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W E S T C O A S T

April 15, 2016

CONDOMINIUM www.westcoastcondominium.ca

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Westbourne Residences key to renaissance of historic neighbourhood P7-9

EXPERT HELP ON HAND

LIPSTICK RENOVATIONS

STRATA RULES ON RENOS

LUXURY LISTINGS

How to… Choose a great (and reliable) renovator

The best tips for buyrenovate-ip investors

Your design dreams vs. your building’s bylaws P20

After our pick of high-end presale units – now our top listed condos P30

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April 15, 2016

Condo market snapshots New West Vancouver North Shore Richmond/South Delta

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Tri-Cities Burnaby Surrey

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O D L O S T O JUS New Price • Penthse Suite • Pet/Rent w/ Rest • Soaring Ceilings • 2 parking • Wrap Terrace • Main Fee: $978

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DOWNTOWN

COMING SOON to Marpole

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Ways to improve a condo for immediate resale without spending a fortune

Renovating your strata unit

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What changes am I allowed to make? Tony Gioventu of the CHOA explains condo reno rules

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Spacious & Quiet View Home • 641 s.f. • 1 Bdrm & Den • 1 Bathroom

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Metro Vancouver’s luxury listings Our pick of the area’s most fabulous condos and penthouses currently listed for sale

O D L O S T O JUS

1 Bedroom & Den 1 Bathroom Garden Level

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Tips for lipstick renovations

• 1,437 s.f. • Georgie Awrd Wnr • Great Location • 3 Bdrms & Den • Gourmet Kitchen • 2 Pkg/1 Stg • 2 Bathrooms • H/W Floors • Main: $410

$959,000

for more details on this property contact us at 604.224.5277

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For the complete schedule of our open houses & our listings complete with enhanced detail go to...

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The GVHBA’s Bob de Wit offers great advice on hiring the right pro for the job

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• 1,970 s.f. • 2 Bdrm & Den • 3 Bathroom

How to… Choose a renovator

Expansive Mountain Views

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Breathtaking 360 Views

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How Westbourne Residences are key to a New West renaissance

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Historic neighbourhood’s new life

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EDITORIAL

BUYERS

Affordability is the civic duty of the City and its residents

that we assist in realizing their real estate dreams

ENJOY

Let’s all work together to find real solutions to our housing affordability problems

I

’m looking to buy a condo in Vancouver – in fact, I just put in a substantially over-asking-price offer on a tiny studio downtown. I’m lucky enough to have inherited a down payment that allows me to do this. It’s about the sixth offer I’ve made, having seen around 20 units so far. Those open houses have been characterized by streams of people all clamouring to get a piece of Vancouver real estate – or to simply find a home. There are so many people vying for each property that they’re panicbuying – leveraging themselves to the hilt to put in previously inconceivable offers. The prices some of these condos are going for are quite staggering, and it’s really tough to compete. However, as incoming Urban Development Institute chair Jon Stovell observed recently as a guest on my Real Estate Therapist radio show, it’s up to us to ease the problem – as a city, and as a people. How do you solve the problem of not enough homes to go around? Simple: create more homes. This is a basic example of Economics

101 – supply and demand. And as a city, we have woefully failed to keep up with the level of demand that we’re seeing. Not just from overseas investors lured by the low loonie, but also from immigrant buyers from all over the world (myself included), and interprovincial migrants. There are so many ways in which the City of Vancouver could pave the way to create many more homes, but is not doing so. These include: much taller towers in high-density areas; rezoning single-family neighbourhoods for low-level densification; rezoning for row homes near arterial corridors; allowing the sale of laneway homes and basement suites; allowing microcondos; innovative new housing forms such as small homes and stacked townhouses... the list goes on. And we must all follow our civic duty to back these changes and new developments, instead of adopting a nimbyistic attitude to preserve our own neighbourhoods. Change is upon us. We must turn the situation into a wonderful economic opportunity and say, “Welcome, world – come on in.”

Joannah Connolly Editor-in-Chief West Coast Condominium Joannah Connolly is the editor-in-chief of West Coast Condominium and Western Investor newspaper, and is the editor and content manager of Real Estate Weekly and REW.ca. She appears regularly on radio, TV and conference panels discussing the Vancouver real estate market.

W E S T C O A S T

CONDOMINIUM PUBLISHER: Janai York EDITOR-IN-CHIEF: Joannah Connolly EDITOR: Jill Lunde CONTRIBUTING EDITOR: Frank O’Brien DIRECTOR, SALES: Lynn Fry SALES REPRESENTATIVES: Tracey Aussem, Rebecca Bookham, Audrey White, Audrie Gilson, Jackie Mollenhauer PRODUCTION MANAGER: Holly Burge PRODUCTION: Darko Isic, Peter Gallagher DESIGNERS: Carol Rui, Arslan Sultan, Joanne Yen

Your essential guide to condo life in the Lower Mainland

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VANCOUVER HEAD OFFICE: 303 West 5th Avenue, Vancouver, B.C. V5Y-1J6 COPYRIGHT: WEST COAST CONDOMINIUM is published bi-weekly by Real Estate Weekly Partnership. Copyright 2015. While every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of articles and advertising that appear in each edition of West Coast Condominium, the publisher may not be held responsible for any errors or omissions that may from time to time occur. No part of this publication may be quoted or reprinted in any medium without the express written permission of Real Estate Weekly Partnership.

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CONDOMINIUM

April 15, 2016 5


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MARKET

New Westminster March condo sales in the Royal City were steady but not over the roof By Jill Lunde

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s the condo spending spree heats up, buyers intent on finding a home in New West can take heart. Sales here last month were up over February but by just a touch under 10 per cent. Product is not flying off the shelves quite as fast as in other areas, and that makes for more realistic pricing. That doesn’t mean you can avoid bidding wars (one property sold for 27 per cent more than its list price), but most sellers are looking to accept reasonable offers.

Uptown This New West neighbourhood is one of the city’s distinctive commercial hubs where condo developments rub shoulders with single family homes. The area’s 65 active condo listings range in price from $121,900 for a one-bedroom in Vista Royal that was listed last July to $588,000 for a twobedroom in The Uptown that came on the market in late March. The area’s newest listing appeared on April 1 (no fooling!) and is for a one-bedroom in

Cedarhill Manor listed for $149,900. One of the Vista Royal suites changed hands in March. After 16 days on the market, that one-bedroom sold for one per cent less than its $135,000 sticker price. Of 19 area sales in March, the happiest seller may well have been the one who listed their two-bedroom in San Sebastian for $249,800 on March 22 and sold it for $316,001 on March 29.

