Just Listed: 106 9188 University Cr., Simon Fraser University

Spacious 2 Bedroom

243sqft Fully Covered Patio

Price at $474,800

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Looking for a home with more space? Your search is over! Welcome to this spacious 2 bed , 1 bath, 829sqft home. Located in Altaire, a concrete building at UniverCity; Vancouver's premier lifestyle neighborhood. Features: spacious open layout, dining & living rooms to accommodate full size furniture, a kitchen with plenty of counter & cupboard space, SS apps, cozy F/P, extra storage plus a 243sqft fully covered patio. The well sized master has pass-through closets & access to a cheater ensuite. The 2nd bed provides plenty of room. Close to: transit, shopping, nature, indoor/outdoor rec. & a host of amenities available only to UniverCity residents. Act Now!


When we decided to buy a condo at SFU for our daughter we worked with Hafez Panju who found the perfect unit for us that ticked all the boxes.  As we were new to the experience of buying property on the campus, Hafez took the time to explain the process and answered all our questions thoroughly.  He is very knowledgable about all aspects of purchasing and living on campus and was able to give us valuable insight into home ownership in this unique environment.  Hafez was always available and responded to our emails or phone calls right away but never left us feeling pressured.  He is professional but also very personable and his friendly manner was refreshing.  We are considering a second purchase as a rental unit and wouldn't hesitate to work with Hafez again and highly recommend him as a realtor of choice.  

L. M

SFU gondola advances to public consultation

TransLink to consider three possible routes

The dream of one day gliding up Burnaby Mountain in a gondola is one step closer to coming true, thanks to a unanimous vote of the Mayors’ Council on Regional Transportation.

Metro Vancouver mayors advanced the planning process for the proposed project Thursday. It will now go to public consultation, and TransLink staff will start trying to secure funding from senior levels of government. 

The agency’s vice-president of transportation planning and policy, Geoff Cross, explained the mountain’s topography makes it hard to build other types of transit infrastructure. TransLink already struggles to serve the busy 145 bus route between the Production Way-University SkyTrain station and Simon Fraser University, and, he said, that demand is only expected to grow. 

A gondola would “reduce travel time, increase ridership and actually have a higher capacity” than buses, Cross said.

TransLink staff will study three potential routes: a straight line between the Production Way-University station and the SFU bus loop; a “kinked” route that would head east before making a 90-degree turn near Gaglardi Way and onward to the school campus; and a route starting from the Lake City Way SkyTrain station, around the Trans Mountain tank farm and then to the bus loop. 

The direct route could be built for an estimated $197 million and would have a lower operating cost than the current 145 bus service, Cross said. 

Burnaby Mayor Mike Hurley said he was glad to see TransLink taking Burnaby’s proposed Lake City Way route seriously. 

“We're comfortable with this moving forward, providing there is real thorough community consultation,” he said. “We would like all three options explored throughout the public consultation process.”

But the co-founder of the Build the SFU Gondola Campaign said the Lake City Way route doesn’t make sense. Colin Fowler said the key to the other routes is the transfer at Production Way, which is served by both Expo and Millenium SkyTrain lines. 

Going ahead with Burnaby council's preferred route would be “saying we have a gondola just to say we have a gondola, rather than legitimately solving the transportation needs of SFU,” Fowler said.

While there are no plans to build the gondola in the Mayors’ 10-Year Vision passed in 2014, it could be eligible for a federal green infrastructure fund unlike other proposed transit projects in the region, Cross said. 

Hurley told the NOW that the gondola could be built as early as four or five years from now. 

