Investigative Journalism is alive and well

Channel 4 in London has done an experiment on estate agent reactions to potential buyers using obviously ill-gotten gains. The results were predictable:

In a documentary called From Russia With Cash, to be broadcast on Wednesday, two undercover reporters pose as an unscrupulous Russian government official called “Boris” and his mistress “Nastya” whom he wants to purchase an upmarket property in London for.

The couple – Russian anti-corruption campaigner Roman Borisovich and Ukrainian investigative reporter Natalia Sedletska – view five properties ranging in price from £3m to £15m, on the market with five different west London agents, in Kensington, Chelsea and Notting Hill.

Despite being made aware they are dealing with ill-gotten gains, the estate agents agree to continue with a potential purchase. In several instances the estate agents recommend law firms to help a buyer hide his identity.

One estate agent names a “very, very good lawyer … the last person I put them was another minister of a previous Soviet state” in a deal worth £10m.

The estate agents suggest that in the capital secretive purchases of multimillion pound houses are common. One claims that 80% or more of his transactions are with international, overseas-based buyers and “50 or 60%” of them are conducted in “various stages of anonymity … whether it be through a company or an offshore trust”.

Read the full article here.

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fanaticallybroke
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fanaticallybroke

Write to this spineless Premier. The more letters she gets the more chance she might put up some resistance to the RE cartel. I sent a letter yesterday.

Hon Christy Clark
West Annex
Parliament Buildings
Victoria, BC
V8V 1X4

another lost
Guest
another lost

I have been offered a property in UBC with 97 yrs land lease left. My MIL wants me to jump, but I think is a bad idea. I say is expensive rent, she says I will be dead anyway when lease expires. I say is no ownership, she says it is. Are there any good financial arguments against leased land houses ? Why are they even considered ownership ? First time I see that kind of deal any opinions appreciated.

Egg Hunt
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Egg Hunt

> #27 Another Lost

Egg Hunt
Guest
Egg Hunt

> #27 Another Lost

Leased Land is difficult to finance.
Normally, conventional mortgage only (no HELOC = infinite credit limit).

OK to BUY / SELL in bull market, but it turns very illiquid in bear market.

UBC Endowment land used to have favourable lending condition (can do HELOC, no CMHC, etc), I am not sure how it is now.

Also, proce-wise, UBC properties are overpriced for leased propwerty.

vanalice
Guest
vanalice

RE: RE cartel

Prediction, when the s**t hits the fan, RE cartel ‘ll be the 1st thrown under the bus. Politicians & bankers will be shocked, shocked ! by what they will discover. Wise for some of them to speak up. close to a tipping point to get them audited ? look a bus company in Richmond had a crash and is being audited, why can’t we have third party audit of RE statistics, causing more dmage. Predicting when the s**t hits the fan, that’s another question in crazy Vancouver.

Shlomo
Guest
Shlomo

#21

The problem is the trickle-down effect. Even in Port Moody, 800K gets you a dump. You have to go to Coquitlam or PoCo to get something decent for that range.

And of course, you’d have to work overtime to convince me that these neighbourhoods my friends and I grew up, in Coquitlam, are genuinely million-dollar neighbourhoods. Yeah, right……

rally
Guest
rally

6 months nobody is allowed to sell their houses in YVR, said Politburo. Only one bedrooms can be traded and only with the government.
Signed: Free Markets

vangrl
Member
vangrl

#27

I’ve seen some interesting homes for sale near UBC, although I haven’t looked in awhile, there used to be 4000+ S.F properties for around 500 grand, and they had suites that would cover the taxes.

They were houses that would rent for maybe 4 grand a month of 48 grand a year, or 480 grand in 10 years. So they were tempting….

My friend bought one about 6 or 7 years ago, and recently sold, he made 0 appreciation but he got to live in a huge house with a swimming pool for exactly the same price he sold his West End Condo for (which also would have had almost 0 appreciation over the same time). His had a suite as well.

Bull! Bull! Bull!
Guest
Bull! Bull! Bull!

vancouverites have already forgotten about the foreign ownership issue. they are more concerned about when their neighbors are watering their grass and washing their cars and judging kids having water fights.

meanwhile bears cling to desperate hopes that big trouble in little china will pop our bubble, failing to realize that money comes here as insurance against problems in china.

given this reality the obvious conclusion is to buy a house before rates increase.

