Vancouver Real Estate and the Economy - Home and Away

This was just too nice a day not to speak about Vancouver after a dismal start to the week, weather wise.  (I know its only drizzle but talking to family back east whom woke up to -39*c Monday morning - I had to chuckle when hearing complaints).  As stated in the last post we have been seeing increased "interest" in the market very early this year - in the downtown, Coal Harbour, West End, False Creek North and Yaletown areas.  Buyers will be out in force again (thank you Bank Of Canada) and there is really only one secret when considering listing your home - price. Keep price in mind - it will save you agonizing over every single article, rumor, prediction, statistic, advice from professionals, family, the post man and local coffee vendor.  Price. The goal when listing a home is to stand out from the crowd and drive the traffic to your door.  Once the buying process has started and a potential purchaser sees that it is THE home for them the negotiations can begin.  Great example - in the Steveston area south of Richmond one of our office listings for a single family home has 7 offers in place - with just 6 days on the market.  If you price it right - they will come.

Over the horizon to the south, our American friends continue to struggle with the economic recovery.  Federal Reserve policy makers announced today to maintain plans to buy $600 billion of Treasuries through June, indicating the accelerating recovery still needs stimulus to produce a bigger reduction in unemployment - which sits at 9.4%.  Considering the population - this is a significant number.  Back home we are at 7.6% as we speak.  The expansion in the US is “continuing, though at a rate that has been insufficient to bring about a significant improvement in labor market conditions,” the Federal Open Market Committee said today in its statement after a two-day meeting in Washington.  Officials were unanimous for the first time since December 2009.  Reality is setting in.  Jobs are the key.

According to the current issue of Canadian Business magazine - which I highly recommend as a great Canadian publication keeping ours and the rest of the business world in perspective (one million readers per issue cannot be all wrong) a recent survey of Canadian CEO's - when asked to describe Canada's economy had 49% saying it was good - 47% saying it was fair.  Back in 2009 only 18% said it was in good shape.  All this of course is based on various sectors of the economy.  Thankfully our economy is resource based.  We continue to seemingly absorb any cross border trade reductions with the US.  How long will this last - is anyone's guess.  If I had that crystal ball - I would be posting this blog via satellite from my private jet.  Back to the CEO poll - most are saying we will continue along much the same path as 2010.  Nothing exceptional but in this global climate - stability seems to be on many a wish list.  Just ask the Irish, Spanish, British, Greeks, Portuguese, etc.  The poll can be found at

And so thankfully - February is just around the corner.  The credit cards bills from the holidays have all arrived - buds are beginning to appear and just yesterday in the West End every tree for an entire block was full of Robins - a true sign of spring.  Another will be the first sunny weekend which is sure to bring out home hunters on mass.  Fear not the rain and beat them to the street.  Much like my red breasted friends - the early bird gets the worm.


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