The good news is, we are starting to see a shift in the number of homes that are being listed for sale. The Fraser Valley Real Estate Board received 5087 new listings which is a 56% more than February. Although this means there is more selection for buyers, it has not yet had the effect of slowing down price increases and we are still seeing homes sell for way over list price and in multiple offers.
For more information contact Garry Voigt – 604 789 2140 or firstname.lastname@example.org
411 6866 Nicholson Street – Welcome to Nicholson Green in Sunshine Hills! This 1906 sq ft 3 bed, 3 bath, 2 storey home feels nothing like a typical townhouse! Wide foyer with conveniently located powder leads through to large dining/living room with access to back patio. Adjacent, is even more living space with the great size family room & kitchen. Choose between 2 cozy gas fire-places. The large kitchen boasts tons of cabinets, ample quartz counter tops, updated pot lights & under cabinet lighting. The oversize laundry/storage room completes this floor. Upstairs you will find a huge master bedroom with updated ensuite with separate shower & tub + 2 additional large bedrooms & family bathroom. Bonus side by side garage. Walk to stores, restaurants, Cougar Canyon Elementary & Seaquam Secondary! Don’t wait on this one!
Offered at $699,900 Call or email garry Voigt for more information 604 789 2140, email@example.com
Welcome to UPTOWN, located in the very family friendly neighborhood of Clayton Heights. This 3 bed, 3 bath Townhome has a bright open plan feel on the main floor. Kitchen has SS appliances, quartz counters & large eat up island. Adjacent family room leads to sunny south facing deck & also has cozy fireplace & built in TV unit. Large living/dining room, with elegant chandelier & tucked away powder room complete the main floor. Upstairs are 3 spacious bedrooms including the master that easily fits a king size bed. Ensuite has oversized rain shower head and quartz counter and soaker tub in the family bath, below is a large tandem garage with tons of storage space, leading to your fully fenced south facing covered patio & grass area, perfect for kids & pets! WALK TO BRAND NEW MADDAUGH ELEMENTARY!
For More information contact Garry Voigt – firstname.lastname@example.org
Looking for the perfect family home? Here it is, first time on the market in 30 years! Located next to East View Park in the very desirable Cloverdale neighborhood. This large 2878 sq/ft, 6, bed 3 bath home sits on a 7428 sq ft lot with tons of parking & huge, PRIVATE SOUTH FACING back yard. Upstairs consists of 3 bedrooms including master with updated ensuite! Formal living, dining room & family room with cozy gas fireplace & kitchen with access to huge (recently redone) south facing sun deck, great for entertaining! Below features a very bright WALKOUT 2 bed, 1 bath mortgage helper + 1 bed for upstairs use. Some recent updates include all the bathrooms, H/W tank 2019, New furnace 2020, roof approx 10 years old & newer gutters. Walk to Latimer RD Elementary. Hurry, this home won’t last!
Call Garry Voigt for more information 604 789 2140 or email email@example.com
303 20068 Fraser Highway. Welcome to VARSITY, one of the best condo buildings in Langley! This 2 bed, 2 bath CORNER unit has tons of natural light flooding in from wrap around windows. Beautifully maintained home with a great open layout. The large kitchen boasts elegant, soft close shaker cabinets, lots of quartz counter space, stainless appliances, including gas range & eat up breakfast bar. Laminate floors throughout the open living/dining room & bedrooms separated for extra privacy. Large master with spa like en suite and walk-in closet with custom organizers & great size 2nd bedroom. Dining room leads to patio with amazing mountain views & GAS BBQ hook up. BONUS storage locker on the same floor. Well maintained and secure building. Centrally located in downtown Langley. Pets and rentals allowed. Don’t wait!
The current situation with strata insurance in BC has seen a huge hike, not only in strata insurance premiums but also in the amount of deductibles now payable by strata corporations in the event of a claim. It is not unheard of to have a deductible that was previously $10,000 rise to $100,000 for claims such as flooding/water damage. It is the responsibility of the strata corporation to find the funds to pay for the rise in premiums, but it is up to the individual strata lot owner to ensure they are insured to cover the deductible amounts in the event of a claim.
