Archive for May, 2018

Scotiabank releases Q2 report

Tuesday, May 29th, 2018

Q2 profit up four per cent

Canadian Real Estate Wealth

Scotiabank reported a nearly four cent jump in profit in the latest quarter, beating market expectations with a boost from its international operations in Latin America.

The bank said Tuesday it earned $2.04 billion in net income attributable to common shareholders for its second quarter, up 3.9 per cent from $1.97 billion a year ago

The earnings amounted to $1.70 per diluted share, compared with $1.62 during the three-month period ended April 30 a year earlier.

On an adjusted basis, the profit amounted to $1.71 per diluted share, compared with analysts’ expected earnings per share of $1.67, according to Thomson Reuters Eikon.

Scotiabank chief executive Brian Porter said the bank’s diversified business model continued to contribute to its overall performance.

The lender’s Canadian banking division saw a five per cent increase in net income attributable equity holders to $1.02 billion, but its international banking arm saw a 14 per cent increase to $675 million.

Porter said its earnings growth outside of Canada was driven by momentum in the Pacific Alliance countries of Mexico, Chile, Colombia and Peru.

“International banking reported strong results with another quarter of double-digit earnings growth,” said Porter in a statement.

“This was driven by continued momentum in the Pacific Alliance region, better credit performance and productivity gains. Recently announced acquisitions in Chile, Colombia and Peru, all expected to close in the second half of this fiscal year, will further grow our customer base and improve our presence in the Pacific Alliance region.”

Scotiabank’s global banking and markets division, however, saw net income attributable to equity holders drop by 14 per cent compared with the previous year to $447 million. The drop was due to “lower non-interest income, due primarily to high levels of client trading activity in equities last year, and the negative impact of foreign currency translation.”

The bank’s provisions for credit losses, or money set aside for bad loans, was $534 million, down $53 million or nine per cent from the second quarter of 2017.

The bank’s common equity tier 1 ratio, a key measure of the bank’s financial health, was 12 per cent, up from 11.3 per cent a year ago and 11.2 per cent in the previous quarter.

Scotiabank was the fourth of Canada’s Big Five lenders to beat market expectations for their latest quarter with year-over-year profit increases, despite concerns about the impact of a cooling housing market on mortgagelending.

Mortgage originations, or new mortgages issued, by Scotiabank during the latest quarter totalled $8.9 billion, down slightly from $9 billion in the same quarter one year ago.

Gabriel Dechaine, an analyst with National Bank of Canada Financial Markets, called it a “solid but unspectacular quarter” and noted that Scotiabank’s adjusted growth in its Canadian banking division of seven per cent is “low relative to peers.”

“Outperformance was driven by a re-alignment of reporting periods that added an extra month contribution from BNS Chile and the Canadian insurance business,” as well as lower provisions which were offset by a higher tax rate, Dechaine said in a research note to clients. 

The Canadian Press

Copyright © 2018 Key Media Pty Ltd

Two Canadian banks hit by cyber attack

Tuesday, May 29th, 2018

Simplii Financial reports a cyber attack

Steve Randall
Canadian Real Estate Wealth

BMO Financial Group and Simplii Financial say that some customer data appears to have been exposed in a cyber attack incident.

The incidents both took place Sunday and both banks issued statements Monday saying they are working with relevant authorities and have contacted customers who may have been affected.


The total number of customers who may have been affected is less than 100,000 across the two lenders.

The full BMO statement reads:

“On Sunday, May 27, fraudsters contacted BMO claiming that they were in possession of certain personal and financial information for a limited number of customers.  We believe they originated the attack from outside the country.

We took steps immediately when the incident occurred and we are confident that exposures identified related to customer data have been closed off.

We have notified and are working with relevant authorities as we continue to assess the situation. We are proactively contacting those customers that may have been impacted and we will support and stand by them.

BMO has strong and robust processes in place to protect customer data and we take customer privacy very seriously. Customers are recommended to monitor their accounts and notify BMO with any suspicious activity.”

Simplii Financial’s SVP Michael Martin said that the safety and security of customer accounts is the firm’s top priority.

“We want to assure you that if you are affected by fraud because of this issue, we will return 100% of the money lost from the affected Simplii account,” he said in a statement.

Customers are urged to monitor their accounts for any unusual activity.

