Archive for March, 2013

Returning to the PST and GST on April 1

Friday, March 29th, 2013


On Monday, April 1, the Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) will be replaced by the federal Goods and Services Tax (GST) and the BC Provincial Sales Tax (PST).

What this means to you:

As we move back to the GST and PST tax structure, it’s important to remember that:

  • sales tax on a new home will be reduced to 5% GST plus 2% BC Transition Tax (total 7%) from the current 12%; and
  • tax on real estate commissions will be reduced to 5% from the current 12%.

These reduced tax rates apply to all transactions that are payable on or after April 1.

Available Resources

The Board has prepared two fact sheets:

  • GST and the 2% BC Transition Tax on new homes; and
  • information about the HST/PST new housing transitional rules.

Visit: and under Latest News you will see both fact sheets.

The BC Real Estate Association has developed a PST transition site at:

The BC Ministry of Finance has prepared bulletins, seminars, videos, webinars, and registration information for the return to the PST. Visit:

WEBForms revised to reflect the change back to the GST

On April 2, the following forms will have the HST replaced with GST. Please do not use the previous version.

  • Authority to Lease
  • Assignment of Contract of Purchase and Sale – New Development
  • Assignment of Contract of Purchase and Sale – Non Developer
  • Contract of Purchase and Sale
  • Contract of Purchase and Sale For Commercial Real Estate
  • Contract of Purchase and Sale of a Leasehold Interest in Indian Reserve Lands
  • Contract of Purchase and Sale of a Manufactured Home on a Rental Pad
  • Exclusive Authority to Lease
  • Exclusive Buyer’s Agency Contract
  • Exclusive Buyer’s Agency Contract – Large Print
  • Exclusive Tenant’s Agency Contract
  • Fee Agreements (all 4 agreements)
  • Lease Report and Payout Instructions
  • Multiple Listing Contract
  • Multiple Listing Contract – Large Print
  • Offer to Lease

Home buyers aged 18 to 35 have different ideas from their parents on what goes into their dream home

Thursday, March 28th, 2013

“Millennials” have fresh take on housing needs


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Zen Townhomes at 196th Street and 66th Avenue in Surrey 62 townhomes offered by Zenterra Developments

Thursday, March 28th, 2013


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Killarney: The Neighbourhood at a glance

Thursday, March 28th, 2013

Sandra Thomas
Van. Courier

When it comes to diversity in Vancouver, the neighbourhood of Killarney is about as mixed as it comes, likely due to its geography.

Killarney, which also includes the small community of Champlain Heights, begins at East 41st Avenue and Kingsway to the north, Boundary to the east, Elliott Street and Vivian Drive to the west, and is bounded by the Fraser River to the south.

Killarney was one of the last sections of the city to be developed and, until after the Second World War, was still mostly second-growth forest. It wasn’t until 1878 when British surveyor William Rowling was given a land grant that included much of the southern portion of Killarney that it began to be settled. That new development was due mostly to the expansion of the interurban streetcar line north of Kingsway.

A walk or drive along Kingsway today demonstrates the melting pot Killarney has become, with small businesses catering to a variety of ethnic Canadian communities ranging from Chinese to Korean, Vietnamese, Taiwanese, Japanese, South Asian, Caribbean, Filipino and more.

Directly across the neighbourhood, one of the highlights of Killarney is its proximity to the Fraser River, a working waterway linking municipalities along its shores. A stroll along the Fraser River walkway allows for sweeping views of the water, Mitchell Island, the Knight Street Bridge and the steady stream of barges, tug and fishing boats that traverse the river. Eagles and seals are a common site in and around the river, as are the many species of waterfowl that nest upon its shores.

According to the City of Vancouver, the total adult population of Killarney is 28,455, of which 57.2 per cent are immigrants. Of that 57.2 per cent, 18.1 per cent are from China, 10.4 per cent are from Hong Kong, 3.7 per cent are from the Philippines and 1.6 are from India. As well, 51 per cent are married, 30.4 per cent are single, 62.3 per cent own their home and 37.7 per cent rent. The total labour force in 2006 was 13,970 and the average annual household income is $64,189.

© Copyright (c) Vancouver Courier

Market Turnaround… Vancouver Prices are going up!

Tuesday, March 26th, 2013


Les, is the Market going Up or Down??.. can you seriously answer this question with some real facts! Please do not use the MLS Home Price Index or any other Index until you have looked at the real numbers!

