Living in Vancouver comes with it’s share of surprises. You’ve just visited a nice store or coffee shop in a beautiful neighbourhood then walk up to where you thought you’ve parked your car and can’t see it. The first reaction you will get is “oh, I’ve must of parked somewhere else or I’ve must of walked past my car” so., after a few walks up and down the block
you remember the spot where you’ve parked. Next thing that runs through your mind is even worse.. you think “someone’s stole my car” oh crap.. why did I leave my laptop in the truck? Now what am I going to do with the mirage of other things I’ve left in the trunk.
So you make the dreaded call to the police to report your car stolen. The police ask you to contact the City of Vancouver and give you their number. So here you are in the middle of the sidewalk waiting for your call to go through. Luckily, you get a live person who tells you to contact Busters. Busters? who’s Busters? Busters is the towing company contracted to pick up cars for the City of Vancouver. Busters.. you think in disbelief for a moment then you call them. Sure enough they ask for your plate number and confirm your car is at their compound.
At this time you have mixed emotions. The same mixed emotions you’d have if you watched your mother in-law drive over a cliff in your brand new Porsche. So you say out loud… Busters?!?! … B@#%RS!!! Immediately you find a way (with lightning speed) to get to the impound, pay the towing fee and then pay the parking ticket that was issued mere seconds before your car was towed. What?!?! Another fee?!?! Talk about putting salt on the wound. Oh well, at least I still have my laptop and all the other important stuff (you think to yourself and then skip that dinner for two at the Keg).
Vancouver has a lot of signs.. and I mean a lot. Some of them can be quite confusing if you don’t look twice. One particular parking by-law you can miss is where you’re parked on the side of a road where there is no post indicating how far from the curb you can park.
You must be at least six meters from where the grass on the sidewalk meets. There are a number of these types of intersections and you don’t want to discover them the hard way. Below is what I call the tow away hot zones. Notice how the distance from this post is a lot closer to the intersection than six meters? Keep an eye out for these and always remember, the sign does not have to be there to indicate a tow away zone.
Living in Vancouver is very rewarding and over time, you get to know where to park.. or where not to park.
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- Find a real estate agent that’s simpatico. Home buying is not only a big financial commitment, but also an emotional one. It’s critical that the agent you choose is both skilled and a good fit with your personality.
- Remember, there’s no “right” time to buy, any more than there’s a right time to sell. If you find a home now, don’t try to second-guess the interest rates or the housing market by waiting. Changes don’t usually occur fast enough to make that much difference in price, and a good home won’t stay on the market long.
- Don’t ask for too many opinions. It’s natural to want reassurance for such a big decision, but too many ideas will make it much harder to make a decision.
- Accept that no house is ever perfect. Focus in on the things that are most important to you and let the minor ones go. Look carefully at the home inspection report but remember, home inspectors cannot pass or fail a home. They will bring to light items of concern that you may has missed during your initial viewing. These items for example can be that the 10 year old hot water tank is past it’s life cycle and should be replaced soon.
- Don’t try to be a killer negotiator. Negotiation is definitely a part of the real estate process, but trying to “win” by getting an extra-low price may lose you the home you love.
- Remember that your home doesn’t exist in a vacuum. Don’t get so caught up in the physical aspects of the house itself–room size, kitchen–that you forget such issues as amenities, noise level, etc., that have a big impact on what it’s like to live in your new home.
- Get financing approved first. Don’t wait until you’ve found a home and made an offer to get approved for a mortgage, investigate insurance availability, and consider a schedule for moving. Presenting an offer contingent on a lot of unresolved issues will make your bid much less attractive to sellers.
- Account for extra costs. Factor in maintenance and repair costs in your post-home buying budget. Even if you buy a new home, there will be some costs. Don’t leave yourself short and let your home deteriorate.
- Prepare to be uncomfortable. For most people a home is the single largest investment in their life. Accept that a little buyer’s remorse is inevitable and will probably pass. Buying a home, especially for the first time, is a big commitment, but it also yields big benefits.
- Treat your home as a home. Choose a home first because you love it; then think about appreciation. While Canadian homes have appreciated an average of 7.3 percent annually over from 2014 to 2019, a home’s most important role is as a comfortable, safe place to live.
There are more, way more things to consider when buying a home and your real estate professional can guide you through the process. To streamline the process Click HERE
A construction crew made a terrible decision to block this Burnaby bike lane
The City of Burnaby takes a lot of heat for its system of bike lanes.
Cyclists have messaged me repeatedly with criticism for poorly marked bike lanes, or areas that could really use protected bike lanes.
Some of the heat is unfair because the city is working on an expanded plan that simply takes time to implement. Other criticisms are right on the mark.
One issue that cropped up that seems like an easy fix. Cyclist Richard Campbell (no relation) tweeted the city about construction signs actually being placed in the middle of a bike lane on Lougheed Highway at Brentwood. Read more
Vancouver has two main areas. Vancouver East & Vancouver West. In December 2018 the average detached home in Vancouver West sold for $3,306,055 whereas the Average home in Vancouver East sold for $1,480,383 That’s $1,825,672 more for a home on the Westside! However, we are not comparing apples with apples. The other factor you must account for is the size of the lot the home is on.
As of December 2018 there were 494 detached homes listed with an average size lot of 4,270 sq foot, and of the homes that sold, it worked out to $346.63 per sq foot. Of the 549 homes listed on the Westside, the average sized lot was 7,808 sq feet and of the homes that sold, worked out to $423.39 sq foot.
This means for $76.76 per sq foot more.. you would get (on average) a lot that is 3,538 sq feet more. A larger lot generally means a larger home as well.
If you’ve always wanted to live on the Westside, now may be the single best time to do that. For a complimentary, no obligation market evaluation on your home.. give me a shout at 778.879.8366 or send me an email with your name and address to email@example.com
Oakridge Vancouver will be Vancouver’s Second Downtown Center. Located on 30 acres in Vancouver’s west side..
Oakridge will be North America’s 2nd most expensive development. World class developer Westbank is now offering pre sales for phase 1 North. Two buildings are in this phase and units are selling fast.
The total number of units in Oakridge will consist of 2000 units, valet parking, 21 world class restaurants w/rotating cuisines and a city park in the center and so much more.
Call me Tom Ikonomou at 778.879.8366 for more information on how to get a great unit and an introduction to this world class development.