Should I Build Or Should I Buy A Home?

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If you are in the market for a new home, you may have considered building from scratch instead of buying a resale home. While the decision isn’t always simple or obvious, each option has its pros and cons. Building a new home – advantages Control over details You can personalize the details of your home […]

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“Virtual Staging” Can Be Misleading. Make Sure You Are Aware Of This

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We are living in a sophisticated digital era where real estate photo enhancement is being done on a massive scale. There is also sophisticated virtual staging software available, where one can completely transform the makeup of a listing in a very short period of time. Both factors have helped transform the home staging concept. Consider […]

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REGBV Report April 2019 – The Trend of Reduced Demand And Increased Supply Still Prevails In The Market.

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The latest Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REGBV) report on the April 2019 real estate market, shows that buyers are reluctant to get into the market and sellers are being forced to be creative. Product that is staying on the market for more than a month is seeing discounts that were unheard of 2 […]

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Fixed Rate Mortgages Are Now More Sought After Than Variable Rate Mortgages

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According to most mortgage brokers today, fixed rate mortgages are outnumbering variable rate mortgages. Until a few years ago, variable rate mortgages were the savvy homeowner’s go to choice, where the homeowner typically paid a lower interest rate for a variable rate compared with a fixed rate, and the borrowing costs would adjust when the […]

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2019 Water Restrictions Back In Effect For Metro Vancouver

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Yes. It’s that time of the year again. Metro Vancouver’s 2019 annual lawn watering regulations came into effect recently. In case we get a long, hot and dry summer, these restrictions will ensure that our drinking water supply will be adequate to see us through this period. We are currently in Stage One of Metro’s […]

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REBGV Market Update For March 2019 – Potential Homebuyers Sidelined For The Short-Term.

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The highlight of the March 2019 market report released by the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV), showed that prospective buyers remain on the sidelines in March. “Housing demand today isn’t aligning with our growing economy and low unemployment rates. The market trends we’re seeing are largely policy induced,” Ashley Smith, REBGV president said. […]

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How To Protect Yourself From Mortgage Fraud As Home Buying Season Dawns Upon Us

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Winter is over, the snow is beginning to melt, temperatures are getting warmer and “for sale” signs will begin springing up in various neighborhoods. This is the signal for home buying season. If you are planning on buying a home, here’s how you can avoid being a victim of mortgage fraud and protect yourself and […]

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The 2019 Federal Budget – Making Home Ownership More Possible.

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The 2019 Budget that the Liberal government has recently put forth allows more middle income Canadians fulfill their homeownership dream, by helping them lower their mortgage costs. Specifically, it is implementing 3 measures: CMHC First-Time Home Buyer Incentive Eligible buyers will be offered a 10-per-cent, shared equity mortgage for a new home or five per […]

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The Cost Of Selling Your Home Without A Real Estate Agent – Is It Worth It?

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Using a real estate agent to sell your home will cost you money. After all, you are using a trained professional who has taken a lengthy course and is licensed. But everyone likes to save money, and if you can save thousands of dollars by hiring your own photographer and selling it online, how difficult […]

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REBGV Market Update February 2019 – Increased Supply From Home Sellers And Below Average Demand From Home Buyers

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The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) released its February 2019 housing report, and it clearly showed that homebuyers appear to be the ones with power in the current market. Phil Moore, the President of the REBGV said “For much of the past four years, we’ve been in a sellers’ market. Conditions have shifted […]

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REBGV market Update For January 2019 – Fewer Deals And Higher Inventory

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The January 2019 stats released by the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) confirmed a continuation of the past few months, whereby home listings continued to increase and homebuyer activity continued to remain below historical averages. “Realtors are seeing more traffic at open houses compared to recent months, however, buyers are choosing to remain […]

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Luxury Home Sales And Prices Have Plummeted. Is It Time To Buy?

