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From floods to real estate to young overachievers, our 10 most read stories of 2021 – BCBusiness



30 Under 30

The pieces that proved most popular with visitors to our site

Say what else you want about 2021, but it’s given us plenty to write about. Here are the 10 stories we published this year that generated the most interest online.

At No. 1: the profiles of our latest 30 Under 30 winners, a diverse and innovative group who haven’t let tough times get the better of them. Finishing second is the 2021 edition of our Best Cities for Work in B.C. ranking, which contributor Andrew Macaulay revamped to put an emphasis on economic resilience.

Of course, the pandemic figures heavily in the top 10, as does real estate, one of this province’s longstanding obsessions. And we were heartened to see so many people click on our guide to helping those afflicted by the recent floods, which claims the No. 3 spot.

Thank you for reading, and we look forward to bringing you more stories in 2022!

30 Under 30

1. 2021 30 Under 30 Winners
by the Editors
The latest winners of this perennially popular competition, marking its eighth year, hail from industries as diverse as finance, esports, cannabis and fine art.

 READ MORE: Nominate for the 2022 BCBusiness 30 Under 30 Competition

Best Cities for Work in B.C.

Credit: iStock

2. B.C.’s Most Resilient Cities in 2021
by Andrew Macaulay
For our seventh annual ranking of the province’s best cities for work, compiled against the backdrop of the pandemic, we shift the focus to broader economic health.

READ MORE: Vancouver was just named the top life sciences startup ecosystem in Canada

Abbotsford floods

Credit: City of Abbotsford

3. How you can help B.C. residents affected by the floods: resources, donation links and drop-off hubs
by Alyssa Hirose
Food banks, search and rescue teams, animal-focused charities—this list helped our readers send aid where it was needed most in the wake of last fall’s devastating floods.

 READ MORE: 18 B.C.-based Indigenous charities and organizations to donate to this week

B.C.'s Most Loved Brands

Credit: Save-On-Foods

4. B.C.’s Most Loved Brands 2021
by Nick Rockel
The eighth edition of our annual ranking, based on a survey by research partner Ipsos, reveals that brands with a long-term view have fared better during the pandemic.

READ MORE: Canada’s big brands have taken a beating during COVID: survey

Ryan Berlin

Credit: Rennie Intelligence

5. Q&A: Vancouver housing market expert Ryan Berlin weighs in on COVID’s impact, supply versus demand and where prices might go next
by Nick Rockel
For an episode of The BCBusiness Podcast, the director of intelligence and senior economist with Rennie Intelligence offers his insightful take on Vancouver’s housing situation.

READ MORE: 2021 Real Estate Report: With a push from COVID, the B.C. property market is reinventing itself

Well Health Technologies

Credit: Well Health Technologies on Twitter

6. Pacific Trader: Will Well Health Technologies’ big acquisition break the fever for its stock?
by Michael McCullough
This instalment of our biweekly B.C. stocks column takes the pulse of Well, a Vancouver-headquartered provider of virtual and in-person health-care services that has been on a buying spree.

READ MORE: B.C. 2.0.: Doctors and patients learn that there’s no place like home

Surrey new downtown

Credit: Hariri Pontarini Architects

7. Land Values: Can Surrey become B.C.’s next major downtown?
by Frances Bula
In her debut real estate column for the magazine, urban issues and politics writer Bula asks what needs to happen for Surrey to create a serious rival to Vancouver’s central business district.

READ MORE: How a B.C. upstart became a key player in the real estate software biz


Credit: Nik West

8. 2021 Education Guide: Micro-credentials are catching on at B.C. universities and colleges
by Dee Hon
For learners and educators, the economic changes wrought by the pandemic have accelerated the push toward micro-credentials, which let students quickly acquire new skills.

READ MORE: Tech unicorn Thinkific moves to the head of the online learning class. That success didn’t happen overnight

30 Under 30

Credit: Shobhit Sahu

9. 30 Under 30: Emily Davies’ stock is steadily rising at Linde Equity
by Nick Rockel
Davies, who quickly made partner after joining Vancouver-based independent investment firm Linde in 2018, is one of two female money managers celebrated in our latest 30 Under 30.

READ MORE: 30 Under 30: Lauren Minogue brings a fresh perspective to wealth management

mining industry

Credit: Association for Mineral Exploration

10. As the world electrifies, the mining industry will strike gold, Robert Friedland predicts
by the Editors
The legendary mining financier, turning in via video from Singapore, shares his thoughts on the sector’s future in a plain-spoken opening keynote for the Association for Mineral Exploration’s 2021 conference.

READ MORE: Can B.C. stake its claim as a leader in responsible mineral extraction?

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Lack of listings pushes Alberta real estate into a sellers' market – Calgary Herald



High demand in Calgary and Edmonton, paired with continuing low supply, will likely drive prices higher in the year ahead, says Zoocasa

Reviews and recommendations are unbiased and products are independently selected. Postmedia may earn an affiliate commission from purchases made through links on this page.

