotels

Drove by the Yale Hotel yesterday and saw a Rezoning Developement Permit, so did some research and here’s the scoop. (if you live downtown you will know they are located at the north end of  the Granville Street bridge).

Bought for about $10 million in 2006, the Yale will be deemed heritage by City Hall, whereby it will be upgraded and retained, including the Yale Pub. Rize Alliance Properties will retain and upgrade 44 subsidized housing rooms at the Yale and have single room occupancy (SRO) zoning. The rooms will then be given to the City. In return, it is expected that the City will allow 165,000 sq.ft. tower, instead of 100,000 and ask for 255 to 260 ft tall tower instead of the origianal proposed 225 ft.  The City will have to approve the zoning from DD to CD and it is possible the project will be at risk due to the backlog in rezoning.

What do you think of this idea? Happy to see the Yale survive?

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Today’s Stats

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In my market area there were 36 new listings, 20 sales (1 sold at list and 3 over list) and 11 price reductions.

Currently there are 1111 condos listed on MLS in vancouver west and 146 sales for the month, of which 8 are over 1 million. Average days on the market (DOM) 45.

Compared solds for same period in December and found 200 sales, of which 13 were over $1M. Average DOM 40. December had more sales and they sold faster.

Checked Vancouver West Townhomes and found 15 sales in January to date with DOM at 30. For the same period in December there were 29 sales and DOM 41. Fewer sales so far in January but they sold faster.

Have a question about the market or stats?

Took the above pictures at Kits Beach…beautiful or what?

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Just Listed!

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2803-1189 Howe, Downtown Vancouver

Updated subpenthouse at The Genesis. Features hardwood floors, new stainless steel appliances, blinds  Rare 3 bedroom, SE corner with great city views plus English Bay to the west. Large Dining Room  & insuite storage, 2 parking. Pets and rentals ok. 24 hr security concierge, indoor pool, guest suite, gym, steam and sauna, bike room. This is a 10! Definitely priced to sell! Hurry! $699,000

Open House: Jan 25th 10-12. Jan 26th and 27th  2.30-4.30

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Where to Find Vancouver Events

Find out what’s happening in Vancouver, view this site – music, theatre, sports, comedy, nightlife, film, charity and other events.

when you’re ready to buy or sell Vancouver real estate, contact Magge – an experienced realtor marketing Vancouver homes since 1981 

this site is updated regularly, subscribe via RSS or email

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

How Does Your Neighbourhood Compare?

Perhaps you live in a specific n’hood and wish to move up to a larger property but find it expensive, so you are wondering how other neighbourhoods compare in price? Or maybe you’re a first time buyer and renting, love your hood but cant afford to buy a property in it.

REBGV puts out these stats on vancouver west n’hoods (benchmark prices) as at December 2007. In brackets is the price change for the past year.

Cambie $412,000(16.7%)/Coal Harbour $613,000(2.8%)/Downtown $427,000(14.8%)/Fairview $459,000(18.7%)/False Creek North $811,000(12.7)/Kerrisdale $536,000(15.4%)/Kitsilano $423,000(9.1%)/West End $443,000(9.9%)

Appreciation over the last 5 years:  Cambie 98.2%./Coal Harbour 111.7%/Downtown 110%/Fairview 98%/False Crrek North 137%/Kerrisdale 84%/Kits 98%/West End 96%

Appreciation over the last year for West Side house 27%(best apprciation in the Lower Mainland),  townhomes 13% and condos13.7%.

Vancouver East houses appreciated 14.3%,  townhomes 11.7% (Richmond was the highest at 14.7%)and condos a whopping 18.8% (best condo apprciation in the Lower Mainland)

What municpality and what neighbourhood do you think has the best upside?

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Canada & U.S. Central Banks Cut Policy Rates

Are you real estate buyer in Vancouver? Then you’ll be happy about rates going down. 

Bank of Canada cuts policy rate by 25 basis points
The Bank of Canada cut the overnight rate by 25 basis points to 4% saying that “further stimulus is likely to be required in the near term to keep aggregate supply and demand in balance and return inflation to the target over the medium term.” The Bank said that “the 2008 outlook for the US economy is now significantly weaker than at the time of the October MPR” and that this “will lead to additional downward pressure on export growth.” However, the Bank remained optimistic on the outlook for Canada’s domestic economy saying that “despite tighter credit conditions, domestic demand in Canada is projected to remain strong.”The Bank’s announcement came after the Fed cut the Fed funds and discount rates by 75 basis points this morning citing a weakening of the economic outlook and increasing downside risks to growth.” Although details on the changes to the Bank’s forecasts were scant in today’s press release, the Bank said they expect “weaker growth in 2008 than was expected in October, with the economy moving into modest excess supply in the second quarter of this year.” The release also said that the Bank has revised the inflation forecast lower with both the core and all-items inflation rates expected to fall below 1.5% by the middle of this year. The press release cites the “increased competitive pressures in the retail sector stemming from the level of the Canadian dollar” as contributing to the lower-than-expected inflation rates recently. The Bank still expects both the all-items and core rates to return to the 2% target by the end of 2009 and said that the “risks to this inflation projection are roughly balanced.”Today’s release points to additional rate cuts ahead by the Bank especially if the U.S. economy remains under downward pressure. Our baseline forecast is that the Bank will lower the overnight rate by another 50 basis points during the next couple of meetings with the risk of more aggressive rates cuts if the US situation continues to deteriorate. Dawn Desjardins, Senior Economist, [email protected]RBC’s Best Rates:

