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Vancouver Off-Topic / Current Events The off-topic forum for Vancouver, funnies, non-auto centered discussions, WORK SAFE. While the rules are more relaxed here, there are still rules. Please refer to sticky thread in this forum.

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Old 01-05-2016, 09:45 PM   #4526
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Almost everyone I know, including myself can't get even 15k close to their assessed value for their surrey condos
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Old 01-06-2016, 12:11 AM   #4527
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Almost everyone I know, including myself can't get even 15k close to their assessed value for their surrey condos
Yeah, the market has not moved at all, really, since 2008.
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Old 01-06-2016, 12:16 AM   #4528
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Ideally, one would defer their taxes and shortly before they die, sell the property to their main beneficiary (they'd have to pay the lien first, obviously), to avoid getting raped on inheritance tax.
what inheritance tax?

when one dies, their estate is taxed (all unrealized capital gains/losses are realized and taxed). the principal residence will be tax free, as we all know.

unless you are speaking about some special tax on the deferred property tax portion, otherwise i have no idea what you're talking about.

Canada actually has one of the best tax systems for when you die. it is incredibly fair, full tax deferral (tax base carries over) when a spouse passes away, full taxation when you leave assets to non-surviving spouse.

the only time you want to do what you are suggesting is if you have a lot of pregnant taxable gains but low income in your remaining years, so you want to realize the capital gains at lower marginal rates (realize the gains little by little each year)... but even then, we really don't know when we will die, and i'd concentrate on living first.
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Old 01-06-2016, 07:21 AM   #4529
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Parents sold the house 2 years ago, but I checked the housing assessment from last year 2014 vs 2015

It went up by about 32%, house is in East Vancouver
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Old 01-06-2016, 08:53 AM   #4530
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8.3% increase in my townhouse in Poco
last year was a ~1% increase

I can't remember what my parents' increase was in East Van but it was pretty horrifying sounding
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Old 01-06-2016, 11:34 AM   #4531
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Actually, there is a very simple and logical explanation to this.
Supply and demand.

During, winter time, most of the veggies that we eat come from either California or Mexico.

California has been in a severe drought for the past 2 years and with heavy water restrictions and increased cost in labour, due to Obama's version of welfare and increased crack down on illegal mexican farm workers and low prices leading to low profits these past few years, farmers grew less crops this year.
Some farms have switched to growing crops that use less water like nuts or crops that pay more $$$ ie medical marijuana.

Then you add in the Christmas craze for produce which is an increased demand for produce which pushes prices higher.

Generally speaking, prices usually fall after the new year but this year there was some cold weather that brought snow to Las Vegas and some parts of Mexico during Christmas and -4C temps in California which has slowed the growth or caused damage to some leaf lettuces and celery.
Because the west coast normally pulls from California, and the general dislike of Mexican produce, Mexico doesn't have enough product to fill our current demand.

Add in the fact that the Cdn dollar is 30 pts lower than last year, everything that is brought up from the US and Mexico cost that much more.

I just hope Canada doesn't end up in a stagflation type of stage. Where we have prices and inflation increasing (gas, housing, transportation, insurance, food, utilities etc), but low economic growth.

Perhaps the BoC will start raising raises if inflation keeps going up.

On another note Banks are starting to increase their 5 year mortgage rates.

Royal Bank to hike some mortgage rates starting Friday - Toronto - CBC News
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Old 01-06-2016, 12:46 PM   #4532
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I just hope Canada doesn't end up in a stagflation type of stage. Where we have prices and inflation increasing (gas, housing, transportation, insurance, food, utilities etc), but low economic growth.

Perhaps the BoC will start raising raises if inflation keeps going up.

On another note Banks are starting to increase their 5 year mortgage rates.

Royal Bank to hike some mortgage rates starting Friday - Toronto - CBC News
not sure why RBC has this approach, but it seems like they will get more marginal profit....

Chance of rate cut rising as markets anxiously await details of Trudeau?s stimulus rescue | Financial Post
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Old 01-06-2016, 01:53 PM   #4533
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Interesting read about another real estate market that was booming but on a decline due to cooling measures, could be things to come locally...


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SINGAPORE (BLOOMBERG) - When Mr Billy Loh started in 2008 as a property agent, his profession was seen as a route to wealth in Singapore. Now, he has to know his way around the city to pay the bills.

Mr Loh, 50, is driving for Uber Technologies when government curbs to cool the market have mired property prices in the longest losing streak in 17 years and transaction volumes have plunged by as much as two-thirds since 2012. After going half a year without doing any deals, he switched to driving and is earning on average S$3,000 a month, one-tenth of the up to S$30,000 commission he could get from a single home sale during the market's heyday.

"The market is slow because of the cooling measures," said Mr Loh, as he drove a Toyota Corolla he has been renting since October, when he started driving for Uber. "We have no choice, we have to come up with means to make ends meet."

