Issuu on Google+

New Richmond homes at Am-Pri’s Mezzo ›› p.4

Enjoy a South Surrey location and lifestyle at Citimark’s Enclave ›› p.8

July 15, 2010

Starts at steady pace in June, reports CMHC Builders were busy throughout Metro Vancouver in June. Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation reports that 1,250 housing starts were recorded in June in the Vancouver Census Metropolitan Area, bringing the total number of starts for the first half of 2010 to 6,881 homes. “We have a steady pace of new projects breaking ground, and together with a significant increase in the value of residential building Robyn Adamache permits recorded in May, we are well on track for total housing in 2010 to surpass “We are well starts the 10,000 mark,” says on track CMHC senior market analyst Robyn Adfor total amache. housing The current rate starts in suggests that the region will remain under the 2010 to 10-year average level of surpass 15,360 units, Adamache the 10,000 notes, but she adds that rental housing starts mark.” are up. “Rental housing units have totalled 475 units so far this year, surpassing the levels seen for the same period over the past five years,” Adamache says. “Given the steady pace of immigration adding to the region’s population, builders are responding to demand for this type of housing.” Nationally, housing starts were down slightly in June, slipping to 189,300 units (seasonally adjusted at annual rates, or SAAR). In urban British Columbia, the rate of housing starts moved higher during the month of June, edging up 6.3 per cent to 23,600 units SAAR.

Even if homebuyers are purchasing a brand-new home in Metro Vancouver, there’s still a lot of research and prep work they can do before buying, says South Surrey realtor Sarah Daniels. Martin Knowles photo

Preparing to purchase new On the house hunt: even if it’s new, there’s still questions to ask MAGGIE CALLOWAY You have decided that this time when you move, you want to buy a new home. You are looking forward to living in a home with brand-new everything – from furnace to roof – instead of worrying about

what is lurking behind the walls of an older home. New homes have warranties, which are a major comfort, but homebuyers should always conduct due diligence and research on the builder or developer they choose. Visiting homes or developments where the chosen builder has built in the past and asking questions about the quality of work, and the builder’s response to concerns, is always a good idea. This is the biggest purchase in many homeowners’ lives, and it deserves at

least as much research before buying as any other financial commitment. Even when purchasing a new home, there are things homebuyers must be aware of, both financial and practical. An ideal first step is figuring out what you can afford. Visit your lender and have a frank discussion about your financial situation now and in the foreseeable future. Getting a CONTINUED ON P.2


2 • New Local Home | July 15, 2010

Many new homes fall under HST threshold, says FVREB

Talking to a real estate professional who knows the industry and the community is a good idea before purchasing a new home. Realtor Sarah Daniels helps ensure the homebuyers ask all the right questions prior to buying. Martin Knowles photo

Impact of HST ‘will be lessened’ in some areas The Harmonized Sales Tax became official in B.C. as of July 1. And that means purchasers of new homes will be able to find noticeable savings in several Metro Vancouver and Fraser Valley communities, reports the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board. The FVREB, which represents the real estate industry in North Delta, Surrey, White Rock, Langley, Abbotsford and Mission, notes that there are still several Metro Vancouver neighbourhoods and communities where the impact of the HST will be nearly unnoticeable. “Since the majority of new townhomes, apartments and select, new single-family homes in our region sell for less than $525,000, the new housing rebate threshold in B.C., the impact of the new HST will be lessened,” says FVREB president Deanna Horn. The seven per cent Provincial Sales Tax Deanna Horn joins the five per cent Goods and Services Tax July 1, for a combined HST rate of 12 per cent. While the HST applies to the sale price of all new residential properties, the provincial government will provide a rebate up to a maximum of $26,250, the FVREB notes. “According to the provincial government, homes that sell for up to $525,000 will cost the same or less than what they would have with only the GST applied,” the FVREB release states. Horn says that when the HST was first announced, FVREB members were extremely concerned for their clients. Now, although the HST impacts new homes purchases more dramatically than resale, “We’re pleased that through our lobbying efforts alongside other B.C. housing industry representatives (including the Greater Vancouver Home Builders’ Association), we were able to convince the government to increase both the threshold for the new housing rebate, and the amount of the rebate itself,” Horn says. “The result is that most buyers of new, attached homes and select detached homes in the Fraser Valley will be able to maximize the benefit of the government’s rebate program.” According to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, the average price of a new townhome in Surrey in May was $475,154 and $403,469 in Abbotsford. The average price of a new apartment home – 1,000 square feet – is $294,860 in Surrey, $273,880 in Langley, and $2323,800 in Abbotsford, the FVREB notes.