Variable 5.25%, 6 month convertible at 6.04%, 5 years 6.09% 30day close special.

Contact Mortgage Broker Tony Rossander 604-612-6252

The expectation is for rates to go lower still, so a short term mortgage right now makes good sense.

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Kitsilano Point New Listing

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The ink hasn’t dried on this one yet!

Come home to 1450 Laburnum on Kits Point.

Steps to Vancouver’s most popular beach. this spacious studio has been completely renovated, the great taste, including new windows and sound proofing exterior wall. New tile floors, new kitchen with stainless fridge and cooktop. All new bathroom with large shower and seemless door, new Murphy Bed. New ceiling and new wiring, lots of pot lights. Super large west facing patio, treed, fenced and private. Maintenance fee includes hot water heat. One secured parking and storage locker. Pets and rentals welcome. Furnishings negotiable.

Easy to show, move in today! $319,000. Call Maggie to view 604-328-0077

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Mortgage Rates Drop Again

Are you real estate buyer in Vancouver? Then you’ll be happy about rates going down. 

Bank of Canada cuts policy rate by 25 basis points
The Bank of Canada cut the overnight rate by 25 basis points to 4% saying that “further stimulus is likely to be required in the near term to keep aggregate supply and demand in balance and return inflation to the target over the medium term.” The Bank said that “the 2008 outlook for the US economy is now significantly weaker than at the time of the October MPR” and that this “will lead to additional downward pressure on export growth.” However, the Bank remained optimistic on the outlook for Canada’s domestic economy saying that “despite tighter credit conditions, domestic demand in Canada is projected to remain strong.”The Bank’s announcement came after the Fed cut the Fed funds and discount rates by 75 basis points this morning citing a weakening of the economic outlook and increasing downside risks to growth.” Although details on the changes to the Bank’s forecasts were scant in today’s press release, the Bank said they expect “weaker growth in 2008 than was expected in October, with the economy moving into modest excess supply in the second quarter of this year.” The release also said that the Bank has revised the inflation forecast lower with both the core and all-items inflation rates expected to fall below 1.5% by the middle of this year. The press release cites the “increased competitive pressures in the retail sector stemming from the level of the Canadian dollar” as contributing to the lower-than-expected inflation rates recently. The Bank still expects both the all-items and core rates to return to the 2% target by the end of 2009 and said that the “risks to this inflation projection are roughly balanced.Today’s release points to additional rate cuts ahead by the Bank especially if the U.S. economy remains under downward pressure. Our baseline forecast is that the Bank will lower the overnight rate by another 50 basis points during the next couple of meetings with the risk of more aggressive rates cuts if the US situation continues to deteriorate. Dawn Desjardins, Senior Economist, http://dawn.desjardins.comRBC’s Best Rates:Variable 5.25%, 6 month convertible at 6.04%, 5 years 6.09% 30day close special.

Contact Mortgage Broker Tony Rossander 604-612-6252

The expectation is for rates to go lower still, so a short term mortgage right now makes good sense.

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Calculate Your Mortgage Payments

Mortgage Amount: 100000

Rate Smart Monthly Payment

Variable 5 Year 5.40 $604.58

5 Year Fixed 5.99 $639.21

10 Year Fixed 6.30 $657.75

* O.A.C. Some restrictions may apply. Rates are subject to change without notice

Independant Advice

Here’s what you can expect from Verico Wealth Wizard Financial Team:

We provide rate holds for 120 days, not all banks do. We request full documentation and perform a credit

check on every client.

We provide closing cost disclosures to all our clients. Now specializing in self employed, off shore and

equity financing.

We can help your SELLERS with their port, increase

and blend mortgages.

Providing bridge financing for your SELLERS too!

Call: Alma Pasic 604-729-4611 [email protected] (mortgage broker)

www.verico.ca

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Vancouver’s Downtown Waterfront Neighbourhood Coopers Park

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Downtown’s newest neighbourhood, Coopers Park.

Just opened the first building in this neighbourhood on the north side of False Creek . 980 Cooperage Way.

The neighbourhood is situated east of the Cambie Street Bridge, on the north side of False Creek. on the waterfront.

There are 6 suites per floor and the front suites offer wonderful views of False Crrek and the Olympic Village.

