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Old 06-13-2016, 01:40 PM   #6701
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when filling out home insurance info I think there's a spot that asks if it has unauthorized suite and takes that in to account in costs when buying home insurance?
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Old 06-13-2016, 01:42 PM   #6702
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when filling out home insurance info I think there's a spot that asks if it has unauthorized suite and takes that in to account in costs when buying home insurance?
I don't know - maybe it depends on the insurer? Also another friend who recently bought a house was not able to get insurance because they did not get the proper permits when they did renovations to their home. They had to rip out the work, get the proper permits, and then redo it again + pay fines.

These examples aren't friends of friends stories - they are directly coming from people we know first hand.
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Old 06-13-2016, 01:43 PM   #6703
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If all people did that, it would cool the Van housing market quick. New builds now commonly have 2 basement suites and laneway house, yet sell quick and easy because owners see an easy $2500-3000+ a month tax free in mortgage help. Add that to an average $2000/mth regular mortgage contribution and you don't need to make CEO money to afford a 2M house. Now think of how that. that extra taxed income can contribute to actual social problems if everybody went about it the proper way.



The increase in property tax I'm guessing just goes to pay for increased use of garbage, water, etc. What is the fine/penalty? Clearly not big enough to deter people from doing that. Then we also have the issue of essentially tax evasion with illegal rental suites and non-reported rental income, not sure what sort of hurt CRA could deliver but I'm guessing they know this happens a lot and they can't really do anything to enforce it unless somebody rats out on a landlord?
Let's cool the market by making it even more difficult for locals to purchase properties? This would have no effect on outside buyers. It would make the condo market even hotter and more inflated as well. Not to mention cut down on affordable rentals.

Yes, it's an issue, but I doubt it's the number one issue at hand.
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Old 06-13-2016, 07:49 PM   #6704
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So what you're saying is it's fine to evade taxes because it will help locals stay local and buy into an overpriced market.
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Old 06-13-2016, 09:09 PM   #6705
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I'm saying fix the problem, not bandaid an issue.
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Old 06-15-2016, 08:13 AM   #6706
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Gregor Robertson is proposing a tax on owners of empty homes.

Vancouver mayor proposes punitive tax on empty homes - NEWS 1130

Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson is again pushing for a tax solution to the city’s affordability problems, outlining an idea for a punitive levy on owners who let their homes sit empty rather than put them on the very tight rental market.

“It is an approach to get people renting out empty homes,” he told reporters. “If we can create that momentum then it creates more rental housing and obviously that’s income to the people who have empty homes. Basically they are sitting on those homes as a business holding so they should be taxed more like a business than a residence.”

Robertson says he’d “love to have thousands of those homes in the rental market right now.”

The mayor admits there may be privacy concerns in determining which homes are sitting empty and he wants city staff to work on the issue.

He says it would be “easy” for the province to enact an empty home tax and he is pushing for quick action from Victoria.

“We are going to take any action we can at the City level but our powers are very limited with housing. That’s why we are in this predicament. We are doing everything we can and we are looking at the next steps with empty homes but we absolutely need more support from the BC government and the federal government to deal with a market this hot.”

Robertson didn’t give any details on what the city’s “next steps” would be.
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Old 06-15-2016, 08:34 AM   #6707
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“We are going to take any action we can at the City level but our powers are very limited with housing. That’s why we are in this predicament.
I guess their powers were very limited too when it came to stopping foreign home ownership or taxing foreign investors..
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Old 06-15-2016, 08:47 AM   #6708
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Well, what can the city do? It has no jurisdiction over capital flows or the markets. It can only apply property taxes or make decisions with respect to zoning.
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Old 06-15-2016, 09:17 AM   #6709
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Honestly, to me, this all sounds like lip service to score brownie points so that Mayor bicycle can apply to build more bike lanes while saying he tried but the city has limited power and Crusty and the province refuses to do anything.
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Old 06-15-2016, 11:30 AM   #6710
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Drove past east 1st and renfrew 2 bedrooms starting at 339k RIGHT BESIDE FROM THE T&T on east 1st!!!!
No more sympathy for anyone complaining about SF housing costs. Unless you want the population of vancouver to decrease dramatically, thats never going to happen.
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Old 06-15-2016, 11:51 AM   #6711
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Drove past east 1st and renfrew 2 bedrooms starting at 339k RIGHT BESIDE FROM THE T&T on east 1st!!!!
No more sympathy for anyone complaining about SF housing costs. Unless you want the population of vancouver to decrease dramatically, thats never going to happen.
Good luck buying a unit for $339k.
There might have been 1 unit for sale at that price but I am willing to bet it has long been sold.

