Metro Vancouver home buyers set a record pace in February

Last month was the highest selling February on record for the Metro Vancouver housing market.

Residential property sales in the region totalled 4,172 in February 2016, an increase of 36.3 per cent from the 3,061 sales recorded in February 2015 and an increase of 65.6 per cent compared to January 2016 when 2,519 home sales occurred.

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Last month’s sales were 56.3 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month and ranks as the highest February sales total on record.

“We’re in a competitive, fast-moving market cycle that favours home sellers,” Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said. “Sustained home buyer competition is keeping upward pressure on home prices across the region.”

New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 5,812 in February 2016. This represents an increase of 7.1 per cent compared to the 5,425 units listed in February 2015 and a 30.8 per cent increase compared to January 2016 when 4,442 properties were listed.

“We’re beginning to see home listings increase as we head toward the spring market, however, additional supply is still needed to meet today’s demand,” McLeod said.

The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the MLS® system in Metro Vancouver is 7,299, a 38.7 per cent decline compared to February 2015 (11,898) and a 10 per cent increase compared to January 2016 (6,635).

The sales-to-active listings ratio for February 2016 is 57.2 per cent. This is indicative of a seller’s market.

Generally, analysts say that downward pressure on home prices occurs when the ratio dips below the 12 per cent mark, while home prices often experience upward pressure when it reaches the 20 to 22 per cent range in a particular community for a sustained period of time.

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $795,500. This represents a 22.2 per cent increase compared to February 2015.

Sales of detached properties in February 2016 reached 1,778, an increase of 37.2 per cent from the 1,296 detached sales recorded in February 2015. The benchmark price for detached properties increased 27 per cent from February 2015 to $1,305,600.

Sales of apartment properties reached 1,790 in February 2016, an increase of 43.9 per cent compared to the 1,244 sales in February 2015.The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 17.7 per cent from February 2015 to $454,600.

Attached property sales in February 2016 totalled 604, an increase of 15.9 per cent compared to the 521 sales in February 2015. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 17 per cent from February 2015 to $569,600.

Another Project Comes to A Close – Alture MidCity

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I am incredibly proud of the completion of this building designed by award winning architects Duel Architecture. The construction of MidCity progressed smoothly and according to schedule – with many design and engineering upgrades included along the way for the benefit of our future homeowners.

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Our most notable delay was waiting for the registering with land titles in order to include the lake association’s many requirements – however we still managed our goal which was to get homeowners into their homes on time.

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A new addition to our service lineup is the printed Homeowner Guide and Online Homeowner Portal which Alture has provided to every owner. We hope that you find this resource useful as it contains detailed information from the paint colour in your bathroom down to who installed the kitchen faucet.

I appreciate all the support everyone has given to us this past year, and hope all our homeowners enjoy peace of mind knowing that you are living in an incredibly sound and well-built building that will last for years to come.

 

Poems of Reflection – Book Launch with 100 Success – March 2nd

The anticipation is building! We’ve come such a long way & it’s amazing to see how not just the volunteers, but the 100 Success community itself has come together to pitch in for Brian. #AllHandsOnDeck #BuildingACommunity

Brian’s book launch is just around the corner, please come and join us March 2nd at 6pm, 431 Princess Ave.

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Just a bit of background, some of you may know I’ve been working with 100 Success, a group of individuals who want to lend their support to the Downtown Eastside community by providing mentorship and encouragement for individuals who have completed recovery (Climbers) to connect their business ideas and social projects to advisers (Sherpas) and to potential clients.

Come join us this coming Wednesday for a glimpse into what we’ve been doing!

 

 

 

BC’s New PTT (Property Transfer Tax)

The new rules on BC’s Property Transfer Tax have been released with the potential to save up to $13,000 for some, and rate increases for others. The goal of the province’s 2016 budget to help put home ownership within the reach of more people, but you can weigh in – does BC’s New PTT achieve its stated goals?

Highlights

  • Exemption for buyers of new homes that priced at up to $750,000;
  • PTT increase to 3% from 2% for properties valued at more than $2 million;
  • Requirement that property buyers self-report their nationality when they register their property.

Let’s go back and recognize the PTT as a major source of BC’s revenue, Vancouver accounting for nearly one-quarter of the government’s $1.15-billion windfall from B.C.’s property transfer tax in the past fiscal year.

The property transfer tax was introduced in 1987 as a “luxury tax,” however thresholds have not changed since then, meaning it has turned into a revenue generator for the province.

Just Sold! 103 – 3075 Primrose

We have just sold this gem nestled in a resort-like complex. Welcome to Lakeside Terrace! If you missed this great opportunity, email us on the form below to get in contact today.262049031-3

The perfect balance of elegance and charm greet you as you enter the foyer, and continues into the large kitchen & open concept dining/living room. The tastefully decorated master suite has two closets/ 4 piece ensuite with separate shower.

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A huge private deck is your oasis perfect for entertaining. With water features/lagoon, and manicured gardens you are surrounded by beauty. Workout in the gym, dip in the pool or relax in the hot tub/sauna. A short stroll to mall/T&T, all levels of great schools, the West Coast Express, Lafarge Lake, Aquatic Center, and soon the Skytrain.

 

How to get the biggest bang for your buck from your RESP

Eric Hadley and Alex Taman opened an RESP account for their 9-month-old daughter, Molly, in 2010. Contributing as soon as possible can reap significant financial rewards down the road.

Eric Hadley and Alex Taman opened an RESP account for their 9-month-old daughter, Molly, in 2010. Contributing as soon as possible can reap significant financial rewards down the road.