There are presently 18 resale condos listed on MLS, ranging from $459,000 for 720 sq.ft. to $1,750,000 for 1193 sq.ft.

 Call Maggie if you’d like more info on any of these waterfront condos. 604-328-0077

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Coal Harbour Statistics for December 2007

109 LISTINGS

The least expensive l bedrooms is 555 Jervis $320,000 494 sq.ft.
The least expensive 2 bedroom is at 1328 W. Pender 877sq.ft. listed at $599,000. The most expensive listing is at the Shaw Tower $19,800,000 for 7500 sq.ft.

14 SALES (vs. 28 in October)

Lowest sold was for $415,000 for a l bedroom 560 sq.ft.

Highest sold was for $2,180,000 for 1792 sq.ft. at 1680 Bayshore

Average Days on Market: 90 (vs. 46 in Oct)

0 sales under 300K; 3 under 500K; 8 – 500K to 1M; 3 from $1-2M, 1 from $2-3M

1 sold at list price, all the others under list

2007 SALES: 393  (93 over $1M, 6 over $3M. The highest sales was at Shaw Tower at $4.9 million for nearly 3000 sq ft)

July – 28, Aug – 24, Sept – 14, Oct – 36 Nov -23 : Dec 14

REMARKS

December is usually a slow month in the business but it was active this year.

CMHC predicting Vancouver prices to rise 7% in 2008.

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Coal Harbour Stats for December 2007

109 LISTINGS

The least expensive l bedrooms is 555 Jervis $320,000 494 sq.ft.
The least expensive 2 bedroom is at 1328 W. Pender 877sq.ft. listed at $599,000. The most expensive listing is at the Shaw Tower $19,800,000 for 7500 sq.ft.

14 SALES (vs. 28 in October)

Lowest sold was for $415,000 for a l bedroom 560 sq.ft.

Highest sold was for $2,180,000 for 1792 sq.ft. at 1680 Bayshore

Average Days on Market: 90 (vs. 46 in Oct)

0 sales under 300K; 3 under 500K; 8 – 500K to 1M; 3 from $1-2M, 1 from $2-3M

1 sold at list price, all the others under list

2007 SALES: 393  (93 over $1M, 6 over $3M. The highest sales was at Shaw Tower at $4.9 million for nearly 3000 sq ft)

July – 28, Aug – 24, Sept – 14, Oct – 36 Nov -23 : Dec 14

REMARKS

December is always a slow month in the business.

CMHC predicting Vancouver prices to rise 7% in 2008.

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Coopers Park

coopers.jpg

Downtown’s newest neighbourhood, Coopers Park, has just opened its first building at 980 Cooperage Way. The neighbourhood is situated east of the Cambie Street Bridge, on the north side of False Creek. on the waterfront.

There are 6 suites per floor and the front suites offer wonderful views of False Crrek and the Olympic Village.

There are presently 18 resale condos listed on MLS, ranging from $459,000 for 720 sq.ft. to $1,750,000 for 1193 sq.ft.

 Call Maggie if you’d like more info on any of these waterfront condos. 604-328-0077

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Who are the Vancouver Home Buyers?

“Focusing your life solely on making a buck shows a certain poverty of action. It asks too little of yourself. Because it is only when you hitch your wagon to something larger than yourself that you realize your true potential.” Barack Obama

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver recently carried out a home sellers and buyers survey and here is what they found about home-buyers:

*about six-in-ten are female

*about half are age 45 years and younger

*the majority (more than 7 in 10) of all buyers are married or living common law

 *their typical household size is 2.7 persons

* about 6 in 10 have a university degree or college diploma

*one in ten work from home and another one in ten do so at least part of the time

 *one third are born in BC

*a language other than English is spoken in 18% of their households

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Homeowners Grant Increased

If your home is assessed below $1,050,000 you will be eligible for the Homeowners Grant. 

The January 12, 2007 Provincial Budget included additional measures to assist Low-Income Seniors and Others with a Homeowner Grant Supplement. This program is administered at the Provincial level, not by the City of Vancouver. For further details

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Today’s Stats

Vancouver West townhomes and condos –  there are 42 new listings, 6 sold above list price and 19 sales.

Vancouver West detached – 8 new listings and no sales

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Kits Point Just Listed

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The ink hasn’t dried on this one yet! Come home to 1450 Laburnum on Kits Point, steps to Vancouver’s most popular beach. this spacious studio has been completely renovated, the great taste, including new windows and sound proofing exterior wall. New tile floors, new kitchen with stainless fridge and cooktop. All new bathroom with large shower and seemless door, new Murphy Bed. New ceiling and new wiring, lots of pot lights. Super large west facing patio, treed, fenced and private. Maintenance fee includes hot water heat. One secured parking and storage locker. Pets and rentals welcome. Furnishings negotiable. Easy to show, move in today! $319,000. Call Maggie to view 604-328-0077

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