MARKET SNAPSHOT

Glenbrooke North This is another close-knit New West neighbourhood with a mix of condos, townhouses and detached homes bordering Queen’s Park. There are only two active condo listings here; both are in Eight West. A onebedroom is listed for $325,000 while a two-bedroom is for sale for $389,800. Another Eight West two-bedroom changed hands in March. Listed for 10 days at $418,000, it sold for $437,500. Two other recent neighbourhood sales spent only five days on the market. A one-bedroom in The Winchester sold for six per cent over its $299,900 list price and a two-bedroom in The Westerly went for seven per cent over its $349,900 asking price.

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Active condo listings* 155

New listings in March

111

Condos sold in March

$323,500

New Westminster March median selling price

$361

Median price per square foot*

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Median days on market* Type of inventory* Studio: 1% 1 BR: 38% 2 BR: 53% 3 BR: 8%

That doesn’t mean you can avoid bidding wars (one property sold for 27 per cent more than its list price) 6 April 15, 2016

CONDOMINIUM

*Active listings up to April 1, 2016


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affordability within a historic location Brow of the Hill neighbourhood is undergoing a renaissance bringing back its original charm and sophistication

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n the heart of the province’s oldest city is where JAGO Developments (Westbourne) Ltd. will launch Westbourne Residences. Centrally located in the historic community of Brow of the Hill, Westbourne offers easy access to two Skytrain stations, a short drive to Burnaby’s Edmonds community and Metrotown, and is only 20 minutes to downtown Vancouver. “In the early days of New Westminster’s development, Brow of the Hill was a popular neighbourhood for the city’s professionals,” says 8 April 15, 2016

CONDOMINIUM

James Askew, president of rareEarth Project Marketing Ltd. “It’s a wellestablished neighbourhood, which was originally planned with large lots and wide tree-lined boulevards. Today this neighbourhood is undergoing quite a renaissance to bring back its original charm and sophistication.” In addition to being located in a quiet neighbourhood, residents of Westbourne will be in close proximity to the city’s new waterfront Riverwalk, complete with volleyball courts and grassy areas for families and kids to enjoy.


Designed by Richard Ciccozzi Architects, Westbourne Residences will feature a boutique four-storey building blending classic brick charm with today’s contemporary design. Westbourne showcases 50 spacious condominium residences, plus five townhomes, located on the quiet tree-lined 5th Avenue away from busy congested streets, yet only a few minutes’ walk to shops, services and transportation. Starting from $199,900 for a onebedroom unit up to $595,900 for a three-bedroom townhome, these wellappointed homes offer tremendous value. “It’s a much more affordable option, and more and more people are moving

Today this neighbourhood is undergoing quite a renaissance to bring back its original charm and sophistication here for its central location within the Lower Mainland,” Askew adds. “With most homes priced under $375,000 for spacious layouts, we feel this is the best new home value in Greater Vancouver.” Residents will also enjoy rooftop courtyard amenities, which feature a large gathering space with outdoor kitchen, children’s play area and even a bocce court. Meanwhile, inside there will be a comfortable entertaining

lounge with a big screen theatre, televisions, bar, billiards table and a yoga studio – creating a sense of community for the owners and their families.

Thoughtfully designed, these homes reflect the lifestyle needs of Vancouver’s first time home buyers, downsizers and empty nesters. Previews for Westbourne Residences are slated for early April at the presentation centre, located at the corner of 12th Street and 5th Avenue. Estimated completion is spring 2017. For more information, visit www.westbourneliving.com

Westbourne Residences launches Canada’s first paperless presales process Yongle Technologies innovation offers next-generation presales technology

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estbourne Residences has launched Canada’s first paperless presales process, using Yongle Technologies Inc.’s innovative system, which completely eliminates the use of paper in presale contracts. According to Richard Bell, president of Yongle Technologies, the paperless process is all about streamlining the sales engagement and closing process. He explains, “Data from the sales centre can flow through to the developer’s lawyer’s office and from there to the buyer’s lawyer’s office. A sharing of data amongst all stakeholders creates new efficiencies, avoids errors and eliminates thousands of sheets of paper.”

The system offers a number of advantages: • Buyers unable to attend the sales site can work online with the sales team. • In addition, families with busy lives will have the opportunity to fit the buying process into their schedule. • For developers, real-time data enables them to understand the current market demands and adjust their project and/or marketing to match the demand. For more information, visit www.yongletechnologies.com

CONDOMINIUM

April 15, 2016 9


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Vancouver Who’s the hottest market of them all? By Jill Lunde

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or sheer volume, the city of Vancouver is hard to beat when it comes to condo sales. And, it’s not too shabby when it comes to percentage gains either. Vancouver’s West Side owners no doubt appreciated seeing March sales rise 24 per cent over February. But, it was the East Side that won the battle of the month-to-month analysis. Sales there were up 50 per cent in March. If you would rather compare trends, the prize goes to the West Side. Sales from January to March 2016 were up 35 per cent over the same period in 2015, while the East Side noted a modest increase of less than four per cent. Making the Vancouver market even more cutthroat is the number of listings. There was only 0.7 per cent more of these on the West Side in March compared with February and close to two per cent fewer on the East Side.

Yaletown This historic neighbourhood is one of Vancouver’s most sought-after areas with 79 active listings; more

than half of which were new to the market in March. The cheapest condo is currently a one-bedroom in Pacific Promenade that was listed February 1 for $429,900. Homes here can have stratospheric price tags. The most expensive current listing is $8.9 million for a four-bedroom in Kings Landing. March was kind to Yaletown sellers with well over 60 properties changing hands last month. Accepted offers ranged from 11 per cent under asking (a three-bedroom in Pacific Plaza that sold for $1,588,888) to 23 per cent over asking (a one-bedroom in Yaletown Park 3 that closed at $576,000).