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Amid the success of the real estate market is a sore spot that could drive up prices more than expected, and that’s low inventory in the coming year, according to one national realty firm.


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While the pinch of low supply is most acute in larger centres like Toronto and Vancouver, Alberta is also “feeling the inventory pinch,” says Rachel Rehkopf, spokesperson for Zoocasa Realty Inc. in Toronto.

She points to December total sales rising by 27 per cent in Alberta while new listings remained stagnant.

That “pushed the entire province into sellers’ market conditions.”

The province sits at 2.5 months of residential inventory. That essentially means if no new homes came to market over the next two and a half months, and current demand for housing continues, Alberta would have no more homes for sale.

It’s a scenario that’s unlikely to happen, of course, and the overall supply-demand picture is better in Alberta than other parts of the country, she adds.


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In Ontario, for example, supply is 0.6 months while the metric is 1.7 months in British Columbia.

Yet Alberta’s supply is significantly lower than last year when it had four months of supply, she says.

Calgary is the tighter of the two large markets in the province with only 1.5 months of supply, while Edmonton actually added new listings in December, growing by about 10 per cent, year over year. Still, sales in Edmonton outpaced new listings, resulting in a 14 per cent decrease in inventory.

Overall, high demand in both cities paired with continuing low supply will likely drive prices higher in the year ahead, she notes.



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Welcome to Real Estate Friday! –



Here’s what we have for you this week in The Edge Real Estate section:

  • Property of the Week – Janet Kain of TKG Real Estate offers the opportunity to live in a stunning home, lovingly cared for and perfectly located for year-round enjoyment of the Berkshires.
  • Transformations – Designer Jennifer Owen and her clients imagined a calming space to relax while listening to the Boston Symphony Orchestra Live from Tanglewood on the radio!
  • Weekly real estate transactions for Berkshire County, Northern Litchfield County and, now, Columbia County
  • Market Perspective – Updated this week: The 2021 year-end real estate report from the Berkshire Board of REALTORS. What does it tell us?
  • The Self-Taught Gardener – How does Joan Didion’s approach to life and to her art inform our Self-Taught Gardener on how to garden?
  • Gardener’s Checklist – The holidays are over and the winter doldrums have set in. What’s a gardener to do to lift his spirits in these dark days?

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Vancouver real estate: Luxury sales way up in 2021 | CTV News – CTV News Vancouver



Sellers of luxury real estate did well last year, data on the Vancouver market suggests. Sales of properties with price tags higher than $4 million were up a whopping 171 per cent year-over-year.

Data released by Sotheby’s International Realty earlier this week included that 410 such properties were sold in the area in 2021. That total includes condos, attached homes and single-family homes.

It’s a trend that wasn’t limited to Vancouver, too.

Records fell in most of Canada’s major metropolitan luxury markets, something Sotheby’s attributes to buyers’ “urgent, pandemic-influenced demand for housing mobility,” as well as strengthened confidence in Canada’s post-pandemic economic recovery.

As in non-luxury markets, demand quickly outpaced supply. Prices went up, inventory “eroded,” and markets reached historic highs, Sotheby’s report explains simply.

“Canada’s real estate market was redefined in 2021,” Sotheby’s said.

The luxury market benefitted from a change in priorities – with more people working from home, buyers were less concerned about their commutes, and more concerned about space and security.

Low interest rates and record savings also didn’t hurt, and Sotheby’s noted seeing underlying anxiety from buyers concerned about investments made elsewhere, like on the stock market.

In Vancouver, that translated to the increase mentioned above for all luxury properties.

Sales jumped even more from 2020 to 2021 when looking at the ultra-luxury listings. Twenty-four properties priced over $10 million were sold last year, up 218 per cent from just 11 sold the year before.

The report does not address the buyers of homes at this price range, so it’s unclear whether they were purchased by residents already living locally, and whether they were purchased by people intending to live there full time.

A report released last week from the Bank of Canada suggested a significant share of newer homes, at least, were purchased by repeat buyers and investors.

Of course it’s unlikely many first-time buyers are looking at luxury real estate, but the report found that as home sales grew and prices skyrocketed – a trend realtor groups often tied to local buyers looking for more space during the pandemic – it was purchases by investors that grew the most. 

The Bank of Canada study looked only at mortgage data, however, so it does not capture homes bought with cash or by corporations.

Looking at lower-priced (relatively) homes, Sotheby’s said broadening the scope to include all properties sold for prices higher than $1 million still shows an increase in 2021, compared to 2020. But sales were up 145 per cent, compared to in the higher-priced categories.

Sotheby’s said 5,794 homes in this category were sold last year.

The category that saw the steepest growth was specifically single-family homes priced higher than $10 million. Those sales were up 240 per cent, compared to the previous year’s.

Other markets saw steep growth when it came to the sale of luxury real estate last year, including in Toronto where sales of properties over $4 million was up 224 per cent from in 2020, and ultra-luxury property sales were up 238 per cent.

Calgary saw the greatest growth in sales over $1 million, which were up 222 per cent, and in Montreal, real estate listed at over $4 million was up 178 per cent from 2020. 

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