Provided by: Kelvin Gawley/ Burnaby Now

Photograph By THINKSTOCK


Just Sold: 110 3280 Plateau Blvd., Coquitlam, Westwood Plateau

A rare opportunity to own this spacious, quiet 2 bedroom condo in the desirable Westwood Plateau neighbourhood. Immaculate condition with top finishing like California cabinets, quartz countertops. The charming, large and covered patio is surrounded with nature and is perfect for summer barbeques. Very functional layout. 9 foot ceilings, 5 piece deluxe ensuite with double sinks and radiant hot water heat. Lots of sunlight. This is a nature lovers dream location. Walk to hiking trails and the golf club. Only minutes away from the Coquitlam Center, Skytrain station and stores. 2 underground parking stalls and a large storage completes this unique cozy home.

Listing offered by: Re/Max All Points Realty 


Just Sold: 205 20068 Fraser Hwy., Langley, Langley City

Calling all INVESTORS & first time buyers! "Varsity:" Expansive 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom "05" floor-plan located on the QUIET side of this gated complex! Combine sophisticated living w/ exceptional convenience! Luxury designer finishings throughout featuring a modern kitchen w/ built in soft close cabinetry, granite countertops, full sized S/S appliance package, gas range & outdoor hook-up on your balcony! This bright & open floor-plan features an abundance of in-suite storage & a spa inspired bathroom w/ a deep soaker tub. Walk downstairs and you will be in the heart of the best restaurants, cafes & shops! Close to transit and easy highway access! 1 parking + 1 storage on the third floor! Rentals & pets allowed w/ restrictions!

Listing provided by: Macdonald Realty Westmar


Just Sold: 614 9009 Cornerstone Mews., Simon Fraser University

Spacious 1 Bed Condo

The Heart of SFU

Price at $414,800

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Looking for that perfect 1 bed condo & can't seem to find it? Well your search ends here! Located in the "The Heart" of SFU, UniverCity, in The Hub, a concrete, LEED building. This 1bed/1bath/594sqft home is perfect for investors, first time buyers, aspiring students & everyone else in between. Features: an open concept plan, plenty of natural light, wood floors, a kitchen with SS apps, quartz counters & plenty of cupboards. The well sized master offers excellent closet space & large windows looking out to the covered balcony. Close to: transit, shopping, indoor/outdoor rec & a host of perks available only to UniverCity residents. Do not miss your chance to enjoy living in this great lifestyle neighborhood! Bonus: 1 parking, locker & rental & pet friendly. Act Now. 


Qualifying Mortgage Rate Falls For First Time Since B-20 Intro

The interest rate used by the federally regulated banks in mortgage stress tests has declined for the first time since 2016, making it a bit easier to get a mortgage. This is particularly important for first-time homeowners who have been struggling to pass the B-20 stress test. The benchmark posted 5-year fixed rate has fallen from 5.34% to 5.19%. It’s the first change since May 9, 2018. And it’s the first decrease since Sept. 7, 2016, despite a 106-basis-point nosedive in Canada’s 5-year bond rate since November 8 (see chart below).

Five-Year Canadian Bond Yield

The benchmark qualifying mortgage rate is announced each week by the banks and "posted" by the Bank of Canada every Thursday as the "conventional 5-year mortgage rate." The Bank of Canada surveys the six major banks’ posted 5-year fixed rates every Wednesday and uses a mode average of those rates to set the official benchmark. Over the past 18-months, since the revised B-20 stress test was implemented, posted rates have been almost 200 basis points above the rates banks are willing to offer, and the banks expect the borrower to negotiate the interest rate down. Less savvy homebuyers can find themselves paying mortgages rates well above the rates more experienced homebuyers do. Mortgage brokers do not use posted rates, instead offering the best rates from the start.

The benchmark rate (also known as, stress test rate or “mortgage qualifying rate”) is what federally regulated lenders use to calculate borrowers’ theoretical mortgage payments. A mortgage applicant must then prove they can afford such a payment. In other words, prove that amount doesn’t cause them to exceed the lender’s standard debt-ratio limits.

The rate is purposely inflated to ensure people can afford higher rates in the future.

