Friday, July 29, 2016

Happy August long weekend! Enjoy it wherever you are - summer is in full swing. Last weekend seemed like there were festivals all over our communities - Coquitlam did a fantastic job of celebrating its 125th birthday in style over Saturday & Sunday. They wrapped up with a fine show from iconic Jim Byrnes & his band in the new amphitheater - a wonderful addition to Town Centre Park. And Ribfest packed in the crowds at Rocky Point Park in Port Moody - great annual Rotary Club fundraiser.

Life in the real estate business took an unexpected turn this week as the provincial Government announced its ill thought out plan for a hike in property transfer tax for off shore buyers, effective August 2 and completely retroactive covering all the contracts already agreed & legally in place. So far noone has explained what happens when the buyer says "I can't do that", doesn't complete the sale and leaves our local sellers unable to complete their next purchase. The possible chain reaction is frightening - especially as it is tough to sue the party in another country. Grandfathering existing contracts would have been wise - one senses a knee jerk reaction. Hopefully sober second thought will be applied - where is that Senate when we need them? Our Francis and Hawthorne Team has kept informed on the latest developments and adjusted our contracts accordingly: we will always advise you on the best course of action for your deal, in the current market.

It will be interesting watching our market from here. We had already sensed the shift and slowdown in our market before the tax announcement, so now it remains to see if this latest move undermines public confidence. When the market is "hot", it is easy to forget that the law of supply and demand always prevails - as the inventory grows to outstrip the demand, the escalation gradually stops & some balance happens. We quite agree that some kind of tax should be applied to buyers "parking" their money here, but to imply that this strategy is responsible for "cooling" the market and making homes more "affordable" flies in the face of economics 101. Do I hear the word 'election' ?

However hot & stormy the climate, we have been here before & still have you covered. Sheila and Michelle

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