As of May 16, 2016, the government now requires contracts prepared by real estate licensees to include a clause that sets restrictions on assignments. This new requirement for real estate contracts is in effect and affects both residential and commercial contracts. The following paragraph has been added to the contracts as seen below: 

Paragraph 20A (Residential) & Paragraph 40A (Commercial)
RESTRICTION ON ASSIGNMENT OF CONTRACT: The Buyer and the Seller agree that this Contract: (a) must not be assigned without the written consent of the Seller; and (b) the Seller is entitled to any profit resulting from an assignment of the Contract by the Buyer or any subsequent assignee.

"Real estate consumers now have a tool to help them decide whether they want their contracts to be assignable," says BC Real Estate Association (BCREA) President Deanna Horn. "Like many other provisions in the contract, buyers and sellers have the option of keeping the new paragraph, changing it or striking it out completely - but at least the conversation is more likely to happen now."

What exactly is an assignment? Basically, it is the practice of someone assigning their rights in a contract to someone else prior to the completion of the transaction. In layman's terms, someone can buy the right to step into the original buyer's shoes to complete the contract. While they are legal under common law and by secion 36 of the Law and Equity Act, there may be instances of parties utilizing assignments as a way to make a profit, especially in a busy real estate market. As such, the new revisions in place stipulate that the Seller is entitled to any profit resulting from the assignment

Commencing in June 2016, the provincial government will be collecting citizenship data of real estate owners through the Property Transfer Tax Form as per Mike de Jong, Minister of Finance.

"BCREA is pleased that the government will collect this information, in which there is obviously a lot of public interest," says Association CEO Robert Liang. "Strong policy is based on solid information, and we look forward to learning more about this aspect of the real estate market."

For all your real estate needs, contact Amalia Liapis by e-mail at amalia@wesellvancouver.ca or alternatively by phone at 604-618.7000.

Source: British Columbia Real Estate Association

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Please visit our Open House at 720 COMO LAKE AVE in Coquitlam.
Open House on Sunday, June 5, 2016 2:00PM - 4:00PM
EXQUISITELY finished custom-built home offering over 4200 sq ft of luxurious living space! Open floorplan with high-end finishings including engineered hardwood floors, crown moldings throughout, gourmet chef's kitchen, quartz counter-tops, beautiful solid wood cabinetry and 10 foot island with breakfast bar ready for your entertaining. Upstairs are 4 large bedrooms, each bedroom with its own ensuite. Master has a generous walk-in closet and 5 piece spa like ensuite. Unfinished basement is fully roughed in and ready to finish (design plan available). Walking distance to schools, shopping and Evergreen Line. Don't miss this gem! Open House Sunday June 5th 2-4pm.
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We've got a new listing in Coquitlam at 720 Como Lake Avenue. This exquisite quality-finished custom-built home is listed at $1,325,000. Contact Amalia Liapis at 604-618-7000 for more details!

Listing: http://www.wesellvancouver.ca/mylistings.h…/details-57627263

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I have listed a new property at 720 COMO LAKE AVE in Coquitlam.
EXQUISITELY finished custom-built home offering over 4200 sq ft of luxurious living space! Open floorplan with high-end finishings including engineered hardwood floors, crown moldings throughout, gourmet chef's kitchen, quartz counter-tops, beautiful solid wood cabinetry and 10 foot island with breakfast bar ready for your entertaining. Upstairs are 4 large bedrooms, each bedroom with its own ensuite. Master has a generous walk-in closet and 5 piece spa like ensuite. Walking distance to schools, shopping and Evergreen Line. Don't miss this gem!
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It's no surprise that the ongoing trend of housing demand outpacing supply has followed us into the month of May. Let's look back at April 2016 statistics to solidify our understanding of the housing market. 

There has been an increase of 30.3% residential unit sales when comparing April 2016 to April 2015 with a total of 12,969 units recorded. The total sales dollar volume was $9.64 Billion which is a 52.7% increase compared to the same period in time last year. Looking at the average MLS® residential price in BC of $743,640 shows a year-over-year increase of 17.2%. 

“Housing demand is exceptionally strong across the southern regions of the province,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. “Consumers appear to be particularly active in the Vancouver Island, the Fraser Valley and the Thompson/Okanagan regions.” “Strong employment growth is helping underpin consumer confidence,” added Muir. 