While property agents across the globe often juggle alternate jobs in what is a notoriously cyclical business, things look especially dire in Singapore, where home prices fell by the most among the world's major markets last year. After seven years of government intervention to cool prices in Asia's second-most expensive housing market, a plunge in sales volumes is hurting real estate agents even more than price declines.

With further declines expected this year, Singapore's industry group for property agents is offering courses and helping agents get trained in other jobs, such as property management, to help them supplement their income.

Adding skills would enable agents to "at least earn a fixed income rather than only rely on commissions in this market", said Mr Jeff Foo, president of the Institute of Estate Agents in Singapore. "This has been one of the toughest times for property agents."

Home prices in Singapore declined 4.3 per cent in the 12 months ended Sept 30, more than in Hong Kong, China, Japan, and Australia, according to the Knight Frank Global House Price Index, which tracks 55 global residential markets. During the past year, Singapore developers have managed to sell only about 7,000 new homes, according to SLP International Property Consultants. Sales matched 2014 levels, although they have plunged by half since 2013 and by about 68 per cent since 2012.

Singapore also has a relatively large number of property agents compared with the volume of deals. There are over 30,000 registered real estate agents in the island-state, 10 times the number of monthly property transactions, according to the Institute of Estate Agents. In comparison, there are only 1,840 agents in Australia's New South Wales state that handle an average of 8,160 monthly transactions in Sydney, according to CoreLogic Inc.

Mr Terence Tham, 35, had never seen such a bad year as 2015 in the nine he has worked as a property agent. In November, he decided that he could make better use of his Honda Civic and potentially increase his client network. So he signed up to become a driver for Uber.

When Mr Tham is not showing apartments, he is ferrying commuters around. To every passenger he hands out a card promoting his other job.

"This has been one of the worst years for me in the property broking business," he said.

Services such as Uber, which began operating in Singapore in 2013, and GrabCar are attracting a growing number of property agents amid the deteriorating market outlook. The number of rental cars, a proxy for vehicles being used for private car services such as Uber, increased 51 per cent in the 12 months to November to 27,988, according to statistics from the Land Transport Authority.

The number of driver partners has grown "exponentially" in less than three years Uber has been operating in Singapore, with a growing number being real estate agents, according to Uber's general manager for South-east Asia Chan Park.

Primary occupations that are commonly seen among GrabCar drivers are property agents, entrepreneurs and people in the sales line, according to Mr Lim Kell Jay, regional head of GrabCar.

After seven months without sales, Mr Ronald Han, 43, began driving a Corolla for Uber in July. That way, he can retain his old job while earning some income, he said. He works 50 to 60 hours a week driving to get a net S$2,800-S$3,200 a month.

Mr Tham says he drives his own car, from 6am until midnight. Net of costs such as petrol, maintenance and accidents, he pockets between S$3,000 and S$4,000 a month.

"This is the best trade for a property agent, you see?" Mr Han said. "You can have free time if you have an appointment, so the best is to work as an Uber or a taxi driver."
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Old 01-06-2016, 03:10 PM   #4534
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not sure why RBC has this approach, but it seems like they will get more marginal profit....

Chance of rate cut rising as markets anxiously await details of Trudeau?s stimulus rescue | Financial Post
I would hazard a guess that raising these margins is a means to cover the commercial loan losses they are experiencing within alberta and any thing related to it
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Old 01-06-2016, 05:36 PM   #4535
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Interesting read about another real estate market that was booming but on a decline due to cooling measures, could be things to come locally...
Christy Clark has said that she doesn't want to do anything to decrease home owner's equity. So I doubt we will see any foreign restrictions or policies that will curb real estate prices. For homeowners, most do not want to see the values of their home going down, especially for people who recently bought it. It really becomes a case of homeowners vs non homeowners.

A news report has said that Clark's property has increased ~ 700K since she purchased her home.
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Old 01-07-2016, 03:15 PM   #4536
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stolen from reddit, this is surrey

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Old 01-07-2016, 03:32 PM   #4537
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Those lamps remind me of Morgan Creek... Chinese buying like crazy there. In the last 12 mos. I lived there 4 out of the 5 houses on my street that were for sale sold to Chinese. Mine eventually did as well. Southridge (very good private school) and the golf course must be the major attractions I'd guess.
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Old 01-07-2016, 03:36 PM   #4538
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stolen from reddit, this is surrey
I am just beyond words... even the style of that banner is 100% Mainland Chinese...
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Old 01-07-2016, 03:56 PM   #4539
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stolen from reddit, this is surrey
At least they had the decency to put the sign in both English and Chinese.
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Old 01-07-2016, 03:56 PM   #4540
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I'm shocked the english isn't a smaller font!
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Old 01-07-2016, 04:01 PM   #4541
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I am just beyond words... even the style of that banner is 100% Mainland Chinese...
As is the SUV in the picture
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Old 01-07-2016, 04:09 PM   #4542
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Those lamps remind me of Morgan Creek... Chinese buying like crazy there. In the last 12 mos. I lived there 4 out of the 5 houses on my street that were for sale sold to Chinese. Mine eventually did as well. Southpoint (very good private school) and the golf course must be the major attractions I'd guess.
Southridge...

