Real Estate

Vancouver housing bubble?

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  • Jan 27th, 2021 12:25 pm
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Deal Addict
Jan 14, 2009
1925 posts
972 upvotes
Vancouver, BC
Alpine84 wrote: These all look like bargains now...
Yeah f me. We were in HK most of 2018 but came back to Vancouver because of new baby. Didn't want to shop for a house when wife was pregnant, thought we had time because prices looked stable maybe even shakey. Now it looks like we are stuck here for a bit and prices soar.

Originally budget was 2m but probably need to up it to 3m just for east side 40x120 lot. We can't qualify for that kind mortgage even if we sell our condo. WSB is our only hope now, no other way that I can see.
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May 10, 2008
508 posts
434 upvotes
Vancouver, BC
zakarydoks wrote: Yeah f me. We were in HK most of 2018 but came back to Vancouver because of new baby. Didn't want to shop for a house when wife was pregnant, thought we had time because prices looked stable maybe even shakey. Now it looks like we are stuck here for a bit and prices soar.

Originally budget was 2m but probably need to up it to 3m just for east side 40x120 lot. We can't qualify for that kind mortgage even if we sell our condo. WSB is our only hope now, no other way that I can see.
Sometimes I feel down thinking about it too. I remember joking to my friends who asked me what it would take for a 40% crash in Vancouver real estate prices and I said SARS. 2020 proved me wrong.

Have faith and hang in there! Anything can happen, especially with the next federal budget. At the end of the day, as long as you have money, you haven’t lost the game yet. At least that’s what I tell myself to feel better. Grimacing Face

By the way, what is WSB?
Deal Addict
Jan 14, 2009
1925 posts
972 upvotes
Vancouver, BC
Angel Girl wrote: Sometimes I feel down thinking about it too. I remember joking to my friends who asked me what it would take for a 40% crash in Vancouver real estate prices and I said SARS. 2020 proved me wrong.

Have faith and hang in there! Anything can happen, especially with the next federal budget. At the end of the day, as long as you have money, you haven’t lost the game yet. At least that’s what I tell myself to feel better. Grimacing Face

By the way, what is WSB?
Yup sometimes I just need to take a few deep breaths lol.

Wall Street Bets is a subreddit where people bet on stocks by using high risk, high leverage strategies. They use these strategies because they have very little starting capital but they want to get rich quick. I think they just made a bunch of new millionaires betting on Game Stop (EB games). The vast majority of people lose everything but I think they still created more multi millionaires than any other online community. I can see why some people do it, it's not like you can afford to buy a house on the East side by following the advice of the PFC subreddit, go big or go home Face With Tears Of Joy.
Member
Dec 5, 2009
332 posts
233 upvotes
zakarydoks wrote: Yup sometimes I just need to take a few deep breaths lol.

Wall Street Bets is a subreddit where people bet on stocks by using high risk, high leverage strategies. They use these strategies because they have very little starting capital but they want to get rich quick. I think they just made a bunch of new millionaires betting on Game Stop (EB games). The vast majority of people lose everything but I think they still created more multi millionaires than any other online community. I can see why some people do it, it's not like you can afford to buy a house on the East side by following the advice of the PFC subreddit, go big or go home Face With Tears Of Joy.
Ah, to be young again. Now I’m an old fart and have too many responsibilities and can’t just up and yolo my retirement savings or my families future on yolo calls lol. But with that being said.. I have been dabbing my toes into WSB picks with shares lol. It reminds me of a time when I was young and much more carefree lol.
Deal Addict
Jan 14, 2009
1925 posts
972 upvotes
Vancouver, BC
caspercm2005 wrote: I live in Ottawa and I am looking into Vancouver real estate. Can someone suggest some quality builders? I haven't decided if I should go with condos or town houses yet. I will not go detached because I want to rent it out for some time before I finally move over to Vancouver for retirement. Is there any freehold in Vancouver? I heard even town houses in Vancouver have strata fee.
In terms of area, someone suggested me to buy in Burnaby. How about Coquitlam and Surrey? It seems the housing price is cheaper there.
Personally I would pick DT. Time is the most important thing for a retired person. There are some bad builders to avoid like Omni and Westbank but I think it's mostly building dependent. We live in Burnaby, Metrotown area now because I can walk to work and everything else. I think it's OK for retired living but from the old people I know I would pick a location closer to VGH lol.
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Apr 10, 2011
2168 posts
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GVRD
caspercm2005 wrote: I live in Ottawa and I am looking into Vancouver real estate. Can someone suggest some quality builders? I haven't decided if I should go with condos or town houses yet. I will not go detached because I want to rent it out for some time before I finally move over to Vancouver for retirement. Is there any freehold in Vancouver? I heard even town houses in Vancouver have strata fee.
In terms of area, someone suggested me to buy in Burnaby. How about Coquitlam and Surrey? It seems the housing price is cheaper there.
This thread is focused more on Vancouver homes, but you can get lots of advice from the dozen or so regular contributors. Amongst those, some are owners, some multi-property investors, some are agents, some have attached, some prefer detached, some are near downtown, some west-side, some east-side, some outside Vancouver. If you were hoping to get a consensus amongst hundreds of opinions, this may not be the place.

