Have you gotten your 2020 Property Assessment yet? Values down across Metro Vancouver

Within this week,  owners of more than 1,040,000 properties throughout the Lower Mainland can expect to receive their 2020 assessment notices which reflect market value as of July 1, 2019. Have you gotten yours? If not, Homeowners can learn the value of your home without waiting for a mailed assessment by visiting BC Assessment online.

It is the first time in the last 20 years that B.C.’s total property assessment values have gone down, according to BC Assessment.

Both detached homes and strata properties are down as much as 16 per cent throughout Metro Vancouver, with some values holding steady without any change and the prices holding steadier the further a property is from the city of Vancouver.

The biggest drops were seen in single-family home values in West Vancouver and UBC, both down 16 per cent year over year, followed by Richmond’s detached houses, down 14 per cent, and then Vancouver, Coquitlam and North Vancouver single-family homes – all down 11 per cent.

Market Trends For Single-family Residential Properties By Geographic Area:

Single Family Home Changes by Community2019 Typical Assessed Valueas of July 1, 20182020 Typical Assessed Valueas of July 1, 2019% Change
City of Vancouver$ 1,755,000$ 1,568,000-11%
University Endowment Lands$ 5,904,000$ 4,946,000-16%
City of Surrey$ 1,042,000$ 1,010,000-3%
City of Burnaby$ 1,512,000$ 1,363,000-10%
City of Coquitlam$ 1,254,000$ 1,121,000-11%
City of Port Coquitlam$ 969,000$ 875,000-10%
City of Port Moody$ 1,342,000$ 1,192,000-11%
City of White Rock$ 1,310,000$ 1,196,000-9%
City of Richmond$ 1,532,000$ 1,322,000-14%
City of New Westminster$ 1,147,000$ 1,054,000-8%
City of North Vancouver$ 1,510,000$ 1,351,000-11%
District of North Vancouver$ 1,616,000$ 1,479,000-9%
District of West Vancouver$ 2,803,000$ 2,356,000-16%

Market Trends For Strata Residential Properties (e.g. condominiums) By Geographic Area:

Strata Home Changes by Community
2019 Typical Assessed Valueas of July 1, 20182020 Typical AssessedValueas of July 1, 2019% Change
City of Vancouver$ 740,000$ 686,000-7%
City of Burnaby$ 623,000$ 569,000-9%
City of Coquitlam$ 591,000$ 537,000-9%
City of Port Coquitlam$ 533,000$ 486,000-9%
City of Port Moody$ 648,000$ 615,000-5%
City of New Westminster$ 547,000$ 500,000-9%
City of North Vancouver$ 707,000$ 656,000-7%
District of North Vancouver$ 758,000$ 693,000-9%
District of West Vancouver$ 1,288,000$ 1,156,000-10%
City of Surrey$ 522,000$ 497,000-5%
City of White Rock$ 478,000$ 461,000-4%
City of Richmond$ 654,000$ 600,000-8%

While property values help determine a home’s property taxes, a lower value doesn’t mean you’ll be paying less in property taxes.

As noted on your assessment notice, how your assessment changes relative to the average change in your community is what may affect your property taxes. You can find your property class on your assessment notice next to your assessed value.

Click here to find the average change for your property class in your jurisdiction.

Cities throughout the region finalized their budgets and their property tax rates last month and those budgets don’t change based on the value of their constituents’ properties, so the amount homeowners pay will be recalculated based on relative values. For example, if the home values dropped 10 per cent in your community, but your home dropped by 13 per cent, it’s possible your tax bill could stay the same or even dip a little.

But considering the City of Vancouver alone has approved a seven per cent tax hike for 2020, the likelihood of paying less in property taxes this year is slim.

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Vancouver Real Estate 2019

Looking back at the 2019 Vancouver Real Estate Market

Home sales decline below long-term averages in 2019 despite increased demand to end the year

The Metro Vancouver housing market experienced below average sales activity and moderate price declines in 2019.

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that sales of detached, attached and apartment homes reached 25,351 in 2019, a three per cent increase from the 24,619 sales recorded in 2018, and a 29.6 per cent decrease over the 35,993 residential sales in 2017.

Last year’s sales total was 20.3 per cent below the region’s 10-year sales average.

