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Recreational property catches the real estate wave – Western Investor



The pandemic has blurred the line between recreational real estate and primary residences, with the former catching the incredible upturn in prices being seen by the latter.

On the Sunshine Coast, a recreational region a BC Ferries ride from West Vancouver, the median price of a detached house increased 34.6 per cent in March, compared to a year earlier. This was the second- highest increase of any market, according to the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver, second only to Bowen Island, and twice as high as the average price increase in Greater Vancouver.

Across Canada, average property prices in the recreational regions will increase 15 per cent in 2021 to crest over $500,000, according to Royal LePage, which has upwardly revised its November 2020 price forecast to reflect a shortage of inventory and soaring demand.

“From coast to coast, the line between primary residence and recreational property is blurring,” said Phil Soper, president and CEO, Royal LePage. “The trend began last summer when the option of traveling abroad was taken away, and continued to gain popularity as it became clear that with access to high-speed internet, many people can do their jobs from just about anywhere.”

In 2020, the average price of a house in Canada’s recreational property regions increased 16 per cent year-over-year to $437,156 in 2020 compared to 2019. During the same period, the aggregate price of a waterfront property increased 9.8 per cent to $813,385 and the aggregate price of a condominium rose 10.5 per cent to $310,257.

A survey of 190 Royal LePage recreational real estate professionals across the country, found that 91 per cent said that their market has less inventory than typical for their region, including 72 per cent that reported significantly less inventory available.

Houses in the recreational regions of Ontario and Atlantic Canada are forecast to see the highest price appreciation in the country this year, set to increase 17 per cent, while prices in Quebec and British Columbia are forecast to increase 15 per cent and 13 per cent, respectively.

In B.C., 52 per cent of agents said a shortage of listings and rising demand is forcing buyers into multiple-offer situations, which often result in properties selling above the asking price. As in Atlantic Canada, two-thirds of B.C. agents say they have seen an influx of buyers from out-of-province during the pandemic, Soper added, and many of them are young buyers.

A Royal LePage survey released in February found that 47 per cent of Canadians aged 25 to 35 said they would choose to small town or country living over living in a city if given a choice. Fifty-two per cent said the availability of remote work has increased their likelihood to move further from their current or future place of work. Overall, 39 per cent of this cohort are considering a move from their current home to a less dense area as a result of the pandemic, the study said.

” Access to high-speed internet and the ability to work remotely are among the top criteria for those seeking properties in recreational regions, followed closely by four-season usability,” Soper said.

The average price of a house in B.C.’s recreational regions is forecast to increase 13 per cent in 2021 to $781,918. In 2020, the aggregate price of a house in the province’s recreational markets increased 12.9 per cent year-over-year to $691,963 compared to 2019. During the same period, the average price of a waterfront property increased 2.7 per cent to $1.74 million, according to Royal LePage.

Despite its 34 per cent price surge, year-over-year, the benchmark price of a Sunshine Coast house in March was $765,000, compared to a Greater Vancouver benchmark of $1.7 million.

In the central Okanagan, where the B.C. Real Estate Association reports that detached house prices increased 12 per cent in 2020, compared to 2019, to $588,000, local agents are bracing for a record-setting year.

“Our biggest challenge right now is extremely low inventory and increased buyer demand,” said Francis Braam, broker, Royal LePage Kelowna. “I expect we’ll see double digit price gains this spring.”

In Whistler and Pemberton, remote work and low borrowing costs remain a driving force behind increasing prices, agents say.

On the Sunshine Coast region, a BC Ferries trip from West Vancouver,

In Alberta, the average price of a detached house in recreational markets, such as in the Rockies or Sylvan Lake, is expected to increase 6 per cent this year to $942,881.
“Canmore is seeing unparalleled demand from people,” said Brad Hawker, managing broker, Royal LePage Rocky Mountain Realty. “A growing segment of young and middle-aged buyers are seeking primary residences in the area.”

On the Prairies, recreational real estate prices are forecast to increase 9 per cent in 2021 to $260,862. Top areas are Manitoba’s interlake regions close to Winnipeg, agents say.

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Credit 'Zombies' on the Rise as Real Estate Firms Lead Charge – BNN



(Bloomberg) — The walking dead of the corporate world are multiplying — and the property industry sustains the most.

A new study on companies that have dodged default for years, even though they don’t have enough money to pay interest, comes just as markets from Hong Kong to New York are roiled by real-estate giant China Evergrande Group’s showdown with its creditors. 

Consultancy firm Kearney found their numbers have expanded by 9% globally in the past decade, in part because loose monetary policy has allowed them to keep rolling over debts. 