Attached freeholds never seemed to quite happen in Vancouver, although a previous mayor promoted the idea for awhile. If you're considering the Vancouver attached strata world, you might want to catch up on the issue of strata fees, strata building insurance, rain-screening, etc. New builds may start with a very low strata ($250), but older places might ramp up to $500+/month if they come with recreation facilities.

I'd first narrow your region. Indeed, you can get more home/$ in areas such as Surrey, New Westminster, etc. But you should visit those areas to explore them first hand to know more about them. Each area is different, and they each have different issues when visiting Vancouver (tunnels, bridges, highways). There's an excellent Skytrain network that connects a lot of outlying areas with Vancouver.

Once you narrow your region, then I'd consider a real estate agent for that specific area. Although I dislike most of them, there are a few good ones that might be helpful. If you start to feel they aren't working for your best interests, dump them fast. After all, they only get paid when you buy something. There are probably 10,000+ registered agents in Greater Vancouver.
Newbie
Jan 25, 2021
3 posts
1 upvote
Hello all, made an account just to ask for some opinions, not sure where else to post.

Moved to van ~6mo ago, working DT, looking to purchase a detached property and contemplating which neighbourhood to look for. Will be the first detached property we will be purchasing and just want to gather as much info as we can. 1 kid, 1 more in future probably, quality of school isn't something we care too much about, I think they all tend to be similar.

Things we are looking for:
  • ~3000-3500 sq ft
  • <10 yrs old
  • no laneway
  • 1-2 basement rental suites
Option 1: Renfrew/collingwood/killarney area
Option 2: Willingdon heights/Brentwood area

There isn't too much difference in terms of price in between the two areas, seems like you get more space in burnaby, bigger lots, wider streets, looks cleaner? My realtor thinks there's more potential for price appreciation with a vancouver house. If you had to which area would you buy?
Newbie
Jan 13, 2021
10 posts
3 upvotes
zakarydoks wrote: Personally I would pick DT. Time is the most important thing for a retired person. There are some bad builders to avoid like Omni and Westbank but I think it's mostly building dependent. We live in Burnaby, Metrotown area now because I can walk to work and everything else. I think it's OK for retired living but from the old people I know I would pick a location closer to VGH lol.
Thanks, I like DT too, but then seems Condo might be the only choice. Is there any townhouses? We are looking at possibly 800k to 900k range property. That is the budget we have. Whereabout is "VGH" by the way?
Newbie
Jan 13, 2021
10 posts
3 upvotes
RxMills wrote: This thread is focused more on Vancouver homes, but you can get lots of advice from the dozen or so regular contributors. Amongst those, some are owners, some multi-property investors, some are agents, some have attached, some prefer detached, some are near downtown, some west-side, some east-side, some outside Vancouver. If you were hoping to get a consensus amongst hundreds of opinions, this may not be the place.