Despite what appears to be a period of higher than normal unemployment, there has been an additional 78,000 workers employed in BC in the first quarter of 2016 which is a 3.5% increase in comparison to the same period last year. Looking at the year-to-date statistics, the BC residential sales dollar volume is sitting at $31.2 Billion (64.3% increase), unit sales total 28,028 units (36.2% increase) and the average MLS® residential price is currently $761,860 (20.6% increase). Take a look below for a regional breakdown of MLS comparative data and the changes from April 2015 to April 2016. 

Source: British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA)

For all your real estate needs, contact Amalia Liapis by e-mail at amalia@wesellvancouver.ca or alternatively by phone at 604-618-7000.

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Join us in this three part series on Canada's financial perspective featuring blogs on the (1) Mortgage Rate Outlook (2) Economic Outlook and (3) Interest Rate Outlook

Interest Rate Outlook

The Agreement between the Bank of Canada and the Goverment of Canada for the Inflation-Control Target was renewed in 2016. The Bank of Canada has a mandate to keep an inflation-control target range of 1-3% with 2% as being the midpoint target over the medium-run. This target is the year-over-year increase in the total consumer price index (CPI) which is the most relevant cost of living measure for most Canadians. Keeping the inflation target in mind, the Bank of Canada has to maintain a delicate balance given the current state of the economy as well as inflation trending near its target

The low oil prices have taken a snowball effect as it continues to increase unemployment in energy producing provinces while simultaneously causing a weaker Canadian dollar which in turn makes the cost of imported goods more expensive. The BCREA expects a continued weak economic growth for the first quarter. However, with "the possibility of an effective fiscal stimulus, a stronger US economy and a stabilization of oil prices points to stronger growth ahead" (BCREA, 2016).

"After standing on the sidelines for years, the Bank unexpectedly cut its benchmark [interest] rate twice last year in an attempt to stimulate a Canadian economy waylaid by low oil prices" (CBC, 2016). Since then, there have been some signs of improvement. There is potential for the Bank of Canada to reduce rates once more in 2016 although the BCREA's expectation is that the Bank will remain on the sidelines throughout the year. The Bank of Canada has elected to keep its benchmark lending rate at 0.5%. In a broad sense, the Bank will reduce rates when the economy needs to be stimulated or alternatively, would increase rates when it needs to pump the brakes on inflation. 

Source: British Columbia Real Estate Association + CBC Business

Thanks for joining us in this three part series on the Canadian Financial Outlook. For all your real estate needs, contact Amalia Liapis at amalia@wesellvancouver.ca or alternatively, at 604-618-7000.

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Please visit our Open House at 407 1405 15TH AVE W in Vancouver.
Open House on Sunday, May 22, 2016 2:00PM - 4:00PM
Condo living with LARGE outdoor space, this is the South facing patio you've been looking for! Located in the heart of South Granville's shopping district & less than 10 minutes to downtown this beautifully renovated 1 bedroom condo has it all. Recently renovated kitchen with all new cabinets, stainless steel appliances, quartz counters, laminate flooring, completely renovated bathroom with walk in rain head shower. The living room has a cozy gas fireplace, recessed lighting & room for a separate dining area. Slide open the brand new sliding glass doors to your private patio. Mature trees & tropical plants fill the garden beds & your 400 sq ft patio has room for sun chairs, BBQ & outdoor dining area just in the time for summer! Open House May 21 & 22, Sat/Sun, 2-4pm
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Please visit our Open House at 407 1405 15TH AVE W in Vancouver.
Open House on Saturday, May 21, 2016 2:00PM - 4:00PM
Condo living with LARGE outdoor space, this is the South facing patio you've been looking for! Located in the heart of South Granville's shopping district & less than 10 minutes to downtown this beautifully renovated 1 bedroom condo has it all. Recently renovated kitchen with all new cabinets, stainless steel appliances, quartz counters, laminate flooring, completely renovated bathroom with walk in rain head shower. The living room has a cozy gas fireplace, recessed lighting & room for a separate dining area. Slide open the brand new sliding glass doors to your private patio. Mature trees & tropical plants fill the garden beds & your 400 sq ft patio has room for sun chairs, BBQ & outdoor dining area just in the time for summer! Open House May 21 & 22, Sat/Sun, 2-4pm
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Join us in this three part series on Canada's financial perspective featuring blogs on the (1) Mortgage Rate Outlook (2) Economic Outlook and (3) Interest Rate Outlook

Economic Outlook

Looking back at 2015, the first half of the year saw negative growth but looking at the big picture reveals a registered economic growth of 1.2%. Multiple factors attributing to the slow economic growth in 2015 has trickled into 2016 as well such as the low oil prices and the related adverse effects on income and job growth. With the newly elected federal government in place, there is an effort to utilizing old-fashioned fiscal policy in order to boost economic growth.

