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Old 06-01-2013, 12:51 PM   #726
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Originally Posted by Tapioca View Post
There are legit basement suites in Vancouver, but the homeowners are obviously going to pass down the costs to make that suite legal (taxes, permits, compliance) to potential renters.

Here's an example: a couple of friends of mine lived in a three suite renovated house in East Vancouver. It had 2 bedrooms and a shared yard. They paid $2000/month for a ground floor unit.
For sure! I've had people balk when I tell them how much our 2 bedrooms go for.

"oh shit! I can get a 2 bedroom thats bigger at xyz building on 123 street"

Literally, more than once had people tell us we're nuts. Rudely.

Guess what? Rented. To pretty happy shiny people.

Ok dude...did the owners of xyz building just drop 10k in the apartment last month? Cause we did.

You get what you pay for. So when we're talking average house price, we need to mention if it includes Shaugnessy(sp) or not, and if we're talking rentals, we need to mention if the walls have bullet holes, or nail holes.
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Old 06-01-2013, 01:02 PM   #727
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From a landlord's POV, it's hard to price a suite accordingly.

Too low, and it's no longer a sustainable mortgage helper.
Too high, and nobody will rent.

Then you have your middle ground; It's priced accordingly +/- $50-$100.
But then you attract a certain demographic on either end of that spectrum.

Low end, you might end up with a squatter, or somebody who's just really shitty with paying rent on time.
High end, you won't get a squatter, but they'll sure voice thier opinion on every little thing. Sure, you get your rent on time, but you're babysitting them 24/7.
There is no middle. because there is no perfect tenant.

Landlords charge more for rent in Vancouver, because, well, there are alot of shitty tenants. Charging an extra $50-$100 weeds most of them out. People may think that it's a renter's market, and they have the RTA to back them up. But at the end of the day, the Landlord makes the calls. Don't like it? Move. Simple as that.

I've always been nice to each and everyone of my tenants, but I'm jaded.
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Old 06-01-2013, 01:11 PM   #728
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Nailed it.
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Old 06-01-2013, 05:15 PM   #729
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I think the real estate market is not necessarily hurting current home-owners.

It is hurting newcomers to the market: people who are first-time home buyers.

This market segment is being hurt by the rapid rise in prices the most.
Welcome to 3 years ago... it`s a better time to get into the market now than it was 3-5 years ago. I don`t think rapid rise in prices has been mentioned by anybody for a while now, things have levelled off in a big way if not taken a slight dip, from my casual observations

There certainly are good deals available now for near new units as some are cashing out or getting out of the market due to market uncertainty. For those who must buy presale and new for whatever reason, maybe not.

If your finances can manage it, now is not a bad time to buy to live. You can argue that things may be cheaper in a couple of years, and many signs point to that happening, but there`s always the element of risk (and will the market drop enough to offset what you will end up paying for rent until you buy, whenever that may be). If you`re buying to invest, probably not a great idea.
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Old 06-01-2013, 07:57 PM   #730
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Welcome to 3 years ago... it`s a better time to get into the market now than it was 3-5 years ago. I don`t think rapid rise in prices has been mentioned by anybody for a while now, things have levelled off in a big way if not taken a slight dip, from my casual observations

There certainly are good deals available now for near new units as some are cashing out or getting out of the market due to market uncertainty. For those who must buy presale and new for whatever reason, maybe not.

If your finances can manage it, now is not a bad time to buy to live. You can argue that things may be cheaper in a couple of years, and many signs point to that happening, but there`s always the element of risk (and will the market drop enough to offset what you will end up paying for rent until you buy, whenever that may be). If you`re buying to invest, probably not a great idea.
I see you drank the cool aid

Vancouver is still unaffordable, prices have 20-30% to come down, and they will
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Old 06-01-2013, 09:35 PM   #731
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I would add a really really obvious caveat, if you can afford a piece of property and has a comfortable safety margin build into your math AND you really like the property for one or more unique feature(s) (eg location / the building on the property etc or you just need it for a growing family NOW).. then go for it.

Remember this caveat applies more to stand alone houses rather than apartments. Since an existing house might be on sale now, but might not be on sale when the price is low etc.

I think you have to do you homework, be able to filter out the BS from your own agent and trust in your gut.