“Stay in close contact

with the developer” Off the front: “You

should do a walk-through with the builder and make a deficiency list” – Sarah Daniels CONTINUED FROM P.1

pre-qualified mortgage and looking at homes that fall into your price range is never a bad idea. You may think you can handle being house-rich and cash-poor, but the romance soon fades when a homebuyer realizes he can’t afford his usual recreational pursuits because of an enormous mortgage. Sit down and really talk with your family about lifestyle choices. Do you want to live in a rural setting or is a downtown condo more your style? What about commuting? And if a commute is in your future, how long should it be and what will be the cost? If you have children, having schools and recreational facilities nearby is important, as are local playgrounds where children can play together. Consider your needs first: how many bedrooms? Total living space? Do you need a big kitchen and family room? How much yard space will the family use and maintain? After needs comes wants. Would you like an extra room for an office or exercise room? Do you want a swimming pool? Do you entertain a lot through the summer and an outdoor kitchen would be fantastic?

New homes at Morningstar’s South Pointe in Delta come with full, unfinished basements.

Sarah Daniels, a realtor with Bay Realty in South Surrey, says when homebuyers are looking to purchase a brand-new home, they should still make their offer to buy subject to financing, and they should look at the builder’s disclosure statements with their realtor if purchasing a strata property. “You should also do a walkthrough with the builder and make what is called a deficiency list, if there are things that need to be either changed or repaired,” Daniels says. “Both you and your builder should sign off on the list, so you both agree with the contents. The walk through should be done about a week to ten days before the closing date.” Sometimes, the house is still being built

BUYING NEW

when viewed, so it’s hard to do an inspection, Daniels notes. In that case, she advises having a copy of the final occupancy permit. She adds that another thing to keep in mind when having a house built or with a pre-sale purchase is the date of occupancy. “If you sold a home with the expectation of moving in on a certain date and the new house or condo isn’t ready, you need a contingency plan to get you from A to B,” Daniels says. “The buyer needs to stay in close contact with the developer or builder so they have a firm idea of the completion date.” What each homebuyer looks for in a new CONTINUED ON P.3

Publisher: Fiona Harris • 604-575-5822 • publisher@newlocalhome.com Editor: Tricia Leslie • 604-575-5346 • editor@newlocalhome.com Reporter: Maggie Calloway • maggiec@blackpress.ca Advertising Sales: Black Press National Sales • Adrian Saunders • 604-575-5812 • adrians@blackpress.ca Online Advertising: 604-575-5822 Designer: Brad Smith • bsmith@blackpress.ca New Local Home is published once a week by Black Press Group Ltd. (Suite 309 - 5460 152 Street, Surrey, B.C. V3S 5J9) 350,000 copies are distributed free across Metro Vancouver. Reproduction in whole or part is prohibited.


New Local Home | July 15, 2010 • 3

Look into local amenities before moving CONTINUED FROM P.2

home is different, but Morningstar Homes vice-president of sales and marketing Deborah Calahan breaks it down into a priority list, based on a recent Morningstar survey. Location tops that list, Calahan says, followed by floorplan, then builder reputation. “Location is because (it’s) where you want to live, and the floorplans (are important) because they have to work with the way your family lives,” Calahan says. “People are now using their homes as a place to hang out with family and friends, a meeting place. The great room/kitchen area has expanded into a gathering place with large islands between the kitchen and great room where your guests can enjoy a glass of wine while watching the meal being prepared.” She adds that the focus on children’s rooms and play spaces has evolved. “Our parents used to think nothing of kids sharing rooms or assigning (children) small rooms, but we are not that way anymore, our kids get it all,” she says. “People are looking for large secondary (or kids’) rooms. We have incorporated this into our floor plans.” Remember to relax and enjoy the process. Take your time, get your financial ducks in a row, research the builder’s reputation and look at new homes. Then all that’s left is simply, to enjoy your new home.

Redwood Park in South Surrey is a favourite destination for five-year-old Geordon McMaster and his family. When purchasing a new home, it’s a good idea to find out what kinds of parks, schools, amenities and recreational facilities are nearby, says a local realtor. Brian Giebelhaus photo/Peace Arch News

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4 • New Local Home | July 15, 2010

Make Mezzo your home

Am-Pri offers new homes in Richmond A vibrant, thriving city, Richmond offers much in the way of lifestyle for those who choose to live there. Nestled in the heart of Richmond’s established North McLennan neighbourhood, Am-Pri Construction Ltd.’s latest development, Mezzo, is attracting homebuyers with its high-quality construction and central location. A small collection of 24 three-bedroom townhomes, Mezzo offers limitless lifestyle options to its residents; everything is within reach, from worldclass dining, shopping, entertainment and leisure opportunities to a reputable school system. Two new McLennan neighbourhood parks are just steps away from Mezzo, notes Am-Pri general manager Amit Sandhu, while Landsdowne Centre, Richmond Centre, city hall, Minoru Park and other amenities are all nearby. Am-Pri builds it homes with direct supervision from its founders throughout the entire process, Sandhu notes, and adds that Am-Pri understands purchasing a new home is one of the biggest decisions people will make in their lives. “We thrive on creating meaningful relationships with our clients, which enriches the experience of buying a

to Hwy 1

CONTINUED ON P.5

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‘We thrive on creating meaningful relationships with our clients,” says Am-Pri Construction general manager Amit Sandhu. Rob Newell photo


