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Month: August 2008

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Sins of the City Guided Walking Tours in Vancouver

So it may be a wet long Labour Day weekend in Vancouver and you’re looking for something to do.

What about a walking tour through Vancouver’s oldest parts? Explore the early (and roguish) history of our city. Covering ten city blocks, the tour visits numerous locations, including the site of one of Vancouver’s oldest brothel districts, the location of the city’s first saloon as well as the first police station (and jail). Opium dens, gambling houses and beer parlours are also featured topics of the tour.

Tour runs every Wednesday at 2pm and Friday and Saturday at 4pm.

$15 for adults, $12 for students and seniors. 24 hours advanced reservation required.

Venue: Vancouver Police Museum, 240 Cordova Street East. 604-665-3346 from July l to October l, 2008. Visit their website.

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by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Is Vancouver’s Condo Market Bottoming?

It’s no secret that Vancouver’s condo market prices have soften and overall the media news is negative but I have a different opinion based on my experiences in the market over the last two months, which have kept me hopping and left less time to blog!

Whilst housing sales have dropped, new construction picked up slightly in July, according to CMHC’s latest report. Starts in metropolitan Vancouver last month were up 24% above July 2007, boosting starts for the first 7 months of the year to a gain over same period last year.  The largest gains were in Vancouver, Surrey and Delta. Are the developers turning positive again?

CMHC note that British Columbia is still experiencing population and job growth, though the economy has slowed a bit, and new home starts will move back to their long term average by 2009. A tight labour market and robust income growth will partially offset the dampening effect of rising mortgage carrying costs (though some analysts are anticipating the Bank of Canada to drop rates by year end) . They project 31,500 new housing starts in 2009, down from 39,195 in 2007.

CMHC also predict the average MLS price in B.C. will grow by 7.6% in 2008 and 3.5% in 2009. Are they right? Leave a comment. Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Consumers Re-evaluate Risk

Considering everything, would you say that your family is better or worse off financially than six months ago? This is the first question the Conference Board of Canada asks in its survey of consumer confidence. With gas prices at $1.50 a litre in many communities, who could provide a positive response? Rising fuel prices hit home fast. They have an immediate and negative impact on household finances. This report was published by BCREA’s Chief Economist – Cameron Muir

More than 2000 Canadian households participate in the monthly survey, which forms the foundation of the Consumer Confidence Index. In late June the index for British Columbia fell below 100 for the first time in five years, to 94.3. The index for Canada was worse, falling to a 13 year low of 79.6. Just 32.6% of those surveyed said now was a good time to make a major purchase, more than half (54.9%) said now is not a good time to make a major purchase. Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

It’s Getting Hot in Here

BC Hydro introduces ESTAR windows, which keeps the heat out and allows the homeowner to stay cooler inside, whilst saving money. Homeowners can save up to 7% on energy costs or about $127 a year by replacing their windows and doors with ESTAR qualified products.

ESTAR windows are also PST exempt, saving consumers an additional 7%. If just 10% of Greater Vancouver’s households replaced all of their windows with ESTAR, there would be an energy saving of more than $10.4 million a year.

Visit Natural Resources Canada’s website to find model numbers of all Energy Star labelled windows qualified under the Canadian criteria. Look for the Energy Star label.

For more info about renovations to green homes and buildings, visit BCREA’s Green Tool Kit for REALTORS.

Have a energy saving idea you’d like to share with us?

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by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Downtown Vancouver’s Newest Pre-Sale “Cosmo”


 Concord Pacific have just released “Cosmo” on West Georgia Street in Downtown Vancouver.

Featuring Miele appliances, quartz stone countertops, hardwood flooring and wood carpeting. Club Cosmo on the rooftop features a lounge, terrace, outdoor spa and wellness facility. The lobby is furnished by Armani Casa.

This will be one of the final pre-sales in Vanocouver’s Downtown as there are few lots left.

Pre-register here of fill out my contact form for other Downtown Vancouver presales or resale condos.

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by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Hitting Gold on Vancouver’s Skid Row

Maclean’s recently published this article on the most notorious slum in Canada getting a millionaire makeover – Vancouver’s Skid Row in Downtown Eastside.