But yes.. a lot of them are buying properties in the ocean park/crescent beach area as well..
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Old 01-07-2016, 04:42 PM   #4543
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South ridge sure, but that area around the school is turning into a ghetto from the amount of multi family going up there

Tones of break ins etc even 4-5 years agl
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Old 01-08-2016, 03:26 AM   #4544
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stolen from reddit, this is surrey
Spoiler!
im 99% sure they were filming a chinese movie there. cuz people were reporting they saw some mainland celebrities in the area. the banner is just a prop.
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Old 01-08-2016, 11:16 AM   #4545
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stolen from reddit, this is surrey

That photo is the Lower Mainland in a nutshell. Even has the white Benz with an "N" sign
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Old 01-08-2016, 11:29 AM   #4546
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Although funny, this picture on Reddit has already been de-bunked as a movie set. Should give some context to the photo.
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Old 01-10-2016, 06:46 PM   #4547
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Interesting read.
Housing speculation seems to be taking hold in West Side Vancouver - The Globe and Mail

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Housing speculation seems to be taking hold in West Side Vancouver

Vancouverites have become inured to house demolitions by now, but real estate agent Lori Rowe, who sees the action of the hot property market up close, was still shocked when she saw her and her husband’s 14-year-old former home get bulldozed just prior to the holidays.

“It was really beautiful, a high-end house,” Ms. Rowe says. “It is incredibly sad. It feels wrong in so many ways to destroy a house like that. It wasn’t like it was old and decrepit.”


The 8,700-square-foot luxury house, seen in 2012, was built in 1998 and demolished last year to make way for a 14,000-square-foot mansion.
Her husband had overseen the building of the 8,700-square-foot mansion at 2606 S.W. Marine Dr. in 1998, which included coffered ceilings, wainscoting, cherry wood floors, stone fireplaces and wine cellar.

Ms. Rowe says they’d sold the house in 2011 for $6.35-million to an offshore purchaser. That purchaser resold the home in April, 2013, for $8.88-million, which was $1-million below their asking price. That’s a pretty good return: $2.5-million in only two years. Once it sold, the house then sat empty long enough to make the long list of empty Vancouver houses on the blog Beautiful Empty Homes. On the upside, the owners did hire salvage companies to strip the house, which helped them save money on the demolition.


A luxury home built in 1998 once sat on this site. It was sold in 2013 to one of China's biggest property developers for $8.8 million and demolished in 2015. (Kerry Gold for the Globe and Mail)
They are now building a 14,000-square-foot contemporary house that will emphasize privacy, according to Bryan Reid, vice-president of Kindred Construction, which was hired by a third party to build the house.

“They wanted to make sure they weren’t overtly wasteful. Green is the wrong term, but they tried to get everything reused, and it saved them a few dollars as well.

“Most people would have just nuked it.”

In the past couple of years, the market has been moving at warp speed, with property values climbing around 20 per cent or 30 per cent a year. And big is best in Vancouver, particularly in a speculative real estate market. A sample of 250 West Side properties shows that between 2010 and 2015, 147 detached houses were flipped twice. Thirty-seven houses were flipped three times in that same time period. Either West Side buyers are an extremely fickle demographic or speculation is rampant. Remember, this is only a sample of 250 West Side houses, located in MacKenzie Heights, Point Grey, South Granville and Dunbar. Imagine what a comprehensive data set would show.

(The Globe and Mail obtained the data from Landcor Data Corp.)

Speculation has long been a cause for concern in Vancouver and it came up again when Mayor Gregor Robertson issued a statement this week, rightly calling for a speculation or luxury tax as a means to curb the spending spree:

“A speculation tax would help slow down the practice of flipping houses, which treats housing as a commodity and intensifies the price escalation. A luxury-housing tax would ensure that the very wealthiest buyers or investors pay an added price. Both of these taxes would raise new funds to make housing more affordable for those on low and modest incomes,” he said.

His statement was timed with the release of BC Assessment figures that made thousands of homeowners ineligible for the Home Owner Grant because of property prices. Since the province has made it clear that it doesn’t want to intervene to slow speculative buying, there is one move that could be made at the municipal level that could take the pressure off.

The city could down-zone single-family neighbourhoods that are in the crosshairs of speculation to disallow the building of houses that are bigger than what already stands. After all, a massive house doesn’t house more people or increase density; it’s not sustainable, it’s usually out of scale, it often replaces a character house and it drives up prices.

