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Old 02-22-2016, 10:52 AM   #5001
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When i was working at trump tower, i could get from Lougheed mall to the parkade walking into the trump in under 30 minutes every single day taking Hastings.

Mind you, we were starting at 630, but i rarely have a problem getting DT on hastings or Mcgill.. first is another story
I start work at 7 am so I leave North Burnaby around 6:40 am every morning and make it into work in 20 minutes.
My wife leaves for work at 8 am and she works 5 minutes from where I work and it takes her closer to 30 minutes on a good day. 35-40 minutes on a slightly bad day and over an hour on the worst days when there is an accident on the bridge and traffic on Hastings is backed up all the way to Gilmore.
Mind you, she isn't the type to take side streets.

On the way home, it is another gong show. If I can leave right at 4 pm, I can be home in 30 minutes.
If I leave around 4:30, it can take me 45 minutes to get home.
If I stay late and leave around 6, it can still take me 45 minutes to get home because the park car lane is no longer empty.
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Old 02-22-2016, 07:48 PM   #5002
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Also live in North Burnaby and work near Cambie and 12th. Usually have to be in by 830.

If I leave a few mins before 8, I am in my office before 830. That's after parking, paying and walking a block to office. It takes about 25-35 mins majority of the time. It's a distance of 11 KMs.

I take Boundary to Broadway to Cambie. It's not a bad commute at all.
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Old 02-22-2016, 07:57 PM   #5003
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Is Vancouver's pricey housing market sending buyers to northern B.C.?
Feb. 22, 2016, 8:23 a.m
By Jonny Wakefield, Alaska


Dawson Creek realtors say any spillover from Vancouver's overheated housing market isn't being felt in the north | Photo: Rob Kruyt

https://www.biv.com/article/2016/2/v...ing-buyers-no/

If Vancouver's overheated real estate market is leading house-hunting city dwellers north, local realtors aren't seeing any sign of them.

In the B.C. legislature earlier this week, Premier Christy Clark was taken to task for suggesting people unable to afford a home in Metro Vancouver move to a less expensive city.


Spencer Chandra Herbert, NDP MLA for Vancouver-West End, said the government has no plan to rein in ballooning house prices, which are being driven up in part by foreign investment.

"What does the Premier say? She says 'well, you can move to Fort St. John. You can move to the north,'" said Chandra Herbert, referring to comments Clark made to CTV in January. "Those are not solutions. Those are sidestepping."

Chilliwack-Hope MLA Laurie Throness doubled down, saying "no one has a God-given right to live in a particular place."

But Trevor Bolin, a Fort St. John city councillor and agent with RE/MAX Action Realty, said the Energetic City isn't seeing any spillover from the Lower Mainland.

"Honestly, from a logistical standpoint it makes sense: you can't enter a housing market such as Vancouver, you look at where you can," he told the Alaska Highway News. "But you're sitting in Vancouver where it's probably 10 C today and it's -17 C with the wind here. I think it would take a lot more than housing to convince people to leave that area and come up here, which is unfortunate."


"Absolutely not," said Dawson Creek realtor Al Mottishaw, when asked if Vancouver real estate was having any impact on Dawson Creek. "If anywhere, it might spill over into the Okanagan."

Kevin Kurjata, with Dawson Creek's Century 21 Energy Realty, agreed.

Kurjata was born in Dawson Creek, lived in Vancouver, and moved home for work. He said the cost of housing had little to do with that decision.

"Most of the people I know in Vancouver that want to get into the housing market can get into it, they just buy a tiny condo," he said.

"When people in Vancouver think about leaving Vancouver, they think Langley, or maybe as far as Kelowna," he said with a laugh. "But they're not coming up here, unless they're adventurous."

According to figures released earlier this year by BC Assessment, an average home in Fort St. John costs around $405,000, compared to $3.1 million on Vancouver's west side and $1.31 million in East Vancouver.

Dawson Creek homes go for around $260,000, while the Canadian average sits at $470,297.
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Old 02-22-2016, 08:48 PM   #5004
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On the topic of commuting downtown, my wife had her office moved from Burnaby to downtown. We live on the Cloverdale/Langley border and were dreading the fact that her office was moving. It's been a month and surprisingly it hasn't been that bad for her. She drives up to the park and ride near the Hwy, grabs a bus to New West and skytrains from there. Her total commute is between 65 to 70 minutes door to door. Her commute to Burnaby was 45-60 minutes depending on traffic.