The Pacific Hotel on Main Street is coming down. Next door Ginger the new condo building is selling for as high as $900,000. The unthinkable is happening….Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside is quietly disappearing. The sold signs are everywhere – most along Hastings Street, ground zero of the city’s drug and homelessness crises.

In the past 24 months hundreds of lots have changed hands as developers and speculators snap up deeds to the Vancouver’s so-called final frontier.  And some of Vancouver’s biggest players have bought in, including Holborn, the group behind the $500 million Residences at Ritz-Carlton: Westbank Projects, developers of the Shangri-La, the city’s tallest tower and Macdonald Development Corp, which hopes to erect the Downtown Eastside’s first high rise.  Concord Pacific is building a glass tower along Hasting’s seediest stretch.  Then there’s Salt, a chic charcuterie in Blood Alley. Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Vancouver’s Downtown Market Analysis July 2008

Vancouver’s Downtown market in July saw listings level off (745 vs 740 in June). The sales were down to 65 from 102 in June.  The average days on market was up to 39, from 32.  The average price was down to $403,000 from $460,000. 80% of the sales were under $500,000 ( vs 75% in June) and no sales over $800,000….very much a bottom end market.

Listings – 745

Vancouver’s Downtown has a    months supply for condos listed under $500,000.  A   months supply for listings between $500,000 and $1 million and no takers for condos over $900,000 this month.

2008 Listings Jan 420 , Feb 457  ,Mar 529 , Apr 630, May 669 , June 740, July 745

Solds 65.  23 had list price reductions, 1 had a list price increase!

52 sold under $500,000 and the rest sold under $800,000.

2008 SALES – Jan 109, Feb 137 , Mar 139, Apr 114, May 86, June 102, July 65

Expired Listings (didn’t sell)  67 vs. 48 in June and 20 in July’07

Days on the Market – 39

Average Sale Price – $403,793

Average $ pr sq ft – $598

Did you know you can search for Downtown listings on this site?  Read my other posts on Vancouver’s Downtown.Buying or selling in Vancouver’s Downtown?  Please fill out my contact form.this site is updated regularly, subscribe via RSS or email FOR FREE

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Vancouver Kitsilano’s Market Analysis July 2008

Vancouver’s Kitsilano condo neighbourhood saw sales for the month of July increase to 38 from 35 in June and listings at 159 versus 157 in June. Average $ pr sq ft and average price for sold condos were both up. Days on the market 43, up from June. Market bottoming?

Listings – 159. 46 of those Kitsilano listings had list price reductions (vs. 57 in June). 99 are listed under $500,000 and 52 listed between $500,000 and $1 million. 6 are listed between $1 and 2 million and 1 listed over $2 million.

Sales – 38. 14 Kitsilano condos had list price reductions (vs. 13 in June). 26 sold under $500,000 and 12 sold between $500,000 and $1 million. There is a 3.8 month supply of Kitsilano condos under $500K and a 4.3 month supply for condos between $500K and $1 million. No market for Kitsilano condos over $1 million for the month of July 2008.

2008 SALES – Jan 26, Feb 44 , Mar 20, Apr 42, May 45, June 35, July 38 Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Vancouver’s False Creek North Market Analysis July 2008

Vancouver’s False Creek North neighbourhood saw listings up from 210 in June to 237 and sales drop substantially from 17 to 9. The average $ pr sq ft dropped from $733 to $688. Aaverage price was down from $713 in June to $550. The days on the market dropped from 59 to 46. Market run out of steam?

Listings – 237.  82 False Creek North condos had a price reduction and one increased their price. 33 are listed under $500,000. 136 are listed between $500,000 and $1 million.  46 are listed between $1 and 2 million. 11 between $2 and 3 million and 5 between $3 and 4 million and the Penthouse at 1000 Beach at $14,800 for nearly 8000 sq.ft.

The least expensive l bedroom is $329,00. The least expensive 2 bedroom is $399,000.