When you purchase a strata property you should ask for a copy of the strata “Summary of Coverage’ and take this to your insurance broker. They will be able to take a look at the coverage and deductible amounts for the strata corporation and quote for your personal insurance accordingly.
If you already live in a strata, make yourself aware of when your insurance is renewed each year and be sure to reach out to your strata manager for a copy of the summary at least a week before renewal. That way, you can be adequately prepared if there is any adjustment to the previous years policy. Be pro-active, do not rely on your strata corporation to reach out to you.
It is not only deductibles that need to be covered, you should also consider purchasing insurance for items below.
Personal Property – Although the common property and limited common property is covered by strata insurance, the interior of your strata lot is not and it is your responsibility to get personal insurance to cover household contents such as furniture, clothing, household goods, electronics, etc.
Personal liability – for any bodily injury or property damage unintentionally caused to others whilst on your strata lot.
Improvements (“betterments”). If you make improvements to your strata lot, such as new flooring, finishing a basement etc. you need to let your insurance company know. These are considered ‘betterments’ and may need additional coverage. If you don not and you make an insurance claim, you run the risk of only being covered for original fixtures and all your improvements will not be covered.
Additional living expenses. If there were an event such as a flood in your strata lot and it becomes uninhabitable for a period of time, you would need to be covered for expenses such as alternative accommodation and living expenses.
Additional coverage (deductibles) In the past year we have seen deductibles rise to as much as $100,000. What this means is, if you have a flood or other damage to your property, or an event originates in your strata lot and damages another strata lot, the deductible would be charged back to you. If you do not have adequate coverage for strata deductibles you could be liable to pay 10’s of thousands of dollars.
Fixtures installed by the owner-developer if, as per Strata Property Regulation 9.1 (1), these can be moved without damaging the building such as fridges, ovens, microwaves and other items.
Losses to common property or other owners’ units – As with deductibles, if an event that causes damage to another strata lot, originates in your strata lot, you may be liable for the costs of repairs to the other damaged unit.
Recent court cases have determined that responsibility for an insurance claim does not mean that the strata owner must be at fault in order to be responsible for paying the corporation’s insurance deductible.
For example, a dishwasher overflows in a strata unit and causes water damage to common property and other strata lots. The strata owner is responsible and the strata corporation can sue the strata owner for the cost of the strata corporation’s insurance deductible even if the strata owner was not “at fault.”
Stay informed, be pro-active in knowing what changes there are, each year to your strata corporation’s insurance. Talk to your insurance broker and be sure you are fully covered for every eventuality.
On the heels of the busiest, most unexpected December in our Board’s history and half a year of the market out-performing all expectations during COVID-19, we turned to one of the most in-demand, economists in our province for insight for you to share with your clients.
We were fortunate to get exclusive, in-depth market intelligence – specific to our Fraser Valley region – from BCREA’s Brendon Ogmundson, who as you can imagine is currently busier than a snow-making machine at local mountains due to 2020’s astounding market numbers.
He details: What happened in Fraser Valley’s market last year, and answers the million-dollar question, can it sustain in 2021?
This is part one of two with the second installment coming in next week’s NewsReal. First, we look back at a year like no other and next week, we look at what’s ahead.
FVREB Communications in conversation with Brendon Ogmundson, BCREA Chief Economist:
Q: How would you describe Fraser Valley’s real estate market in 2020? Walk us through what happened starting from what looked like a decent start of the year…?
After two years of demand being stifled by various government policies – principally the B-20 stress test – and new taxes on housing, the Fraser Valley market was set to continue to recover and record an average, typical year. However, as members know, that return to normal was swiftly upended by a worldwide pandemic that threw a blanket of uncertainty over the entire global economy.
With the industry and society in lockdown during the spring months, the housing market slowed dramatically. Sales in the early spring fell to unprecedented lows and it was anticipated that sales would remain below normal through the summer months and possibly beyond. No one knew.
Then the unexpected happened. Home sales in the Fraser Valley began to climb in the early summer, eventually setting or nearly setting monthly sales records through the fall and winter.