She doesn't like the fact that she has to go to Vancouver but it wasn't nearly as bad as either of us thought it would be. She has to buy a transit pass where she didn't before but she pays less for parking at the park and ride then she did at her Burnaby office and she's saving on fuel and wear/tear of her vehicle.

She's still going to look for a job east of the Fraser but for now it's bearable.
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Old 02-22-2016, 10:40 PM   #5005
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Vancouver's new homeless plan: shipping container-sized portable homes
City issues request for proposal for company to build, install up to 300 moveable 'modular homes'

By Steve Lus, CBC News Posted: Feb 22, 2016 5:06 PM PT Last Updated: Feb 22, 2016 6:04 PM PT

Vancouver's new homeless plan: shipping container-sized portable homes - British Columbia - CBC News


Providing temporary living spaces in shipping containers or other portable housing units is part of the latest plan to tackle homelessness in Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson's city.

The City of Vancouver has issued a request for proposal for a company to build and install shipping container-sized modular housing units to 'temporarily' house the homeless.

The city's RFP makes it clear the plans are in their early stages and no site for the modular homes has been selected. But the type of unit, and its purpose, is spelled out — 150 sq ft, washroom and sleeping quarters but no kitchens and must be portable.

They also can't be ugly, according to Vancouver city councillor Kerry Jang.

"People have the idea that these are Britco trailers or something like that. Let's be clear. They absolutely don't look like that at all," Jang said. "We want to make sure these units fit into the neighbourhoods. That's not only good for the neighbours, but good for the people living there, so they feel like they are part of the community as well."

This won't be the first time the city has considered homes made out of shipping containers, or something similar. The Atira Women's Resource Society opened a six-unit housing complex made from recycled shipping containers in 2013 on Alexander Street.


The shipping container housing development at Vancouver's 502 Alexander Street was established in 2013. (Atira Women's Resource Society)

Not permanent

But the new plan for container homes would be a "temporary" solution said Jang, who envisions a homeless person or couple staying in a modular home for a year or two while waiting for permanent housing. The location of the homes, once selected, also wouldn't be permanent.

"They could go on private lands that's waiting for development for example, for a few years, or it could go on city land until that land is developed to do permanent housing," Jang said.

Developers who agree to have modular homes on their site while they wait to break ground could receive property tax breaks or other incentives, and Jang expects some will volunteer their services, regardless.

"We get a lot of developers who simply say, I really want to help the community," he said.

The homes must be portable, because as land is developed, the city will look to move the modular units to new sites, Jang said.

Pilot project

The first phase of the project will be a pilot of 30 to 40 modular homes. The homes must meet B.C. building code requirements, can be a single storey or stacked two storey, and will be joined to a 1,000-1,500 sq. ft communal area with a kitchenette.

If the pilot is successful, there could be as many as 300 homes purchased by the city every year, according to the RFP.

"Getting people inside ... has been very important because it really gets people ready to move into permanent housing when it is ready," Jang said.
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Old 02-22-2016, 10:46 PM   #5006
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^ helping the homeless is all fine and dandy but..
What about the people that actually work for a living and can't afford to live here?
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Old 02-22-2016, 10:58 PM   #5007
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Just came back form Beijing and I had dinner with a friend and some of her friends. Basically they were buying Vancouver houses without even seeing it, just buying it base of the price and the pictures @@. No inspection or anything......
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Old 02-22-2016, 11:08 PM   #5008
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^ helping the homeless is all fine and dandy but..
What about the people that actually work for a living and can't afford to live here?
sad thing is that if you start speaking out against these policies you look like a pro-gentrification asshole
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Old 02-22-2016, 11:35 PM   #5009
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Just came back form Beijing and I had dinner with a friend and some of her friends. Basically they were buying Vancouver houses without even seeing it, just buying it base of the price and the pictures @@. No inspection or anything......
I hope you didn't pay for dinner! What else did they say? Do they choose the ugliest one so they can drive the bulldozer through it?
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Old 02-23-2016, 12:51 AM   #5010
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Just came back form Beijing and I had dinner with a friend and some of her friends. Basically they were buying Vancouver houses without even seeing it, just buying it base of the price and the pictures @@. No inspection or anything......
lol exactly what the Brazilians were doing back in 2008-2012 or so, in the US. People were just moving money out of the country like crazy.
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Old 02-23-2016, 06:46 AM   #5011
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Everyone is buying with no subjects, not just the Chinese. Only way to get in at this point.

