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Old 09-29-2016, 10:41 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Sunset View Post
If one is worried about ownership by foreigners, why just tax it, just ban it, only citizens can buy property, that should kill the market pretty quick.
The issue in Vancouver is not having too many foreigners living in the city, but having too many middle and low income Canadians who cannot live there at all because the cost of housing is so insane. Chinese billionaires and multimillionaires buy homes in Vancouver to park their money abroad, or for their kids to attend university, or to establish residency with a view to citizenship. Many of these homes remain unoccupied. It's not healthy for the city.
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Old 09-30-2016, 12:22 AM   #22
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Looks like London, England is facing a similar challenge.

https://www.theguardian.com/cities/2...MCNEWEML6619I2
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Old 09-30-2016, 06:37 AM   #23
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The issue in Vancouver is not having too many foreigners living in the city, but having too many middle and low income Canadians who cannot live there at all because the cost of housing is so insane. Chinese billionaires and multimillionaires buy homes in Vancouver to park their money abroad, or for their kids to attend university, or to establish residency with a view to citizenship. Many of these homes remain unoccupied. It's not healthy for the city.
+1 Exactly!
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Old 09-30-2016, 11:57 AM   #24
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From today's Guardian:

http://www.theguardian.com/cities/20...e_iOSApp_Other
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Old 09-30-2016, 10:55 PM   #25
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The low and middle income Canadians could never afford to buy in Vancouver for about the past 20+ years.
Personally I'd like to live in a city where 10% of the condo's were owned, taxes paid, but nobody lived there, it would be less population density with extra tax money available since these empty places would be less of a drain on resources.

Anyhow, the easy solution for all the foreigners is to form a shell company and their company can buy the real estate. It will increase business for some lawyers.

There are a lot of places in various countries that a person earning the median family income cannot buy a house, they are called rich folk areas.
For example: "Los Altos, California, in the heart of Silicon Valley, is now the most expensive real estate market in the country, according to a new report from Coldwell Banker. The average four-bedroom, two-bath home in Los Altos costs $1,963,100"

The 10 most expensive real estate markets in the US

I do think it's totally within rights of the government to do this tax as there are already lots of other countries that do not allow foreign ownership of property. Just that it will not permanently solve the problem, and hurts all the Canadians who were hoping to sell their house to rich folks, so they could retire to a LCOL.
Like a some San Francisco/California owners do when they retire to AZ or NV.
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Old 10-02-2016, 07:17 PM   #26
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Companies buying in Vancouver must meet the criteria for foreigner ownership as well. Ie owners of the corp must meet rules.

Foreign ownership can be banned but it would violate NAFTA.

Remember the spevial tax only applies to Vancouver, not all the surrounding cities.
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Old 10-03-2016, 06:56 AM   #27
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There are a lot of places in various countries that a person earning the median family income cannot buy a house, they are called rich folk areas.
For example: "Los Altos, California, in the heart of Silicon Valley, is now the most expensive real estate market in the country, according to a new report from Coldwell Banker. The average four-bedroom, two-bath home in Los Altos costs $1,963,100"

We moved from Los Altos 12 years ago so for fun I looked up our old street. The 3/2 1400 square feet house next to our old place has a pending offer for $2.4M. Crazy what the silicon valley job market has done. When we lived there, that neighbor was a 70 year old retired pensioner and former worker for the town. His whole yard was vegetable gardens.
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Old 10-03-2016, 09:55 AM   #28
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We moved from Los Altos 12 years ago so for fun I looked up our old street. The 3/2 1400 square feet house next to our old place has a pending offer for $2.4M. Crazy what the silicon valley job market has done. When we lived there, that neighbor was a 70 year old retired pensioner and former worker for the town. His whole yard was vegetable gardens.
Great opportunity for him to sell (or even better for his inheriting children).
I wish my home would be bought for 2.4 Million, I'd be happy to move out in 10 minutes.
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Old 10-03-2016, 10:29 AM   #29
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To the OP:

You should be aware of this morning's announcement by the Minister of Finance:

Federal government closes tax loophole used by foreign home buyers, hikes mortgage scrutiny | Financial Post

In future, in order to avoid paying tax on capital gains when you sell your home in Canada, you must be a Canadian resident at the time of purchase. We'll see how this rolls out.
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Old 10-03-2016, 10:31 AM   #30
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Policy experiments related to real estate are popular in Vancouver. In 1988 the large Expo '86 site was sold to a Hong Kong developer for a very low price. The resulting development and public amenities served up as part of the deal drew international attention.

