Speculation Tax Update

MEDIA RELEASE

For Immediate Release

Yes to More Affordable Housing, No to So-Called Speculation Tax

KELOWNA, B.C. – October 17, 2018. While the BC government is to be admired for attempting to tackle housing affordability, the approach taken via tabling a so-called speculation and vacancy tax neither addresses the affordability problem nor targets actual housing market speculators.

Taking aim at claims made by the NDP government about the benefits of the tax, tabled Bill 45 on Tuesday, Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board (OMREB) President Marv Beer comments “I’ve not met anyone who disagrees that we need more affordable housing, but suggesting that this tax, as proposed, would somehow improve the situation is misleading to say the least.”

The tax, should it come into being, targets homes worth more than $400,000 so even if these homes were rented or sold to avoid the tax the housing supply created would not be what is generally considered affordable.

Cautioning again about the potential harm that could come from introducing yet another tax on homeowners on which no economic impact studies have been conducted, Beer notes that the provincial government already has a homeowner tax in place that it could use to further housing affordability. It’s called the Property Transfer Tax and while only homeowners pay it, proceeds currently go into general revenue to benefit everyone. “If the government really wanted to make homes more affordable, it could exempt buyers of lower-cost homes from having to pay the Land Transfer Tax.”

Beer contends that the proposed tax doesn’t target the speculator, defined as someone who purchases and ‘flips’ properties within a relatively short time-frame for profit.

“Speculators, because they don’t hold a property for long, would be minimally affected by this tax. Instead, it would be the long-time home owner who would pay, year over year, for choosing to spend time and money in BC,” says Beer, adding “Ironically, it’s possible that the tax would encourage speculators to set their sights on homes under $400,000, competing with legitimate buyers for lower cost homes. If the government really wanted to go after speculators, it could apply a levy to homes sold within a short time of being purchased.”

Beer notes the government’s claim that the legislation is aimed at foreigners and those from other provinces who don’t pay income taxes here. In fact, the minister responsible for this tax revealed in legislature that almost two-thirds of those who would pay the tax would be British Columbians, about 20,000 of 32,000 homes targeted.

“The good news is that the government has included a number of exemptions from the tax. The bad news is that the myriad of exemptions would create a costly administrative nightmare and still, housing affordability would not be enhanced nor speculators deterred. While measures to address both problems may be needed, this tax, as it is currently proposed, is not the answer.”

For more information, please contact OMREB at media@omreb.com.

MEDIA RELEASE

OMREB is a member-governed not-for-profit association representing almost 1300 REALTORS® and 89 real estate offices within the southern interior region of British Columbia (Peachland to Revelstoke). The Board is dedicated to providing leadership and support to its members in their pursuit of professional excellence.

For those living in the Middleton Mountain, watch your mailboxes!

For those living in the Middleton Mountain, watch your mailboxes! This is going to be delivered via Canada Post direct to your home very soon. If you find your contact info is incorrect please do let us know and we are happy to update this for you.

Any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact the Salt Fowler Team at RE/MAX Vernon at 250-549-SALT (7258) or webinfo@saltfowler.com, your Kalview homes specialists! We offer FREE Market Evaluations on all Vernon Real Estate!

Just Released!! Our Kalview Area Market Update for October!

Just Released!! Our Kalview Area Market Update for October! Here is a preview of our folder featuring homes and lots for sale and sold in the popular Kalview area of Coldstream BC. This folder will be mailed out in the next 10 days! If you are interested in selling your home and having it advertised in this popular marketing piece, please let us know! We would be happy to feature your Kalview, Coldstream Real Estate here! Contact the Salt Fowler Team at 250-549-SALT (7258) or visit our website to view thousands of Vernon homes for sale online all in one place at www.KalviewHomes.com.

For those living in the Bella Vista Homes watch your mailboxes!

For those living in the Bella Vista Homes watch your mailboxes! This is going to be delivered via Canada Post direct to your home very soon. If you find your contact info is incorrect please do let us know and we are happy to update this for you.

Any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact the Salt Fowler Team at RE/MAX Vernon at 250-549-SALT (7258) or webinfo@saltfowler.com, your Bella Vista homes specialists! We offer FREE Market Evaluations on all Vernon Real Estate!

