In the News

BC’s New Property Registry 2019: A good idea?

* this is a brief commentary on the topic of BC’s newly proposed property registry. For more information, contact our office. How does owning a condo in the name of my company raise the risk that the owner is committing fraud, laundering money or evading taxes? As usual these unsubstantiated assumptions are made by the government and then blindly repeated by the reporter without question. Rather than creating a whole… Read More »BC’s New Property Registry 2019: A good idea?

The Speculation and Vacancy Tax – What the government isn’t saying

On November 27, 2018, the speculation tax was passed in B.C. to, in the government’s words “target speculators who own residences in B.C. but don’t pay taxes here, turn empty homes into good housing for people, and raise revenue that will directly support affordable housing.” The pitch to the public was that this tax would aid in tackling the housing crises in major urban centers in British Columbia and make… Read More »The Speculation and Vacancy Tax – What the government isn’t saying

Canada’s first pre-sale register to crack down on flipping

The BC government is announcing the creation what appears to be yet another make work project to create needless government jobs (doubtless for NDP supporters). It’s called “The Condo and Strata Assignment Integrity Register.” Even the name is odd.  It implies that there is a difference between condos and stratas. However, in common parlance, a condo is a strata and vice versa. Furthermore the BC Condominium Property Act (which used… Read More »Canada’s first pre-sale register to crack down on flipping

5 Ways the Government could Help with Housing Affordability in Vancouver BC

This article suggests 5 things that the government could do to help housing affordability. 1.     Longer amortizations are a good idea.  They help buyers get into the market.  All mortgages have prepayment options so if the buyer’s fortunes improve he or she can shorten the amortization down the road. 2.     Scrap the mortgage stress test. Historical mortgage default rates in Canada for the last 50 years are about .3% and… Read More »5 Ways the Government could Help with Housing Affordability in Vancouver BC

Why are Metro Vancouver housing prices falling? When will this trend end?

Those are the $64,000 questions which occupy the top of the charts these days. For the past 10 years foreign money has poured in to Canada, particularly Vancouver and the Lower Mainland destabilizing real estate prices and uncoupling them from local incomes. Both the BC and federal governments turned a blind eye to this phenomenon for the better part of the decade and in fact, encouraged it as “foreign investment.”… Read More »Why are Metro Vancouver housing prices falling? When will this trend end?
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[Vancouver Real Estate]: How to lie with Statistics

“Foreign capital accounted for only 2.92% of Metro Vancouver real estate sales over 11 months” was the recent headline in the Georgia Straight earlier this month. As the perennial classic book by Darrell Huff points out, there are many ways to deceive with statistics, including how they are presented. These foreign capital statistics are misleading, as they relate only to the period between January and November of 2018 – about 7 months… Read More »[Vancouver Real Estate]: How to lie with Statistics
Vancouver reale state prices 2019

Is the sky falling? Vancouver Real Estate Prices in 2019

“Uncharted Waters” reads the front page of the Vancouver Sun last weekend, with the comment that “insiders” say that there are signs that is a full blown market correction looming! (…followed by the teaser, “But really, who knows?) This does not add much to what we already know. With 20/20 hindsight, it points out that the government-mandated mortgage stress test, combined with several interest rate hikes and the implementation of… Read More »Is the sky falling? Vancouver Real Estate Prices in 2019

Real Estate Advice: A dozen things NOT TO DO before you buy a home!

The market has slowed down so you have some breathing space to shop for a home without a half a dozen people waiting behind you to offer over the asking price with no due diligence conditions. However, the government has recently imposed “stress tests” for mortgage approval thereby making it more difficult to qualify for a mortgage. In addition, some “experts” are predicting that prices will soften in the foreseeable… Read More »Real Estate Advice: A dozen things NOT TO DO before you buy a home!
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Ask a Vancouver real estate lawyer: is Canada’s real estate market ACTUALLY about to crash?

Is Canada’s real estate market at extreme risk or out of danger? Doug Porter, the chief economist at BMO opines in the above article that the worst is behind us and the “soft landing” that was hoped for has in fact materialized. Forecasting and analytics company, Oxford Economics Group on the other hand still ranks Canada as the third riskiest real estate market in the world (“Our set of cross-country… Read More »Ask a Vancouver real estate lawyer: is Canada’s real estate market ACTUALLY about to crash?