Uner the Strata Property Act a strata corporation may pass by-laws prohibiting or restricting the rental of strata units. A rental restriction by-law (RRB) must be filed at the Land Title Office and will take effect:

-immediately upon filing, if filed by the developer prior to the sale of any units.

-alternatively, the later of:

1) one year after the RRB was passed

2) where a unit is rented, one year from the date the tenant vacates the unit

Despite a RRB prohibition restricting or prohibiting rentals, an owner may rent a strata lot under 3 conditiions:-

1) A RDS filed after January 1,2010 will benefit the first and subsequent buyers until the expiration of the rental period. A RDS filed before January 1, 2010 will benefit the first owner for the length of the rental period.

2) Family Member - an owner may rent their strata lot to a family member - a spouse, child or parent, or a parent or child of a spouse. 

3) Hardship Exemption - an owner may rent their strata lot on the basis of hardship and must follow the statutory procedure to apply for the exemptiion and must prove hardship.

Be sure to consult a real estate lawyer to verify the above information.

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What happens when a strata building is at the end of its life cycle, or owners want to sell the building for redevelopment? Currently, all eligible voters must approve.

Did you know that the strata property legislation in BC dates back to 1966? Currently about 20% of British Columbians - about one million people = live in some form of a strata property?

The BC Government are updating this legislantion, proposing to lower the threshold to 80%.

If a strata corporation has more than five lots, then court confirmation will be required, thereby helping to protect the rights of dissenting owners. 

The BC Law Institute is reviewing the following areas of strata property law:

  • fundamental changes to a strata - including winding up
  • leasehold stratas
  • common property
  • complex - mixed use - stratas
  • selected insurance issues - competing interests and options
  • selected governance issues - including protection of minority interests and the accountability of strata councils
  • selected land-title issues
I will have further updates once the above Amendments have been passed.
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1. How is the government going to monitor the 1 year occupancy detail ? The Ministry will send a letter to the purchaser at the end of the year to confirm compliance.

2. If client is FTHB and purchases a 550K used (not new) property, do they still pay PTT?  Yes, the $475K limit remains the same for FTHB first property. The FTHB Exemption values remain as they were.

3. The new amendments to the PTT Act deal only with the registration date and not the date of the contract.

4. For the New Housing Exemption of $750,000, is there any portion over $750,000 subject to 1%, or does it start at 2% on the portion over $750,000 – much like the FTHB exemption, a partial exemption is available  where the fmv is over $750,000 but less than $800,000. If the price is $800,000 or more, PTT is payable on the entire price. So if the price is $801,000, PTT is on the entire amount, not just the last $1,000.

5. The new rules also apply to commercial property purchases  There is a 3% tax on the value over $2,000,000.00.

6. To qualify for the full exemption, which is up to $750,000, the calculation is based on the price, net GST, so that PTT is calculated on net price

7. For a Buyer to qualify for the FTHB or the New Housing Exemption - even if they move here from another province –  the Buyer must be either a Canadian citizen or permanent resident AND have lived in B.C. for 12 consecutive months immediately before the date they take ownership of the property, or they have filed at least 2 income tax returns as a B.C. resident in the last 6 years. For the New Housing Exemption the Buyer must be an individual and either a Canadian citizen or permanent resident.

**Note the difference, for the FTHB exemption there is a residency in B.C. requirement but not for the New Housing Exemption.  

8. The New Housing  PTT exemption apply only apply to principal residence, not to investment properties.

9. The new rules - It is 1% on the first $200,000, 2% on values over $200,000 up to $2,000,000, and 3% on any value over $2,000,000.

The change is when the sale reaches $2,000,000, it will be 3% on the value over $2,000,000.

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GTS is charged on commercial properties and on new residential properties. If the property is subject to GST and the agreement does not say about GST, i.e.  whether it  is included in the price or is extra, then the rule is that it is in addition to the price.

Be sure to check with your accountant or lawyer, prior to making the transaction firm.


Assignment fees in flip situations are subject to GST.. Therefore the assignment contract should state who pays it otherwise the assignee is stuck paying it.


GST is not charged on used residential properties. However be wary of sellers who have very new houses and say they have been lived in and are not therefore subject to GST. M If CRA determines that GST is payable the buyer will have to pay it and good luck trying to sue the seller for misrepresentation. Some people think that if a property is over a year old there is no GST on it. That is not true. 


There is a limited rebate of GST for new home buyers, whether first time buyers or not, for properties worth $350,000 or less. The rebate is 36% of the GST paid.  For properties between $350,000 and $450,000 the rebate decreases exponentially with the price.


There is also a GST rebate for new residential rental properties. Similar price limits apply and you must have it rented before you can apply for the rebate.  


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BC Budget 2016 – the impact on Vancouver Real Estate

The BC budget included a number of items intended to affect affordability and availability in the Lower Mainland’s housing market. 

Property Transfer Tax (PTT)

• a New Housing exemption will apply to newly built homes or newly subdivided units priced up to $750,000, saving buyers up to $13,000.  The buyer must be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident;

• a partial exemption will apply on newly built homes priced $750,000 to $800,000.