MARKET SNAPSHOT

848

Active condo listings* 891

New listings in March

890

Condos sold in March

Fraser This East Side neighbourhood is a mix of residential homes and eclectic shops. There are six active condo listings beginning at $330,000 for a two-bedroom in Kingsgate Manor to $429,000 for a one-bedroom in Century. Two Century condos sold in March. One, a one-bedroom listed at $429,900, took a week to sell for six per cent over asking. The other, a two-bedroom unit listed at $598,000, also took a week to sell. It went for $662,300 – 11 per cent over asking.

$428,000

East Side March median selling price

$629,500

West Side March median selling price

$823

Median price per square foot*

22

Median days on market* Type of inventory* Studio: 3% 1 BR: 40% 2 BR: 48% 3+ BR: 9%

Making the Vancouver market even more cutthroat is the number of listings 10 April 15, 2016

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*Active listings up to April 1, 2016


14 IMPORTANT QUESTIONS SELLERS need answered before hiring a real estate agent to market & sell your home! Literally tens of thousands of dollars are riding on the agent you hire to market, present and negotiate the sale of your Vancouver home. And let’s face it - in real estate, as in life - not all things are created equal. Honest answers to these questions from the agents you are interviewing will help you to decide whom to entrust to market and sell your home for top dollar with the least amount of hassle.

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What makes you different? Why should I list with you? What unique strategies do you use? Today, it is a much tougher and more dynamic real estate market than it was even 5 years ago. A successful agent stays up-to-speed on the complex, multi-dimensional marketing needed to reach all buyers, including mobile and internet-savvy consumers and international prospects.

2

How many properties have you marketed and sold in the last 12 months?

Did you know that only 10% of Vancouver agents sold more than 10 homes in the last 12 months? Working with top producers ensures \RX DUH UHFHLYLQJ WKH EHQH¿W RI WKHLU experience, resources and their proven plan to deliver a successful sale.

3

How many contracts have you negotiated in the last 10 years?

The more contracts negotiated and the more exposure to cross cultural scenarios translate into better advice which delivers better results for you.

4

Do you work solo or with a team?

There are simply too many steps in the full process for a solo agent to do a great job of everything. A team approach is the only way to ensure you receive the attention to detail and the full service and consistent coverage that you deserve.

5

How do you manage all showings across all of your listings?

&RQVLGHU WKDW WDNLQJ R̆ WKH EDVLF WZR weeks of holidays, stats and 1 day per

week means your solo agent misses 74 days (20%) of the year to meet face to face with prospective buyers and highlight the best of your home. Does the agent have licensed property showing specialists as part of their team or do they miss opportunities to show and sell?

6

What is your pricing strategy for my home?

A realistic, market-based price point will attract the full scope of buyers and not just those looking to “steal the deal”. Setting the right price requires skill, experience, plus local market trends knowledge.

7

How long, on average, does it take your listings to sell?

Ask if the agent tends to sell a home faster or slower than average and compare that answer to your goals; this is an indicator of their expertise.

8

Beyond posting my home on MLS and its related pickup sites, where will my home be marketed online? Today, 92% of home buyers use the internet during their home buying process and nearly half of buyers look RQOLQH DV WKHLU ¿UVW VWHS 'RHV KHVKH have a website dedicated exclusively to showcasing their clients’ homes? Does the agent’s internet marketing plan assure accessibility in Chinese and optimization for mobile devices?

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Do you provide references from past clients?

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What homes have you sold in my area?

An informed agent will provide you with their performance in your neighbourhood and area.

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Do you provide a written schedule of the services you deliver?

A set of performance promises will clearly detail what you can expect from the agent, including recourse if they don’t deliver.

In closing, the sale of your home is likely one of the largest financial decisions you will make. The right agent with the skills, the plans and the commitment will deliver distinctly better results. We present these questions for your consideration in order that you make the right decision for you and your family. Please use these questions as a foundation for making the right choice for your needs.

12

Do you provide regular, updated market evaluations on my home?

Once your home is listed, how often do you update me on relevant market activity and overview?

13

What is your marketing budget for my home so as to stand out versus comparable listings? What percent of the agent’s commission will be dedicated to the marketing budget and how does this compare?

14

What marketing media mix will you use to display my home to the widest array of potential buyers?

Successful agents use a mix of search advertising, social media plus web sites for Vancouver, China, the U.S. and other international markets, and print media.

A trustworthy agent will be delighted WR SURYLGH UHIHUHQFHV IURP VDWLV¿HG clients for you to review.

Buying or Selling, you’ve got to have Faith CONDOMINIUM

April 15, 2016 11


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Bob de Wit offers advice on how to find a renovator who will deliver on your dreams By Bob de Wit

Professional renovators show a commitment to maintain their professional status through continuing education and industry involvement

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he first step in hiring a professional renovator is to source renovation companies that seem well suited for your project. Look around your neighbourhood for renovation projects underway. Ask family and friends who have recently completed a renovation. Most people enjoy discussing their renovation experiences. Talk with suppliers you may be considering for your renovation. Reputable renovators will have a network of suppliers with whom they conduct business regularly. Visit home shows, and check out industry programs such as www.ovationawards.ca for awardwinning projects and renovators. The GVHBA also hosts several free home renovation shows that offer useful advice and that give you opportunities to meet directly with renovators in one easy location.

Prepare a list of questions in advance Once you have narrowed down a list, you will need to sit down with each renovator to discuss your project and their services in details. Make sure you discuss the same criteria with each company to help you compare them later. Be prepared to talk about your project in detail. Outline your plans, what you want to achieve, and the renovation services you are looking for. If you are uncertain about your needs, ask the renovators to explain the entire process and the services offered by their company. Meet with prospective renovators in your home, one at a time. Do this as early in your project as possible, when you have a good idea of what 12 April 15, 2016

you want, but before you have worked out too many details. A renovator’s technical experience and practical knowledge with building codes and design trends can be a great asset in the planning phase of your project. Don’t be afraid to ask for ideas and suggestions. Experienced renovators often see possibilities overlooked by the homeowner.

Ask about experience and past projects Ensure the renovator has the kind of experience and skillset you need for your job. How long they have been in business? Do they have any special skills or expertise? Always follow up on the references provided by the renovator. If you found the renovator through a personal recommendation, you should still follow up. Ask previous clients about their satisfaction with the company and the results. Was the project completed on time? On budget? Would they hire the renovator

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again or recommend the company to friends?

