Category Archives: BC

Runaway market taking ‘a breather’

As you may be aware it is always a good time to buy or sell real estate according to most real estate professionals who earn their living by buying and selling real estate.

Well right now it’s a great time to buy or sell real estate because the runaway market is taking a breather.

It’s a “soft landing,” according to Royal LePage CEO Phil Soper, who says their latest house price survey shows the effects of government measures to cool things down.

What were previously called the “dangerously overheated” conditions in Metro Vancouver housing have cooled significantly, but prices have remained resilient.

He says it’s the soft landing policy-makers had hoped for, rather than a crash.

“But it won’t stay this way for long. Household formation in Canada… is going to grow rapidly,” he predicts.

Read the full article here.

BC Tables Speculation Tax on Vacant Second Homes

Will a new tax on vacant homes help solve the affordability crisis?

The speculation tax will apply to those who own multiple properties in Metro Vancouver, the Capital Regional District (excluding the Gulf Islands and the Strait of Juan de Fuca), Kelowna, West Kelowna, Nanaimo-Lantzville, Abbotsford, Chilliwack and Mission.

The tax will apply at a reduced rate in 2018, based on property owned as of Dec. 31. It expands in 2019 to 0.5 per cent of assessed value for B.C. residents, one per cent for Canadians from outside B.C., and two per cent for non-Canadians.

Owners are exempt if they rent their properties for at least six months a year. And there is also a tax credit for B.C. residents with second homes valued under $400,000.

James pointed to exemptions she said will make the tax fair, including for people facing medical emergencies, people who have to relocate suddenly for a job, seniors who enter care homes, people undergoing a separation, and those with disabilities.

“If people choose to leave their homes vacant where the housing crisis is the deepest, we are asking them to pay their fair share. All that revenue will be returned to British Columbians in the form of affordable housing,” said James.

Read the full article here.

Home sales continue to slide

Home sales in BC continue their decline.

“Sales fell 33.2 per cent compared to the same month a year ago, and the average residential price of $685,749 was down 1.1 per cent from September of 2017.”

“Association chief economist Cameron Muir says, “The impact on affordability and purchasing power caused by the mortgage stress test and moderately higher interest rates are negating the effect of the extraordinarily strong performance of B.C.’s economy over the last five years.”

Read the full article here.

More imaginary buyers

For some reason even in a hot market some salespeople feel compelled to make up fake buyers. You might remember the fake sisters posing as buyers for a news story.

Well a North Van Realtor has been found guilty of professional misconduct after a competing offer was presented from a buyer who doesn’t exist.

According to the disciplinary panel’s written reasons, Inglis testified at the hearing that the offer from a buyer with a last name of “Huang” had been left on the kitchen counter on the property –along with a real estate agent’s business card – at an open house, after he’d given a pre-printed offer form to an “Asian person” who asked for it. He told the council he’d altered the form to delete his own name as the buyer’s agent, and added the real estate agent’s name whose card had been left with the offer.

But that real estate agent told the panel he hadn’t been involved in writing the offer and had not had a client named Huang.  The discipline committee also noted Inglis gave a contradictory version of how he’d received the offer in a message he left for his co-listing agent, saying he’d been handed the offer in person. A handwriting expert called to testify said it was “probable” Inglis wrote the offer himself.

The committee concluded Inglis had changed or made up the offer to create the impression that his story about receiving offers on the property was true, then made “false statements” to both his co-listing agent and the real estate council about it.

When Inglis found out about the investigation, he called the co-listing agent and left her a phone message, according to the panel’s written reasons, saying, “So if you really want to get blackballed you’ve gone to the right person because trust me I wield a bigger bat than you do.” The message continued: “So you’re off my books as far as ever doing a deal. I will never, ever, ever process one of your offers ever. So you’re done.”

Read the full article here.