Attached freeholds never seemed to quite happen in Vancouver, although a previous mayor promoted the idea for awhile. If you're considering the Vancouver attached strata world, you might want to catch up on the issue of strata fees, strata building insurance, rain-screening, etc. New builds may start with a very low strata ($250), but older places might ramp up to $500+/month if they come with recreation facilities.

I'd first narrow your region. Indeed, you can get more home/$ in areas such as Surrey, New Westminster, etc. But you should visit those areas to explore them first hand to know more about them. Each area is different, and they each have different issues when visiting Vancouver (tunnels, bridges, highways). There's an excellent Skytrain network that connects a lot of outlying areas with Vancouver.

Once you narrow your region, then I'd consider a real estate agent for that specific area. Although I dislike most of them, there are a few good ones that might be helpful. If you start to feel they aren't working for your best interests, dump them fast. After all, they only get paid when you buy something. There are probably 10,000+ registered agents in Greater Vancouver.
That is a very good point. I by no means want to get a consensus and I know it is impossible. Considering the budget 800k to 900k I have, is it still possible to buy detached in an area where there is growth with some reasonable appreciations, and in the meantime still be able to be rented out? In terms of the area, I'd like some advice. I heard people are buying in Surrey because it has great potential on future growth. And because there may be about 10 years before I finally move over, considering the time gap here, I will still have an option to change the location, meaning selling the property and buy a new one right before or right after I come in that time frame.
Deal Addict
Jan 14, 2009
1925 posts
972 upvotes
Vancouver, BC
caspercm2005 wrote: Thanks, I like DT too, but then seems Condo might be the only choice. Is there any townhouses? We are looking at possibly 800k to 900k range property. That is the budget we have. Whereabout is "VGH" by the way?
There are some townhouses in DT and on the west side. VGH is close to Broadway and Oak and that's a good area too. 900k is a decent budget. I would pick location over size with that budget.
Deal Addict
Apr 10, 2011
2168 posts
1720 upvotes
GVRD
caspercm2005 wrote: That is a very good point. I by no means want to get a consensus and I know it is impossible. Considering the budget 800k to 900k I have, is it still possible to buy detached in an area where there is growth with some reasonable appreciations, and in the meantime still be able to be rented out? In terms of the area, I'd like some advice. I heard people are buying in Surrey because it has great potential on future growth. And because there may be about 10 years before I finally move over, considering the time gap here, I will still have an option to change the location, meaning selling the property and buy a new one right before or right after I come in that time frame.
Check out 'solds' in areas like Surrey, etc. You could use a site like Fisherly (or others). Filter on solds $800-900 and see what comes up. It'll all pop up on a map spread across the region. That'll give you an idea of what areas to watch. Don't use the default filter on the past 2 years. It's changed a lot, so narrow your search to 6 months of history. Then you know your area to watch and what you can get for your $. See what's available now. But inventory, they say, is rather light at the moment.

You'll likely see more sellers come out closer to spring. Some sellers are taking advantage of the light inventory at the moment to sell some difficult properties. But there's a backlog of potential buyers too. Many prices bumped another 10% in the fall. It'll be interesting to see if those prices stick, and weather there will be sufficient demand to bump another 10% this new spring year.

At the moment, it's a great time to sell some less-than-ideal homes, or homes that didn't get their number in 2020 and de-listed. There were a few that I watched try repeatedly to get their number last year (list, de-list, re-list, de-list). They recently re-listed and mostly got their numbers. (Low inventory.) It still took them 6-9 months, although their current listings say they were sold in only a few days.
Last edited by RxMills on Jan 27th, 2021 2:39 am, edited 1 time in total.
Member
Dec 5, 2009
332 posts
233 upvotes
I've found Zealty to be the best website to use for selling prices and analysis.
Member
Dec 5, 2009
332 posts
233 upvotes
Looksmooth wrote: Hello all, made an account just to ask for some opinions, not sure where else to post.

Moved to van ~6mo ago, working DT, looking to purchase a detached property and contemplating which neighbourhood to look for. Will be the first detached property we will be purchasing and just want to gather as much info as we can. 1 kid, 1 more in future probably, quality of school isn't something we care too much about, I think they all tend to be similar.