Copyright © 2018 Key Media Pty Ltd

CRA nets $43.7 million in fines relating to real estate transactions

Monday, May 28th, 2018

Tax evasion in real estate transactions nets millions


More than $43.7 million in penalties have been assessed by Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) during the last three years for evading taxes in real estate transactions.

The agency says that audits have identified $592.6 million in additional taxes related to the real estate sector during that time. CRA auditors reviewed more than 30,000 files in Ontario and B.C.

In 2017-2018, it assessed $102.6 million more in additional taxes than in 2016-2017. Penalties increased by $19.2 million from one year to the next.

The CRA says it has a number of ways to detect taxpayers who avoid paying taxes related to real estate transactions, collaborating with provinces, territories and municipalities. It also uses “legal tools such as unnamed persons requirements to uncover unpaid income taxes and GST/HST on assignment sales of condominiums,” says the agency in a statement.

The CRA issues unnamed persons requirements to property developers and builders who have information about buyers involved in pre-construction assignment sales. This information is used to identify taxpayers who may not be reporting correctly for both income tax purposes and GST/HST purposes, says the agency.

“Property flipping is not illegal; Canadians have the right to purchase and sell property for a profit. However, the income resulting from these transactions is considered business income and must be reported to the CRA,” the agency says.

“The Canadian housing market is becoming more complex through pre-construction assignment sales and the real estate sharing economy (vacation rentals) and the CRA is committed to ensuring that tax obligations are met in these cases.”

© 2017 REM Real Estate Magazine

RE/MAX INTEGRA signs up for automated luxury listing program

Monday, May 28th, 2018

Luxury listings get wider exposure

Ephraim Vecina

RE/MAX INTEGRA has cemented an agreement with online real estate advertising firm Adwerx Enterprise, which will power listing advertisements for luxury properties situated in Canada and New England.

The ads, which will use behavioural targeting and related methods to reach the broadest possible audience, are now live in local markets and are visible on high-traffic websites, as well as on Facebook and mobile apps.

“This added exposure gives sellers the confidence to know that their homes are being extensively marketed on the popular media outlets and social media websites that people visit every day,” RE/MAX INTEGRA stated in its announcement.

 “We see a unique opportunity to build awareness of our Luxury Listings immediately which should garner more sales and in turn help us generate more listings,” RE/MAX INTEGRA vice president of marketing and special projects David Brown said. “These ads provide high visibility and extensive exposure for listings during those first critical days when the property is brought to market.”

Copyright © 2018 Key Media Pty Ltd

REMAX along with the Western Hockey League have raised money for organ donations

Monday, May 28th, 2018

Don Cherry gives REMAX thumbs up

Neil Sharma

REMAX has partnered up with the Western Hockey League and raised over $265,500 for organ donation awareness.

The initiative, REMAX Presents: WHL Suits Up with Don Cherry to Promote Organ Donation, involved every WHL team donning jerseys emblazoned with the REMAX name and in colourful semblance of Don Cherry’s famous suits. While the money was raised through the Kidney Foundation of Canada, all parties involved are endeavouring to bring attention to organ donation.

“Canada has one of worst records for people registering to be organ donors,” said Elton Ash, regional executive vice president for REMAX of Western Canada. “We’re 23rd in the world for list of organ donor registration. It’s important that Canadians understand being organ donor is the most unselfish act one could perform.”

Don Cherry, WHL Commissioner Ron Robison and REMAX of Western Canada’s Jeremy Cossette presented Kurtis Krug of the Kidney Foundation of Canada with a cheque this week before a game between the Swift Current Broncos and the Hamilton Bulldogs last week.

“I knew the people of the Western Hockey League would come through, and they came through in

spades,” said Don Cherry, on behalf of the Kidney Foundation. “We couldn’t have done it without

RE/MAX, our sponsor. $265,500 is the most we’ve ever raised and when you see something like that, it

makes you very proud to be a Canadian.”

The Kidney Foundation holds a dear place in Cherry’s heart. His son Tim contracted kidney disease and was on dialysis before it was determined his sister Cindy was a match and donated to help save her brother’s life.

“Don has always had a soft spot towards the Kidney Foundation and we’ve worked with them from time to time, so it seemed natural,” said Ash. “Being involved with the Cherry family and the Kidney Foundation was a very exciting opportunity for us. As long-time supporters of organ donation across Canada we hope this partnership has increased the awareness about how critical it is to be an organ donor. Many lives can be enriched and saved when you register as a donor.”