“We didn’t see typical seasonal patterns in 2019. Home buyer demand was quieter in the normally busy spring season and it picked up in the second half of the year,” Ashley Smith, REBGV president said. “In terms of home values, prices dipped between two and four per cent across the region last year depending on property type.”

Home listings on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in Metro Vancouver reached 51,918 in 2019. This is a 3.2 per cent decrease compared to the 53,614 homes listed in 2018 and a five percent decrease compared to the 54,655 homes listed in 2017.

Last year’s listings total was 7.6 per cent below the 10-year average.

“Home buyer confidence was a factor throughout the year. In the first quarter, many prospective buyers were in a holding pattern, waiting to see how prices would react to the mortgage stress test, new taxes, and other policy changes,” Smith said. “Confidence started to return in the summer, and we saw above average sales in the final quarter of 2019.”

The MLS® HPI composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver ends the year at $1,001,000. This is a 3.1 per cent decrease compared to December 2018.

The benchmark price of apartments decreased 2.7 per cent in the region last year. Townhomes decreased 2.4 per cent and detached homes decreased four per cent.

Source: REBGV-Stats-Pkg-December-2019

3 Festive Décor Trends to Deck the Halls

Emerald City

Celebrate in style with a glamourous take on holiday décor. Emerald green paired with gold and white puts a contemporary spin on a classic colour. The warmth of gold strikes a balance with cool undertones of white, while gold coloured details on plates, metallic champagne flutes and patterns like chevrons and dots elevate this style to modern and chic.


Add a dash of drama by incorporating hits of black in your décor – from ornaments to wall art.

Boho Brights

Add some Yuletide pop this season with a beautifully bright colour scheme. Pair hot pinks, bold blues and vibrant greens to achieve a whimsical décor style. The key to bringing this look to life is a proper balance of white – make sure it’s your backdrop for this fun and playful palette.


Don’t be alarmed by colour! Unify your theme by choosing pieces that pick up on any one of three key colours like blue, pink and green.

Classic Christmas

Nothing says Christmas more like traditional greenery and touches of red. This timeless décor scheme incorporates a subtle mix of soft white and sage greens to create a holiday look that’s both simple yet sophisticated.


Consider layering several garlands in different shades of green over a bannister to create multi-toned look.


Should I Renovate Before Selling?Avoid These Projects With Terrible ROI

Celebrities who perform dramatic home makeovers on TV and the average homeowner on Main Street live in two very different worlds. One has the budget of a reality show to foot the bill for materials and labor, and the other has whatever’s in their bank account and tight profit margins.

Investing big bucks in fixing everything isn’t the smart move if you want to see the highest return on your investment (ROI). Let’s take a look at some of the most popular pricey projects that have the lowest ROI and the wiser, low-cost upgrades that offer a bigger bang for your buck.

Check out a summary of the results below in Homelight’s custom infographic:

Source: homelight

Cleaning and Decluttering Is Your best Project To Increase Your Home Value

You’re better off spending less money on smaller scale projects than trying to recoup your spend on bigger renovations base on the HomeLight survey conducted in the first and second quarter of 2019.

Source: homelight

1. DON’T: Drop big bucks on a full kitchen renovation

According to HomeAdvisor website, A kitchen remodel averages in Canada at $21,999 with the typical range being $12,560 to $33,282.

According to data from HomeLight, top real estate professionals estimate that on the average smaller-scale $23,140 kitchen upgrade, sellers would recoup $23,122 at resale, for a -0.08% ROI. So… better, but you still don’t break even.

2. DON’T: Completely renovate the bathroom

As arguably the grungiest place in the house, on the one hand completely remodeling the bathroom makes sense. And at an average cost of $9,627 with the typical range being $5,923 to $14,010, it’s cheaper than redoing the kitchen.

Unfortunately, while it’s technically cheaper, the ROI for a bathroom model is worse. HomeLight’s survey data indicates that if you spent smaller-scale $10,284 bathroom upgrade, you’d get back $10,180, for a -1.00 % ROI.

Spend less on renovations to make more money back

There’s no need to spend big bucks on one major renovation when a handful of minor upgrades throughout the home will actually net you a bigger ROI.