Things we are looking for:
  • ~3000-3500 sq ft
  • <10 yrs old
  • no laneway
  • 1-2 basement rental suites
Option 1: Renfrew/collingwood/killarney area
Option 2: Willingdon heights/Brentwood area

There isn't too much difference in terms of price in between the two areas, seems like you get more space in burnaby, bigger lots, wider streets, looks cleaner? My realtor thinks there's more potential for price appreciation with a vancouver house. If you had to which area would you buy?
Funny, these were part of my consideration set when I was looking for a house last year. I grew up in Killarney so here's a quick rundown.
Option 1: I grew up in Killarney, it's a nice neighbourhood. Some areas were built on a peat bog so try to avoid these areas (primarily around killarney secondary school). Fraserview (a little bit to the south of killarney) is another really nice neighbourhood. Just stay north of Everett Crowley park so you don't live on a hill. Renfrew is nice too, lots of hills though. Collingwood is probably one of the worst areas in East Van so I would avoid it if you can (lower incomes, much of it built on a peat bog, lots of rundown houses). With the exception of Fraserview, most of Collingwood & Killarney consist of smaller lots. All of Vancouver is heavily rented so you will find a lot of streets with ugly curb appeal, but it's not too bad until you hit the where the lots are small and cars line the streets from nose to tail.
Option 2: I love Willingdon heights & the hastings strip. Brentwood is also nice. Similar to slightly larger lots than Vancouver.

Personally, I would rank them in the following order: Willingdon Heights, Fraserview, Killarney, Brentwood, Renfrew, Collingwood.

Vancouver has the most potential for land appreciation because it's the main city and A LOT of people will not consider living outside of Vancouver, let alone east of Cambie or main street. But you really want to find a larger than average lot since the city of Vancouver has allowed developers to basically have free reign over what they can build, anywhere in Vancouver (a big reason why land is appreciating so quickly). Hence why every lot with a rear lane will have a new house + rental basement suite + rental laneway house, every slightly larger lot will have a duplex + rentable suite, and every large lot will have a tri or quadplex built. If you can find a larger lot, then that gives you a larger buffer from the inevitable duplex+ with 2-4 families next door.

Personally, I was priced out of these areas in Van & BBY so I ended up landing in the Harbour Chines/Harbour Place/Chineside area of Southwest Coquitlam. Big lots, curb appeal, fewer renters, lower density, etc.
Deal Addict
Jan 14, 2009
1925 posts
972 upvotes
Vancouver, BC
Looksmooth wrote: Hello all, made an account just to ask for some opinions, not sure where else to post.

Moved to van ~6mo ago, working DT, looking to purchase a detached property and contemplating which neighbourhood to look for. Will be the first detached property we will be purchasing and just want to gather as much info as we can. 1 kid, 1 more in future probably, quality of school isn't something we care too much about, I think they all tend to be similar.

Things we are looking for:
  • ~3000-3500 sq ft
  • <10 yrs old
  • no laneway
  • 1-2 basement rental suites
Option 1: Renfrew/collingwood/killarney area
Option 2: Willingdon heights/Brentwood area

There isn't too much difference in terms of price in between the two areas, seems like you get more space in burnaby, bigger lots, wider streets, looks cleaner? My realtor thinks there's more potential for price appreciation with a vancouver house. If you had to which area would you buy?
It's true teaching quality is similar for all schools but there's a reason for school rankings. It's ranking the quality of the students and their parents which is very important. I agree with Alpine84, if you must to live on the east side, at least avoid Collingwood and some parts of Renfrew. You should probably add Kensington to you list since it's better than Renfrew Collingwood for around the same money. Use the school rankings, not for teaching quality but as a score of the people living in the area. Don't listen to people who says Fraser school rankings are meaningless, those people are politically motivated and ideological left leaning, like teachers.