Copyright © 2018 Key Media Pty Ltd

South Campbell Heights development sent back to City of Surrey for reconsideration

Sunday, May 27th, 2018

Surrey development plan rejected by Metro

Jennifer Saltman
The Province

Metro Vancouver’s board has sent a City of Surrey development proposal back to the drawing board, with some directors saying the proposal sends the wrong signal to developers and speculators.

“If we adopt this, we are setting an extremely dangerous precedent, simple as that,” said director Harold Steves, a Richmond councillor, at Friday’s board meeting.

As part of its efforts to develop South Campbell Heights — a process that has been going on for four years — Surrey had to ask Metro to amend the land-use designations in its regional growth strategy for a part of the area.

The amendments would extend the urban containment boundary, which restricts urban development to certain areas, and redesignate 235 hectares of land from rural to mixed employment, conservation, recreation and general urban to allow for potential industrial and residential land uses.

They would also change some areas in the urban containment boundary from mixed employment to conservation and recreation and general urban. Twelve hectares would be added to the Agricultural Land Reserve.

Director and Surrey Coun. Tom Gill said the city spent four years consulting extensively with the public and stakeholders about the proposed plan.

“There’s no question city staff approached this with kid gloves,” he said. “These properties that we speak of today, it’s really about addressing the last pocket of these lands and making sure that we actually have a local area plan that really addresses the issues.”

Metro staff found the redesignation of rural lands to general urban for urban residential development south of 16th Avenue would be inconsistent with the regional plan.

“A large expansion of the UCB into the rural and proximate to agricultural areas would signal that the expansion of urban development into rural areas of the Hazelmere Valley is feasible, and would encourage speculation and establish a precedent for similar future amendment requests not only in the Hazelmere Valley, but throughout the region,” the staff report states.

Staff recommended sending the proposed amendments back to Surrey for reconsideration, and members of the regional planning committee agreed unanimously at a meeting earlier this month.

A majority of board directors agreed with Metro staff members’ assessment.

“It’s not just a bad precedent in Surrey, but more importantly to all of the other municipalities in Metro Vancouver, where we need to be showing that we take the urban containment boundary and the regional growth strategy very seriously. They’re there for a reason,” said director John Becker, mayor of Pitt Meadows.

“I am tired of hearing from the development community that the regional growth strategy and urban containment boundary are like an Etch A Sketch, and you simply turn it upside down and give it a shake and redraft it at will.”

Director Derek Corrigan, Burnaby’s mayor, said he was taken aback to find that another option was being considered by the board Friday after the committee voted unanimously to refer the issue back to the city.

“This would set a very dangerous precedent and it’s one that we need to be well aware of,” Corrigan said. “There was an opportunity to work collaboratively and co-operatively with Metro to have a win-win situation that would allow some development to occur, establish some additional opportunities for industrial land, but this extension to create residential land in regard to the area south of 16th Avenue is just impossible to approve.”

Director Adriane Carr said she was voting in favour of sending the proposal back to Surrey because she had to seriously consider the concerns the committee must have had to make that recommendation.

“I also take seriously the input from local conservationists, and the lack of assurance they feel that the aquifer and the watershed are protected,” she said.

Representatives from the Semiahmoo Fish and Game Club and the Friends of Hazelmere/Campbell Valley were among the speakers who came out against the proposed redevelopment Friday.

Director Richard Stewart, who chairs the regional planning committee and is mayor of Coquitlam, said if there’s a compelling reason to move the urban containment boundary, he’s ready to listen.

“I can’t find one to move it this far and neither could the committee. The committee asked that it be referred back to Surrey,” he said. “I urge Surrey to come back with a proposal that gives a compelling reason as to the urban containment boundary’s new location from their perspective.”

© 2018 Postmedia Network Inc.

City of Vancouver Laneway Housing How-To Guide

Saturday, May 26th, 2018


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Westcoast Outbuildings – Laneway Housing Catalogue

Saturday, May 26th, 2018


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City of Vancouver Zoning Map

Saturday, May 26th, 2018

The Vancouver Sun

ST. PAUL 1215 St. Paul Street Kelowna 50 homes in a five storey wood frame building by Innocept Development

Saturday, May 26th, 2018

Residential condo suites appeal to first-time buyers and skilled young professionals

Michael Bernard
The Vancouver Sun

St. Paul, Kelowna

Project address: 1215 St. Paul St., Kelowna

Project scope: 50 suites in a five-storey wood-frame building with four ground-level two-storey townhomes in the Okanagan city’s downtown district. Close to shopping, entertainment and Okanagan lakeside amenities. Monthly rentals permitted.