Stylish townhomes, central location

New Local Home | July 15, 2010 • 5

Mezzo offers value, quality CONTINUED FROM P.4

new home,” Sandhu says. “We try to put ourselves in the shoes of the homeowner and ask ourselves questions when looking at blueprints, (such as) ‘Will this feel spacious or constricted?’ or ‘Will this door be an obstacle when it swings open?’” These may seem like simple details, but it can be amazing how often such details are overlooked, Sandhu says. Materials for the new homes are selected with sustainability and the environment in mind, as well as practicality and decreased operating costs for homeowners, he notes. Mezzo’s traditional architecture features elegant details including deep gables, traditional wood trim and CONTINUED ON P.6

Aiyana Markling flies a Revolution four-line kite at Richmond’s Garry Point Park, a popular recreational site. Richmond Review/Black Press photo


6 • New Local Home | July 15, 2010

Move into Mezzo today

Fenced yards give security CONTINUED FROM P.5

decorative window boxes. Inside, entry foyers are graced with imported floor tiles, while laminate flooring extends through living areas. Main-floor living spaces all feature nine-foot ceilings, painted wood baseboards and door casings. Kitchens feature stainless steel appliances and granite countertops; luxurious ensuites have deep soaker tubs; and closets come with built-in shelving. “There are spacious patios and fenced yards for each home at Mezzo,� Sandhu says, making it easy for homeowners to enjoy barbecues in the summer; homes have fireplaces to ward off the chill of winter nights as well. All Mezzo homes feature three bedrooms, two-and-a-half bathrooms, and two-car tandem parking; square footage ranges from 1,190 square feet to 1,384 sq. ft. Homes are priced from $520,000. Visit www.ampri.ca for more information.

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8 • New Local Home | July 15, 2010

Enjoy an Enclave lifestyle

New homes in a fabulous location Citimark, developer of Enclave in Morgan Heights, has surpassed itself with the sixth phase of Enclave, a collection of 129 brandnew townhomes in the trendy South Surrey neighbourhood. Built on a quiet, tree-lined, nothrough street, the homes feature classic West Coast architecture, which fits naturally into the surrounding setting, close to acres of nearby parks and nature trails. This distinctive design is enhanced by details such as bay windows, gables, brackets, rafters, trellises and board-and-batten siding; three distinctive exterior colour schemes give the homes individuality. The location offers easy access to major commuter routes, shopping, services and schools. The Morgan Crossing lifestyle centre and the big-box stores and coffee shops of Grandview Corners are within easy walking distance. White Rock, with its scenic beaches and unique boutique dining and shopping, is only 10 minutes away. Crescent Beach, a little smaller and quieter but just as beautiful, is also only five to 10 minutes away. Existing schools will soon be joined by both a new elementary and high school, which are now in the planning stage. Enclave is attracting a wide range of buyers, notes Mark Manuel, Enclave sales manager. “We are seeing a lot of young couples buying into the project, most of them professionals planning on starting a family,” he says. “On the other end of the scale, we have empty nesters who appreciate the convenience of the location and the ability to lock and go.” The uniqueness of the project continues in the interior with 15 different floor plans to choose from, ranging from two-bedroom homes to spacious, family sized four-bedroom end homes; three different interior colour schemes are offered. Floor plans have been designed to efficiently use space and maximize value. Overheight nine-foot ceilings throughout the main floor give a feeling of openness and grandeur and, coupled with stylish laminate wood and tile flooring, create a feeling of elegance. CONTINUED ON P.10

Citimark’s Enclave offers brand-new townhomes to prospective new homebuyers in a fantastic South Surrey location. There are more than 15 floorplans to choose from, ranging from two-bedroom homes to spacious, family sized four-bedroom homes. ‘We are seeing a lot of young couples buying into the project, most of them professionals planning on starting a family,” says Enclave sales manager Mark Manuel. ‘On the other end of the scale, we have emptynesters who appreciate the convenience of the location and the ability to lock and go.” Rob Newell photos


New Local Home | July 15, 2010 • 9

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10 • New Local Home | July 15, 2010