The range for the estimate of the fiscal multiplier for Canada ranges from 0.5 to 1.5. The fiscal multiplier is a ratio that shows the effect of government spending on economic activity. However, the level of impact of fiscal policy is highly interdependent on the state of the economy. BCREA's current forecast for the Canadian economy is for economic growth of 1.6% in 2016 and 2.5% in the following year, taking into account the impact of expansionary fiscal policy. 

Source: British Columbia Real Estate Association

Stay tuned for the last part of the blog series where we'll dive into the Interest Rate Outlook. For all your real estate needs, contact Amalia Liapis at amalia@wesellvancouver.ca or alternatively, at 604-618-7000.

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Come join us this weekend on Saturday May 21st and Sunday May 22nd between 2-4pm for an open house in South Granville. For additional information on this property, contact us at amalia@wesellvancouver.ca or alternatively at 604-618-7000

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I have listed a new property at 407 1405 15TH AVE W in Vancouver.
Condo living with LARGE outdoor space, this is the South facing patio you've been looking for! Located in the heart of South Granville's shopping district & less than 10 minutes to downtown this beautifully renovated 1 bedroom condo has it all. Recently renovated kitchen with all new cabinets, stainless steel appliances, quartz counters, laminate flooring, completely renovated bathroom with walk in rain head shower. The living room has a cozy gas fireplace, recessed lighting & room for a separate dining area. Slide open the brand new sliding glass doors to your private patio. Mature trees & tropical plants fill the garden beds & your 400 sq ft patio has room for sun chairs, BBQ & outdoor dining area just in the time for summer!
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Grab a hold of this opportunity to invest in the revitalization of Chinatown. We have 4 great commercial units left with prices to match. Contact Amalia Liapis at 604-618-7000 or Kane Ryan at 778-223-5961 for more details!

 
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Join us in this three part series on Canada's financial perspective featuring blogs on the (1) Mortgage Rate Outlook (2) Economic Outlook and (3) Interest Rate Outlook

Mortgage Rate Outlook

The financial markets have seen tremendous volatility thus far with record low oil prices with consumers and investors being more risk averse as a result. This risk aversion has overwhelmed any potential pressure on yields from bonds that may have arisen due to the US Federal Reserve tightening the monetary policy. In Q1 of 2016, Canadian bond yields dropped to a low of 0.48% but have bounced back to 0.8%. Bond yields may continue to see a rise due to the anticipation of economic growth towards year end. 

Despite the volatility in the financial market, there is a silver lining for home buyers as it is keeping the mortgage rates low for the time being. Take a look below at the forecasts for both 2016 and 2017. The one-year mortgage rates are seeing a slight increase towards Q4, however, the five-year rates are expected to be stabilized at 4.64% for the entirety of 2016 which is good news for home buyers! 

Note: Rates are based on an average of weekly rates
Source: British Columbia Real Estate Association


Source: British Columbia Real Estate Association


Stay tuned for the next part of the blog series where we'll dive into the Economic Outlook. For all your real estate needs, contact Amalia Liapis at amalia@wesellvancouver.ca or alternatively, at 604-618-7000.

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Want to be a part of the gentrification within Vancouver's evolving Chinatown? We only have 4 more brand new concrete and glass units available for sale. Contact us today for more details!

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I have sold a property at 2603 1011 CORDOVA ST W in VANCOUVER.

SKY LOFT at Fairmont Pacific Rim -- is a unique alchemy of glamour, celebration, attraction, & intimacy, in the sky. ONLY 4 LOFTs in the building. Its 17'5 ceiling, double-height space & floor-to-ceiling windows open onto magnificent views of ocean, northshore mountains, national landmarks: Canada Place & the Marine Building, & glittering city lights of downtown Van. Featuring exquisitely finished kitchen, luxurious bathrooms, & a 221 sf. patio on main level & a balcony extending from the master bdrm. Be pampered w/ Fairmont's full hotel services. More than a home that combines all the luxuries & comfort; it is your ultimate hideaway & a stage for elegant entertaining w/ beautiful natural scenery & the whole city as a backdrop.

-Listing courtesy of Macdonald Realty Ltd. (Van)

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