Get quotes Three companies should be sufficient. Most often the bids of experienced professional renovators fall within the same price range of five to 10 percent. Make certain the renovators are specifying the same quality materials and are offering to do the same work. Verify that taxes are included in the price. Then, get the specifics in writing. At a minimum, contract details should include a description of the work, the materials used, start and finish dates, as well as the price and payment schedule. Ask your lawyer to check it before you sign.

Good management is essential to achieve your renovation goals. Professional renovators will coordinate your entire project. Once complete, a professional renovator will still be there with a commitment to after-sales service. Professional renovators show a commitment to maintain their professional status through continuing education and industry involvement, always offer contracts, will provide a list of references for previous projects, and show proof of liability insurance and workers’ compensation. When you add it all up, working with a professional renovator is your best assurance that you will get the quality and value that you can enjoy for years to come.

Bob de Wit is the CEO of the Greater Vancouver Home Builders’ Association (GVHBA), representing the residential construction industry in the Greater Vancouver Area. Celebrating 40 years in 2014, GVHBA has 880 members and is proudly affiliated with the provincial and national Canadian Home Builders’ Associations. You can reach Bob at bob@gvhba.org.


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INVESTING

Lipstick renovations can do wonders Small improvements pay off in fastmoving market

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s a condominium investor planning a buy-fix-flip strategy, keep in mind that the whole idea is to not spend a lot of money on renovations and improvements. Don’t fall in love with the place, but do apply “lipstick” renovations to make others fall in love with it. Lipstick renovations are those subtle improvements that can be done inexpensively but which can make a dramatic difference in the market value. Condominiums and townhomes are especially susceptible to lipstick renovations because of the uniform way the majority of projects are designed and finished. Unlike with detached houses, you don’t have to worry about landscaping, painting an exterior, doing roof repairs, or replacing windows to increase curb appeal. Also, let’s be honest here: in Metro Vancouver’s white-hot condominium market you have a much better chance of selling your investment faster and for more money than anywhere else in Canada. A study by the Conference Board of Canada showed that the average price of a resale home in Metro Vancouver increased by 25.6 per cent in 2015, nearly twice as high as second-place Toronto and four times higher than the average in 28 cities surveyed. On Vancouver’s East Side, for example, the benchmark price of a resale condo has increased nearly seven per cent in the past three months according to real estate board 14 April 15, 2016

There are many things that can be painted rather than replaced, which can save you a ton of money statistics. Also, the average Vancouver condo apartment is selling in less than 20 days, with townhomes selling in an average of 13 days, and multiple offers are common. In such a fast-moving market, lipstick renovations go a long way.

Getting down to the nittygritty After cleaning, the first thing that you should do when fixing up your condo is paint. There are many things that can be painted rather than replaced, which can save you a ton of money. For example, older kitchen cabinets that are in good condition but don’t look nice can be updated with a coat of paint. Even heat registers can be spray-painted rather than replaced.

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There are new paint products created to redo counter tops, and paint that can be used to cover an old bathtub. Spend some time in the paint area at your local hardware store, and the products that can be used to improve items that you thought you’d have to replace might surprise you. If you are a serial flipper, buy white paint by the gallon. Look for larger buckets of paint that can stretch further – they are usually cheaper per gallon, saving you money. You can add tint to small batches of it, which

will allow you to get different colours out of one bucket of white paint. Other lipstick improvements include adding a new kitchen backsplash with low-cost and attractive subway tiles. To improve a bathroom, shop for drop-in vanities, fancy lights and ceramic tiles. All of these are fairly inexpensive but make a dramatic difference. The whole concept is to aim for a wow factor that will make your condo stand out and sell fast so you can move onto to your next investment.

Frank O’Brien is editor of Western Investor, the largest commercial real estate investment newspaper in Western Canada.


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Dexter Team) has the knowledge and the experience to support and guide you through the entire process.

Your one-stop source of Lower Mainland home listings and real estate news.

Wherever you are, we can help. Contact us with confidence. Enjoy the security and confidence which comes from dealing with professionals who care. Call or visit us at www.dexterrealty.com

16 April 15, 2016

CONDOMINIUM

RESALE HOME LISTINGS | NEW HOMES FOR SALE AGENT PROFILES | REAL ESTATE MARKET NEWS HOME BUYING & SELLING ADVICE

Email: rewads@rew.ca or Call 604.379.4576


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MARKET

Burnaby What’s the most you’d pay over asking? Last month in Burnaby, the answer was 19 per cent MARKET SNAPSHOT By Jill Lunde

I

t’s spring madness and it seems as though everyone wants to get in on the condo action. Burnaby sales were up 37 per cent over March but it is when you compare year-overyear stats that the mind truly boggles. Nearly 57 per cent more condos changed hands between January and March this year than the year before. While there were substantially more owners selling their condos last month than in February (326 versus 281), there were actually fewer properties available than the previous March when 343 owners were trying to cash in on the frenzy. How much more is your Burnaby condo worth than a year ago? The median selling price jumped from $390,000 in March 2015 to $433,950 last month.

Forest Glen This small neighbourhood in the vicinity of Deer Lake has a number of newer apartments. There are 20 active listings here ranging in age from one to 41 and in price from $320,000 for a two-bedroom in Edgeview Manor to $1,160,000 for a two-bedroom in

Sovereign. (The unobstructed views of the water, mountains, and downtown account for the latter’s high price.) There have been a number of sales recently in Sovereign. One twobedroom home was on the market for 15 days before its owners let it go for two per cent below its $868,000 list price. Other owners fared better. Two two-bedroom units changed hands for one per cent over asking after eight and 10 days on the market. A onebedroom home in the building took only five days to sell for seven per cent over its $$429,800 price.

Active condo listings* 326

New listings in March

322

Condos sold in March

Government Road This eclectic neighbourhood is a favourite with nature lovers. Condo listings are slim; there is currently only one for sale (a two-bedroom in Woodstone Place for $265,000) but sales have been busy. Of seven condos that changed hands in March, six went for over asking including another two-bedroom in Woodstone Place that took a week to sell for 16 per cent over its $225,000 list price. An owner in Lougheed Estates was also likely pleased with the 10 per cent over-asking bid for their $308,000 listing that sold in eight days.