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I see you drank the cool aid

Vancouver is still unaffordable, prices have 20-30% to come down, and they will
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Old 06-01-2013, 10:05 PM   #732
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I see you drank the cool aid

Vancouver is still unaffordable, prices have 20-30% to come down, and they will
When did I say Vancouver was affordable to buy into? Its more affordable now than it was 3-5 years ago. Am I telling everybody to go out and buy? No. If it's within your means and the numbers work, it's a better time now than it has been previously. Hey, it may be, and probably will be, an even better time to buy 3 years from now. I'm not disputing that, I don't know what will happen, but it sounds like you do.

Yeah, I drank the cool aid. We bought our place 5 years ago, it fit our lifestyle back then, and it fit our lifestyle now. Yeah it sucks to see that the market value of our place take a bit of a hit since we've owned it. But for US, it's not a huge deal. When we sell and upgrade, we are banking that the place we are buying into will have also gone down, just like how you are banking that prices still have 20-30% to fall. The net effect of a market crash, if it happens, will not affect us much if at all despite us buying in during peak pricing, because we're not buying strictly to invest.

5 years of rent at a conservative $1500 = $90,000. Let's assume another 3 years for prices to drop another 20%, we would have sank $144,000 into rent over 8 years. Assume we bought in at 500k 5 years ago, and current value has dropped to 450k. Another 20% drop will bring us down to 360k, net loss to us of $140,000. Maybe my financial understanding is overly simplistic, but the end result isn't all that far off using these hypothetical numbers.

I don't need a lecture on how I should have parked my money elsewhere, rented for the past 5 years, etc etc. Like godwin mentioned, the numbers worked out for our situation and when all factors were considered we valued the stability and control of our own home, that peace of mind outweighed what could have or may yet to happen with the market. We are risk adverse at this point, and speculating that the market will drop another 20-30% does not fit in with our lifestyle. Just appreciate that different people have different values, needs, and financial drive. If/when the market goes the way you think it will, then congrats, that's your big chance to cash in on all of us suckers. I'm pretty sure our lives will still go on, one way or another.
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Old 06-01-2013, 10:42 PM   #733
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I see you drank the cool aid

Vancouver is still unaffordable, prices have 20-30% to come down, and they will
If the statistics really reflect the actual average income of families in Metro Vancouver, then housing values would have to fall 50-60% to make real estate affordable. A single person basically needs to make $2000 to sustain himself in this city; $2000 is basically $15/hour.
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Old 06-02-2013, 10:17 AM   #734
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There certainly are good deals available now for near new units as some are cashing out or getting out of the market due to market uncertainty.
that's my concern with what you said - there are no 'good deals'

the US in 2010-2011, they were good, or even great, deals... Vancouver right now, they're all overpriced.

better than they were, you're right, but catching a falling knife is never good
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Old 06-03-2013, 08:11 AM   #735
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Well everything is relative and speculative. Things may be a good deal by my standards, or they may not by yours. But the one thing we KNOW is that things are better than they have been, and current trend points to things getting even better.

For those who want/need to buy in Vancouver, it's as good a time now as it has been in the recent past--everybody's own values and lifestyles will play into this, it isn't all just about market values, trends, and directions. Like I said we bought in during the peak of pricing, and largely no regrets. We've been able to live and maintain our lifestyle, settled down, and laid down some equity at the same time.
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Old 06-03-2013, 09:46 AM   #736
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Living in china's basement is NOT not EVER going to be the same as renting an apartment.

Yes, anything ranked "acceptable" and above in a stand alone rental building will always be more expensive. What you get is a place that stands a better chance of being professionally managed, in an apartment that's not squished around the water heater.

Think of all the rental problems that have been written about on RS or in general. Almost 90 percent involve a basement suite.
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I wouldn't want to live in a house that's older than 15 years myself. In East Van, there are so many newer houses and from what I can tell, almost all of them have their suites rented out. Just limit your searches to these. Most of them are relatively nice imo. If I was renting, I'd rent these save save my money over renting an apartment anyday.

I am not talking about renting some ugly smelly Vancouver Special suite.
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Old 06-03-2013, 10:25 AM   #737
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its depressing looking at houses, 750k gets you a house that needs work. 650k gets you a newer townhouse.
Even with 150k down your mortgage is $2200+. Its crazy.
Is there any sites that show you how long a house has been on the market for?
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Old 06-03-2013, 02:06 PM   #738
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^Why does everyone need to live in actual Vancouver? There are new-newer 3 bedroom townhomes for 300-350k (even less if they are older) all over in Chilliwack, Langley, Coquitlam, Surrey, etc. From my limited knowledge, couple friends bought new 3BR's in new west for just over 400 and there are 10-12 year old townhomes in Richmond for low 500s (while one's that I would consider old are low 400s). I'm mentioning these townhomes cause their big enough to raise a family in without having to move once 1-2 kids pop out.

