I was gratified at the various comments I received after my last Update. Other than a few, most were in agreement that our elected Provincial government has not managed the question of control of foreign residential real estate investment, very well. Why do I get a feeling of Deja Vu when I think of the previous Federal government’s handling of Senators’ expenses scandal? One person went so far as to say that they hoped that these investors, especially those leaving residences largely vacant, do not claim a “principal residence” status when they sell their investment and possibly repatriate the proceeds to their home country. “That could never happen could it?” The tax implications of non-resident’s profit on sale is not my expertise (I don’t do “legal opinion/advice”). However, presence of detailed records of residence/citizenship newly minted Canadian citizens (whom we welcome) would hopefully preclude that eventuality.
Let us not be smug in this matter. We must recognize that numerous Canadians have benefitted significantly from the demand which this unfettered foreign investment has made possible. If this has, even in a minor way, led to some percentage of these “investment” residences (detached or strata) being withdrawn from the pool of available dwellings, is this not sad on some level?
I believe that this conversation has just started. Thank you Mr. David Eby for your role in this conversation, so sad that the governing party did not see fit to ask some of these questions some years back. Shame.
Now to the YTD figures, or 4/12ths (1/3rd) of this year so far. Yes, we have a pretty good idea of what’s happening and the direction 2016 will maintain. North Van detached homes sold are 567 vs 548 last year on a YTD basis, attached (t/hses) up from last year by 6% and apartments up 22%. The detached median price is up 29% and inventory is down 2% from 2015. Median prices (t/hses) up 27% and up 14% for (apts). Inventory (t/hses) down 11% from Apr 30th 2015 and (apt) down 24% from last year for the same date.
In West Van, detached number of sales YTD for Apr 30th 2016 is up by 4% from last year at that time. Median price of what has sold is up 29% from last year and inventory now down 14% from Apr 30th 2015. On the condo side, attached (t/hses) sold by Apr 30th 2016 are down 40% from 2015. Active listings at 14 are equal to last year at Apr 30th. Apartments reflect 22 sold in 2016 vs. 25 in 2015 down(12%) – median price for (apts) sold decreased by 26% for this period.