And in simple terms, if bigger houses were no longer part of the picture, speculative buying would have to ease off. Theoretically, people treating the city as little more than a sure-bet casino would back away, prices would ease up and first-time buyers would have a chance to enter the market.

Legally, the city has the power to do it. The question is more of a political one. So far in the discussion, there’s been more concern about protecting homeowner equity than creating affordable detached housing. Some people argue their life savings completely depend on the overheated market staying overheated – which is nonsensical when you consider that those homeowners could never have anticipated that we’d currently be sitting with an average detached-house price of $2.53-million citywide. Such wealth was not earned or banked: It’s a windfall.

But the political will to upset that windfall is understandably absent, says lawyer Bill Buholzer, who’s an expert in municipal law and land-use zoning.

“I hear elected officials talking about things they can’t do for legal reasons, when what’s really going on is things they don’t want to do for political reasons. Sometimes, it’s easier to explain what they can’t do as a legal impediment. That’s not to say that the political impediment isn’t major. In this economy, in this city, it’s always brought up that the potential value of real estate represents people’s retirement plans.”

But it could be done. According to the Vancouver Charter, the city is entirely within its right to take away development opportunity in a neighbourhood such as Dunbar, for example, without having to compensate homeowners for any subsequent loss in value. As is, Dunbar houses are being relentlessly demolished because zoning allows for much bigger houses than what currently stand.

“The city has essentially added speculation value to those properties by zoning them to permit development in excess of what is there already,” Mr. Buholzer says. “And the city can take that development potential away just as it bestowed it in the first place, by exercising its zoning power. Would it be politically unpopular? Probably. But it’s not something that people would be compensated for.

“I think what’s often missed in this discussion is the fact that local governments can encourage the protection and preservation of buildings in areas like that by putting appropriate zoning in place.”

It would have to be well considered and exhaustively studied, he adds. And it would be a controversial move.

Laneway house builder Jake Fry says a combination of down-zoning and incentives such as stratified laneway houses would curtail speculation and help first-time-buyers get into areas such as the West Side. An existing house that has a secondary suite and laneway house offers more density and affordability, especially if it can be sold off. And this type of RT zoning already exists in pockets of Vancouver, used to protect old-character neighbourhoods.

Rick Michaels, former assistant director in development services for the city, says this type of zoning was successful, it but took a lot of complex planning.

“It took a tremendous amount of public and private energy, hard work, and expertise, and extensive community engagement and collaboration,” says Mr. Michaels, who is a development consultant.

It would be worth the effort, Mr. Fry says.

“They need to disincentivize those huge homes, because they take away opportunities,” he says. “Massive homes with two people in them is not a community builder, and it seems to be what the big driver is right now.

“If you add a penalty like down-zoning, but also balance it with a lot of incentives, then the problem starts to self-regulate.”
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Old 01-12-2016, 10:05 AM   #4548
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Recently I've started to form the opinion that Vancouver's premium housing market is being impacted by a looming economic crisis in China. I believe that the upper business-class Chinese are aware of the current, and largely unreported, economic situation in China, and are laying the framework for a quick and painless exit.

Commodity prices and the recent volatility in the major markets suggest to me that the party is over, reality should sink in shortly, likely on/before the summer sell off/Q2 2016. Don't underestimate how hard it is to escape the burning building when the hallways are crowded with the like minded.

If anything I'm no longer thinking that interest rates will be the prime factor in reducing Vancouver home costs, it will be a global financial crisis due to a significant reduction in growth of emerging markets.
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Old 01-12-2016, 10:19 AM   #4549
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Recently I've started to form the opinion that Vancouver's premium housing market is being impacted by a looming economic crisis in China. I believe that the upper business-class Chinese are aware of the current, and largely unreported, economic situation in China, and are laying the framework for a quick and painless exit.
Jason,

Would you care to elaborate on what you mean by "impact"? Without any clear indications, I cannot guess whether you mean our Vancouver market will be "impacted" positively or negatively. As a matter of fact, even the words "positive impact" and "negative impact" can have totally opposite meanings, depending on whether you are speaking from the perspective of the average Canadian home owner, or the RE agent.

Cutting the chase, do you think the Vancouver housing market (premium or otherwise) will go higher or lower?
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Old 01-12-2016, 11:10 AM   #4550
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Jason,

Would you care to elaborate on what you mean by "impact"? Without any clear indications, I cannot guess whether you mean our Vancouver market will be "impacted" positively or negatively. As a matter of fact, even the words "positive impact" and "negative impact" can have totally opposite meanings, depending on whether you are speaking from the perspective of the average Canadian home owner, or the RE agent.

Cutting the chase, do you think the Vancouver housing market (premium or otherwise) will go higher or lower?
Read it carefully. The answer is pretty obvious.
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