While there were substantially more owners selling their condos last month than in February, there were actually fewer properties available than the previous March 18 April 15, 2016

335

CONDOMINIUM

$439,950

Burnaby March median selling price

$508

Median price per square foot*

24

Median days on market* Type of inventory* Studio: 2% 1 BR: 33% 2 BR: 60% 3 BR: 5%

*Active listings up to April 1, 2016


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What am I allowed to do?

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It’s natural to want to make improvements, but often you will need prior approval

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Renovating my condo:

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Too often strata councils are left with managing the disasters of flooded buildings or electrical shut downs because an owner started renovations without permission

By Tony Gioventu

W

e often see home renovations as a necessity and not as a luxury to improve our environments and protect our investments. Because many strata corporations have not provided sufficient funding for longterm repairs, owners often tap into their resources for special levies and leave their units unattended. Every strata home at some point will need some renovations and upgrades and while it may be the next owner who takes up the paint brush and starts improving their space, doing the renovations in a way that keeps you in line with your strata bylaws and neighbours is just as important as the renovations you are considering.

What is/isn’t permitted The Strata Property Act imposes a Schedule of Standard Bylaws that determines the type of renovations permitted and when an owner requires permission from their strata council. There are also significant differences between renovations to a strata lot, and renovations or alterations to the use and appearance of common property and common assets of the strata. Apply the same rule of renovations to a strata lot as you would to digging on a construction site. Before you dig – or rather before you renovate – contact your strata council and find out what the limits are. The Standard Bylaws require that 20 April 15, 2016

any structural change to a strata lot, or a change to a fixture the strata has to insure, must first be approved by the strata council. It seems silly, but technically speaking under the Standard Bylaws, replacing the original carpets would require permission from the strata. The strata cannot unreasonably refuse an application for an alteration to a strata lot; however, never assume that what appears to be part of your strata lot may not have an impact or change to common property.

The ins and outs of kitchen renos Kitchen renovations and upgrades are a perfect example of condo alterations. They often involve new appliances, ventilation, kitchen cabinets, plumbing fixtures, flooring, lighting, and even removal of a wall section if an island or other features are being installed. These types of renovations are a great improvement to many condos, but there are a number of alterations that affect both the strata lot and common

CONDOMINIUM

property and require the permission of the strata corporation. You may also be required to obtain building permits for changes to plumbing, electrical and fire safety systems. As a condition of granting permission for the alterations, the strata may require an alteration agreement and request proof and copies of any plans or drawings that clearly identify the scope of the work, copies of the permits required, any additional insurance requirements, and engineering or environmental reports. Asbestos in older drywall or popcorn ceilings is common and must be managed before the construction can proceed. Too often strata councils are left with managing the disasters of flooded buildings or electrical shut downs because an owner started renovations without permission.

Protecting your investment The alteration agreement is essential for your protection as an owner and for the strata corporation. As the owner, you do not want the problem of unauthorized alterations becoming an issue when you are trying to sell your home. As a strata council, you need to know what is being changed to the building systems and common property to manage the property. The results for both an owner and the strata can be extreme. Between bylaw enforcement that could include substantial fines or court orders to restore the unauthorized alterations or pay for damages, it becomes very costly. Save everyone the troubles: before you renovate, request permission in writing.

Tony Gioventu is executive director of the Condominium Home Owners’ Association, which promotes the interests of strata property owners by providing advice, resources and support for its members. Tony has more than 20 years of experience within the local real estate and development industry.


MADISON AVE

HASTINGS ST

GILMORE AVE

HASTINGS ST

SEA TO RIVER BIKEWAY

ALBERT ST

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MARKET

North Shore Properties are moving fast and prices are on the rise By Jill Lunde

M

arch was good to North Van condo owners… and even better to West Van ones. Sales were up over the previous month by 21 per cent in North Vancouver and a gigantic 47 per cent in its westerly neighbour. And those buyers weren’t cash poor. The median selling price of a condo in West Van where 25 properties changed hands last month was $945,800. That makes North Van seem positively affordable with a median selling price of $465,000. Condo owners there have also watched their investments climb steadily. The median selling price of a condo in North Van a year ago was $405,000. Even in February, the median selling price was $435,000. How intense is the heat on the North Shore? It all depends where you look. Properties in March sold from anywhere from 10 per cent under asking to 24 per cent over.

Panorama Village Known for its spectacular views, Panorama Village has four active listings in four different buildings along Folkstone Way. These start

at $699,900 for a one-bedroom in Panorama Gardens and go as high as $1,268,000 for a two-bedroom in Panorama Village. Pick any of these homes if amazing views are what’s most important to you. Several sales were reported in the neighbourhood last month. A twobedroom in Panorama Gardens finally found a new owner after 125 days on the market. The seller settled for two per cent under their $1,298,000 asking price. It was a happier story for the owner of a two-bedroom in Panorama Village. That unit spent only eight days on the market and sold for $1,610,000 – 15 per cent higher than asking.

MARKET SNAPSHOT

191

Active condo listings* 212

New listings in March

181

Condos sold in March

Deep Cove This waterfront community with its quaint village is a destination for many day trippers. Condos are few and far between and there is currently only one listing. It came on the market April 1 and is a two-bedroom in The Coveside. Asking price? $588,000. When it comes to sales, properties move fast. A one-bedroom in Mariner’s Cove sold in mid-March after 11 days. Asking $430,000, the sellers walked away with 17 per cent on top of that: $501,000.

$465,000

N. Vancouver March median selling price

$945,800

W. Vancouver March median selling price

$626

Median price per square foot*

18

Median days on market* Type of inventory* Studio: 1% 1 BR: 39% 2 BR: 51% 3 BR: 9%

How intense is the heat on the North Shore? It all depends where you look 22 April 15, 2016

CONDOMINIUM

*Active listings up to April 1, 2016


NOW SELLING

ONLY A FEW LEFT

NOW SELLING

COMING 2018

THIS IS NOT AN OFFERING FOR SALE. ANY SUCH OFFERING MAY ONLY BE MADE WITH A DISCLOSURE STATEMENT E.&O.E. PRICES AND PROMOTIONS ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE WITHOUT NOTICE. SOME CONDITIONS APPLY.