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The Foreign buyers tax, Mortgage stress test and incremental mortgage hikes have severely impacted the Vancouver real estate market in the past 2 years. The luxury home market has been hit the hardest:  In 2017 there were 4,282 homes that sold over $1 million – in 2018 only 3,151 units were sold – a drop […]

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How To Maintain Your Home During The Harsh Winter Weather

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A cold winter can be especially hard on a house. Snow and ice can wreak havoc on your property if not dealt with in a proper manner.  A bit of preventative maintenance can ensure that you will not have the problems of frozen pipes, ice dams and other winter woes. Prevent cold air form getting […]

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Why Is Title Insurance So Important?

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When you purchase a home, the title of the property passes on to you the new homeowner.  Your property’s title provides the legal proof that you are the rightful owner. So when you purchase title insurance, you are protected against a number of risks and challenges that are related to the title of your home. […]

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Here Are Some Important Facts To Know About The Principal Residence Exemption When You Sell Your Home.

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  If you sell your home and it is designated as your principal residence, then you have the ability to claim the principal residence exemption (PRE) on the sale. The PRE is probably one of the most valuable tax breaks available to Canadian homeowners, as it provides them with an exemption from tax on the […]

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Carbon Monoxide Leaks – Are You Adequately Informed And Protected Against This Fatal Gas?

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  It’s an odourless, colorless and potential deadly gas that is a byproduct of incomplete combustion – anything that burns a fuel emits carbon monoxide or CO. This deadly gas can escape from a furnace or boiler malfunction, a gas fireplace, or any appliance that burns a fuel. Someone who is asleep can die from carbon […]

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5 Great Reasons Why Maintaining Your Roof Is So Important.

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Your roof is one of the largest parts of your house and the most vulnerable, as it is exposed to weather hazards and other elements that contribute to its damage and deterioration. If it is neglected, its lifespan can be dramatically shortened and this can be very expensive for you the homeowner. By doing regular […]

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REBGV Market Update For December 2018 – Buyers In Control

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The December 2018 market report released by the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) has displayed the same trends that have been prevalent over the past few months. In his end of year comments about the Greater Vancouver real estate market, Phil Moore, REBGV president said. “This past year has been a transition period […]

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BC Government Launches New Condo Registry To Prevent Condo Flippers From Evading Taxes.

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Keeping in line with one of its election pledges to create transparency and prevent tax evasion in BC’s real estate industry, the BC government recently launched the “Condo and Strata Assignment Integrity Registrar”, which will scrutinize condo sales more closely. Beginning January 1, 2019, developers who sell strata lots in development properties are required to: […]

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REBGV Market Update For October 2018 – Buyers Have More Selection and Sellers Face Stiffer Competition

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The underlying theme of the October 2018 market report released by the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV), was that home sales remained below long-term historical averages “The supply of homes for sale today is beginning to return to levels that we haven’t seen in our market in about four years,” Phil Moore, REBGV […]

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How To Be A Responsible Short Term Rental Operator

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A short-term rental is a stay in your principal residence for less than 30 days where you receive mail. If the property is a rental, then the strata bylaws must allow short-term rentals. If the property is a rental, then the landlord’s permission must be obtained. A business license must be obtained if you want […]

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Real Tips On How To Save Money On Your Energy Bills This Winter

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Nowadays, the price of pretty much everything is going up, including energy. While the cost of heating your home may be steadily rising, you are in a position to control how much energy you use, thereby reducing the pain in your wallet. Below are some tips to help reduce your costs while improving the comfort […]

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Can Home Sellers Back Out Of A Deal To Sell Their Home?

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Purchasing and selling a home is a very emotional process. Normally one hears of buyers backing out of real estate contracts, but there are situations when the seller can and will back out of a sale. Why would a seller back out? A Lack of a suitable home to move into. This arises when the […]

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REBGV Market Update For August 2018 – Housing Market Calmer.