Are you getting enough sales? How does your Expiry Rate, DOM and List-Sale Discounts compare to the top 5%. Find out who buys their listings.  Vancouver’s Top 5% / FV’s Top 5%

Not sure what marketing is working today? You are invited  to join our online Market Analysis and Business Coaching every evening at 9:00 pm Mon- Thurs. (details)

Too much Admin time? ..need a Virtual Assistant? Spend more time with your Clients and join the 100+ RE/MAX agents that have used our Virtual Assistants; for Marketing, Social Media, Listing Management & CMA’s.
(details)    Note: 64% of the listings now expiring  have no price reduction at all!  Les may we help you sell more homes?  (Yes)

How Can I Make My Vancouver Condo Sell Faster?

Tuesday, March 26th, 2013

Maggie Chandler

Vancouver home sellers often ask me “how can I make my Vancouver condo sell faster?”  Let’s assume its been decluttered, staged and is in top condition. All that’s left is selecting the right price. Never price your property above market value!  I disagree with Realtor’s recommendation to list 3-5% above what you expect. That is a recipe for getting a much lower price than you would if you price it right on the money, or preferably less, which will attract multiple offers.

I Need to Sell My Vancouver Home in Two Weeks

Your chances of selling drop to less than 40% after the 2 week mark (this number fluctuates depending on the market – ask Maggie for current Vancouver real estate stats on this). So depending on whether it is a Vancouver buyers market or a sellers market you need to price your house at slightly less than market.

If you are priced right, you should get an offer in less than 2 weeks! Guess who has the upper hand in negotiation when you get an offer less than 2 weeks after it has been on the market? If you guessed “YOU” then you are right! Negotiate for top dollar because you have the upper hand and make it clear that you are in no rush with the house only being on the market for less than 14 days.

How Much Will I Have to Drop My List Price on My Vancouver Condo?

1% of asking should be the most you drop – but keep in mind Vancouver buyers need to feel that they are getting a deal off asking price even if it is only 1% otherwise it won’t be a win-win. If you don’t trust the list price your Vancouver Realtor gives you, ask to see the supporting documentation they used to arrive at your home’s price, and if they can’t provide that then find an experienced Vancouver Realtor with hyper-local neighbourhood info, as it is likely they didn’t do their homework and are just ball-parking.

If you don’t sell your Vancouver condo within 14 days, you will need to lower your price, and will likely have to lower it much more than if you would have priced it right in the first place in order to get people interested again.

Compliments of Maggie Chandler

Tamarack at Dayanee Springs in Coquitlam

Thursday, March 21st, 2013

Escape to higher ground


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BMO fires second shot in new mortgage war

Thursday, March 21st, 2013


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After April 1? HST Transition Primer for Home Buyers & Sellers

Thursday, March 21st, 2013

Glen Korstrom

Most BC residents will reap no tax savings if they postpone buying a home until the provincial government officially eliminates the harmonized sales tax and reinstitutes a provincial sales tax (PST) on April 1.

Homebuilders are hammering away at this message in an attempt to eliminate confusion among consumers, who wrongly believe that they will save tax if they wait to buy a new home.

“Builders are frustrated with the confusion in the public,” said Bob De Wit, who is CEO of the Greater Vancouver Home Builders’ Association. “It’s a complicated issue.”

The PST transition will make the purchase of pricier homes cheaper. Cost savings on the purchases of new homes after the PST is re-instated April 1 will be limited to those priced above $850,000, said Mackay LLP director of income and commodity taxation Tom Baybutt. New homes are currently taxed the equivalent of 7 per cent – not the full 12 per cent HST – on the first $850,000. Every dollar above that threshold is taxed at 12 per cent.

After April 1, buyers of new homes will have to pay the 5 per cent goods and services tax (GST) and a 2 per cent transitional tax on the cost of their home regardless of how expensive it is. But the transitional tax kicks in only if the home’s construction is at least per cent complete. Builders of those homes are then reimbursed for the per cent PST that they will have to spend on the building materials that go into the homes.

Pre-sales and other homes that are at least per cent built after April 1 will not be subject to the transitional tax, and builders will not be eligible to apply for rebates on the per cent PST that they spend on building materials for those homes.

The 2 per cent transitional tax will be phased out on March 31, 2015.

Real estate agents’ fees for home sellers will also be lower under provincial sales tax regime. Baybutt pointed out that, after April 1, real estate commissions, which are subject to per cent HST, will be subject only to per cent GST.

The tax on legal fees, however, will not drop after April 1 because they are subject to the new PST. Condominium fees, such as move-in fees, are not taxable under either the HST or the future GST-PST system.

© 2013 Real Estate Weekly

New app turns real estate agent business cards and print advertising into virtual billboards

Thursday, March 21st, 2013


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