“A good agent will not let a seller spend $20,000 to get $20,000 back, because that doesn’t make any sense. You’re better off just selling the house as-is,” says Gaddis.  “The best agents work to help clients get two to three dollars back for every dollar spent. And those agents won’t be guessing. When you sell a lot of houses, you get pretty good at the science behind ROI.”

So when you’re prepping your home for sale, pick up the phone and consult me before you spend a single penny on home improvements.

Your 10-Step Guide to Successful Home Buying

It is safe to say that you are prepared to purchase your house? In spite of the fact that owning property can appear to be an entangled procedure, the means to pursue are generally basic. Here are ten tips that will assist you with this progress towards another progression throughout everyday life.

1.  Find the right moment

Start by analyzing your financial capabilities and professional perspectives before buying a primary residence. If you’re in a precarious or unstable position or you’re planning to move in the near future, it might be better to wait. In the long run, acquiring real estate is a great financial investment if you plan to stick around.

2. Outline your needs, goals and desires

Determine exactly what you’re looking for: number of bedrooms, yard size, location of shops and schools, privacy and open spaces or service proximity, etc.

3. Prepare a financial plan

Often part of your initial research should be your budget. To order to know how much you can afford to pay, it is important to develop your financial capacity. Experts generally say that your property’s price should not exceed two and a half times your salary.

4. Meet with a financial advisor

Make sure you know and understand all the funding options available to you before you start your research and visiting houses. It is important to learn about the various types of mortgage loans, what rates are being offered, the difference between fixed and variable loans, the term, etc. You can discuss the goals and budgets you have in mind by making an appointment with a mortgage advisor. It may help you to select the right loan while respecting your ability to repay it.

5. Get a pre-approved mortgage loan

You have chosen a financial institution that you would like to do business with and now you know all of your financing options — it’s time to choose the solution that suits you best and get your loan pre-approved.

6. Search for the ideal property

Contact a real estate broker if you want guidance during your search. You will be shown properties that meet your criteria and will accompany you throughout the purchase process.Their fees are paid by the sellers at the time of the sale (if it takes place).

7. On your mark, get set, visit!

To make sure you make the right choice, visit as many properties as possible. Go back and see it again once you find a home you want, get acquainted with the neighborhood, tell the neighbors about the area’s positive and negative aspects, etc.

8. Present a purchase offer

Once you find it rare gem, present the sellers with a purchase offer. Determine a fair price without hitting your maximum capacity for borrowing. During talks with the owners, this will give you some wiggle room.

9. Inspect the property

Your home will be a major financial engagement for many years, so it’s important that you ensure the property of your dreams is, underneath appearances, in good shape.

10. Negotiate

Between you and the owners you should expect some back and forth. It’s rare for sellers to accept a first bid, so starting with a lower offer is crucial than what you’re willing to pay.

Purchasing a property is an enormous commitment. By following each of these steps, you’ll have the best chance of avoiding any unpleasant surprises and having the most satisfying transaction possible. Once you’ve moved in, you’ll have more time to enjoy your new life as a homeowner.

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The Armoury District: The latest workshop-dining area in Vancouver is stylish by design

The Armoury District, one of the latest acknowledged neighborhoods in the city, is scarcely a century old. But the area has seen an influx of architects, interior designers, retail shops and cafés over the past 10 years to complement the high-end vehicle dealerships that have been its most prominent characteristic for a while.


The Spirit Wrestler Gallery was founded in 1995 and is one of the longest running businesses in the area. Inuit, Northwest Coast and Maori artists are on display in the gallery. Gallery Jones exhibits contemporary art by artists from Canada and abroad. Visit Three Centuries and J.H. for antiquities. Tee Antiques (a specialty for state silverware) ; Westbridge Fine Art Auction House has a ticket for fine art. But this neighborhood is really about home decoration, with shops featuring cabinetry and floors (Troico and Frontier, respectively), home line of Giorgio Armani (Armani / Casa), patio furniture (Brougham), and more.


Some of the best examples of indulgences from Vancouver turn the neighborhood into a location for food. For top-of – the-line cheeses and sweets, these include Les Amis du Fromage and Chocolate Arts. Speaking of indulgences, Bel Café’s second location just opened here by famous chef David Hawksworth, and is the place to be seen eating French macaroons and gourmet sandwiches.