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All housing types are continuing to see reduced demand as was made clear in the August 2018 market report released by the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV). August 2018 sales were 25% below the 10 year August sales average. “Home buyers have been less active in recent months and we’re beginning to see […]

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If You Are Planning To Build A New Home, Here Are Some Important Tips You Cannot Ignore

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It may seem a daunting task, but building a new home can be a rewarding experience.  You can truly make it your own: you get to choose colors, cabinets, flooring and fixtures without having to deal with the design choices or shortcuts made by previous owners. But building a new home can be very stressful […]

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Good News For The Self Employed – Buying A Home Will Be Much Easier

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Self-Employed individuals have had a harder time qualifying for a mortgage as their incomes may vary or be less predictable. This will soon change as from October 1 2018, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) will make changes that will make it easier for the self employed to secure a mortgage. The self employed make […]

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Should I Sell Or Should I Renovate? – Important Points To Consider

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You have been in your present home for a number of years, the family is growing and you have been thinking about moving into a home that fits your needs.  You want a new home but you love your neighbours, your yard, the schools are close by, the bus stops 15 feet from your entrance,……these […]

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Corporate Secrecy On Landownership In BC May Soon Be Gone

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In 2001 when Gordon Campbell became premier of this province, he amended the Business Corporations Act, by declaring a law (Section 49) that prevented the media from visiting a corporate registered records office to find out who owns the company. This was a thorny issue with Transparency International Canada, which has been saying all along, […]

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REBGV Market Update For June 2018 – Supply Of Homes For Sale Reached A 3 Year High

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The highlight of the June 2018 market report released by the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV), showed that home sales dipped below long term historic averages, and supply reached a 3 year high. “Buyers are less active today. This is allowing the supply of homes for sale to accumulate to levels we haven’t […]

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How US President Trump’s Steel Tariffs Can Have Dire Consequences For The Canadian Construction Industry.

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The temporary reprieve we wrote about in March was just that – a temporary reprieve. (read our blog “The Steel Tariffs: We Have A Temporary Reprieve, But Will Trump’s Proposed Tariffs Affect Canadian Real Estate?” ) Last month the unthinkable did happen when US President Donald Trump slapped tariffs on some $20 billion worth of Canadian […]

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Here’s What You Need To Know About The New Real Estate Rules Recently Rolled Out.

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On June 15, the BCREA rolled out new rules aimed at better protecting both home buyers and sellers. The real estate board mandated an independent advisory group in June 2016 to look at market conduct in view of the white-hot market and all the scandals and shady dealings that were affecting consumers at the time. […]

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REBGV Market Update For May 2018 – Housing Inventory Increased As Supply Accumulated.

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The May 2018 market report released by the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) noted that reduced demand allowed the housing supply to accumulate across Metro Vancouver. “With fewer homes selling today compared to recent years, the number of homes available for sale is rising,” Phil Moore, REBGV president said. “The selection of homes […]

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Are Vancouver’s Priciest Homes Becoming More Affordable?

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It was only 2 years ago when Vancouver’s luxury real estate market was one of the best performing in the world.  Today, according to the Knight Frank Global Cities Index, Vancouver sits as the second worst performer over a 6-month period to March 2018. The April benchmark price for a single family home in East […]

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Latest BC Budget Takes Shots At Cooling The Red Hot Real Estate Market.

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The long awaited budget by the new NDP government has lived up to its promise by aggressively addressing BC’s urban real estate market.  This budget is aimed at cooling speculation, dropping house prices and taxing wealthy offshore buyers. However, there is no way to see how these measures will affect the market in the long […]

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REBGV Market Report For January 2018 – Condos and Townhomes Were Still In Demand. Detached Homes Lacked Buyers.

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The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) report for January 2018 was released early this month. Townhomes and condos continued to dominate the real estate market  – a trend that has carried forward from 2017. Detached homes, on the other hand, faced less competition. “Demand remains elevated and listings scarce in the attached and […]

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The Smart Homes Revolution: You Cannot Ignore It.

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The Smart Homes Revolution: You Cannot Ignore It. In today’s homes, Smart Home technology is becoming more and more ubiquitous and difficult to avoid. It encompasses things like thermostats, lighting, video etc.; just about everything at home can be connected to a smart device making our lives easier. For example, the Smart Home revolution has […]

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REBGV Market Update For December 2017 – Condo and Townhome Sales Continued to Dominate.

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The December 2017 Real Estate Board Of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) market report showed that the prevailing trend of the last few months, continued in December. Home Sales December sales of detached, attached and apartment properties totaled 2,016, a 17.6% increase from December 2016 and a 27.9% decrease from the previous month. December sales were 7.5% […]

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Will The “Locals First” Policy Work At Reducing Vancouver Condo Prices?