Congratulations Alex Wambold – Salt Fowler Team Top Salesperson for August 2018

The Salt Fowler Team is proud to honour Alex Wambold as their Top Salesperson for the month of August 2018.

Real Estate has always been a passion for Alex and his enthusiasm to help others with a professional attitude has provided him with success.

Lisa, Gord and the rest of the Salt Fowler Team congratulate Alex on his recent accomplishment and wish his more success in his career!  To contact Alex directly, you can email his at alex@saltfowler.com or call 250-308-9472.

Let him help make your Okanagan dreams come true!

Vernon and Area Market Update for August 2018

This North Okanagan Real Estate Update covers the areas of:  Vernon, Coldstream, Falkland, Armstrong, Enderby and Lumby.

Updated Stats for Residential Homes in the North Okanagan:

Sell/Inventory Ratio:   

18.6%  (this is how much of what is currently on the market sold last month)

Days to Sell:  

62 (how many days on average it is taking to sell a home)

Avg. Sale Price:  

$483,666 (averages can be skewed by a few really high, or really low $$ sales)

Median Sale Price:  

$435,000 (the exact middle sale price of every residential property sold last month)

Waterfront Home Sales: 

15 waterfront home sold year to date (versus 13 last year, same time period)

North Okanagan overall statistics:

Total Units that were newly LISTED (and active on the market) during each of the past 3 months:

Jun:      489

Jul:       385

Aug:    335

Total Units SOLD (all property types including raw land and commercial) during each of the past 3 months:

Jun:      204

Jul:       218

Aug:    200

Wrap Up:

Sellers:  Yet another month that sales have declined – this month by another 12.53%.  That is 7 months in a row.  As we have been reporting in the past 6+ months – this market is changing.  The proof is in the numbers.  You are of course welcome to price your home at whatever you wish – however the statistics are not reflecting that properties are continuing to sell at any price as they (almost) have been the last few years.  Those days are gone my friends, at least for the time being.  Those who overprice will now sit, likely for the next cycle, rather than selling when the market catches up.  Those who need to sell and who still overprice, will likely end up chasing the market down and sadly netting less money in their pockets than if they had priced it right the first time. In a declining market, that is a very dangerous strategy.

If you currently have your home listed and you are noticing that interest is declining, and/or you aren’t receiving any second showings or offers – that is a very loud signal that your house price is now out of the market.

In my 25 years working in the real estate business I have witnessed 3 upturns and 2 downturns.  The patterns are generally always the same.  However, the sky is not falling!  It just means that you, as a Seller, need to be a little sharper on your pencil and a bit more open to recommendations given for marketing your home.

Inventory of homes on the market has also now increased to 1606 versus 1468 last year.  This gap is about the same as last month.  For sellers, this means more competition for your home in today’s market, especially for higher end homes.

Buyers:  The number of homes on the market has now increased for 7 months in a row. More homes on the market means more competition, more homes for you as a Buyer to view, and a bit of a reprieve to what was starting to feel like runaway pricing.  The market has started to cool ever so slightly, especially in the more expensive price ranges.

However…. (and isn’t there always a “however”?) interest rates are now slowly, but surely, on the rise.  Waiting to see if the price of your dream house may reduce may not be the right play, if interest rates increase in the meantime.  By paying the increase in the interest rates could very well mean that in the long run you end up ultimately paying more for your home.  A small increase in rates equals a large increase in the amount spent over the life of your mortgage.  That is an important analysis to make before making the decision to fence sit.

Although the Government has intervened numerous times in an attempt to slow down the real estate prices skyrocketing in the major centres, we aren’t expecting any immediate drastic price drops in our local market.  We are still experiencing a lot of in-migration to our fair city, which is helping our local market while others considerably decline.

And once again, as anyone who has sought to buy or sell during the last few months has no doubt learned – the new real estate rules in BC are onerous and somewhat confusing.  Once again, here is my repetitive public service announcement:  Are you finding these new Real Estate Rules Confusing?  Are you annoyed with all the forms?  Are you against all the forests that are going to be eliminated with this excessive use of paper?

Me Too.