I find it only gets expensive if you want a semi-detached/detached house and it has to be in Vancouver, Richmond, Burnaby, etc.
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Old 06-03-2013, 02:11 PM   #739
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^Why does everyone need to live in actual Vancouver? There are new-newer 3 bedroom townhomes for 300-350k (even less if they are older) all over in Chilliwack, Langley, Coquitlam, Surrey, etc.
I'm looking in coquitlam/Port moody
People want to live in a nice area and not to far from work
Anything 2000sqft + that isn't run down or near a shit hole is 550k+
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Old 06-03-2013, 02:15 PM   #740
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^Why does everyone need to live in actual Vancouver? There are new-newer 3 bedroom townhomes for 300-350k (even less if they are older) all over in Chilliwack, Langley, Coquitlam, Surrey, etc. From my limited knowledge, couple friends bought new 3BR's in new west for just over 400 and there are 10-12 year old townhomes in Richmond for low 500s. I'm mentioning these townhomes cause their big enough to raise a family in without having to move once 1-2 kids pop out.

I find it only gets expensive if you want a semi-detached/detached house and it has to be in Vancouver, Richmond, Burnaby, etc.
My commute from home to work (Burnaby--Imperial/Canada Way to Richmond--Simpsons/Bridgeport) is 35 minutes in the morning, 45 minutes going home.
If I lived in Chiliwack, Abbotsford, Langley.. My commute would probably be an hour and a half easy each way. That's 3 hours/day = 15hours/week = 720hours/year spent sitting on the goddamn road. I'd probably kill myself first.
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Old 06-03-2013, 02:25 PM   #741
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Residing in Burnaby/Coquitlam is ideal because you're in the center of the action. If your job requires you to be on-site, to meet clients, etc, you can go anywhere in Metro Vancouver in an hour. If you want to spend the weekend with the wife and/or kids at the beaches or downtown, again, you're not too far away from Vancouver (where most of the action is). Transit is always an option too the closer you are to Vancouver. Want to spend an evening downtown to catch a Lions/Canucks game? At least you can down a few pints and not worry about driving an hour back home afterwards. Furthermore, the best restaurants, grocers, etc are closer to the core.
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Old 06-03-2013, 02:43 PM   #742
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its depressing looking at houses, 750k gets you a house that needs work. 650k gets you a newer townhouse.
Even with 150k down your mortgage is $2200+. Its crazy.
Is there any sites that show you how long a house has been on the market for?
AFAIK, only a realtor can search the specifics on MLS Link.

If you're thinking long term, look for something that has rental suites available. They're a great mortgage helper, and in say.. 5-10 years, you can switch it up and get something nicer. At the very least, it'll eat the interest and you can pay off the principal on your own.

If you can afford it, and you're looking for sustainability:
- Location
- Location
- Location
- Lot size (I would go min. Standard lot, 33x120)

Even if the house is worthless in 10-15 years, you'll still get the land value back. Let your tenants eat the interest. Win, win.
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Old 06-03-2013, 04:42 PM   #743
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^Why does everyone need to live in actual Vancouver? There are new-newer 3 bedroom townhomes for 300-350k (even less if they are older) all over in Chilliwack, Langley, Coquitlam, Surrey, etc. From my limited knowledge, couple friends bought new 3BR's in new west for just over 400 and there are 10-12 year old townhomes in Richmond for low 500s (while one's that I would consider old are low 400s). I'm mentioning these townhomes cause their big enough to raise a family in without having to move once 1-2 kids pop out.

I find it only gets expensive if you want a semi-detached/detached house and it has to be in Vancouver, Richmond, Burnaby, etc.
because people wont be caught dead saying they live in Surrey or Langley, why would you when you could live in a complete dump of a house in east van for 800k?

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Old 06-03-2013, 10:21 PM   #744
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I wouldn't want to live in a house that's older than 15 years myself. In East Van, there are so many newer houses and from what I can tell, almost all of them have their suites rented out. Just limit your searches to these. Most of them are relatively nice imo. If I was renting, I'd rent these save save my money over renting an apartment anyday.