South Surrey living

Find your dream home at Enclave CONTINUED FROM P.8

Durable tile flooring completes the kitchen and adjacent family room or nook, while an eco-friendly Energy Star Deluxe Whirlpool stainless steel appliance package is stylish and sustainable. Solid wood shaker-style kitchen cabinets, distinctive stainless steel finish pulls, granite countertops, a full-height tile backsplash and double-basin stainless steel sink add to this carefully designed space. All homes feature at least two full bathrooms. The private and wellappointed master ensuite bathrooms feature radiant in-floor heat – welcome on winter mornings – as well as granite countertops and undermount sinks. “I think what makes this project very special is the high-end finishes that are basic to every townhome,” says Manuel. Full-height fireplace surrounds are pre-wired – cable, power and component cable conduit – for easy and sleek installation of flat screen TVs and all related systems. Environmentally friendly features include the Energy Star appliances, dual-flush toilets, low-flow shower heads, low VOC paints, energysaving light bulbs throughout and exterior light fixtures that reduce light pollution. Enclave homes are priced from $349,900. Visit www.citimark.ca.

All Enclave homes have at least two full bathrooms. Overheight, nine-foot ceilings on the main floor add to the feeling of airy spaciousness. Kitchens come with stainless steel appliances, highquality cabinetry, a full-height backsplash and granite countertops. Master ensuite bathrooms feature infloor radiant heat; both master and secondary bedrooms are good sizes. Several ecofriendly features, such as Energy Star appliances, dual flush toilets and energy-saving light bulbs and light fixtures help make Enclave homes more energy efficient and sustainable. Rob Newell photos


New Local Home | July 15, 2010 • 11

< Skye-Soleil-Aqua Presentation Centre, Unit 3, 1233 Main St., Squamish. 604-616-1215 = Furry Creek-Ocean Crest 415- Furry Creek Dr. 604-787-1456

@ Morgan Heights 26th Ave & 164th St. 604-531-1111, 604-420-4200 A Cathedral Grove 2738-158th Street. 604-541-7383 B SouthPort 3677-143 St. 604-292-0871 C High Street 402-2950 King George Hwy. 604-536-9333 D Summerfield 109-172A St. 604-536-1155

Maple Ridge/Pitt Meadows

North Vancouver

Port Coquitlam

< Wedgewood 768 Orwell St. 604-980-2508 = The Kimpton 210 W. 13th St. 604-988-3020

< Pearl 2343 Atkins Ave. 604-308-0227 = The Shaughnessy (on Lions Park) 2950 Glen Dr. 604-461-2750

Vancouver

Richmond < River Green 5111 Hollybridge Way. 604-233-2633 = Mezzo 7373 Turnill St. 604-725-1250 > Emerald 7180 No. 3 Rd. 604-244-8333 ? Hamilton Station 22788 Westminster Hwy. 604-279-8866 @ Wishing Tree Alexander Gardens. 604-871-4296 A Cambridge Park 9191 Odlin Rd. 778-297-7511 B Saffron 180-8360 Granville Ave. 604-270-2482 < Highland Park 160th & 24 Ave. 604-542-8995 = Glenmore at Morgan Heights 161A St. & 24 Ave. 604-542-8863 > Wills Creek 160th & 32 Ave. 604-542-6200 ? Kaleden 2729-158 Street. 604-541-4246 .

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Cressey offers brand-new Vancouver homes at James, in the emerging, sustainable neighbourhood of southeast False Creek. All James homeowners will have access to an amazing rooftop outdoor facility that includes community garden plots and UP Lounge.

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< Augusta Walk / Woods at Provinceton 18199 70th Ave, 778-571-1088 = Hazelwood Estates 7881 164A Street. 604-657-5220 > Knoll 7348 192A Street, Surrey. 604-574-0001 ? Quattro 114-10768 Whalley Blvd. 604-581-8000 @ Ultra 105-13339 102 Ave. 604-588-6999 A Taylor 1-8767162 St. 604-584-1114

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< The Mark 1035 Seymour St. 604-687-4353 = Pacific Spirit UBC Westbrook Village. 604-221-8878 604-264-6477 > James 289 W. 2nd Avenue. 604-275-1000 ? Spice on Robson Nicola and Robson streets. 604-683-5555

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< Brighton at Silver Ridge 13851 232 St. 604-270-1889 = Duet 22977 116 Ave. 604-453-4962 > Main Stone Creek 10116-241 St. 604-463-5000

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? Cornerstone 5655 210A Street. 604-534-6000 @ High Point Equestrian Estates 20048 2nd Ave. 604-531-1111

200th St.

On Tour

> Tatton 1240 Holtby, Coquitlam. 604-552-2220 ? Larkin House (East) 1456 Avondale St. 604-461-7113 @ Belmont 1456 Avondale St. 604-461-7113 A Sterling 3412 Wilkie Ave. B Larkin House 1131 Pipeline Road. 604-552-1113


12 • New Local Home | July 15, 2010

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I think cottage life agrees with her.

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