The impact of the B-20 stress test has been very significant and continues to be felt in all corners of the housing market. As expected, the new mortgage rules distorted sales activity both before and after implementation. According to TD Bank economists in a recent report, "The B-20 has lowered Canadian home sales by about 40k between 2017Q4 and 2018Q4, with disproportionate impacts on the overvalued Toronto and Vancouver markets and first-time homebuyers...All else equal, if the B-20 regulation was removed immediately, home sales and prices could be 8% and 6% higher, respectively, by the end of 2020, compared to current projections." 

According to Rate Spy, for a borrower buying a home with 5% down, today’s drop in the stress-test rate means:

  • Someone making $50,000 a year can afford $2,800 (1.3%) more home
  • Someone making $100,000 a year can afford $5,900 (1.3%) more home
    (Assumes no other debts and a 25-year amortization. Figures are rounded and approximate.)

For a borrower buying a home with 20% down, today’s drop in the stress-test rate means:

  • Someone making $50,000 a year can afford $4,000 (1.4%) more home
  • Someone making $100,000 a year can afford $8,300 (1.4%) more home
    (Assumes no other debts and a 30-year amortization. Figures are rounded and approximate.)

Bottom Line: Almost no one saw this coming due to the stress test rate's obscure and arcane calculation method (see Note below). This 15 basis point drop in in the qualifying rate will not turn the housing market around in the hardest-hit regions, but it will be an incremental positive psychological boost for buyers. It should also counter, in some small part, what’s been the slowest lending growth in five years.

Note: Here's the scoop on why the qualifying rate fell. According to the Bank of Canada:

“There are currently two modes at equal distance from the simple 6-bank average. Therefore, the Bank would use its assets booked in CAD to determine the mode. We use the latest M4 return data released on OSFI’s website to do so. To obtain the value of assets booked in CAD, simply do the subtraction of total assets in foreign currency from total assets in total currency.”

The BoC explains further:

“Prior to July 15th, we were using April’s asset data to determine the typical rate as that was what was published on OSFI’s website. On July 15th, OSFI published the asset data for May, and that is what we used yesterday to determine the 5-year mortgage rate. As a result, the rate changed from 5.34% to 5.19%.”

Provided by: Dr. Sherry Cooper
Chief Economist, Dominion Lending Centres


Just Sold: 102 3690 Banff Court., North Vancouver, Northlands

Updated Throughout

Massive Patio

Price at $824,800

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Gorgeous! Welcome to this stunning West facing ground level home with a huge private semi-covered patio. You won't be disappointed. This updated 2bed+Den/2bath/1391sqft end unit home offers plenty of space for full size furniture on one level; perfect for the downsizing couples or growing families. Features: remodeled gourmet kitchen w/wood cabinets, quartz counters, SS apps & plenty of cupboard/counter space, flex room, eating area & spacious living & dining rooms. The master accommodates king size bed & has 4pc ensuite & walk-in closet w/excellent separation from a spacious 2nd bed. Upgrades: quality laminate, crown moldings, coffered ceilings, 3pc main bath & more. 1 Parking & huge locker. Walk to: shopping, restaurants, transit & tons of outdoor amenities. Act Now! 

BC Home Sales Trend Lower in June

The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that a total of 6,960 residential unit sales were recorded by the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in June, a decline of 11.8 per cent from the same month last year. The average MLS® residential price in the province was $687,584, a decline of 4 per cent from June 2018. Total sales dollar volume was $4.8 billion, a 15.3 per cent decline from the same month last year. “BC home sales moderated lower in June after a stronger showing in May,” said BCREA Deputy Chief Economist Brendon Ogmundson. “While mortgage rates offered by lenders have moved below 3 per cent, a static qualifying rate has limited the impact of the lower cost of borrowing.”

Total MLS® residential active listings were up 18.6 per cent to 42,625 units compared to the same month last year and were essentially flat on a seasonally adjusted basis compared to May.

Year-to-date, BC residential sales dollar volume was down 23.4 per cent to $24.5 billion, compared with the same period in 2018. Residential unit sales decreased 18.7 per cent to 35,679 units, while the average MLS® residential price was down 5.8 per cent to $688,080.