A search of MLS shows this unit for $455,900 for 823 sq ft.
https://www.realtor.ca/Residential/S...olumbia-V5M1A9

Oh yeah, it's a Thind building.
1st & Renfrew Condos by THIND Properties |

But, it is still cheap i guess.
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Old 06-15-2016, 12:00 PM   #6712
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overly complicated elevator system in that building, opens on both sides, with each side of the building on a slightly different elevation. it's almost as if they couldn't be bothered to level the footprint properly so it's got like double the amount of floors it can go to
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Old 06-15-2016, 01:38 PM   #6713
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Prices listed there were prices offered. Know two people who looked at the building and considered buying a unit to live in.

Both had in or around a 50k deposit and were approved on the mortgage on the units they were looking at no problem. Both ended up not buying due to external factors but yea..

dat unaffordabillity doe.

Oh..and I looked at 3 units near Lougheed mall on the weekend, all 2 bed 2 baths, 700 sq ft + for under 340

Dat unaffordabillity doe...but who am I kidding? I couldn't possibly be forced to live somewhere with top loading laundry and an old white fridge!
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Old 06-15-2016, 01:58 PM   #6714
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you mean there's another way to load laundry?

i heard the pho place downstairs sucks so your friends are better off
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Old 06-15-2016, 02:53 PM   #6715
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A Vancouver realtor has taken a look at the city’s West Side and come up with some pretty shocking evidence of housing speculation happening in that area.

In a June 15 blog post, Steve Saretsky wrote that he was curious about the extent to which people are flipping properties there.

According to the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver, the benchmark price for a single-family detached home on the West Side was $3.4 million in May, up 34.7 percent from one year earlier. And so it’s a good question.

Saretsky explains that he began by looking at 179 properties sold in May 2016, and then found that of those, 28 had been sold a previous time within the last 12 months.

That means that 15.6 percent of West Side homes sold last month—nearly one in six—had been previously purchased not so that they could be lived in, but so that they could be flipped for a profit. (See Saretsky’s post for notes on methodology.)

“I believe Vancouver real estate prices are heavily encouraged by massive amounts of speculation,” Saretsky writes. “People, not just investors are trading Vancouver real estate like it’s a cheap penny stock. Buying and flipping properties within a short period of time, sometimes as short as a month or two, cashing in on massive profits.”

To drive his point home, Saretsky looked at one house in South Granville that was sold four times in the last two years. The lot at 6712 Adera Street changed hands in January 2014 for $5.1 million, then again in November 2014 for $5.5 million, then in July 2015 for $6.4 million, and then again just last month for $7.6 million.

“These are staggering numbers,” he continues. “Over 15% of homes were flipped in the month of May, having been purchased within the last year for an average profit over $1 million.”

Saretsky even went and checked for evidence of renovations that might account for some of the increases in sales prices. He didn’t find any.

“I also made sure to go back and look through the listing photos of the past 28 sales to see if any substantial upgrades or renovations were done to these homes,” he writes. “As I had suspected, none of these homes appeared to have any noticeable upgrades. At least none that I could detect by comparing photos.”

Saretsky’s conclusion: “Based on the evidence, to dismiss Vancouver real estate speculation as not playing a key role in surging home values would be ignorant. There are certainly many factors influencing the Vancouver real estate market, speculation is definitely one of them.”

This might sound obvious, but one reason I think we’ve found some (flawed) evidence of foreign money in Vancouver real estate is because we’ve looked for it.

I’ve long wondered whether journalists and academics, applying the same scrutiny and persistence to other facets of the market, could find evidence of factors that have an effect on prices that’s equal to or greater than the effect of foreign money. (The Globe and Mail has done this with the shady practices of real-estate agents, finding, for example, that the abuse of contract assignments may be widespread enough to impact prices.)

