Condos with Mortgage helpers.

There’s an article in the province about a great new idea! Renting out part of your condo to pay the bills.

“You know what I should call it? It’s a mortgage-helper in the sky. It’s a mortgage-helper, and it’s a way of delivering affordable housing. It’s just like the basement suite.”

Hmm.

10 Vancouver west-side house price reductions

So whats happening on the west side sfh market? Here’s ten random price drops in that market, similar to the condo price drops, these are mostly listings that are over 90 days old, price drops from $50,000 – $250,000. Go get your bargains now and keep those prices from slumping!

1125 W 43RD AV– Original: $2,280,000 | Asking: $2,080,000
Home Theatre handpainted with florescent mural

1092 W 42ND– Original: $1,980,000 | Asking: $1,880,000
Walking distance to Osler and Eric Hamber School

6318 GRANVILLE ST– Original: $1,450,000 | Asking: $1,200,000
Great central location close to the airport, downtown & UBC.

2047 W 14TH AV– Original: $1,180,000 | Asking: $1,080,000
Strata with 3 legal suites.

4599 W 5TH AV– Original: $2,150,000 | Asking: $1,850,000
Here you have a hot tub, mini bar & a sound system. Come see!

7529 OAK ST– Original: $998,000 | Asking: $899,000
The house is livable and in good condition.

1025 W 43RD AV– Original: $1,798,000 | Asking: $1,688,000
“Priced to sell.”

1593 W 64TH AV– Original: $749,900 | Asking: $699,900
close to all amenities.

209 W 64TH AV– Original: $850,000 | Asking: $798,000
“Close to school, bus, shopping, airport!

3760 W 17TH ST– Original: $839,000 | Asking: $775,000
Small Cute Bungalow in need of your decorating ideas.


The great ‘buy vs. rent’ debate.

There’s an article today on canada.com about the affordability gap between buying and renting in Canada.

“A report on real estate trends indicates that steadily rising home prices and the recent upward drift in mortgage rates is tilting the economics of housing back in favour of renting over home ownership.”

The report released by the Scotiabank Group links the price difference between buying and renting to the slowing housing market across Canada.

“Among major urban areas, the buy-over-rent premium in 2005 ranged from just $31 per month in Winnipeg to $1,220 in Vancouver. Nevertheless, in most centres, the affordability gap is widening.”

Relative price trends in recent years have consistently favoured renters over homeowners, the report said. Between 2000 and 2005, renters’ shelter costs increased at an average annual rate of 1.3 per cent. Homeowners’ costs, on the other hand, rose an average 2.7 per cent yearly. Rising home prices have been a major inflationary factor, but homeowners have also faced relatively larger increases in insurance premiums and maintenance costs.”

Kitsilano vs. France

I thought this was a rather amazing comparison between two houses priced roughly the same. This was posted by ‘exvancouverite’ over at the Vancouver Housing Blog, and it gives an interesting comparison between house values in central vancouver compared to other parts of the world (France in this case).

Here’s the kits house: $1,280,000

and here’s the french house: 8,999 Euro ($1,279,891 CAD)

The french house is quite old though, it was built in the 18th century.

What is the right price to pay for a condo?

With the current real-estate market here most people seem to agree that property is getting too expensive in Vancouver, particularly for first-time buyers. Opinions differ on what that means for the future, most people who earn their living through real estate seem to be of the opinion that prices will stay the same for a while (plateau), increase very moderately for the next few years (about the same as inflation) or dip slightly. Others take a more negative view, pointing to Vancouvers history of manic depressive real-estate price swings, including a one year 40% drop in house prices in the early eighties.

With the current build-up of houses and condos for sale and months of dropping sales its starting to look like we’ve hit the market peak – so how many are waiting on the sidelines to buy? If prices start to drop who will jump in to make sure they don’t drop too much?

If you’re looking to buy in Vancouver, but are currently ‘priced out’ or have found better places to invest your hard-earned money, what would convince you to buy in Vancouver? What do you feel is a reasonable price to pay for a house or condo in Vancouver? What about specific areas: the downtown core, kerrisdale, grandview, collingwood, etc.