Feel sorry for anyone actually moving into the homes they buy full of asbestos and mold
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Old 02-23-2016, 07:33 AM   #5012
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Everyone is buying with no subjects, not just the Chinese. Only way to get in at this point.

Feel sorry for anyone actually moving into the homes they buy full of asbestos and mold
Some people don't care, especially the ones that plan on tearing the place down and building something new.

But I feel the same way. For some people looking to buy a home, it is the biggest purchase of their life and they aren't allowed to do it with rational thinking. It's becoming all emotional.

We went to look at an open house over the weekend. We walk in and see 2 ladies arguing. Turns out they were realtors. One was the sellers agent and one was the agent for a potential buyer. But as it turned out, the seller got a no subject offer that the owners took before the open house. The buyer's agent was pissed because she wasn't given the opportunity to throw in a bid for her clients, clients where weren't even there at the open house.

Asking price was $530K for a town house built in 2012. Gonna have to wait a week or so to see how much it sold for.
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Old 02-23-2016, 07:40 AM   #5013
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Some people don't care, especially the ones that plan on tearing the place down and building something new.

But I feel the same way. For some people looking to buy a home, it is the biggest purchase of their life and they aren't allowed to do it with rational thinking. It's becoming all emotional.

We went to look at an open house over the weekend. We walk in and see 2 ladies arguing. Turns out they were realtors. One was the sellers agent and one was the agent for a potential buyer. But as it turned out, the seller got a no subject offer that the owners took before the open house. The buyer's agent was pissed because she wasn't given the opportunity to throw in a bid for her clients, clients where weren't even there at the open house.

Asking price was $530K for a town house built in 2012. Gonna have to wait a week or so to see how much it sold for.
if people are buying with no subjects (ignoring those who will tear down), doesn't that just scream danger?

As you rightly point out, it's all emotion, and given I look at everything from a financial point of view, I'd never buy when those around are buying with emotion, as everything detaches when emotion is involved!

Every house purchase and sale I have been through has been with inspections and certain subjects, you'd be crazy not to.

can you even get a mortgage without an inspection these days (surely the banks would have to, no?)?
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Old 02-23-2016, 07:50 AM   #5014
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if people are buying with no subjects (ignoring those who will tear down), doesn't that just scream danger?

As you rightly point out, it's all emotion, and given I look at everything from a financial point of view, I'd never buy when those around are buying with emotion, as everything detaches when emotion is involved!

Every house purchase and sale I have been through has been with inspections and certain subjects, you'd be crazy not to.

can you even get a mortgage without an inspection these days (surely the banks would have to, no?)?
Nope. It's at the point you go to the bank and see what the max is that you can borrow and then go house hunting based on that number.
You walk in and make an offer.

No subject to financing BS for most properties being sold.

Then again, we put an offer down for a condo with a subject to financing. Signed the contract and gave them the deposit.
The next day, the developer's sales person called us to go to the office to pick up our cheque cause someone bought the unit cash down. And this was 8 years ago.
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Old 02-23-2016, 08:31 AM   #5015
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You bring your inspector to the first open house and have it done on the spot, that way you can make your no subject offer. Having said that, majority of home inspectors are not exactly useful IME. And in this climate you won't be able to use the inspectors negative findings to bargain the price down anyways
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Old 02-23-2016, 08:49 AM   #5016
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Structural stuff is a non-factor in most Vancouver homes anyways, especially on the east side. If a house is 100 years old you're either going to tear it down, or live with the problems it has.

My main concern with moving into these houses are the health aspects from old pipes, insullation, asbestos, etc.

These are all things, even the best inspectors will not be able to pick up, and with lab testing turn around times a week or more, yoube already lost the house by then.
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Old 02-23-2016, 09:57 AM   #5017
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I agree with the comments above - an inspector can only tell you so much.

With respect to strata properties, you can get a sense of how well managed the complex is through the minutes and the fees. If the fees are too cheap for the age of the complex, then something has probably been neglected, or an amenity has been decommissioned (like a pool, for example). If the complex was self-managed, I would probably walk away unless you know there's a lawyer, engineer, accountant, architect, landscaper, etc. who live in the complex and are on council.

For newer strata complexes (<10 years old), you have to assume that the build quality is shit to passible, so unless the unit has been rented for the duration of its life, there's only so much an inspector will be able to tell you. All they can do is a visual inspection - they're not cutting up walls and telling you about the electrical, plumping, and heating systems.