It seems like everywhere you look these days, there’s a back-to-school sale. Frankly, I’m somewhat skeptical as to whether returning students actually need a new home-theatre system to succeed, but electronics retailer Best Buy, in an online ad, claims that “Studies show great sound improves GPA.”

What could help even more, in my opinion, is a well-funded education savings plan, ideally, in the form of a Registered Education Savings Plan. While RESPs have been around for many years, and really took off in 1998 with the introduction of the matching 20% Canada Education Savings Grants (CESGs), my experience is that parents are not using them in the most strategic or optimal manner possible.

Reblogged from The Financial Post | Jamie Golombeck

Here’s a quick overview of the basic rules and then we’ll run through a couple of optimization strategies.

The RESP is a tax-deferred savings plan that helps an individual, typically a parent, save for a child’s post-secondary education. Similar to other registered plans, the RESP is in essence a wrapper in which you can hold various eligible investment products, such as GICs, mutual funds and even individual stocks and bonds. Unlike RRSPs, contributions to an RESP are not tax-deductible nor are they taxable when withdrawn.

 The main benefit of the RESP is the ability to have all earnings (capital gains, dividends and interest) on the investments inside the RESP accumulate tax-free until withdrawn. When the funds are paid out, they are included in the student’s income but presumably the child will be in a low- or zero-tax bracket, on account of the various tax credits available to them (including, most commonly, the basic personal amount and tuition, education and textbook amounts) that little, if any, tax will ever be paid on the earnings when withdrawn.

The other benefit is the CESG, equal to 20% of the annual contributions, to a maximum of $500 (or $1,000 if there is unused grant room from previous years). The maximum CESG entitlement is capped at $7,200 per child.

When funding an RESP, the first missed opportunity is that parents often only start thinking about contributing to their kids’ RESPs several years after their children are born. But contributing to an RESP as soon as possible can reap significant financial rewards down the road.

For example, take Alan, who starts saving for his daughter Amy’s education the year she is born. If he contributes the $2,500 maximum amount needed each year to maximize the CESGs until he hits $36,000 of contributions in the year Amy turns 14, he will have accumulated nearly $61,000 in Amy’s RESP by the time she is 18, assuming a 3% rate of return.

Contrast this with Zoe, who only starts saving for her son Zack’s education when he turns 10 by contributing $1,000 in that year and then $5,000 each year from age 11 to 17 to catch up on all prior years’ CESGs. By the time Zack is 18, assuming the same 3% rate of return, Zack’s RESP would only be worth $49,000, despite Zoe having contributed the same $36,000 that Alan contributed.

Finally, for those parents who can afford to do so, consider maximizing the tax-deferred (or, most probably, tax-free) compounding by contributing beyond the annual amounts needed to maximize the CESGs. This can be done by making an additional lump sum contribution of $14,000, bringing the total amount contributed up to the lifetime maximum of $50,000 per child.

Jamie.Golombek@cibc.com

Jamie Golombek, CA, CPA, CFP, CLU, TEP is the Managing Director, Tax & Estate Planning with CIBC Private Wealth Management in Toronto.

Read the Original Article here

New social-housing project opens in Vancouver

Rich Coleman, minister of natural gas development and housing, tours the Budzey Building, a newly completed structure providing 147 apartments for women or women with kids who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, in Vancouver on Thursday. Photograph by: NICK PROCAYLO , PNG

Rich Coleman, minister of natural gas development and housing, tours the Budzey Building, a newly completed structure providing 147 apartments for women or women with kids who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, in Vancouver on Thursday.
Photograph by: NICK PROCAYLO , PNG

Minister Rich Coleman tours the Budzey Building, near Oppenheimer Park

Reblogged from STEPHANIE IP | POSTMEDIA NEWS

VANCOUVER — Women and children first is the key to the province’s latest social-housing project, the success of which will hopefully draw more federal support for other projects in B.C.

On Thursday, minister Rich Coleman toured the Budzey Building, near Oppenheimer Park in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside. The building provides long-term permanent housing for women (including transgender and cisgender) and women-led families.

The Budzey was opened in July 2015 and was gradually tenanted throughout the fall. Only just recently did the building finally reach capacity.

According to Amelia Ridgeway, an associate director at RainCity Housing, the organization partnered with B.C. Housing to interview prospective tenants, ensuring that the residents being moved into the Budzey are from the surrounding community. As well, there was a focus on women who had been longtimetenants at nearby SROs (single-room occupancy) facilities.

Read 354 more words here

Just Sold! 601 – 111 East 13th

I have just sold this Beautiful Bright unit in a Gorgeous building! Welcome to The Prescott! If you missed this great opportunity, email us on the form below to get in contact today.

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Close to everything, from restaurants and shopping to transit and parks, location can’t be beat! Oversized One Bedroom Unit with High End Finishings and Modern Open Concept living. End Unit, so only has 1 shared wall. Complete with a wonderfully open view of City, Water and Mountains. Come live in the centre of North Van with a View!

 

Just Listed! 1250 Seymour

We have Just Listed this UNIQUE RIVERFRONT ESTATE LOT! Call us today at (604) 629-7515 for your private showing or to be notified of the Open House schedule. You may also email me directly using form below.

View – 1250 Seymour – Exclusive Riverfront Listing
Photo Tour
– Map & Streetview (Extremely Private Lot)

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This one-of-a-kind property is the best location in Seymour, high side of the river with an amazing 180 ft of water frontage!

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Absolutely private & located at the end of a cul-de-sac. RARELY AVAILABLE; over 21,000 sq ft lot with both high bank and easy water level access including a mini sand beach.

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Hold or build your dream on this truly one a of a kind property. Not to be missed. Current house was rented for $4000/month.

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