Now, Saretsky has found evidence of speculation to quite a significant extent. I wonder what other factors we might find if only we really look for them.
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Old 06-15-2016, 03:15 PM   #6716
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Anyone who has dealt with a realtor (as the selling party) in Vancover I'm looking for some info if you'd care to share. I don't need names or details on the property but I'm just wondering what types of commission people are paying? Are things pretty standard across the board?

I've only ever used one realtor before and he basically specializes in surrey/Langley so I'm going in a different route for Vancouver
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Old 06-15-2016, 04:30 PM   #6717
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Realtor for a home purchase or condo?
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Old 06-15-2016, 04:38 PM   #6718
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I don't mean any disrespect as it is still peanuts but it is a concern of mine seeing a lot of expensive properties in rough shape landscaping wise. It makes the neighborhood look like a sore thumb sticking out. Grass hasn't been mowed all year, hedges that will forever be brown if cut back, etc, etc.

I know one owner claimed(with sunglasses on) they were trying to get a redevelopment application for tear down but what if that request gets rejected? Just a idea. Maybe the city should tidying things up with their own landscaper employees and then charge the appropriate bill to the owners?
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Old 06-15-2016, 04:39 PM   #6719
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Good luck buying a unit for $339k.
There might have been 1 unit for sale at that price but I am willing to bet it has long been sold.

A search of MLS shows this unit for $455,900 for 823 sq ft.
https://www.realtor.ca/Residential/S...olumbia-V5M1A9

Oh yeah, it's a Thind building.
1st & Renfrew Condos by THIND Properties |

But, it is still cheap i guess.
LOL it's a Thind building... it'll be cheap in the short run... that's about it.
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Old 06-15-2016, 05:16 PM   #6720
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Gregor Robertson is proposing a tax on owners of empty homes.

Vancouver mayor proposes punitive tax on empty homes - NEWS 1130

Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson is again pushing for a tax solution to the city’s affordability problems, outlining an idea for a punitive levy on owners who let their homes sit empty rather than put them on the very tight rental market.

“It is an approach to get people renting out empty homes,” he told reporters. “If we can create that momentum then it creates more rental housing and obviously that’s income to the people who have empty homes. Basically they are sitting on those homes as a business holding so they should be taxed more like a business than a residence.”

Robertson says he’d “love to have thousands of those homes in the rental market right now.”

The mayor admits there may be privacy concerns in determining which homes are sitting empty and he wants city staff to work on the issue.

He says it would be “easy” for the province to enact an empty home tax and he is pushing for quick action from Victoria.

“We are going to take any action we can at the City level but our powers are very limited with housing. That’s why we are in this predicament. We are doing everything we can and we are looking at the next steps with empty homes but we absolutely need more support from the BC government and the federal government to deal with a market this hot.”

Robertson didn’t give any details on what the city’s “next steps” would be.
My buddy bought a condo in Vancouver. He works at Fort Mac and only come back during the weekend and sometimes don't.

It would be unfair if this determines it as "empty home"
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Old 06-15-2016, 05:19 PM   #6721
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home sale
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Old 06-15-2016, 08:13 PM   #6722
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There are a ton of illegal suites in the lower mainland. A buddy of mine rented a place in east Surrey, near the Langley border. There was a family in the basement, another family in the main floors, and another family living in the coach house above the garage. I'm pretty sure that they exceeded the square footage capacity for the tiny lot. But the streets are littered with far more cars than a standard single family home should have.
especially the coach house area in some part of Surrey
I'll rarely find a parking spot
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Old 06-15-2016, 08:40 PM   #6723
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Drove past east 1st and renfrew 2 bedrooms starting at 339k RIGHT BESIDE FROM THE T&T on east 1st!!!!
No more sympathy for anyone complaining about SF housing costs. Unless you want the population of vancouver to decrease dramatically, thats never going to happen.
Hey guys. I saw a sign. Please disregard all real estate statistics. The billboard dictates the market.
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Old 06-15-2016, 08:50 PM   #6724
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I saw a sign.
Did it open up your mind?
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Old 06-15-2016, 09:08 PM   #6725
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Hey guys. I saw a sign. Please disregard all real estate statistics. The billboard dictates the market.
A recent low rise pre-sale in New West was advertising 1br starting at $199k. I looked at their info package and they had one unit at that price only. Everything else was in the high 200s low 300s for the 1br. Not terrible but the location was a bit far from "downtown" new west and was definitely in a crappy area.
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