People don’t necessarily come to the Armoury District in search of parks, playgrounds or cultural activities (though the Indian Summer Festival offices are situated here). The fun here is of the aspirational kind: visiting local stores, designers and galleries, and playing with thoughts about the kind of life you want to live in / the setting you want to live in. And if you’re really aspiring, you’d like to ride the Lamborghini model.Live and work.

In this stretch of the town there may not be many condos, but there are plenty in neighboring regions such as the Olympic Village and a little further south in Kitsilano. The Armoury District itself is all about shopping and working, and here are several architectural, growth and interior design companies.

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Thinking about investing in commercial property in Canada? Here are 5 tips for new investors

To own commercial property, you don’t need to be rich, and there are more opportunities with the downturns in the Vancouver and Toronto markets.

Chris Catliff, The President and CEO of Blueshore Financial, says for middle-class investors, there are other methods to enter the property business.

He lately shared five tips with those considering building up their commercial real estate retirement portfolio.:

  1. Start small with a REIT

To own commercial property, you don’t need to be rich, Catliff said. “In fact, my son is already invested in a Tax-Free Savings Account with a Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT).”

A REIT is a company that owns, operates and pays dividends on a variety of real estate assets on behalf of a pool of investors who purchased shares or stocks.

“They have relatively high yields compared to the broader market, or bonds or Guaranteed Investment Certificates (GICs),” he said. They’re typically riskier than government bonds or GICs but much less risky than tech stocks.

The purchase of shares in a REIT basically includes a collection of assets across the nation.Some REITs focus on the office sector, others on apartment or industrial or retail properties

“That diversifies your risk,” he said, adding that most REITs can be purchased through a stock broker, financial advisor or online through your direct investing platform.

  1. Invest in a strata unit

For bolder middle-class investors — and ones who don’t mind a bit more work — you could buy your own strata unit in a commercial development, Catliff said.

Like with condo residential buildings, many developers build strata commercial buildings in various asset classes including office, retail and industrial..

  1. Buy in a place you can visit

Catliff said he likes to own units in buildings he’s familiar with and can visit. “I purchased business units on my drive to work so I could see them twice a day..”

That’s so you can see what kind of development is taking place around your building and stay familiar with the market and the other tenants, he said.

  1. Think urban

More than three-fifths of immigrants to Canada are settling in Toronto, Vancouver or Montreal, Catliff said. That means demand for homes, jobs and work space will continue to grow along with the population in those areas.

More demand for your space means less cash flow risk.

Catliff said it’s important to understand the supply and demand elements of your local market. In places like Vancouver and Toronto, demand for small industrial warehouse space or small light-manufacturing units has never been stronger.

Demand is also high for small street-front retail spaces in urban cores. There will always be people trying to buy themselves a job with a business like a sandwich shop or small restaurant, Catliff said. “There is just a lineup of people waiting for that kind of space.”

  1. Do your homework


“You really have to consider location,” he said. “You’re looking for high traffic. How easy is it to rent out to somebody else? Anything downtown pretty much has a lineup of people. If it’s in Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Kelowna, you can always rent something out, it’s just a matter of what return you get.”

In the suburbs, anything you purchase should be considered for its future redevelopment potential, he added. “In the burbs… you’re (often) holding land until development comes to you.”

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Partisans Unveils the Pavilion Proposal for Canada Expo 2020


PARTISANS, Their proposal for the Expo 2020 Canada Pavilion, entitled “Portal,” were unveiled in collaboration with HXouse and Besix. The pavilion aims to generate an “alluring architectural invitation to step into the Canadian identity.” Visitors to the scheme experience the varied social context that makes Canada a model for the globe, using information collection and AI to re-conceive the varied population of the country as a crystalline interactive cloud generated by AI.


The pavilion is conceived as a porous cloud sheltering galleries of exhibitions and shaded semi-public spaces. The crystalline dendritic form, produced almost completely from computation, has an openness that reflects Canadian culture’s diversity. The resulting cloud-like form “defines a land of boundless opportunities on which its residents ‘ dreams are digitally projected in real time.”