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Provided by: BCREA


Canadian home sales hold steady in June

Statistics released today by the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) show national home sales were little changed in June 2019 from the previous month.


  • National home sales edged back 0.2% month-over-month (m-o-m) in June.
  • Actual (not seasonally adjusted) activity ticked up 0.3% year-over-year (y-o-y).
  • The number of newly listed homes rose 0.8% m-o-m.
  • The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) climbed 0.3% m-o-m in June but was down 0.3% y-o-y.
  • The actual (not seasonally adjusted) national average sale price was up 1.7% y-o-y.

Home sales recorded via Canadian MLS® Systems were little changed in June 2019 following a string of monthly gains recorded in March, April and May. Although running close to its 10-year average and up nearly 10% from the six-year low reached in February 2019, activity remains well below levels recorded over much of 2015, 2016 and 2017. 

The nearly unchanged national tally in June was the result of an even split between the number of local markets where sales were up and those where they were down. Larger monthly gains were generally focused in the province of Quebec and in Southern Ontario. Those gains were offset by declines in a diverse mix of markets across Canada, including Greater Vancouver (GVA), Calgary, Halifax-Dartmouth and the province of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Actual (not seasonally adjusted) sales activity edged up 0.3% compared to June 2018, with gains in Greater Toronto (GTA) and Montreal offsetting declines in B.C.

“Sales activity is strong in New Brunswick where I do business, but it’s a very different story in B.C., Alberta and Saskatchewan,” said Jason Stephen, CREA’s President. “All real estate is local. Nobody knows that better than a professional REALTOR®, who is your best source for information and guidance when negotiating the sale or purchase of a home,” said Stephen.

“There’s a growing divergence in Canadian housing market trends between eastern and western Canada,” said Gregory Klump, CREA’s Chief Economist. “While sales activity in Canada’s three westernmost provinces appears to have stopped deteriorating, it will be some time before supply and demand there becomes better balanced and the outlook for home prices improves.”

The number of newly listed homes edged up 0.8% in June. Stable sales and a slight increase in new listings caused the national sales-to-new listings ratio to ease marginally to 57.1% in June from 57.7% posted in May. This measure remains within close reach of its long-term average of 53.5%.

Considering the degree and duration to which market balance readings are above or below their long-term averages is the best way of gauging whether local housing market conditions favour buyers or sellers. Market balance measures that are within one standard deviation of their long-term average are generally consistent with balanced market conditions.

Based on a comparison of the sales-to-new listings ratio with the long-term average, over 80% of all local markets were in balanced market territory in June 2019, the largest share in over three years.

The number of months of inventory is another important measure of the balance between sales and the supply of listings. It represents how long it would take to liquidate current inventories at the current rate of sales activity.

There were 5 months of inventory on a national basis at the end of June 2019. While this is its lowest level since January 2018, this measure of market balance remains within close reach of its long-term average of 5.3 months.

While national measures of market balance are currently close to their long-term averages, which indicates a good balance between supply and demand, there are significant regional variations.

The number of months of inventory has swollen far beyond long-term averages in Prairie provinces and Newfoundland & Labrador, giving homebuyers ample choice in these regions. By contrast, the measure remains well below long-term averages in Ontario and the Maritime provinces, resulting in increased competition among buyers for listings and fertile ground for price gains.

Although the seasonally adjusted Aggregate Composite MLS® HPI rose 0.3% in June 2019 from the month before, it was still running 1.1% below the peak reached in December 2018. Looking past monthly variations, the overall trend has remained stable since March amid divergent regional trends. 

Seasonally adjusted MLS® HPI readings in June were up from the previous month in 9 of the 18 markets tracked by the index, with virtually all of the gains recorded in housing markets east of the Prairie region.

