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by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

What are Your Financial Responsibilities When Buying a Vancouver Condo?

false creek 042What are Your Financial Responsibilities When Buying a Vancouver Condo? As a Vancouver condo owner you pay a monthly maintenace fee which covers common expenses and sometimes a special levy is required. Under the Strata Title Act condo buildings must have an Annual General Meeting , table a budget for the upcoming year, which includes how much the monthly maintenance fee will be. This requires a majority vote in order to pass. The budget will include any required expenditures. The strata owners are responsible for the strata corporation. Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

What Vancouver Condo Investors Should Know About Financing

The tighter Canada mortgage rules introduced in 2012 have put higher-risk borrowers under a microscope and includes Vancouver real estate investors, making it harder to qualify. You’ll now require at least 20%-25% down. Different lenders have different requirements.

What You Should Know About Your Service Debt Ratio

Calculating your service debt ratio will take into consideration how much of the Vancouver rental income the lender recognizes. In many cases they’ll only permit 50% of the rental income you receive. Find a competent and experienced mortgage broker who knows the right lenders with borrower-friendly methods. Some lenders will go as high as 42% total debt ratio, but most permit 40%. Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Which Vancouver Neighbourhood Has the Best Priced Condos?

Are you a Vancouver first time home buyer, investor, trading down or looking for a vacation home?  Whichever category you fit into, you may be looking for the Vancouver neighbourhood with the best priced condos.  A Vancouver condo fits the bill and is, in fact, 70% of the west side sales. So which Vancouver neighbourhood should you buy in? The blue chip ones or the up and coming ones? I researched the average sale price for May 2012 and here are the results.

Which is Vancouver’s Most Expensive Condo Neighbourhood?

Vancouver’s waterfront neighbourhood of Coal Harbour with an average sale price of $1,187,765, boasting less than 40 condo buildings and only one remaining site left to build on. Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

What Vancouver Homebuyers Should Know About Buyer Contracts

Real estate buyers and sellers who have sold their Vancouver property are familiar with the MLS Listing Contract, however, few are familiar with an Exclusive Buyers Contract and in fact few Vancouver realtors use them. A contract is a legally binding agreement between two parties and explains each parties rights and obligations. Buyer and seller contracts have been prepared by lawyers for REBGV and outline the obligations of the parties involved. Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

What Should I Know About Vancouver Real Estate Deposits?

deposit to purchase real estateWhen a buyer makes an offer to purchase a property, the buyers agent draws up a contract of purchase and sale for the buyer and seller to sign. One of the terms of the contract is the deposit, which binds the buyer and seller to the transaction. Sometimes the Vancouver real estate deposit is due when the contract is written. In this case, should the subject to clauses not be removed the deposit is returned to the buyer.

What is the role of the Vancouver Real Estate Brokerage?

The Vancouver real estate brokerage acting for the buyer holds the deposit in Trust until the Closing Date and acts as a stakeholder. The rules regarding Vancouver real estate deposits are governed by RECBC (The Government of BC). Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Hottest Neighbourhoods – Real Estate Update in Vancouver

Local real estate advisor  Ozzie Jurock passes his opinion on Vancouver’s hottest neighbourhoods. The fact that Chinese investment/speculation has made White Rock, Richmond, the Westside and West Vancouver indisputably HOT in 2011.

We expect more inflow of Chinese money into these (and other areas) starting this month at Chinese New Year. What we mean by “HOT” for our purposes are investment type areas, where with a 25% down payment you can still by a condo or even a house that – over time – sees all of its carrying costs paid for by the tenant.

  • We have mentioned these areas before (and have seen the Dunbar area rise by 50% in 3 years, the Main and Broadway area by 35%, North Vancouver area by 30% and Richmond by 45%
  • We still like all of Vancouver, but particularly Dunbar – between 10th Ave and 34th Ave andCoal Harbour, Kitsilano
  • Main and Broadway, proximity to the South Shore of False Creek, Canada Line and Sky train links … condo prices still make sense
  • North Vancouver’s Lower Lonsdale is transforming into ‘Yale town North’ minus the high prices. The $250 million Pier Project has added tremendous value
  • We like Richmond’s Steveston ‘Granville Island meets West Vancouver’

Join Ozzie’s upcoming Canada Landrush Conference this weekend and learn more about where to invest in Canadian real estate

Why Choose Maggie Chandler as your Realtor?

