Category Archives: equity

Toronto prices drop 12% as sales plunge

Toronto is becoming a better and better investment as prices fall, you just need to buy when they’ve stopped falling. Right now they’re seeing quite a price drop.

Re-sale home prices in the Toronto region dropped 12.4 per cent, or about $110,000, year over year in February.

The average price fell to $767,818, from $875,983 for all housing categories, including detached, semi-detached, town homes and condos.

The number of sales also plunged nearly 35 per cent last month compared to Feburary 2017 — to 5,175 transactions from last year’s record 7,955, according to the latest statistics from the Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB) on Tuesday.

Read the full article here.

BC Speculation Tax Impact

People who own more than one home are worried about the new speculation tax:

From a Vancouver Island resident with a condo in Vancouver: “If the proposed speculation tax proceeds as you describe, the two-per-cent tax will far exceed the B.C. income tax that we normally pay. We will have no choice but to sell our Vancouver condo. We’re not speculators. We simply wanted to enjoy a few days a month in the city we used to live in, in the comfort of our own condo.”

On the problem for seniors with recreational properties that have been in the family for years: “If they pay zero income tax because their annual income is low enough to warrant no tax — i.e. married couple making around $25,000 or so — they’d never recover the amount.”

From someone with a place on Saturna: “They call it a speculation tax, but it seems more like an empty home tax. The government claims that taxing homes which remain empty most of the year will help deal with the housing shortage. If that is the case, why isn’t Whistler included? The prices are skyrocketing and there is a real housing shortage for workers. On the other hand, they include a Gulf Island like Saturna, where there isn’t a housing shortage and housing prices haven’t risen in more than eight years.”

On the perverse incentives of a tax vis-a-vis longtime residents versus actual speculators: “If you speculate and sell the property quickly, you pay the tax once, while those keeping property for years pay years of tax. The short-term speculators win!”

Read the full article here.

Fraser valley boom

You know Vancouver is hot, but did you know that house prove gains in the Fraser valley are outpacing Vancouver? Southseacompany points out this CBC article with the details.

“The Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation says demand for less expensive condominiums and apartments in North Delta, Surrey and Langley has inflated prices at a sharper rate than in Vancouver.”

“”Those municipalities have some of the most affordable units in the region, particularly for condos,” he (Eric Bond, a regional analyst with CMHC) said. “For first-time buyers, given the price increases we’ve seen in the rest of the region, often those units are what’s most interesting to them.”

Read the full article here.

Flipper sues buyer who sold at a loss

Here’s a Vancouver story if ever we saw one: A Flipper is suing a buyer who lost half a million dollars selling their condo at a loss.

The industry insider who tipped us off feels that this will end up being a nightmare situation for both Collins and Schomaker.

“When the buyer finds out that the property is now in the middle of a lawsuit, they will walk away and the sale will fall through,” they told ThinkPol. “Prices in West Vancouver keep falling, and seller will be lucky to even get $2 million in 2018. I expect both the flipper and the eventual buyer to lose a lot of money.”

The insider blamed the real estate industry’s unethical practices for putting many working Canadians into a tough financial situations.

“The sad part for me is ordinary Canadians are falling prey to number manipulation by the industry trying to keep up the perception real estate prices can only go up,” the whistleblower said. “The amount of deception, corruption and outright fraud in the industry is appalling and there is so much secrecy around the process of purchase and sale that the public is kept in the dark on just about every aspect of it.”

Read the full sordid tale over at ThinkPol.

Your car insurance is going up.

BC Drivers pay some of the highest car insurance rates in the country while receiving the lowest payouts, and yet somehow ICBC is out of money.

A recent report from Ernst & Young painted a dire picture at the Crown corporation, concluding that rates must increase by 30 per cent by 2019 to cover costs. A separate forecast released last November by ICBC indicated rates would need to increase by 42 per cent over the next five years to make up for expenses.

McCandless pointed to a footnote in the ICBC report that an additional $1.5 billion is required in “capital from other sources” between 2017 and 2020. He calculated the cumulative rate hike to be closer to 117 per cent over four years.

Continue reading Your car insurance is going up.