The only way to make a change to these new rules is for the public to speak up. If you want the choice of being able to speak freely with a Realtor and receive more than just “how many bedrooms” and “how many bathrooms” a home has without being bogged down in paperwork first – please take a moment and contact MLA: Hon. Carole James Minister of Finance carole.james.MLA@leg.bc.ca and Michael Noseworthy: The Superintendent of Real Estate: micheal.noseworthy@gov.bc.ca with your thoughts.

If you would like to get access to MLS listings 24/7 on your own time, click here to get brand new listings in your inbox every morning!

Please feel free to Contact Us Anytime:  Lisa, Gord, Glenn, Alex, Joanne, Greg, Avrill, Christie and Bryan of the Salt Fowler Team, RE/MAX Vernon – specializing in North Okanagan and Vernon BC Real Estate.

Vernon and Area Market Update for July 2018

This North Okanagan Real Estate Update covers the areas of:  Vernon, Coldstream, Falkland, Armstrong, Enderby and Lumby.

Updated Stats for Residential Homes in the North Okanagan:

Sell/Inventory Ratio:   

20.04%  (this is how much of what is currently on the market sold last month)

Days to Sell:  

52 (how many days on average it is taking to sell a home)

Avg. Sale Price:  

$483,666 (averages can be skewed by a few really high, or really low $$ sales)

Median Sale Price:  

$435,000 (the exact middle sale price of every residential property sold last month)

Waterfront Home Sales: 

11 waterfront home sold year to date (versus 9 last year, same time period)

North Okanagan overall statistics:

Total Units that were newly LISTED (and active on the market) during each of the past 3 months:

May:     489

Jun:      489

Jul:       385

Total Units SOLD (all property types including raw land and commercial) during each of the past 3 months:

May:     237

Jun:      204

Jul:       218

Wrap Up:

Sellers:  The market continues to soften. This is now the 6th month in a row where the volume of sales has declined.  We are moving towards a balance market. One thing all sellers should know is that balanced markets never last for long – they quickly switch into buyer’s markets…

Inventory of homes on the market has also now increased to 1610 versus 1468 last year.  The gap is starting to widen. For sellers, this means more competition for your home in today’s market – especially for higher end homes.

As discussed last month, the new real estate rules are still a serious learning curve and we encourage the public to please be heard.

Here is a link to our article on the first, and most widely used, new form that complies with the new BC Real Estate Rules.

Buyers:  Now inventory of homes on the market has increased 6 months in a row.  With more inventory on the market, you should see more choices in homes (again, especially in the more expensive price ranges) and hopefully fewer multiple offers.

Here is a link to our article on being an Unrepresented Party, a solution to buying a home from the name on the sign under the new real estate rules (something buyers may be faced with more often than they think).

Are you finding these new Real Estate Rules Confusing?  Are you annoyed with all the forms?  Are you against all the forests that are going to be eliminated with this excessive use of paper?

Me Too.

The only way to make a change to these new rules is for the public to speak up. If you want the choice of being able to speak freely with a Realtor and receive more than just “how many bedrooms” and “how many bathrooms” a home has without being bogged down in paperwork first – please take a moment and contact MLA: Hon. Carole James Minister of Finance carole.james.MLA@leg.bc.ca and Michael Noseworthy: The Superintendent of Real Estate: micheal.noseworthy@gov.bc.ca with your thoughts.

If you would like to get access to MLS listings 24/7 on your own time, click here to get brand new listings in your inbox every morning!

Please feel free to Contact Us Anytime:  Lisa, Gord, Glenn, Alex, Joanne, Greg, Avrill, Christie and Bryan of the Salt Fowler Team, RE/MAX Vernon – specializing in North Okanagan and Vernon BC Real Estate.

Just Released!! Our Foothills Area Market Update for August!

Just Released!! Our Foothills Area Market Update for August! Here is a preview of our Foothills folder featuring homes and lots for sale and sold in the fabulous Foothills area in Vernon BC. This folder will be mailed out in the next 10 days! If you are interested in selling your home and having it advertised in this popular marketing piece, please let us know! We would be happy to feature your Foothills, Vernon Real Estate here! Contact the Salt Fowler Team at 250-549-SALT (7258) or visit our website to view thousands of homes for sale online all in one place at www.Foothills.info.