  • I LOVE what I do!
  • I come armed with stats and graphs
  • hyperlocal info
  • excellent interpersonal skills
  • all coupled with decades of experience marketing vancouver condos

Please leave a comment on Facebook, at the bottom of this post

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by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Why I Bought a Downtown Vancouver Condo in Domus – Condos for Sale

As a first time Vancouver condo buyer, I’d looked extensively for four months, in four different Vancouver neighbourhoods on the west side and in four different price ranges. In total I’ve viewed over 30 condos with my realtor Maggie Chandler, as well as attending many open houses on my own.

I’d originally wished to be in Kitsilano, north of 4th avenue and had an attraction to the lofts but I ended up Downtown at 1055 Richards Street.

When i viewed the remaining condos at Richards Living I became smitten with the wonderful outdoor spaces. And then a new listing came on the market which I viewed at Open House and called Maggie to take a look with me the next day. There was lots of activity and the realtor had told us she had two offers coming in. As it turned out no offers arrived and I was able to write on the following day. Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Is It True Love? Vancouver Homes for Sale

Is It True Love? How to Know When You’ve Found the Right House for You

There are some things in life that you just know once you’ve found them: When you fall in love. When you’re ready to get married. When you want to start a family. When you’ve found the home in which you want to raise that family. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case. Though you may have that instinctual, gut reaction when you tour a house and suddenly know that it will be your future home, you may also be one of the many who find yourself debating the pros and cons and facing anxiety and uncertainty about committing yourself to the right choice. If you find yourself waffling over your array of choices, consider the following to determine which is the right house for you: Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Looking for A Vancouver Penthouse?

Vancouver's False Creek North

Penthouses have a cache about them and conjure up dreams of huge sqare footage,  luxury, limousines, spacious patios, wonderful views,high design, champagne and sunken tubs begging for bubbles! Perched on the top floor of a tall building , perhaps with its own elevator.

Let’s take a look at some of the most expensive Vancouver Penthouses to sell this year.

The Most Expensive

  1. The crowing glory was the Shaw Tower Penthouse in Coal Harbour which sold for $10M for 7,473sf.
  2. Followed by 1000 Beach for $7,100,000 for 6,841sf.
  3. The Westbrook at UBC came in third at $4,680,000 for 4,380sf
  4. Bayshore Gardens fetched $4.7M for 3,000sf Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Does Affordable Rental Housing Decrease Vancouver Property Values?


Vancouver residents often believe that new rental housing lowers property values.

The NAR online library has links to more than 20 comprehensive studies and articles, some of which in turn reviewed and analyzed data from other studies.

The geographic areas studied included high-density urban areas, upscale suburbs and rural areas. Typically studies compared the sale prices of nearby homes before, during and after rental housing is built. Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

New Listing! 305-168 Powell Street, Vancouver, BC

Welcome home! I’m a huge East facing one bedroom in Concord Pacific’s Smart.

I have a great layout with modern sleek finishings. My boutique building designed by Busby boasts a gym and bike room. I have laminate floors, a balcony and insuite laundry and I’m only 2 years old.

I Enjoy living in this trend setting district bordering historic Gastown and I’m enchanted by the old world charm & character of the much touted and up & coming “Soho of Vancouver”. Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

What is the BC Home Protection Office? – Vancouver Condo Info

The HPO is a provincial Crown Corporation established in 1998 under the authority of the Home Owner Protection Act.

The mandate of the Act

The mandate is to strengthen consumer protection for buyers of new homes, help bring about improvements to the quality of residential construction, and support research and education respecting residential construction in BC Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Vancouver Condo Info – What are Bylaws?