C ONDO

MARKET

Richmond South Delta Sales are hot in Richmond and even hotter in South Delta Boyd Park

By Jill Lunde

I

f you want to see a community where sold signs are going up faster than you can imagine, take a trip to Ladner and Tsawwassen. Condo sales in these South Delta neighbourhoods were up 80 per cent in March over February, while listings were down by 11 per cent. While the picture wasn’t quite as rosy for Richmond sellers, sales were still a healthy 23 per cent higher than the previous month. Listings in the Garden City also enjoyed a vigorous 23 per cent increase in March over February. Interestingly, while sales were up in South Delta, the median selling price was down by almost $40,000 over February sales. Well over half of the sales in our analysis went at or below asking price, with a few anomalies including a Beach Grove condo that sold for 25 per cent above list after a week. Richmond’s median selling price was also down – though not as much. Here close to 90 per cent of our reported sales were at or below asking price.

The Boyd Park neighbourhood is part of West Richmond’s Seaview subdivision, minutes from the airport, the Oval, Steveston, and an easy commute into downtown Vancouver. There are nine active condo listings in generally older buildings ranging in price from $148,000 for a onebedroom that came on the market in February to $284,888 for a twobedroom in Apple Greene that was listed in late March. The Apple Greene complex is large and there were three sales there last month – all changing hands within two weeks of listing. The only onebedroom went for one per cent less than list ($236,000), while two twobedroom units sold for three and four per cent over list.

Neilson Grove This Ladner neighbourhood has just one active listing. It’s a large twobedroom in Shorewalk with views of the local yacht club. $649,900 is the minimum this owner is hoping for. A one-bedroom Shorewalk unit changed hands in March. Asking $379,900, that owner is happily pocketing an additional 13 per cent with the $430,000 final price being agreed upon six days after the property was listed.

While the picture wasn’t quite as rosy for Richmond sellers, sales were still a healthy 23 per cent higher than the previous month 24 April 15, 2016

CONDOMINIUM

MARKET SNAPSHOT

619

Active condo listings* 362

New listings in March

310

Condos sold in March

$406,950

Richmond March median selling price

$454,550

South Delta March median selling price

$524

Median price per square foot*

39

Median days on market* Type of inventory* Studio: 1% 1 BR: 32% 2 BR: 58% 3+ BR: 9%

*Active listings up to April 1, 2016


REW West Coast Condo

MONCTON ST GILBERT RD

NO 2 RD

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MARKET

Tri-Cities Port Moody registered the area’s greatest sales gains with the entry of spring By Jill Lunde

S

pring blossomed well in Port Moody where condo sales were up 35 per cent in March over the previous month. Sales were healthy in the rest of the region too with Coquitlam sellers enjoying a 20 per cent increase and PoCo owners celebrating a 12 per cent rise. Median sales prices were actually lower in March than February in two of the Tri-Cities: Coquitlam and Port Moody. Port Coquitlam’s gain was a relatively modest $11,550 over its February median selling price of $270,950. And, while bidding wars aren’t by any means unheard of in the Tri-Cities’ condo market, our analysis shows most homes are changing hands at or below list price.

New Horizons This vibrant lakeside neighbourhood offers quiet residential homes that are still close to Coquitlam’s town centre. There are 20 active listings here including several in The Lloyd, a Polygon development that’s in its preconstruction phase. Prices range from $295,000 for a one-bedroom in Larkin House East that came on the

market in mid-March to $669,900 for a three-bedroom in The Lloyd that was also listed in mid-March. Area sales last month included several in The Lloyd which sold for list price within days and a two-bedroom in Larkin House East that went for two per cent under its $369,900 asking price after only five days on the market.

MARKET SNAPSHOT

283

Central Port Coquitlam This historical PoCo neighbourhood is attracting more and more young urban professionals every year. And there are lots of condos to be had with 68 active listings ranging from presales to ones that are over 40 years old. Prices start at $99,000 for a onebedroom in 43-year-old Orchard Valley that has been on the market since February to a three-bedroom in seven-year-old Villagio 2 that was listed March 29 for $429,000. March sales were brisk in the neighbourhood with 43 sales during our reporting period. A threebedroom in Orchard Valley changed hands for 13 per cent under its $149,000 asking price after 106 days on the market. At Villagio 2, a twobedroom unit took 12 days to sell for one per cent less than its $528,888 list price.

Active condo listings* 328

New listings in March

294

Condos sold in March

$339,500

Coquitlam March median selling price

$282,500

Port Coquitlam March median selling price

$426,000

Port Moody March median selling price

$396

Median price per square foot*

21

Median days on market* Type of inventory* Studio: 1% 1 BR: 33% 2 BR: 62% 3 BR: 4%

While bidding wars aren’t by any means unheard of in the Tri-Cities’ condo market, our analysis shows most homes are changing hands at or below list price 26 April 15, 2016

CONDOMINIUM

*Active listings up to April 1, 2016


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MARKET

Surrey There was slightly slower growth in Surrey’s condo sales this March By Jill Lunde

C

ondos are flying off the shelves no matter where you look in Metro Vancouver. For buyers, it’s a tough market, but at least the growth rate eased off slightly last month in Surrey. While sales were up 89 per cent compared with March 2015, they were nowhere near the previous month’s 128 per cent increase over February 2015. Nevertheless, the sheer number of sales was up in March over February (269 versus 205) – a 31 per cent increase. The city’s benchmark sales prices were also up last month: close to 15 per cent over March 2015; and nearly three per cent over February. We had the opportunity to analyze about half of Surrey’s March sales and our data suggests owners here are not holding out for outrageous overasking bids. Indeed, 89 per cent of these owners accepted offers at or below (as much as 15 per cent below) asking price.

Morgan Creek This master-planned community has several gated condominium developments. There are 20 active

listings here, with several in the under-construction Elgin House development, and none of the others is more than four years old. Prices start at $264,900 for an Elgin House one-bedroom and go to $565,800 for a two-bedroom in Edgewater. Elgin House dominated neighbourhood condo sales in March with seven properties changing hands within our reporting period – all for list price. One was on the market for 43 days but the others all sold within a day of listing.