Prices were flat on a m-o-m basis on Vancouver Island and in Calgary, Edmonton, Regina, Saskatoon and Moncton. Material declines were limited to the GVA (-1.3%), the Fraser Valley ( 0.8%) and the Okanagan Valley (-0.5%).

By contrast, monthly gains were posted in Barrie (+1.4%), Hamilton (+1.3%), Niagara (+1.2%), Guelph (+1.1%), Ottawa (+0.7%), Greater Montreal (+0.7%), the GTA (+0.6%) and Oakville (0.3%).

The actual (not seasonally adjusted) Aggregate Composite MLS® Home Price Index (MLS® HPI) edged down by -0.3% y-o-y in June 2019. For the second month in a row, all benchmark property categories tracked by the index posted y-o-y declines.

Two-storey single-family home prices were little changed from last June, edging back 0.1%. By comparison, one-storey single-family home prices posted the largest y-o-y decline (-0.8%) among benchmark property categories. Meanwhile, townhouse/row prices were down by 0.7% y-o-y and apartment unit prices edged back by 0.4%.

Y-o-y trends continue to vary widely across the country, with the main theme being a growing divergence in trends between eastern and western Canada.

Results remain mixed in British Columbia, with prices down on a y-o-y basis in Greater Vancouver (-9.6%), the Fraser Valley (-6.6%) and the Okanagan Valley (-0.8%). Meanwhile, prices edged up 0.5% in Victoria and climbed 4.2% elsewhere on Vancouver Island.

Among Greater Golden Horseshoe housing markets tracked by the index, MLS® HPI benchmark home prices were up from year-ago levels in Guelph (+6.8%), the Niagara Region (+6.7%), Hamilton-Burlington (+5.4%), the GTA (+3.6%) and Oakville-Milton (+3%). By contrast, home prices in Barrie held below year-ago levels (-2.4%).

Across the Prairies, supply remains historically elevated relative to sales and home prices remain below year-ago levels. Benchmark prices were down by 3.9% in Calgary, 3.2% in Edmonton, 4% in Regina and 1.1% in Saskatoon. The home pricing environment will likely remain weak in these cities until demand and supply return to better balance.

Home prices rose 8.3% y-o-y in Ottawa (led by a 13.2% increase in townhouse/row unit prices), 6.7% in Greater Montreal (led by an 8% increase in apartment unit prices), and 1.3% in Greater Moncton (led by an 18.4% increase in apartment unit prices). 

The MLS® HPI provides the best way to gauge price trends, as averages are strongly distorted by changes in the mix of sales activity from one month to the next.

The actual (not seasonally adjusted) national average price for homes sold in June 2019 was just under $505,500, up 1.7% from the same month in 2018.

The national average price is heavily skewed by sales in the GVA and GTA, two of Canada’s most active and expensive housing markets. Excluding these two markets from calculations cuts almost $106,000 from the national average price, trimming it to less than $400,000.

Provided by: CREA


Multiple Listing Service (MLS®) residential sales in the province are forecast to fall 9 per cent to 71,400 units this year, after recording 78,346 residential sales in 2018. MLS® residential sales are forecast to increase 14 per cent to 81,700 units in 2020. The 10-year average for MLS® residential sales in the province is 84,800 units. The shock to affordability from restrictive mortgage policies, especially the B20 stress test, will continue to limit housing demand in the province this year. However, a relatively strong economy and favourable demographics are likely creating pent-up demand in the housing market.   

Despite the policy-led slowdown in housing demand, the BC economy continues to be highly supportive of housing demand. After treading water in 2018, BC employment growth is expected to double to 2.2 per cent this year. In addition, the unemployment rate is forecast to continue its downward trajectory, falling to just 4.3 per cent in 2020, its lowest level in over a decade. Against this backdrop, population growth fueled by immigration, as well as the millenial generation entering their household-forming years, provides a solid underpinning to housing demand. 