Bull! Bull! Bull!
Guest
Bull! Bull! Bull!

i mean buy before rates are cut again.

Softy
Guest
Softy

1401 Robson street has been vacant, barren land since 1985. It’s owned by a Hong Kong company.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/vacant-lot-on-vancouver-s-robson-street-is-decades-old-8-5m-real-estate-mystery-1.3143211

patriotz
Member

@36:

Records show it is owned — and has been for some time — by a company in Hong Kong called Melford Estates Limited, which was registered in B.C. in 1973.

Wow, it looks like someone did a title search. Maybe the Sun/Province, CTV, Global might catch on.

“We all have to find a solution. Should [the City of Vancouver] force someone to develop? No. Could they incentivize someone to develop? Yes,” (Bob Rennie) said.

How’s this for an incentive Bob – assess such properties as though they had been developed to the allowed density.

What do you mean, that’s not what you had in mind?

Oracle
Guest
Oracle

Let’s get a petition going on reducing immigration to Canada. On change.org

Any idea on what the proper wording for the statement?

For example ” reduce immigration levels to The average per capita levels of the G7 nations” or ??

Best place on meth
Member
Best place on meth

“However, the city says it has not received a development permit or rezoning application and it cannot force landowners to build on their properties.”

Sure they can, they just have to make a new law to forbid vacant properties. That’s what governments do, make laws.

“We all have to find a solution. Should [the City of Vancouver] force someone to develop? No. Could they incentivize someone to develop? Yes,” he said.

Same solution as above.

southseacompany
Member
southseacompany
“Shadow mortgage lending on the rise as house prices soar” CBC News http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/shadow-mortgage-lending-on-the-rise-as-house-prices-soar-1.3144317 “Canada’s housing boom is increasingly driving homebuyers to seek mortgages from private lenders, who demand rates that can be more than five times higher than those charged by the nation’s banks” “Canadian house prices have risen 36 per cent since June 2009, according to the Teranet-National Bank house price index. At the same time, Canadian banks have become more conservative and regulators are making it harder to lend, giving rise to an alternative market, including Canadians who refinance their own homes at low rates and then use the money to become mortgage lenders themselves.” “One private lender, who asked not to be named because she is close to the real estate market and fears hurting her business, took out a C$400,000 mortgage on her paid-off home at… Read more »
doc
Guest
doc

All, time to wake up. The Vancouver Market has been in a “bubble” for the past 15+ years – or at least it’s what you’ve read in similar blogs like this.

The reality is that *money $$* is depreciating, not the other way around.

In YVR real estate, if you can hold it for >=5 years, you will look back at it like the best decision you’ve ever made.

doc
Guest
doc

save a good Down Payment (10% or more) and buy something you can afford. If you can’t afford it don’t buy it (goes without saying).

doc
Guest
doc

if you are young (in your 20s) you can get away with a 5% down payment, but understand the risk and the tradeoff you are making

Corrupt in Canada
Guest
Corrupt in Canada

WOW alot of videos surfacing of locusts suiciding appearing on social media sites.

Softy
Guest
Softy

China stock market crisis could lead to more real estate investment in B.C.

Expert says Chinese investors are looking for a safe place to invest

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/china-stock-market-crisis-could-lead-to-more-real-estate-investment-in-b-c-1.3144146

Yunak
Guest
Yunak
Bull! Bull! Bull!
Guest
Bull! Bull! Bull!

“Vancouver is the most bubbly city in the world.”
Robert Shiller – 2005

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/yale-economist-sees-vancouver-bubble/article4117073/

Shiller is a very smart man, but he is counting on official stats and official stats don’t capture illicit money flows the likes of which north america has never seen before.

Son of Ponzi
Guest
Son of Ponzi

Locusts are descending on new Luxury Mall near YVR causing traffic chaos.
http://www.vancouversun.com/news/metro/mall+backs+traffic+near+Vancouver+Airport/11201444/

Son of Ponzi
Guest
Son of Ponzi
Shut It Down Already
Guest
Shut It Down Already

A law to force landowners to build in their properties? I think there’s a word for governments that operate that way.