Buy in programs for immigrants followed. This biased the immigrant population toward high net worth, and likely higher levels of education. The place is severely geographically constrained, and the outdoor rec. opportunities are massive. Low and mid income people did and will have trouble affording the place in the absence of subsidies, much like other similar coastal cities.

Residential real estate has far greater liquidity than it used to, but I personally would be reluctant to "trade" unless I lived there and could have my ear to the rail frequently.

Victoria is a different story, I rarely travel there and have no sense of what is going on.
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Old 10-03-2016, 10:56 AM   #31
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To the OP:

You should be aware of this morning's announcement by the Minister of Finance:

Federal government closes tax loophole used by foreign home buyers, hikes mortgage scrutiny | Financial Post

In future, in order to avoid paying tax on capital gains when you sell your home in Canada, you must be a Canadian resident at the time of purchase. We'll see how this rolls out.
Good input, although as Canadian Citizens, myself and DW would not be classified as foreigners. At least it could be argued.
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Old 10-03-2016, 11:05 AM   #32
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Good input, although as Canadian Citizens, myself and DW would not be classified as foreigners. At least it could be argued.
The text focuses on residency, not citizenship. You might have to reestablish Canadian residency before you go house hunting. Or buy the house early in the year and move in immediately so that you spend at least 183 days in Canada during that year.

Minister Morneau Announces Preventative Measures for a Healthy, Competitive and Stable Housing Market

Specifically, from the technical backgrounder:

"An individual who was not resident in Canada in the year the individual acquired a residence will not—on a disposition of the property after October 2, 2016—be able to claim the exemption for that year. This measure ensures that permanent non-residents are not eligible for the exemption on any part of a gain from the disposition of a residence."
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Old 10-03-2016, 12:09 PM   #33
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We are just visiting the area of Mont Tremblant, 2 hours north of Montreal. For sale signs on every 3rd house. Whatever this means...
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Old 10-03-2016, 12:19 PM   #34
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We are just visiting the area of Mont Tremblant, 2 hours north of Montreal. For sale signs on every 3rd house. Whatever this means...
Right, Quebec's real estate market would not be viewed as comparable to Vancouver or Toronto. Much lower prices.
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Similar real estate market to the US in some ways
Old 10-03-2016, 01:35 PM   #35
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Similar real estate market to the US in some ways

Canada is similar to the US or UK in the sense that you have a handful of powerful housing centers powering housing market up. Toronto is unique in this regard as, really, Canada's major economic hub.

Vancouver has had a long-standing blistering market for other reasons. Same outcomes as Toronto, but different inputs and conditions. I don't have definitive data but I'm intuitively fairly sure that Toronto is being buoyed heavily by foreign money too; however, the economy is so big and diverse you don't see it nearly as clearly as in Vancouver.

Most other markets in Canada move at the rate of inflation or are flat. Some are down in recent historical terms and over the medium term. Calgary has obviously been hit hard by the energy deflation and it's spillover effects. Montreal, Halifax, Ottawa, Edmonton, Winnipeg and some other medium cities are "stable".
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Old 10-04-2016, 05:26 PM   #36
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The argument about Vancouver is that it has attained Pacific City Status meaning that a Chinese person can move into any neighborhood and encounter others who speak his language. Before, say 10 years ago, it was only the suburb of Richmond that had that status.

The fact that such people could attain a principal residence exemption indicates how incompetent our federal government has been.
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Old 10-05-2016, 06:32 AM   #37
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The fact that such people could attain a principal residence exemption indicates how incompetent our federal government has been.
Agree. Hopefully the changes announced yesterday to tax reporting and mortgage qualification will fix this. I think we are getting pretty close to a correction in the real estate bubbles in Vancouver and Toronto.
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Old 10-05-2016, 07:31 AM   #38
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Two years or so ago we looked at a condo in the complex (Calgary) where we are currently renting. Asking price was $619. There is currently an identical condo now listed in the same complex, same condition, same view for $509K.

Our realtor tells us that there is enough condo supply, current and coming on stream, to satisfy this market for five years.
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makes sense
Old 10-05-2016, 07:55 AM   #39
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makes sense

Brett, that makes sense. A pin-prick to Toronto or Vancouver price levels would do the same thing to their condo markets.

I have moved in and out of condo investments over 15 years in Toronto and I can assuredly say you must buy extremely carefully and understand neighbourhoods, rent levels, the controls, condo expenses, the boards, etc. to make a low-acceptable return as an investor in an expensive city like this.

As a homeowner, it is a very expensive way to go as well that has risk if you are forced to relocate prematurely for work or family reasons.
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Old 10-05-2016, 09:18 AM   #40
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Well, I'm saving my spocks for when the market drops low enough for me to be able to buy.

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