The inventory of homes for sale has climbed out of a cyclical low, leading to balanced market conditions in many areas and buyer’s market conditions in some communities and across some product types. This shift in market conditions has enabled many potential home buyers to be sole bidders of the properties of their choice.

Current market conditions are expected to provide little upward pressure on home prices this year, with the average annual residential price forecast to remain essentially unchanged, albeit down 2 per cent to $697,000. Modest improvement in consumer demand is expected to unfold through 2020, with unit sales climbing 15 per cent and the average residential price increasing 4 per cent to $726,000.   


Economic growth in BC looks to have slowed by more than expected in 2018, expanding at about 2.5 per cent rather than the 2.8 per cent we had forecast. Rising Canadian interest rates and the deeper-thananticipated impact of the B20 mortgage stress test on home sales slowed the housing market and prompted a dramatic pull-back in consumer spending. Growth was helped by continued strength in both residential and non-residential construction spending, while global trade uncertainty constrained export growth.

Going forward, we expect slower growth to continue in 2019 as overly-restrictive mortgage regulations dampen home sales and new home construction slows. However, the provincial economy should get a boost as construction of the LNG Canada project gets underway. We are forecasting that the BC economy will grow just 2.2 per cent in 2019 followed by an uptick in 2020 to 2.8 per cent.

Consumption spending by BC households slowed substantially in 2018, growing at an estimated 2.3 per cent, the slowest rate of growth since the 2009 recession. The consumption slowdown was primarily the result of a collapse in retail sales growth. On the heels of a near record-setting 2017, total retail spending in the province posted a meagre 2 per cent growth in 2018.

There were two primary factors in BC’s disappointing retail sales growth. Employment growth was stagnant through the first half of the year, and rising interest rates and a policy-induced slowing of the housing market created a drag on household spending. Interest rate sensitive purchases like new cars or renovation spending and purchases linked to home sales like appliances and home furnishings were a major drag on overall retail sales last year.

On a positive note, employment growth has accelerated since mid-2018. Total employment in the province has expanded at an annual rate of over 2 per cent since September 2018, with most job growth coming in the form of full-time employment. That job growth has kept the BC unemployment rate under 5 per cent for the past seven months, which should put upward pressure on wages as firms bid for increasingly scarce labour. As the labour market improves, growth in household spending should bounce back to a level consistent with its long-run average.

Softening domestic demand in 2018 was compounded by an unpredictable global trade environment. Exports of BC goods have been sliding lower since the summer of 2018, driven by a tariff-induced slowdown in the shipment of forestry products to the United States. The preference for tariffs and trade wars as a negotiating tactic on the part of our largest trading partner continues to be a major source of risk for the BC economy, and indeed for the global economy. Global economic growth is forecast to weaken in 2019, largely because of a trade dispute between BC’s two largest trading partners, the United States and China.

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Provided by: BCREA


Just Listed: 614 9009 Cornerstone Mews., Simon Fraser University

Spacious 1 Bed Condo

The Heart of SFU

Open: July 14, from 2 to 4

Price at $414,800

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Looking for that perfect 1 bed condo & can't seem to find it? Well your search ends here! Located in the "The Heart" of SFU, UniverCity, in The Hub, a concrete, LEED building. This 1bed/1bath/594sqft home is perfect for investors, first time buyers, aspiring students & everyone else in between. Features: an open concept plan, plenty of natural light, wood floors, a kitchen with SS apps, quartz counters & plenty of cupboards. The well sized master offers excellent closet space & large windows looking out to the covered balcony. Close to: transit, shopping, indoor/outdoor rec & a host of perks available only to UniverCity residents. Do not miss your chance to enjoy living in this great lifestyle neighborhood! Bonus: 1 parking, locker & rental & pet friendly. Act Now. OPEN July 14 from 2 to 4.

Reciprocity Logo The data relating to real estate on this website comes in part from the MLS® Reciprocity program of either the Greater Vancouver REALTORS® (GVR), 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 GVR, 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 GVR, the FVREB or the CADREB.