The BC Strata Property Act

includes detailed bylaws that apply to all property and operations of every condominium.The act outlines the duties of owners, tenants, occupants, visitors, the corporation, and the strata council, as well as the procedures at council and general meetings.

In addition, the bylaws allow the strata corporation to penalize owners who violate the bylaws. Bylaws and Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

What is a Vancouver Green Home?

A green Vancouver home is sited, designed, constructed and operated to maximize energy efficiency and lower operating costs.

87% of Vancouver home buyers are more satisfied with a new green home than with a previous non-green home.

How do we know if a home is green?

The LEED Canada for Homes rating system assigns points for energy efficiency based on sustainability of the site, water efficiency, energy use, material and resource use, indoor environment quality and innovation and design.

The BuildGreen BC program rates homes at built green” achievement levels – Bronze is the minimum level, Silver and Gold the intermediate levels and Platinum is the maximum level.  Visit here for information on the different levels. Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

VanCity’s Energy Upgrades Program A First in Canada – Vancouver Homes

Vancouver’s Vancity single family home energy upgrades is a first in Canada and will see Vancity offer single family home owners low interest financing of $4,000-$10,000 for energy efficiency retrofits. Loan Payments will be made through the City’s utility billing system and property tax bills and then forwarded to Vancity.

Improvements an include furnace, hot water tank upgrades, attic and wall insulation and weatherization (air sealing). Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

What’s a LEED-ND Rating System? – Vancouver Homes

New LEED Neighbourhoods

LEED has incorporated green principles into a national LEED for Neighbourhood Development (LEED-ND) rating system. A LEED-ND n’hood must have compact development, a diversity of housing types, affordable market housing, affordable rental housing, reduced parking footprint, walkable streets, transit, access to public spaces and local food production.

Construction must include LEED certified green buildings, energy efficiency buildings, reduced water use, reuse of buildings including historic buildings, storm water management, on-site-energy generation, waste management and light pollution reduction. Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Secondary suites Help Vancouver Neighbourhoods Go Green

Secondary suites offer significant benefits to neighbourhoods. They’re an important part of the rental housing market, providing greater choice in affordable housing options.

In some Vancouver neighbourhoods the suites comprise as much as 20% of the rental housing stock.

Local governments place restrictions on suites and require them to be registered and inspected as a safety precaution for homeowners and tenants. Check out the Secondary Suites Bylaws if you’re planning to buy a house that has Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Vancouver Real Estate Buyer Testimonial

Maggie recently helped me in getting a condo for my Son in Vancouver with his tranfer to UBC. I wanted to recognize Maggie’s thorough knowledge of the market and incredibly professional approach to this. We came to Vancouver for 1 day and had made an offer within hours thanks to the pre-work Maggie had done. More importantly, when the “deal was done” is when Maggie stepped up and took care of all the little follow up details eg recommendations on trades for minor repairs, meeting the cleaners for me to get everything all set up etc etc. WIth me living in Calgary having this support was invaliable. Thank you Maggie. I would highly recommend your services to anyone else. John

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by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

10 Questions to Ask the Building Inspector

We strongly suggest you always get a building inspection prior to make a firm commitment with the seller. Here are a list of questions to ask them.
  • Can I see your licence/professional credentials and proof of insurance?
  • How many years’ experience do you have as a home inspector? (Make sure they’re talking specifically about home inspection and not just how much experience they have in a single trade.)
  • How many inspections have you personally completed?
  • What qualifications and training do you have? Are you a member of a professional organization? What’s your background – construction, engineering, plumbing, etc? Read more

by Maggie Chandler Maggie Chandler No Comments

Understanding Strata Councils and Vancouver Condos

The strata council is a group of strata owners that carries out the day to day management of the corporation. It usually consists of three to seven owners, who are elected annually at a general meeting.

In larger developments, the council may hire a professional management company to manage the common property and perform the management functions.

Have a strata council question?

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Contact Maggie Chandler today to find your Vancouver dream home