For older complexes, look at the residents, the property itself, and the fees. There are always issues, but as long as the major stuff's been taken care of (roofing, envelope, etc.), then what else can you do? If you know alterations have been made, look at those carefully. You should factor in 20-30K to bring an older unit up to standard anyway.
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Old 02-23-2016, 09:58 AM   #5018
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Remediation for asbestos can definitely be costly but I'd mostly be worried about oil tanks, followed by degraded foundations.
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Old 02-23-2016, 10:17 AM   #5019
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I agree with the comments above - an inspector can only tell you so much.

With respect to strata properties, you can get a sense of how well managed the complex is through the minutes and the fees. If the fees are too cheap for the age of the complex, then something has probably been neglected, or an amenity has been decommissioned (like a pool, for example). If the complex was self-managed, I would probably walk away unless you know there's a lawyer, engineer, accountant, architect, landscaper, etc. who live in the complex and are on council.
One town house we looked at was 7 years old and only had $80K in their CRF for 54 units.
That was the first red flag.
The depreciation report was deferred to a later date.
That was the second red flag.

Reading the minutes is a good start, but I have heard of strata's not putting everything into the minutes to keep up the image of the building even though they were having issues.
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Old 02-23-2016, 10:33 AM   #5020
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sorry to be so stupid, but are we saying banks issue mortgages without home inspections?!

i'm shocked by this... are the banks really that dumb?
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Old 02-23-2016, 10:39 AM   #5021
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sorry to be so stupid, but are we saying banks issue mortgages without home inspections?!

i'm shocked by this... are the banks really that dumb?
Yes.

You go to the bank with your financial records and 3 latest pay stubs and then they tell you what the max you can borrow at what interest rates.
Then you go and shop till you drop.

While not exactly like that, it's pretty damn close.

And after you buy, you take your LC and buy that new car, expensive furnature, holidays, etc....
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Old 02-23-2016, 10:44 AM   #5022
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Yes.

You go to the bank with your financial records and 3 latest pay stubs and then they tell you what the max you can borrow at what interest rates.
Then you go and shop till you drop.

While not exactly like that, it's pretty damn close.

And after you buy, you take your LC and buy that new car, expensive furnature, holidays, etc....
wild wild west of real estate back financing.

but completely different to US circa 2001-2007, totally different... well it kinda is, canadian tax payers will pick up the pieces of this one
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Old 02-23-2016, 10:55 AM   #5023
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wild wild west of real estate back financing.

but completely different to US circa 2001-2007, totally different... well it kinda is, canadian tax payers will pick up the pieces of this one
The only saving grace, if you can call it that, is that even with money in hand, people are getting out bid and/or there is nothing good to buy.

This is me at the last few open houses.


And the search continues.
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Old 02-23-2016, 11:16 AM   #5024
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All I can say is don't let the emotions get the best of you. It just took me 15 months of searching and there were many times I was so disappointed that a place didn't work out and I was getting quite restless seeing myself lose out on what at the time I thought was "the place" and also watching prices go up wasn't a good feeling. We stood our ground with what we wanted and also felt that our want list was not unrealistic and finally it happened and it absolutely checks off everything on our list and now looking back it blows all the places we thought may have been the place out of the water. Did we have to pay a hefty overall price for it? Absolutely, but we got exactly what we wanted and for the price/sq in Van for current market value is a decent deal imo.
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Old 02-23-2016, 11:16 AM   #5025
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wait...I have a question.

I know we all think that Chinese investors raising housing prices is a bad thing, because our living cost in BC is ridiculously high now.

Gas prices, mortgage prices, labour cost for mechanics, carpenters, anything and everything... all gone up..

But is this a bad thing?

If our living cost goes up, inevitably government would have to raise the minimum wage.

OK so here's an example:
Say BC government announce that minimum wage is now $30/hr due to housing prices, blah blah blah.
Which means, grocery prices will go up because of labour, and all the other things in stores might go up too.
BUT!
What about cars and houses?
Cars that are made in Japan, USA, Germany, etc...will be whole a lot cheaper. (Sure, it will go up due to dealership people getting higher wage) but the cost of goods for car itself will be a lot lower relative to how much money people are making.
This can be said for anything made overseas. Which is majority of what we buy (how many "Made in Canada" products do you see everyday anyways)

I know I'm missing something, but it may not be all bad thing?
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