I am not talking about renting some ugly smelly Vancouver Special suite.
In case you don't know...I'm in the rental business. Too much, but anyway

My issue is some to do with quality, yes. Some to do on pricing. The original comment that set us on this tangent was regarding price.

MY issue on basement suites is the vast majority seemed to be owned and operated by complete and total asshats when it comes to their operation. With one suite, at one tenant on average per year, they will never come close to catching up to the volume of people we interact with in even one building(I mean, obvi)

But the point here...the first guy we rented to was an asshole. AND we fucked up on getting rid of him and it could have cost us a lot of money. The second guy we rented to...was an asshole. Took us 2 years to finally say goodbye.

As we went through this process, we started learning that these apartments need to look better, we need to screen better and started picking up on these little things that you'd like to think you'd catch, but you don't. And we did this by meeting a lot of people. Weeding some at the front door. Giving people "fuck off" answers to questions.

So you say, "But I'm a good tenant!" Sure you are.

But they've dealt with 15 bad ones, and think you are 16.

I had a reference call the other day for a tenant(I'm not sure if it was basement suite to be honest, but I had that vibe) They grilled dino, and then called back because her story didn't match that of the tenant. It was a minor detail, like how long they lived there...one rounded to a year and a half or something.

Like...who the fuck cares?

We told the guy, don't walk...run.

Basement suites are a fucking shitfest of fun. Inconsistent management. No one knows the rules...and if you think that changes because the grass if newly rolled, oh honey, no. You are there for one thing and one thing only...your money, once a month.

Yes..any tenant is there for the same purpose, but in a building, all the people are equals for one, so everyone gets the same rules for not being a noisy dick on friday night.

I lived in 2 suites, and the second one tainted the experience so badly, I would never in good conscience recommend it to people.

On the flipside...I so desperately want a house that has a space where I can build one.
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Old 06-03-2013, 11:10 PM   #745
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My commute from home to work (Burnaby--Imperial/Canada Way to Richmond--Simpsons/Bridgeport) is 35 minutes in the morning, 45 minutes going home.
If I lived in Chiliwack, Abbotsford, Langley.. My commute would probably be an hour and a half easy each way. That's 3 hours/day = 15hours/week = 720hours/year spent sitting on the goddamn road. I'd probably kill myself first.
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Old 06-04-2013, 09:29 AM   #746
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My brother in law did that for years...abbotsford to Burnaby, twice a day every day. Ironic, as he worked for Brinks and his route brought him back out to Abbotsford.

I felt for him, but his kids had a house with a yard.
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Old 06-04-2013, 09:43 AM   #747
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^^ Just like every fucking "Property Virgins" episode on HGTV. Everybody needs to understand compromises..

One of my compromises will be living in a apartment (even though I hate strata's, and don't like having to be quiet just because of others), it won't be my "dream/ideal" living situation, but atleast I'll be close to friends/work/family.
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Old 06-04-2013, 09:50 AM   #748
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stability and control of our own home
There is value in that, it's hard to put a price on since it's intangible but it's true. I'm willing to pay that premium as well.

It's going to be a great feeling at the end of the month when no one (other than the government) can tell me what I can, or can't do with my living space.
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^^I think about this sometimes.

My apartment is contingent on my employment for one.

And I have personally done a lot of work on our apartment to make it look as nice as it is. We obviously get personal use out of it(as I am not going to live in shit, which...it totally was) but really, I've increased the value for someone else, not me.

But on the flip side...we pay an embarassingly low amount on rent. In fact, we're pretty close to 1 bedroom rent, for something significantly more than 1 bedroom
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Old 06-04-2013, 11:55 AM   #750
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^^I think about this sometimes.

My apartment is contingent on my employment for one.

And I have personally done a lot of work on our apartment to make it look as nice as it is. We obviously get personal use out of it(as I am not going to live in shit, which...it totally was) but really, I've increased the value for someone else, not me.

But on the flip side...we pay an embarassingly low amount on rent. In fact, we're pretty close to 1 bedroom rent, for something significantly more than 1 bedroom
Yeah but you're the landlord of your own building aren't you?
You can pretty much choose what rules you want follow.

Like the strata president of the townhouse complex my buddy used to live at. Years ago we did a cam swap for his jeep in his carport, it took two days (Sat-Sun) from start to finish. By the end of the first day the president drives up and says "You guys are going to be done by tomorrow RIGHT?!" meanwhile her son's truck has been on blocks in her spare parking spot for months.
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