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Posts tagged as Lower Mainland

Justin Trudeau sells housing plan in visit to Metro Vancouver’s hot real estate market

Housing a major issue for many, particularly young people trying to get into the real-estate market at a time when prices are soaring in some major.In its budget last week the government introduced measures that would allow Ottawa to pick up a portion of new homebuyers’ mortgage costs and it increased the amount they can borrow from their retirement savings for a down payment.

Housing has emerged as a major issue for many Canadians, especially young people who are trying to get into the real-estate market at a time when prices are soaring in some major cities.During a visit to Maple Ridge, Trudeau said the budget contains measures to help first-time buyers by allowing them to withdraw $35,000 from their RRSPs, up from $25,000, to help lower their borrowing costs.It also brings in a means-tested incentive that would see the government pick up part of the costs of the mortgages of those eligible for the program to lower their monthly payments.DARRYL DYCK /THE CANADIAN PRESST rudeau said housing is also a concern for parents who are worried their adult children won’t be able to live in the neighborhoods where they grew up.

Owning a house is a big achievement. It’s where you raise a family and set down roots.But far too many young people are worried that they won’t be able to reach that dream. Housing prices in the Lower Mainland are some of the highest in the country and rising.Trudeau said the government has also tried to spur new building and keep prices from rising through its national housing strategy to help increase supply.We just can’t treat the symptoms of sky-high housing prices, he added.
We have to deal with the causes as well. When there aren’t enough properties on the market, more people are competing for the same places, which forces the costs up for buyers and renters.

Last Tuesday’s budget also included $10 billion more for a program to fund the construction of new rental units the third time the Liberals have expanded the program, which aims to create 42,500 units over 10 years and now carries a $50-billion price tag.As well, Trudeau said Ottawa is helping the Canada Revenue Agency go after tax fraud and money laundering, which have also been blamed for driving up housing prices in B.C.Trudeau later visited Vancouver Island where a by election has been set for May 6 in the riding of Nanaimo-Ladysmith.

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Residential real estate foreclosures in Metro and Fraser Valley rising

Because residential real estate prices have only dropped further since last summer and real-time information about recent transactions in March 2019
With recent home sales in the Lower Mainland showing some dramatic price declines, there has been an uptick in foreclosures as owners are unable to make mortgage payments.

In the past decade, there have been few foreclosures because rising real estate values and low interest rates allowed owners to easily refinance or sell to get out of a bind.But as prices have turned, there has been a modest increase in the number of court-ordered residential real estate sales in Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley, starting late last year, according to several agents.Yes, there’s definitely more, said Vancouver realtor Russ Macnab. For the last three or four years, on average, there have been about 20 to 30 (court-ordered sale) properties listed at any time across Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley.There were lots of people looking at them and interested in them, but fewer of them (available) because prices were rising.Now, it’s more like about 50 to 70 or 100, said Macnab.

There’s not a boom of them, not all of them at once, but there’s more of a flow.There was an increase in court-ordered sales in Burnaby and Vancouver starting last November, said Simon Clayton, who has sold over 20 foreclosed properties since 2012.Quite a number started popping up as people can no longer rely on gained equity to solve the problem (of not being able to make mortgage payments), said Clayton.Realtor Gary Voigt described the current ratio of court-ordered sales compared to total listings on the MLS as a sliver.
He said out of the 8,406 total listings for detached homes in Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley, 42 are court-ordered sales. For attached homes, the number is 26 out of 9,466.Put together, the total is 68.It can take months to half a year from the time an owner first misses payments to when a lender applies to court to recoup money, said North Vancouver realtor Aaron Rossetti.“It’s a trailing indicator.”For this reason, because prices have only been dropping since last summer and information about recent transactions shows sharper declines, especially in more expensive areas, the number of foreclosures could gather pace.

It’s very telling of the market, said Vancouver realtor Ian Watt, who started tracking the number of past court-ordered sales (not listings) to see how they correlate to price trends. In 2010, there were 752 court-ordered sales of both detached and attached homes, in Metro Vancouver.The number held steady until 2015 when there was a drop to 605. As real estate prices surged in 2016, they dropped further to 327, and then to 214 in 2017, and 195 in 2018.In the first months of this year (there’s not much activity in January, so really it’s February and March, said Watt), there have been 22 houses and four condos for a total of 26 court-ordered sales. Watt, who believes more owners are overextended in this market than in the prior downturn after 2009, predicts that next year, the number of these sales could be back up to 550.

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Commercial real estate remains hot commodity in Greater Victoria

Value for money and a strong return on investment will continue to drive activity in Greater Victoria’s commercial real estate market, according to a new.
The commercial real estate firm said there is still strong demand for good office space from the provincial government and the private sector, while investors and developers see the region as a relatively good bargain.
Trending StoriesSchools will require kids’ immunization status by fall, B.C.health minister saysWilson-Raybould says she was pushed, got veiled threats on SNC-Lavalin Victoria council mulls mid-block crosswalk on Blanshard StreetMayor, councillors in Sooke vote for 50% pay raise “We still see a tremendous appetite for investment product in Greater Victoria and I think the same can be said for development properties,” said Ross Marshall, vice-president with CBRE Victoria. “Investors and developers see value in Victoria [because] it didn’t get over-inflated like Vancouver.” Marshall said that’s what he’s been hearing from both groups, who, in some cases, have been looking at moving money from other markets into the capital region to add to their property portfolios. He said they see Victoria as a safe and secure market.“And our yields are higher than Vancouver, and everyone is chasing yield, so we are a pretty attractive place,” Marshall said, noting strong demand from tenants has driven up rental rates across property classes. According to Colliers International, downtown Victoria office vacancy was at 6.4 per cent overall in the fourth quarter of 2018, down from 7.2 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2017.
That drop came despite the addition of 280,000 square feet of new office space to the mix. Marshall said there was a flight to quality, with professional firms and government moving to class A space, freeing up class B and C space in the region, with some of that taken up by the growing high-tech sector.Marshall said given the region’s strong fundamentals — low unemployment and a strong, diverse economy — there’s no reason to expect developers and investors to back away from the region anytime soon. Marshall said he has fielded inquiries from the Lower Mainland, across Canada and the U.S. expressing interest in some of the larger properties available in the region.“They have a lot of confidence in the fundamentals evident in Greater Victoria,” said Marshall, who sees demand outstripping supply for the next couple of years. “The reality is a lot of these groups are looking for vehicles to invest in and the West Coast and, in particular, Vancouver Island, [is] shining.
” One of his biggest challenges has been to find large enough properties to suit some of the larger investor groups. But even in rosy conditions, the cost of construction, increased development fees, approval delays and other factors could affect the appetite for development in the downtown core.
Marshall said in some cases, it has spurred developers to explore other municipalities that might be more keen on development. The report also noted that Victoria’s industrial market is experiencing historically low availability, while land constraints have led to upward pressure and record-high lease rates.

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