MARKET SNAPSHOT

677

Active condo listings*

Clayton This is another relatively new neighbourhood when it comes to condos and the 22 active listings are a mix of preconstruction buildings and complexes no more than 10 years old. Prices begin at $169,900 for a studio in the yet-to-be-built Yale Bloc and go as high as $329,888 for a two-bedroom in seven-year-old Waterstone. A quick look at recent area sales indicates a neighbourhood where list prices are close to the mark. Of the nine properties reported sold in March, all went at or below the asking price. A one-bedroom in Waterstone, for example, was on the market for 59 days before selling for two per cent under its $195,300 asking price.

269

Condos sold in March

$239,000

Surrey median listing price*

89%

Increase from March 2015

$299

Median price per square foot*

38

Median days on market* Type of inventory* Studio: 2% 1 BR: 38% 2 BR: 58% 3 BR: 2%

While sales were up 89 per cent compared with March 2015, they were nowhere near the previous month’s 128 per cent increase over February 2015 28 April 15, 2016

CONDOMINIUM

*Active listings up to April 1, 2016


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PICKS

Metro Vancouver’s most fabulous listed

luxury condos and penthouses In the market for a room with a view? West Coast Condominium reviewed many incredible Metro Vancouver condo listings to offer these top picks 301-2265 Twin Creek Place, West Vancouver Listed by: Derek Grech, Angell & Hasman | $3.3 million On the market for $3.3 million, this sophisticated Whitby Estates property offers both captivating views and brilliant architectural style. The open floor plan leads to an entertainer’s dream patio positioned with perfect site lines to the Lions Gate Bridge, Stanley Park, downtown Vancouver, and English Bay. The nine-yearold home’s close to 3,000 square feet includes two bedrooms, three bathrooms and a dream kitchen – and it goes without saying that luxury emanates from every wall.

Go to www.rew.ca and search for R2026413

501-150 Alexander Street, Vancouver Listed by: Colleen Gray, Century 21 In Town Realty | $1.28 million It’s a $1.28 million-dollar view – and one that buyers would pay millions more for just a few blocks west. This Gastown penthouse condo has all the character you expect in a 104-yearold building plus all the finishes you demand as a sophisticated buyer. Close to 1,500 square feet of living space over two levels plus a 410-squarefoot deck with panoramic views of the city, mountains, and water. The open concept living/dining/kitchen make for spacious living, while the master bedroom features a canopy of exposed wood beams and the second bedroom has an entire wall of exposed brick.

Go to www.rew.ca and search for R2046397 30 April 15, 2016

CONDOMINIUM

418-14855 Thrift Avenue, White Rock Listed by: Shawn Smith, Smith and Franklin | $1,599,900 This is as close to new as it comes on the resale market: a spectacular twobedroom (both ensuite) penthouse suite in one-year-old Royce. The complex won the 2016 Georgie Award for Residential Community of the Year, earning it accolades as the most prestigious property in White Rock. This unit, on the market for $1,599,900, was the professionally designed, mid-century modern inspired show home with bespoke designer built-ins, wallpaper, and fixtures. The 1,500-square-foot home enjoys sweeping 180-degree southfacing ocean views and its huge oneof-a-kind rotunda balcony effectively doubles the living space.

Go to www.rew.ca and search for R2046397


3000 – 1139 Cordova Street, Vancouver Listed by: Derrick Cheung, MacDonald Realty | $19.8 million Our most expensive property and arguably the most fabulous condo available in Vancouver right now, this Coal Harbour penthouse in Two Harbour Green is listed for a cool $19.8 million. At more than 6,000 square feet with an additional 3,000 square feet of outdoor space, it is absolutely vast – and that doesn’t take into account the soaring 25-foot ceilings. The massive windows offer world-beating, 360-degree views of the North Shore mountains, Stanley Park, downtown Vancouver, and the ocean all the way to Vancouver Island. The home is spread over two levels and has four walk-out terraces, one of which has a putting green and hot tub.

Go to www.luxuryhomes.com and search for 3000-1139 West Cordova St

PH8-683 W Victoria Park Avenue, North Vancouver Listed by: Cynthia Tomlin, Sutton Group | $1,999,900

502-5151 Brighouse Way, Richmond Listed by: Bob Zhong, Interlink Realty | $4,388,000

This deluxe two-level penthouse in eight-year-old Mira on the Park is on the market for $1,999,900. The three-bed/four-bath home with two private balconies has stunning 270-degree panoramic views. The 2,216 square feet have been thoughtfully designed for comfortable living and entertaining with a spacious open plan and 18-foot ceilings. There are hardwood floors throughout plus air conditioning, a gas fireplace, and computer wiring in every room, including the den and media room with a wet bar. All this and three parking stalls. This home is just steps to Central Lonsdale and a short walk to the waterfront.

Luxury condos are popping up along the southern shores of the Fraser River near the Oval. The 28-acre River Green community is Richmond’s answer to Coal Harbour – at much more affordable prices. This 3,300-square-foot, fourbed/five-bath gem is on the market for $4,388,000. Floor-to-ceiling windows offer stunning views of the river and beyond to the North Shore. State-of-theart Miele appliances, high-end cabinets, open stairs, and large balconies are just some of the features in this stunning condo. The complex includes 24-hour concierge service, a 25-metre lap pool, sauna, steam room, whirlpool, modern gym, virtual golf, and pool table.

Go to www.rew.ca and search for R2050811

Go to www.rew.ca and search for R2028063

CONDOMINIUM

April 15, 2016 31


PH 1-6888 Station Hill Drive, Burnaby

1401-301 Capilano Road, Port Moody

Listed by: Patsy Hui, RE/MAX Westcoast Realty | $1,695,000

Listed by: Ryan Eagleton, RE/MAX Sabre Realty | $928,000

Entering the market in late March at $1,695,000, this world-class, two-level South Slope penthouse was completely renovated in 2005. The owner (an outof-town oil executive) purchased two units in the 24-year-old Savoy Carlton and had them legally combined as one strata lot. The result: close to 3,000 square feet of luxurious indoor living space plus over 1,200 square feet of wrap-around balconies with unobstructed views to the east, south and west. The chef’s kitchen won’t disappoint, nor will the custom millwork, hardwood flooring, and all the built-ins. This well-managed complex has an indoor pool, hot tub, sauna, pool table, gym, theatre, and library.

