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episode # 66

8 Reasons Why Vancouver is the Place to Invest

Are you concerned about the effect the BC Provincial Election will have on our local real estate market? Let Adam and Matt put your mind at ease with 8 reasons why Vancouver real estate will always be a good investment.

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Episode Summary

  1. We are landlocked

To the north, there are mountains, to the east we have the agricultural land reserve, to the west is ocean, and to the south is the US border. This means there is very limited space. The distance from Boundary Road (the border of Burnaby and Vancouver) to UBC is only 19km. Putting density and policy shifts aside, there just isn’t much room.

  1. Population growth

Stats suggest there will be 30,000 people moving to metro Vancouver each year. By 2041, that means 3.4 million people (we are at 2.46 million now). Where are we going to put them?! We are dealing with one of the biggest affordability crises the city has ever had.

  1. We are a hedge city (Andy Yan’s term)

Vancouver is one of the world’s “super star” cities (along with London, New York, Paris, San Francisco, Singapore, Hong Kong, and others). We are among those where the wealthy elite congregate, invest and reside. Each city has their own unique characteristics: Vancouver is not a financial centre, we have some culture, we have social and political stability, and we have beauty. We have been described as the “jock” in high school: beautiful but boring (a “no fun” city). We have comfort and security, and boring can be good for investing and real estate.

  1. Temperate climate

Vancouver’s climate doesn’t get too hot or cold, which is very attractive to people. In terms of global warming, we’re in good shape if the worst it gets in 10-20 years is, say, like San Diego.

  1. Future city

We’re green, clean and beautiful. We are progressive and forward looking. Vancouver is one of the only cities in north America where freeways weren’t built through the downtown. It’s very walkable and liveable—not the most car friendly, but in a good way. Our bike lanes are great. Cities around the world are trying to replicate what we have, but it’s tough when they don’t already have the infrastructure and have to work backwards.

  1. Pacific Rim

Our market operates within the national context (baby boomers coming from cold climates to buy condos in Vancouver) and the local context (those who were born and raised here, trying to get into and climb up the market). We also operate within the Pacific Rim context with many long-established networks of people migrating through Canada, which is something that will continue for many reasons, like education, social stability, and climate. Plus, within the Pacific Rim, Vancouver is quite cheap. This relationship might lend itself to future trade partnerships and stronger linkages with Asia-Pacific.

  1. Wealth transfer will take place over the next 15-20 years

Bob Rennie’s stat says 193,000 homes in Metro Vancouver are owned clear-title by someone aged 55 years or older. The assessed value of these properties is $197 billion dollars. This is huge. As $60 billion of this is owned by people aged 75 years or older, there will be a lot of inheritance and wealth transfer. Older people will pull equity out of these homes and buy second homes, downsize, etc. A lot of money raised in the past 30-40 years will be put into other homes or trickle down to younger generations. These numbers are key to understand why demand here is still so powerful, even with the foreign buyers’ tax. It’s coming from the people who have roots here.


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