Monthly Archives: April 2009

Issue 2 – April 2009




Why would sellers contract the services of a Realtor when desiring to dispose of their investment in the current market? The answer, in general terms, likely follows this argument – to obtain advice as to the current market value, advice as to timing, and advice as to how best to position the property (market it) to achieve a sale at the best price in a realistic period of time.

Now consider this actual case of a property which was marketed during the last two weeks of March this year. This West Van home is located in Gleneagles and has an Assessed Value of just over $3,900,000. The listing price agreed upon was $2,995,000 (almost $1,000,000 below the tax assessment). After 9 days and more than one offer, the property was sold for $3,050,000. The goal of achieving a sale and achieving current market value was met. The two Real Estate practitioners concerned provided excellent advice and successfully delivered the desired outcome for their client. These are North Shore colleagues we respect and certainly “get it right” in advising the appropriate strategy in this current market.

Following this train of thought, please humour us as we dwell for a moment on a few favoured concepts – supply and demand and market value. Not too ‘Mary Poppins’, we hope. Most accept as fair comment that a sale occurs when a willing buyer agrees upon a contract price and certain conditions (dates, deposit amount etc) with a willing seller. This constitutes the notion of market value. We know that we are not alone saying that it is intensely annoying when we hear of claims of property being offered for sale at terms such as “below market value” or, as a recent marketing campaign appearing in various publications including a number of full page ads in the Vancouver Sun, claims that you can “own a brand new home in Greater Vancouver for far less than market value”. This is a fallacy as the foregoing (dare we say) “definition” clearly points out. If a group of buyers were able to negotiate prices “far less” than other willing buyers would pay, why would that seller ignore those willing buyers? Only, we propose, because those “other willing buyers” do not exist. Please don’t get us wrong, we do applaud the developer who is clearly realistic enough to be offering those properties for sale at current market value (yes, at prices which may well be “far less” than another period’s ‘market value’).

Now to some facts regarding the upper end Vancouver market 1st Quarter’09 vs 1st Quarter’08.

Detached homes sold [$2MM and above] 2008 – 155 listings sold vs 2009 – 72 sold (a drop of 54%). Highest sale $4,780MM (’09) vs $10,5MM (’08). This property – on Angus Drive, sold in March ’09 after 165 days on the market, originally listed at $8.8MM. 10 bed/8 bth a 9,900 sq ft home on approx 3/4 acre – an impressive Tudor style mansion. Again a home of provenance.

Attached homes, those best described as townhomes and duplexes [$1MM and above] 2008 – 41 units sold vs 2009 – 14 sold (a drop of 66%). Highest sale $3.18MM (’09) vs $2.48MM (’08). This West Cordova property in the highly desirable Carina development is a 2 bed/4 bth Coal Harbour townhome of over 2400 sq ft.

Apartments [$1MM and above] 2008 – 91 units vs 2009 – 36 sold (a drop of 60%). Highest sale was $5.4MM (’09) vs $6.5MM (’08). This property on the 19th floor of the prestigious 32 storey Three Harbour Green in Coal Harbour . At 2600 sq ft with 2 bed/3 bth, it completes in Spring 2012.

Thank you to the folk who have contacted us of late with comments, suggestions and input on the Update. This is truly appreciated. We estimate that we are up over double the communications occurring this time last year. A special thank you to Frank for his input and astute observations.

Again, visit the website to see the new developments. We continue our commitment to keep you up to date on Vancouver’s … – the “go to” site for Upper Tier Real Estate analysis and jumping off point for market listing information.

To join the group getting the e-mail version of this “update” – send a request now to and you’ll be assured receipt; phone us at (604) 626-2526 or visit