There’s something remarkable about penthouses… no matter which Metro Vancouver market you find them in. Its listing agent likens this Port Moody home (on the market for $928,000) to a townhouse in the sky and there’s no getting away from the stunning views of Burrard Inlet and Heritage Mountain from this two-level corner unit. The main level features an open-concept great room with an option for a den or fourth bedroom. The upper level is where the other three bedrooms are located, with a private balcony off the master. Live here and you will also enjoy the exclusive Residences Club with a multi-sport court, fenced dog run, outdoor barbecue, gym, yoga studio, and much more.

Go to www.rew.ca and search for R2051514

Go to www.rew.ca and search for R2047456

2001-13880 101 Avenue, Surrey

4801-677 Howe Street, Vancouver

Listed by: Julie Fairhurst, Royal LePage Northstar | $849,000

Listed by: Nicolas Blachette, Sutton West Coast | $18 million

Over 2,000 square feet plus a massive sundeck with stunning views of the mountains await the new owner of this move-in-ready two-bedroom, twobathroom penthouse in Whalley’s Odyssey Tower. It can be yours for $849,900. The building may be 21 years old, but you would never know it from the pristine shape of this unit. It has been fully updated with the highest standards: wood flooring; custom fireplace; appliances any chef would love; designer shower; custom window shades. The tower has also recently undergone renos on its exterior, hallways, lobby, and security system. The building includes an indoor pool, exercise facility, hot tub, and on-site caretaker.

Still for sale several years after completion is the Private Residences at Hotel Georgia’s 48th floor penthouse. Listed at $18 million, it is a rare true penthouse, taking up the entire top floor and circling the elevator core. Of course, it has incredible 360-degree views of the water, mountains and downtown from its several large balconies, including a west-facing covered terrace home to an outdoor kitchen and bar. But, aside from one lavishly staged corner, the penthouse is currently a blank slate waiting for whoever purchases it to do with as they please (at their own cost).

Go to www.rew.ca and search for R2041188

Go to www.condoinvancouver.ca and search for v1108485

32 April 15, 2016

CONDOMINIUM


C ONDO

MARKET

WEST VANCOUVER

12

13

A selection of open show homes and sales centres across the Lower Mainland

DISTRICT OF NORTH VANCOUVER

CITY OF NORTH VANCOUVER

ANMORE BELCARRA BURRARD INLET

PORT MOODY

BURNABY 1

Modello #118 - 5021 Kingsway Open Daily 12 – 5 pm (except Friday) 604.456.0688

2

Milano 4247 Lougheed Hwy, Brentwood Open Daily 12 – 5 pm (except Friday) 604.294.8989

3

Pixel Kingsway, Burnaby Coming Soon pixelburnaby.com ............Pg 19

4

COQUITLAM

PORT COQUITLAM

BURNABY VANCOUVER

PITT MEADOWS

FRASER RIVER

NEW WESTMINSTER

RICHMOND SURREY

L

Modena Burnaby Heights Coming Soon 604.294.9919...................Pg 21

DELTA

COQUITLAM 5

Loughed Heights 581 Clarke Road, Coquitlam Open Daily 12 – 5 pm 604.939.2677

6

The Lloyd 3096 Windsor Gate Open Daily 12 – 6 pm (except Friday) 604.942.8416

RICHMOND 7

8

Harbour Walk 12235 No 1 Road Open Mon to Fri 9 -4 pm, Sat & Sun 12 - 4 pm 604.274.7326 ...................Pg 25 Concord Gardens 8511 Capstan Way Open Daily 12 – 5 pm 604.233.7748 ...................Pg 35

NEW WESTMINSTER 9

Westbourne Residences Cariboo Street Coming Soon 604.553.4855 ...................Pg 7

Peninsula 10 The 210 Salter Street Coming Soon 604.544.2258

WHITE ROCK

NORTH VANCOUVER Village 11 Seylynn 600 Mountain Hwy Open Daily 12 – 5 pm 604.980.5000 ...................Pg 23

12

13

Connaught Edgemont Village Coming Soon 604.699.0036

VANCOUVER 14 Sterling 3130 Arbutus St Open Daily 12 – 5 pm (except Friday) 604.428.8858

...................Pg 2

34 April 15, 2016

The Residences at Lynn Valley #100-1199 Lynn Valley Road Open Daily 12 – 5 pm 604.924.0166 ...................Pg 3

CONDOMINIUM

7th 15 West 2239 West 7th Avenue Open Mon - Fri: 9 – 5 pm 604.428.0588 Wall Centre Kerrisdale 16 Shannon 1538 W. 54th Avenue Open Daily 12 – 5 pm (except Friday) 604.267.8882 Leveson 17 The 8188 Granville St Open Daily 12 – 5 pm (except Friday) 604.880.8312 ...................Pg 17 Grayson 18 The Cambie Street & 26th Ave. Coming Soon 604.558.1907

...................Pg 15

10th & Maple 19 West 2001 West 10th Avenue Open Daily 12 – 5 pm (except Friday) 604-739-2080

Arc 20 The 89 Nelson Street Open Daily 10 – 5 pm 604.899.8800

TSAWWASSEN 21 Brio 1625 56 Street Call for your Private Viewing. 604.657.9888 Northgate 22 CITYHOMES 1708 55A St at 18 Avenue Open Daily 12 – 5 pm (except Friday) 604.948.2345

VICTORIA Black & White On Upper Fort Coming Soon 778.265.3464 ...................Pg33


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MASTER BEDROOM 13'-4" x 13'-3"

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BATH 6'-4" x 5'-11"

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TO PEACE ARCH (US) BORDER

T. 604.948.4663 (HOME) info@tsawwassensprings.ca Open Tuesday to Sunday 12 -5pm

TSAWWASSENSPRINGS.CA

SPRINGS BLVD

FERRY TERMINAL

CONDOMINIUM

56 ST

Great Homes: All On Freehold Land. A Resort Community, 30 Minutes Or Less To Everything.

TO VANCOUVER

January 15, 2016 1

WESTCOAST CONDOMINIUM Apr 15, 2016  

West Coast Condominium is the only publication in British Columbia’s Lower Mainland to give readers all the latest local condo market ne...

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