By year’s end, in the midst of a global pandemic, with BC facing a jump in the unemployment rate to a 30-year high, with borders closed, and with immigration halted, sales in the Fraser Valley finished the year up over 28 per cent while benchmark home prices were up over 13 per cent.
“The housing market in 2020 was nothing short of remarkable.”
Q: No one knows BC’s economy and the housing market like you, how unusual was this post-lockdown response?
The performance of the housing market in 2020 was nothing short of remarkable. The COVID-19 recession battered many sectors of BC’s economy, but looking at the housing market, it would be difficult to tell that there was a recession at all.
In a typical recession, housing sales decline as job losses and heightened uncertainty prompt potential buyers to pull back from the market. At the same time, the supply of listings accumulates as some households are forced to sell due to rising unemployment and falling incomes. The COVID-19 recession, however, has been anything but typical. Instead, this recession has seen a remarkably swift rebound in home sales and prices, not only to pre-COVID-19 levels but to historic highs.
Hindsight is indeed 2020 when it comes to 2020
Q: Did the rebound surprise even you?
A: The speed and strength of the recovery was absolutely surprising, but with the benefit of hindsight we can see clear factors that propelled the market forward.
First, the real estate industry did an excellent job in ensuring that transactions could continue without undue risk to the public. Secondly, the impact of the COVID-19 recession on the provincial labour market was not equal across sectors. Most job losses afflicted low wage sectors of the economy, like front-line service sector jobs, while employment in above-average wage sectors that tend to drive the ownership market has risen about 5 per cent above pre-COVID-19 levels.
Most importantly, a swift and overwhelming policy reponse from the Bank of Canada pushed mortgage rates to new record lows. All of those factors, along with a surge of pent-up demand after the initial crisis phase of the pandemic, meant that demand for housing returned with vigour.
Homes became all things to all people all the time
Q: We saw some specific home sale trends in the Fraser Valley due to COVID-19 – can you delve into those more?
A: There’s no question COVID-19 altered the needs of BC families as homes suddenly became a workplace, a school, an entertainment centre, and a refuge. We’ve seen a pronounced shift towards demand for larger homes and for those working from home, a commute becomes less relevant.
The extra space afforded by a single-family detached home that fulfills those needs, along with record-low borrowing costs, resulted in the sales numbers we’ve seen. In the Fraser Valley, sales of detached homes almost doubled in December, rose over 40 per cent in 2020 compared to 2019 and approached 50 per cent of total sales for the first time since 2017. So, it’s no surprise that prices for detached homes closed the year up with double-digit increases.
Sales of townhouses, a close substitute for single-detached, were up over 30 per cent in 2020, with more modest price gains of around 5 per cent year over year.
And how about apartments? How did Fraser Valley condos fare in a pandemic year?
A: Apartments began the year with challenges due to strata insurance, and as an investment vehicle or entry-level home for first-time buyers, apartments were clearly held back by the pandemic’s impact on younger workers and renters. Still, even with those challenges, apartment sales across the Fraser Valley finished the year higher and prices appreciated close to 5 per cent.
In terms of the condo sector as a whole, as vaccinations progress, the economy heals, and borders open to tourism and immigration, we anticipate demand for apartments will post a strong recovery in 2021.
Thank you, Brendon! That wraps up the first part of our two-part series on Fraser Valley’s real estate market in 2020 and 2021. Don’t miss part two next week, when Brendon Ogmundson, Senior Economist, BCREA, forecasts what’s in store for hopefully a pandemic-recovery year.
BLACKBERRY LANE 3 – Here is your chance to own this stunning, substantially renovated, 1 bed + BONUS LARGE DEN (Could be a second bedroom), in a very quiet building! The kitchen features SS appliances, including Samsung convection oven, refinished cabinets, quartz counters, under cabinet lighting & opens to the dining/living area. Cozy up in front of the gas fireplace with stone surround or enjoy your coffee on the oversized west facing covered deck! The large master has a walk-in closet with custom organizers and updated spacious ensuite with quartz counters. Other upgrades include new doors, laminate floor, fresh paint throughout & custom organizers in the den as well! Across from Linwood park, off leash dog park + Tons of extra parking on the street. BONUS, Newer Roof, Decks & Boiler!