Sales 9 . False Creek North had 4 sales under $500,000 and 5 sold between $500,000 and $1 million. Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Vancouver West End’s Market Analysis July 2008

Vancouver’s West End neighbourhood listings in July were equal to June. Sales were down slightly (25 vs 29 in June) The days on the market for condos that sold increased from 38 to 51.  The average $ pr sq ft increased from 553 to 556.94. The average price increased from $460,755 in June to $496,935.  Market bottoming?

Listings – 235.  88 had list price reductions (up from 76 in June) and 2 had price increases.

There are 147 West End listings under $500,000 and 61 listed between $500,000 and $1 million. 19 listed between $1 and 2 million. 6 listed between $2 and 4 million and 1 listed over $5 million.

2008 Listings – Jan  168, Feb 172 ,  Apr 232 , May  241 , June 235, July 235 Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Vancouver’s Coal Harbour Market Analysis July 2008

Vancouver’s Coal Harbour statistics for July show listings up from 192 in June.  Sales down. Days on market flat and average price up substantially.

Listings 220 – 42 under $500,000. 75 listed between $500,00 and $1 million. 67 listed between $1 and $2 million. 13 listed between $2 and $3 million. 10 listed between $3 and $4 million. 3 between $4 and $5 million and 10 listed over $5 million. The most expensive is the Shaw Tower Penthouse at $16,800,000 for 7473 sq.ft. Contact me if you wish to sell your Coal Harbour condo.

2008 Listings  – Jan 128,Feb 149, Mar 179, Apr 176, May 175, June 192, July 220

Solds 11. 3 sold under $500,000. 1 sold between $500,000 and $1 million.  5 between $1 and $2 million. 1 sold between $2 and 3 million and 1 over $4 million. Contact me if you’re buying in Coal Harbour.

14 month supply for Coal Harbour condos listed under $500K.  A 6 year supply for condos between $500K and $1 million. 13 months supply for condos listed between $1 and 3 million and a 2 year supply for condos listed over $3 million.

2008 Solds  – Jan 14, Feb 33, Mar 22, Apr 26  May 16, June 16, July 11 Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Abbotsford International Airshow

This popular Vancouver event has been happening since 1962 when the recently formed Abbotsford Flying Club decided an airshow would be an effective way to promote flying from Abbotsford Airport, which was inactive at the time. The Flying Club approached W.J. (Bud) Lloyd of the Abbotsford Rotary Club for their support. The Rotary Club put up the $700 to cover the budget of the show and the Flying Club provided the manpower.  The show is on from August 8-10th.

The first show attracted 15,000 people and was an unqualified success. Included in the flying demonstrations that first year were Mark Hoskins in his Ryan STA, a Fleet 2 – the oldest registered aircraft in Canada – flypast on floats and a demonstration by a RCAF twin rotor H-21 “Flying Banana”, among others.

One of the highlights of the 2000 show was an unexpected series of flybys of the demo CF-18 Hornet with a Sea Fury.

View directions, agenda, pricing on their website.

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Vancouver Market Analysis July 2008

The REBGV reports that Greater Vancouver prices have drawn back, the last two months, from the record highs experienced in early 2008.

Since May 2008 housing prices have declined. Detached properties in the GVA declined 2.1% since the end of May 2008 from $568,411 to $556,605 in July.

We’re seeing more price reductions in properties listed on the market, which is having a levelling impact on the housing price increases experienced at the end of last year and into the first quarter of 2008.

Residential property sales in GVA declined 43.9% in July to 2,174 from the 3,873 sales recorded a year prior. The decline is equal to June 2008 versus June 2007. Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

British Columbia’s Homeowners Choosing to Renovate Rather Than Relocate

British Columbia’s renovation industry is projected to hit $7 billion in 2008 as upwardly spiralling real estate prices convince many baby boomers to mothball moving plans

Andrew Petrozzi recently published this article in Business in Vanouver

BC’s booming home reno business is expected to keep on booming as aging British Columbians are projected to shell out an estimated $7 billion this year from home renovations and improvements, according to Peter Simpson, CEO of the Greater Vancouver Home Builders Association.

Simpson said that the total is up significantly from last year and is expected to continue to rise through the year. Unlike new residential construction starts in BC, which have started to moderate, the value of home renovations continues to rise. The sector’s growth is also draining the skilled labour pool. Read more


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