The Van Realty Real Estate Blog

 

The top three stressors in life are: (1) Death of a loved one; (2) Divorce; and (3) Moving. Buying a home can be bundled into the likes of Moving and can be difficult without the help and support of professionals. Now throw in the mix of buying a home for the first time... feeling overwhelmed would be an understatement.

We stumbled across this First-Time Buyer's Workbook (published by Canada Guaranty) and wanted to share it with all of our blog readers. We're loving the simplicity of the guide but the best part? It's interactive and has worksheets that help you crunch the numbers. Starting on page eight (8), you'll find the following worksheets: 

  1. Calculate Personal Finances
  2. Calculate Your Down Payment
  3. Plan for the Upfront
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For those new to our blog: we had a previous blog post about the effects of new lending rules and the stress test that came into effect January 1st. As a result, the market is officially slowing down and we predict it will continue to stay this way for the next little while (more on these stats in a separate post later).

A slowing market means the banks will have to "up" their strategy on getting new customers and retaining current customers. We have seen this with BMO (Bank of Montreal) earlier in May, which discounted its variable mortgage rate to 2.45 per cent until the end of the month. TD has now followed suit as competition rises! TD is also lowering its five-year variable rate to 2.45 per cent (1.15 per cent lower than the TD Mortgage Prime

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After a long and drab winter, it seems that the weather in Vancouver is finally looking up! May long weekend will be a great time to go out and enjoy some of that sunshine. Here are just some suggestions for the upcoming weekend. 

 

VANCOUVER ISLAND

BC Ferries will be adding 91 sailings to its most popular routes between Vancouver and Vancouver Island. There are some great camp sites - there still may be some availability or stay on the lookout for cancellations - and a ton of outdoor adventures. We found this cool surf and paddleboard "touring" in Tofino that looks like a lot of fun: https://tofinopaddle.com/products/tofino-paddleboarding-long-weekend/   The Island is one of our favourite places to visit. There's so much to do outdoors…
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Completely and beautifully renovated 2 bedroom 1.5 bath, located on a quieter strip of Willingdon Avenue at Metrotown. Only steps away from the convenience of Metrotown and bus hub, Central Park and Cyrstal Mall. You'll love the quality workmanship of this renovation! Come see it at the First Open: Saturday, May 5 from 2:00 to 4:00pm.

 


Quick Facts

MLS® #R2261873 Price: $587,000 Bedrooms: 2 Bathrooms: 2 Full Baths: 1 Square Footage: 896 Year Built: 1976 Style: Apartment


Come check out this rare gem at Metrotown. We'd be more than happy to answer any questions you have about this property and can arrange for you to see it. You can view the complete listing on our website, complete with more pictures,…
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Only steps away from the quaint and beautiful Steveston Village in Richmond, you'll love the convenient access to walking trails and the outdoors. This 3 bed, 2.5 bath heritage-style townhouse has quality furnishings throughout, including a gourmet kitchen. It's also in top-rated McMath Secondary School catchment. 






Quick Facts

MLS® #R2252921 Price: $959,000 Bedrooms: 3 Bathrooms: 3 Full Baths: 2 Square Footage: 1,320 Year Built: 2009 Style: 3 Storey Townhouse


Come check out this Steveston gem. We'd be more than happy to answer any questions you have about this property and can arrange for you to see it. You can view the complete listing on our website, complete with more pictures,…
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    There were 4770 detached homes listed for sale in the Greater Vancouver area last month (February) and only 13% (621 homes) sold! The market seems to be entering buyers' territory, giving buyers a chance to buy their dream home. But what does this mean for sellers? What if you need to sell your home right away? You very likely loved your home and want to see it do well. To ensure a transaction and maximize your profit from the sale, here are a few pointers for today's Vancouver market.   

PRICING IS EVERYTHING

The most common pitfall of a home lingering on the market is overpricing. It's important to price your home just right - there's a fine line between undervaluing your home and pricing it above buyers' expectations. Find out from…
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Multiple Offers on Condominiums and Townhouses the "New Norm"

Many condos jumped 25% or more year-over-year in 2017 and that strength is continuing in early 2018. “Demand has been increasing for months and supply is not keeping pace. This dynamic is causing prices to increase and making multiple offer scenarios the norm," says Jill Oudil, Real Estate Board of Great Vancouver (REBGV) president. What does this mean for first-time home buyers or those who are trying to get into the market? 

Knowledge

Know exactly how much you can afford or how high you can go; this includes being pre-approved for a mortgage so it shows the seller you are serious about the offer you are making. Research the market and know exactly what is within your budget.

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Declaration Due By February 2, 2018 March 5, 2018 

Only 1 in 10 homeowners in the City of Vancouver submitted their declaration form so the city has decided to extend the deadline for one month. If you live in the City of Vancouver, have you submitted your Empty Homes Declaration Form yet? We've provided the link below for quick reference on how to submit the form. Even if your home is occupied or is your primary residence, you are still required to submit the declaration. Otherwise, the city will assume that your home is empty. Submit before the new deadline! 

Why and How? 

According to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, the vacancy rate in Vancouver remains below 1% (0.9%) as of a report that was released on November 28, 2017.

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Photo Sources: 1001Gardens

We really enjoy checking out the Home + Garden Show each year - we love interior design but we also love tending to our garden. We had quite the garden of produce last year; here's to hoping it will be another plentiful season this year!
Don't know what to check out when you go? We're excited to see the "Feature Gardens" and "Tiny Home Village" exhibits. The Feature Gardens exhibit is going to focus on gardens big and small, so regardless of whether you live in a home or in an apartment, you'll be able to gather some great ideas. 

Dates, Times, Location

Wednesday, February 21 from 4pm to 9pm
Thursday, February 22 from 12pm to 9pm
Friday, February 23 from 12pm to 9pm 
Saturday, February 24 from 10am to 9pm
Sunday,

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Goodbye 2017

Let's just dive right into it! 2017 was like sailing uncharted waters. 2015 and 2016 had some of the busiest activity we've seen in the Vancouver market since we've been in the real estate business but as soon as 2017 came around, it was clear that the tides had turned and things were not going to be as easy. The Greater Vancouver Real Estate Board (www.rebgv.org) - link to the article below - reported that there was a 9.9% decrease in activity compared to 2016 and a 15% decrease in activity compared to 2015. We've mentioned in a previous post that there were a few contributing factors to this decrease in 2017: (1) surprise interest rate early in the year; (2) continued drop in offshore money/investment; (3) bank tightening and

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