• a new 3% PTT rate will apply to the portion of a home sale that exceeds $2 million. For homes that sell for below $2 million, the PTT will continue to apply at a rate of 1% on the first $200,000 and 2% on the balance. 

These changes will take effect on February 17, 2016. 

Data collection

Starting this summer, individuals and corporations buying property must disclose if they are Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada and if neither, their home country. These changes will provide information on the volume of foreign investment in BC. 

Home Owner Grant

The Home Owner Grant threshold will increase to $1.2 million from $1.1 million for the 2016 tax year.

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BCREA reports that a total of 5,831 residential unit sales were recorded by MLS® in January 2016, up 33.2 per cent from a year ago. Total sales dollar volume was $4.39 billion in January, up 69.1 per cent compared to the previous year.

The average MLS® residential price in the province was up 26.9 per cent year-over-year, to $752,906.

 "Heightened demand is being met with the lowest level of supply in a decade, resulting in increased pressure on prices in much of the province."

The housing market has seen a blistering start to 2016, with housing demand supported by low mortgage rates and rising employment and wage growth in the province.

However, MLS® residential sales are forecast to edge lower this year. Total MLS® sales last year were the third highest on record at 102,517. A record 106,310 residential unit sales were recorded in 2005, while the only other year eclipsing 2016 were 2007 when 102,805 unit sales were recorded.



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Are you looking for a Vancouver West Side house, townhome or condo? Wondering which Vancouver neigbhourhoods are the most affordable? Here's the benchmark price as at Jan'16 for the five least expensive neighbourhoods.


  • Marpole $1.853.000
  • Mt Pleasant West $1.870.000
  • Cambie $2.151.000
  • Kits $2.251.000
  • Dunbar $2.574.000
  • Kits and Quilchena appreciated the most with a 30% increase over the last year


  • Marpole $686,000
  • Fairview $711,000
  • Downtown $718,000
  • False Creek $728,000
  • Kits $828,000
  • False Creek and Quilchena appreciated the most with a 22% increase over the last year


  • S.W. Marine $343,000
  • Marpole $355,000
  • Cambie $414,000
  • Kits $464,000
  • West End $480,000
  • S.W. Marine appreciated the most with a 36% increase over the last year, followed by Southlands at 29%
Planning a move? Put my decades of hyper-local experience to work for you!

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Are you wishing to buy a condo and looking outside of Vancouver to find a more reasonable neighbourhood? Here's a list of Greater Vancouver's neighbourhoods, the Benchmark Price as at Janauary 2016 and their appreciation over the last year.

  1. Burnaby East $494,000 +19.9%
  2. Burnaby North $381,000 +11.5%
  3. Burnaby Souh $445,000 + 12.2%
  4. Coquitlam $304,000 + 14.9%
  5. Ladner $327,000 +6%
  6. Mape Ridge $169,000 +2.9%
  7. New West $36,000 +12%
  8. North Van $395,000 +8.9%
  9. Pitt Meadows $261,000 +2.6%
  10. Port Coquitlam $259,000 +12.7%
  11. Port Moody $393,000 +16.6%
  12. Richmond $396,000 +15.3%
  13. Squamish $312,000 +15.6%
  14. Tsawwassen $339,000 +6.4%
  15. East Vancouver $373,000 +18%
  16. Vancouver West $599,000 +20.5%
  17. West Vancouver $766,000 +19.5%
  18. Whistler $332,000 +31%
Most expensive is West Vancouver. Least expensive is Maple Ridge. Best appreciation in 2015 is Whistler and least appreciation is Maple Ridge. Over the last 10 years East Vancouver condos are the winner with a 73% increase.

Planning a move? Put my decades of hyper-local experience to work for you! 


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Cenral One Credit Union predict BC's GDP at market prices to be 3.8% this year and 5.2% in 2017!! The unemployment rate will be 6.3% in 2016 and 5.4% in 2017.They do not predict any change to interest rates this year.

The Conference Board of Canada is predicting the Canadian economy will be sluggish this year but it will not go into recession and oil will remain below $50 per barrel until the end of 2017. Large cuts in the energy sector will result in third consecutive year of decline in  business investment.

Real consumer spending will risse only l.9% this year as Canadians are faced with continued week employment, disposable income gains and record high debt levels.

On the bright side, the low Canadian dollar is expected to boost exports and the new Federal Government will boost spending in the public sector as they spend money from 2016-2018 on infrastructure.

Thinking of making a move? Put my hyper-local experience to work for you!

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The data relating to real estate on this website comes in part from the MLS® Reciprocity program of either the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV), the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board (FVREB) or the Chilliwack and District Real Estate Board (CADREB). Real estate listings held by participating real estate firms are marked with the MLS® logo and detailed information about the listing includes the name of the listing agent. This representation is based in whole or part on data generated by either the REBGV, the FVREB or the CADREB which assumes no responsibility for its accuracy. The materials contained on this page may not be reproduced without the express written consent of either the REBGV, the FVREB or the CADREB.