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Vancouver’s on going escalating real estate prices and low availability have been a contentious issue with local residents. In October 2017, Mayor Gregor Robertson introduced a controversial motion in Council  – “Locals first “ condo pre-sale policy –  aimed at preventing real estate developers from offering out of province buyers first chance at condo presales […]

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New Mortgage Rules – Important Information For Homebuyers, Especially First-Time Homebuyers.

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Beginning on January 1st 2018, the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OFSI) introduced 3 new rules that hit first time homebuyers and those thinking of refinancing their homes, the hardest. New minimum qualification rate or “stress test” All prospective homebuyers, even those with a down payment of over 20% have to pass this […]

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If You Own A Home With An Illegal Secondary Suite, Here’s Why You Should Get It Legalized.

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With home prices in the Lower Mainland reaching dizzying heights, many homeowners are looking at ways of offsetting the high mortgage costs. So it should come to no surprise that secondary suites have become a widespread practice, especially with the incredibly low rental vacancy rate. But a large proportion of homes with secondary suites in […]

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Here’s A Summary of Vancouver’s New Housing Strategy For The Next 10 Years

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Vancouver is ranked as one the most unaffordable cities in the world in terms of owning a home and has a vacancy rate for rental units of under 1%. After a year of studies and consultations, The City of Vancouver is proposing sweeping changes in a new 10-year housing strategy just released. It’s a plan […]

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Important Tips On How To Protect Your Garden From Frost During This Cold Weather

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The freezing weather we are currently experiencing can harm or kill plants and damage crops. The cold weather especially frost, causes the water in the plant cells to freeze, damaging the cell wall. Plants most vulnerable to frost are: Spring blooming shrubs and trees such as cherry, azalea, and rhododendron Houseplants and tropicals Tender bulbs […]

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REBGV Market Update For November 2017 – We Are Continuing To Experience Above-Average Demand And Below-Average Supply

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The latest Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REGBV) report on the November 2017 real estate market, showed modest home listing changes and steady demand. Jill Oudil, the current REGBV President remarked, “ We’re seeing steady demand in today’s market. Home buyer activity is operating above our long-term averages, particularly in our townhome and condominium […]

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BCREA – BC Housing Market Will Continue To Cool In 2018, But Prices Will Not Soften

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In the release of its 2017 Fourth Quarter Housing Forecast, the British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) is showing an expected 8.8% decrease in residential prices across the Province this year, and a further 10.4% decline next year. The average MLS residential price in BC is forecast to increase 3.1% to $712,300 this year, and […]

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Vancouver Approves New Bylaws To Regulate Short-term Rentals Such As Airbnb.

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On November 14, Vancouver City Council voted 7-4 to approve controversial short-term rental regulations. Starting April 1st 2018, owners and renters will only be allowed to rent out their principal residence, for a period of less than 30 days at a time. Each applicant will have to pay a one-time activation fee of $54, a […]

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REGBV Market Update For October 2017 – We Continued To Be In Seller Market Territory.

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Once again the majority of the sales for October were concentrated in the townhouse and condominium market.  Last month’s sales were 15% above the 10 year October Sales average. According to the REGBC president, “Conditions (in October) continue to vary significantly based on property type. The detached home market is well supplied with homes for […]

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Three Principal Reasons Why The Condo Market Is So Hot in Vancouver

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The market for detached homes may have cooled when compared to last year, but on the other hand, Vancouver’s condominium market has seen double-digit percentage increases from last year. What is responsible for this year’s super hot condo market? A perfect storm comprising of three competing sectors: First Time Buyers Normally, a condo is what […]

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A Year After the Foreign Home Buyers Tax – It’s a Great Time To Buy A Luxury Home.

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It’s been just over 1 year since the Provincial government introduced the 15% foreign homebuyers tax to cool the then ultra hot Vancouver real estate market. Since the implementation of the tax in August 2016, Metro Vancouver sales have dropped 44%, and the 3 most popular markets for foreign buyers – West Vancouver, Richmond and […]

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