The shape of the pavilion is also influenced by climate. Apart from the interlocking panels capturing and interacting with changing sunlight, the canopy is a natural ventilation conduit. Integrating water characteristics helps create a microclimate within the canopy, while evoking regional water uses for aesthetic and auditory pleasure.

A sculpture designed by an indigenous Canadian artist will be placed at the heart of the system, resting above a reflective pong. Exhibitions, conference rooms, VIP areas and administrative spaces are also located within the cloud, all located within easy climate-controlled boxes.


PARTISANS – Design Architects
MET – Public Presentation
Charcoal Blue – Acoustic and Live Performance Consultant
Augmenta – Artificial Intelligence Specialist
HXOUSE – Cultural Advisor
RWDI – Environmental Consultants
Six Construct – Design-Built Construction Manager
Five Continents – Operations and Maintenance
Rice Perry Ellis – Architect of Record (UAE)
Maffeis Engineering – Structural Engineer

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The 5 most popular renovations are more costly than you could think

Make sure you understand the real price before you begin your next large project.

Home Ownership is more expensive than the original down payment. You are most probably going to need to do some kind of refurbishment at some stage.

while sometimes renovations are factored into the price of purchasing a home, sometimes homeowners choose to do the projects later down the highway. So what precisely is costing some of the most famous remodels?

Clever, a platform intended to link agents, buyers, and vendors of real estate, recently surveyed 1,000 homeowners about post-purchase home expenses. The findings showed not only what individuals were spending on renovating, but also how much they believed expenditure would cost in advance. And rarely did the two rates align.

The study questioned homeowners what renovations they were planning to undertake over the next five years, as well as what the price would be anticipated. The five most popular planned renovations were:

  1. Landscaping
  2. Bathroom Remodel
  3. New flooring
  4. Kitchen Remodel
  5. New patio or deck

The homeowners were conscious of which renovations would cost the most, and indeed relatively accurate. They estimated kitchen remodeling would be the most expensive projects, followed by the new deck, then the remodeling of the bathroom.

But when it came to the real price of those renovations, the homeowners were far away.

For example, homeowners estimated new flooring costs at $1,985, while the actual reported cost is $2,863, according to HomeAdvisor.






Estimates in kitchen and bathroom renovations were even more incorrect. The homeowners estimated the cost of redoing their bathroom at $2,406, but the true cost report from HomeAdvisor reveals that it is closer to $9,723.

As for kitchen renovations, homeowners properly thought that at an estimated $4,773 it would be the most expensive of projects. The real average kitchen refurbishment price recorded? A gigantic $22,134—about a fresh Mini Cooper’s price.

The report serves as a reminder that it may cost more than you expect your dream kitchen. Be sure to budget wisely as you plan your next renovation so you don’t get stuck with sticker shock.

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When is a house buying and selling the best time?

Timing can be all. And, according to some estimates, selecting the correct time to purchase or sell a house might save you tens of thousands of bucks.

Best time to sell

While there is a tendency for customers to choose from more inventory in the spring, there is generally more competition as well, which is good for vendors.

After evaluating states some Experts concluded actual property information, the Experts up with that report. It showed that May had the largest sales amount compared to any other month of the year and that prices tended to be greater.

Possible reasons for that is that aside from nicer weather, a home tends to show better in spring and summer. More buyers may also be ready to buy as they might be using their tax refunds for the down payment. Plus, if they have kids, moving in summer means schooling isn’t interrupted.

Report added that selling in May can get you $60,000 more than if you were to sell in January, on average over the past five.

Best time to buy

“If someone lists a house in the winter, it’s a pretty secure bet they’re keen vendors and more open to negotiation. If not, they’d wait for the spring, a Reporter said”.

Also, sellers may be more driven to accept an offer in January as the holiday credit card bills start rolling in, Reporter said. Purchasers can also enjoy the holidays themselves.

“The house of somebody can be an emotional attachment, so the vendor thinks, ‘ If they are prepared to create an offer on Christmas Day of all days, they must really enjoy this house.’

“And another factor that comes into play is … individuals are in nice and generous moods on Christmas Day so they might very well be prepared to accept less cash than they usually would any other day..”

During the holidays, people who are just sick and tired of shows can be another motivator, like B.C. Realtor’s point was made. She said she had some “very nice offers” about Christmas for customers.


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