Foreign ownership registry a game changer in B.C. say real estate insiders

[Globe and Mail - December 9, 2020] Recent government action to force transparency of property ownership in B.C. had outspoken immigration lawyer Richard Kurland so impressed that he fired off a letter to the Premier. “It’s game over. It’s huge,” Mr. Kurland says. “It means you can’t hide international capital in B.C. real estate. And it’s about gosh darn time, because there were so many players who benefitted from being blind … including individuals who were able to hide capital, to [...]

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Liberals planning national foreign buyers tax in bid to lower housing prices

[Financial Post - December 2, 2020] In this week's fiscal update, government says plan will benefit first-time homebuyers and put more homes on the market. TORONTO — The Liberal government says it will take steps over the next year to tax foreign homeowners who live outside of Canada as part of a plan to lower housing prices. It’s an idea that has been growing in popularity over the last few years in provinces such as British Columbia, Ontario and Prince Edward Island, [...]

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Look for U.S. buyers to snap up more Vancouver homes

[BC Business - October 9, 2020] COVID-19 and political unrest stateside will help drive property purchases by Americans over the next year, real estate services firm Engel & Völkers forecasts Every time there’s a U.S. election, it seems, Americans threaten to move to Canada. Google searches for “How to apply for Canadian citizenship” peaked after the recent train wreck of a debate between President Donald Trump and Democratic rival Joe Biden. Andrew Carros, licence partner with Engel & Völkers Vancouver,  thinks this time really [...]

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Sharp drop in foreign students and immigrants slowing real estate

[Vancouver Sun - August 27, 2020] House prices are more or less flat in Vancouver and Toronto, which are considered gateway cities for global migrants. Rental prices are softening in Vancouver and Toronto and housing prices are soon to follow as the number of new immigrants and foreign students falls sharply because of border restrictions aimed at combatting the spread of COVID-19. Average rents have dropped by eight per cent in Vancouver and Toronto in recent months. Hundreds of thousands of dwellings [...]

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Government is why housing in Canada is unaffordable and more taxes won’t help

[Financial Post - August 5, 2020] Opinion: A home equity tax would be but the latest example of politicians using housing as their personal ATM The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) is giving $250,000 to Generation Squeeze, an advocacy organization for young Canadians, to research ways to improve housing affordability. The group stated it will focus on “wealth generated by rising home values,” which incited fears the government is considering a home equity tax on the capital gains generated when Canadians sell their [...]

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India, China trade places and Brazil gains ground as top sources of permanent residents to Metro Vancouver

[CBC - January 11, 2020] Julia Moioli and her husband were in search of adventure, access to nature and a better future when they moved to Metro Vancouver from São Paulo, Brazil, last August. Moioli, 24, says jobs were plentiful in São Paulo, but political turmoil after Brazil's national elections in 2018 left the young couple feeling uneasy. "It's very complicated with politics in Brazil right now and doesn't seem to get any better," said Moioli, who now studies tourism at Capilano University. [...]

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2020 may be the year when the ‘largest, broadest and fastest’ wave of debt crashes over the global economy. You have been warned

[South China Morning Post -December 30, 2019] The World Bank has provided a chilling analysis of the latest tidal wave of borrowing, which had reached US$55 trillion by 2018. Even though interest rates are low now, they provide no sure-fire protection against debt crises. Which will be the biggest international crisis of 2020: a North  Korean  missile  crisis, the re-election of Donald Trump, a post-Brexit slump, a stock market crash or a climate crunch? Any or all of these are possible [...]

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Armed with new data, B.C. set for crackdown on tax evasion in Vancouver property market

[Globe and Mail - December 11, 2019] Government policies aimed at reducing speculation in Vancouver’s property market have worked to curb foreign buying and speculative demand. That was merely part one, says high-profile immigration lawyer and analyst, Richard Kurland, who’s been studying the impact of those policies. “Part 1 was putting the machine together,” Mr. Kurland says. “Part 2 is using the machine to go after tax evaders in the Vancouver property market. At the end of the day, we are [...]

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Dirty money: it’s a Canadian thing

[Macleans - June 12, 2019] Canada’s housing markets are rife with shadowy buyers and greasy cash. B.C. was just the beginning. On paper, Peter Zhang and his wife, Judy Wang, were models for the type of newcomers Canada wanted to attract with its immigrant investor program. Before it was scrapped in 2014, the program’s aim was simple: lure the world’s wealthy to Canada’s shores with the promise of a passport. In return they would bring their business savvy, invest in the [...]

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Canada’s Housing Market Is Breaking Some Alarming Records Right Now

[MSN - March 11, 2019] It's quiet out there. Maybe too quiet. Canada's residential real estate market has slowed considerably over the past year, a fact the industry chalks up to a tough new mortgage stress test and rising interest rates. This is having an impact on the broader economy. Canada's GDP growth slowed to a snail's pace of 0.4 per cent annualized in the fourth quarter of 2018, dragged down in part by falling residential investment, which has slid 7.5 per [...]

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