Killarney has the highest appreciation potential. I like it because it's close to Richmond and the airport. I drive people to and from the airport 20 times a year and I would probably tell them to take a taxi if I lived in North Burnaby.
Newbie
Jan 25, 2021
3 posts
1 upvote
zakarydoks wrote: It's true teaching quality is similar for all schools but there's a reason for school rankings. It's ranking the quality of the students and their parents which is very important. I agree with Alpine84, if you must to live on the east side, at least avoid Collingwood and some parts of Renfrew. You should probably add Kensington to you list since it's better than Renfrew Collingwood for around the same money. Use the school rankings, not for teaching quality but as a score of the people living in the area. Don't listen to people who says Fraser school rankings are meaningless, those people are politically motivated and ideological left leaning, like teachers.

Killarney has the highest appreciation potential. I like it because it's close to Richmond and the airport. I drive people to and from the airport 20 times a year and I would probably tell them to take a taxi if I lived in North Burnaby.
Never knew about that fraser school ranking website. It shows the lowest ranked secondary school in vancouver Eastside is actually Killarney lol
Newbie
Jan 25, 2021
3 posts
1 upvote
Alpine84 wrote: Funny, these were part of my consideration set when I was looking for a house last year. I grew up in Killarney so here's a quick rundown.
Option 1: I grew up in Killarney, it's a nice neighbourhood. Some areas were built on a peat bog so try to avoid these areas (primarily around killarney secondary school). Fraserview (a little bit to the south of killarney) is another really nice neighbourhood. Just stay north of Everett Crowley park so you don't live on a hill. Renfrew is nice too, lots of hills though. Collingwood is probably one of the worst areas in East Van so I would avoid it if you can (lower incomes, much of it built on a peat bog, lots of rundown houses). With the exception of Fraserview, most of Collingwood & Killarney consist of smaller lots. All of Vancouver is heavily rented so you will find a lot of streets with ugly curb appeal, but it's not too bad until you hit the where the lots are small and cars line the streets from nose to tail.
Option 2: I love Willingdon heights & the hastings strip. Brentwood is also nice. Similar to slightly larger lots than Vancouver.

Personally, I would rank them in the following order: Willingdon Heights, Fraserview, Killarney, Brentwood, Renfrew, Collingwood.

Vancouver has the most potential for land appreciation because it's the main city and A LOT of people will not consider living outside of Vancouver, let alone east of Cambie or main street. But you really want to find a larger than average lot since the city of Vancouver has allowed developers to basically have free reign over what they can build, anywhere in Vancouver (a big reason why land is appreciating so quickly). Hence why every lot with a rear lane will have a new house + rental basement suite + rental laneway house, every slightly larger lot will have a duplex + rentable suite, and every large lot will have a tri or quadplex built. If you can find a larger lot, then that gives you a larger buffer from the inevitable duplex+ with 2-4 families next door.

Personally, I was priced out of these areas in Van & BBY so I ended up landing in the Harbour Chines/Harbour Place/Chineside area of Southwest Coquitlam. Big lots, curb appeal, fewer renters, lower density, etc.
You are right about the curb appeal for sure. Chineside is also a super nice area, rocky point park is maybe one of my favourite parks, I just couldn't deal with the commute to dt unfortunately.

There just doesn't seem to be a lot of inventory right now. Theres a new place in Killarney on a 33 x 139 but price seems high looking at comparables and wide lot is better than longer?
Member
Dec 5, 2009
332 posts
233 upvotes
Looksmooth wrote: You are right about the curb appeal for sure. Chineside is also a super nice area, rocky point park is maybe one of my favourite parks, I just couldn't deal with the commute to dt unfortunately.

There just doesn't seem to be a lot of inventory right now. Theres a new place in Killarney on a 33 x 139 but price seems high looking at comparables and wide lot is better than longer?
We're still in the winter market so the Spring inventory hasn't come onto the market yet. I would take this time to get acclimated with each area more intimately, check out zealty.ca for historical selling prices, and come up with a prioritized list of needs & wants in the house so when you do find the type of house you are looking for, you are able to go all in. It's likely that you will be facing heavy competition, particularly if the house is under 2.5M.

Keep in mind that detached inventory is at decade lows and will most likely become lower in the future***

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