Prices: Mid-$200s to mid $500s

Developer: Innocept Development

Architect: BlueGreen Architecture Inc.

Interior Designer: Materia Interior Design Studio Inc.

Sales centre: 1215 St. Paul St.

Centre hours: Noon — 4 p.m., or by appointment

Sales phone: 250-801-2889


Occupancy: Spring 2020

With Kelowna’s rapidly growing high-tech industry now assuming the role as one of this Okanagan city’s biggest economic drivers, it should come as no surprise that Kelowna’s downtown district is enjoying a building boom to accommodate an influx of highly skilled young people.

St. Paul, a collection of 50 studio, one- and two-bedroom condo suites in a five-storey wood-frame building accompanied by four two-level townhouses, is just one of several residential projects that are sprouting several presentation suite show rooms throughout the downtown, including St. Paul’s own display suite opening Friday.

Don Warkentin, a partner of Fortune Marketing, which is selling the homes, says that with prices starting in the mid-$200,000s, St. Paul will appeal to first-time buyers — both singles and couples — between 25 and 40 years old. “We will even see some downsizers and some second-home owners because this is where they all want to live: downtown.”

Within the last three years, Kelowna has seen unprecedented growth downtown, including the opening of Interior Health’s headquarters for 700 employees, a new RCMP building and numerous small shops, offices and restaurants. Add to that the new Innovation Centre for high tech, which has attracted an influx of startups and young workers, helping the $1-billion industry to supplant the wine business and tourism as the city’s region’s prime economic driver, according to a survey by a high-tech area council.

It has also pushed down the vacancy rate to about .2 per cent (in late 2017) which Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. says is among the lowest of any city in Canada, surpassing even Vancouver’s low rate of .9 per cent.

It has also made for brisk registrations on St. Paul’s home page over the last six weeks, with more than 700 people signing up for information, Warkentin said. Two-bedroom homes account for the majority of St. Paul’s suites.

“Most people, if they can afford it, prefer a two-bedroom,” Warkentin said. “Number one, because people’s lives change rapidly today and because people like the longevity that two-bedrooms provide: they don’t have to move if their situation changes.”

St. Paul registers a high walk score of 92 out of 100, a measurement system that ranks a project’s proximity to desirable amenities, including shopping, transit, culture and sports activities. It is located in the midst of more than 100 restaurants and cafes, shops, banks and other services, as well as local parks and beaches.

While young people account for much of the interest, the traditional influx of seniors cashing out of Metro Vancouver continues, which comes as no surprise to Matt Pasutto, whose family’s company, Innocept, is building St. Paul. In fact, seniors and young professionals have a lot in common these days, he said.

“The idea of your typical senior is changing drastically,” said Pasutto, the firm’s creative director and development co-ordinator. “A lot of the downsizing baby boomers are living a very similar lifestyle to the young professional. Both demographics people want to walk rather than drive; they both want access to everything downtown Kelowna has to offer, and they want the simplicity of condo living.”

Pasutto’s family, which recently completed a similar residential project in the downtown district, is involved in more than simply building for Canada’s newest generation.

His brother Justin, Innocept project manager, and Justin’s fiancée, Jillian Harris of Love It or List It Vancouver fame, star in an upcoming four-part documentary Jillian and Justin that begins June 21 on the W TV network. The show will take an in-depth look at the challenges of first-time parenthood with son Leo and the quest to “have it all.”

Inside the modern building there are a variety of floor plans. Those include efficient studios at 450 square feet, one-bedroom suites from 525 to 700 square feet, one- bedroom-and-dens between 625 and 750 square feet and two-bedrooms between 800 and 1,000 square feet. The four townhouses include two bedrooms and dens with 1.5 bathrooms in either, 1,000 and 1,100 square feet.

All homes have quartz countertops and stainless stainless steel appliance packages by Samsung. Bedrooms are carpeted while the main living areas are done in durable luxury vinyl planking.

All homes come with one parking space under the building and monthly rentals are allowed.

“I think the location and price are fantastic,” says Anthony Lazazzera, a food packaging executive in Vancouver who is considering buying a one-bedroom home at St. Paul. “It’s just two blocks away from the water there. In the future, I see it as a future vacation spot for me and my future wife.”

© 2018 Postmedia Network Inc.