While “zombies” have been on the rise since the last financial crisis, the pandemic looks likely to bolster their ranks, with more companies seeking waivers after taking on unsustainable piles of debt when economies were shuttered.

The OECD defines zombie companies as those that have been trading for more than 10 years and have been unable to cover their interest burden from their operating revenues for three consecutive years. 

Kearney studied records of 67,000 listed companies from 152 countries. It found:

  • 7.4% of real-estate firms were zombies
  • 5.9% of healthcare
  • 5.5% of telecommunications and media
  • 5.1% of travel and tourism

Within retail, online retail had a slightly bigger share of zombies than brick-and-mortar counterparts, potentially due to the low profitability of online players, according to the report.   


At least 5 issuers are offering debt on European markets on Thursday, with new issuance volumes of at least EU2.25 billion-equivalent.

  • Bank of England voted to keep bond-buying target and interest rate benchmark unchanged at a record-low 0.1%
  • Ashmore Group Plc’s Jan Dehn is set to leave the firm, ending a 16-year stint at the emerging market-focused money manager
  • SMCP’s majority shareholder, European TopSoho’s, failed to redeem at maturity EU250 million 4.0% bonds exchangeable into SMCP shares


Financial regulators in Beijing issued a broad set of instructions to China Evergrande Group, telling the embattled developer to focus on completing unfinished properties and repaying individual investors while avoiding a near-term default on dollar bonds.

  • Global investors will focus on China Evergrande Group’s $83.5 million interest payment due Thursday on a five-year dollar note
  • The People’s Bank of China pumped in 110 billion yuan ($17 billion) of cash with seven- and 14-day reverse repurchase agreements.
  • Four Chinese firms were offering dollar bonds Thursday, ending a three-day lull in the Asian credit market amid holidays and concern about contagion from the distressed property giant Evergrande


Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said there is little direct U.S. exposure to debt of the Chinese company Evergrande but said it could impact global financial conditions

  • Powell said the Fed could begin scaling back asset purchases as soon as November and complete the process by mid-2022
  • The takeover of medical supply company Medline Industries Inc. is being funded by the largest leveraged buyout loan in three years
  • A gauge of volatility in the $4 trillion market for state and local-government debt has tumbled to just shy of a record low set in early January

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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Record-breaking real estate: North Saanich property sells for nearly $23M – CHEK



The sale of a multi-million dollar listing in North Saanich is shattering any previous record for highest house price on Vancouver Island.

For $22.75 million, the Lawrence Road property includes a 13,000-square-foot home with eight bathrooms, six bedrooms, a two-storey study, a detached yoga studio, an infinity pool, tennis court, gym — even an underground wine cellar.

The president of the Victoria Real Estate Board, David Langlois, said the property is unique.

“You are looking at a very high-end, very interesting property that is going to offer features that you simply can’t find anywhere else,” he said.

It also comes with its own detached two-bedroom guest cottage.

“It’s significant in that it’s certainly the largest recorded sale that we’ve seen in our marketplace,” Langlois said.

“We do have a lot of really valuable real estate throughout the Greater Victoria area. We’ve got lots of private islands, and lots of estate-like settings. It’s not surprising.”

In June, a property in Metchosin sold for $12 million. It sits on 67 acres and a stream runs under parts of the 10,000-square-foot home.

WATCH: Luxury home with stream running through it sets real estate record in Greater Victoria

At the time, it was the highest price ever paid through the Victoria Real Estate Board listings.

Tina Ireland, a regional assessor with BC Assessment, said there are fewer homes in the luxury market available right now.

“The luxury home market is more unique though of course, because the properties are more unique.”

With demand up for properties worth $4 million and more, so are prices.

“Last year’s assessment, we had seen a 10 per cent increase,” Ireland said. “This year I think we’ll see at least that in our assessed values.”

There have been 245 sales of homes in the $2 million category so far in 2021, compared with just 94 in the same period in 2020.

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Dubai real-estate firm DAMAC approved to take firm private – 95.7 News



DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — A Dubai real-estate company known for its deals with former President Donald Trump said Thursday it had received regulator approval for an effort to take the firm private.

DAMAC Properties still plans to offer $595 million for outstanding shares of the company, the firm said in a filing on Dubai Financial Market stock exchange.

It said it would offer an update on the plan in the coming weeks. It earlier announced plans in June for the offer to take the company private, then withdrew them as regulators examined the plan.

The buyout would be through Maple Invest Co. Ltd., a holding company of DAMAC’s billionaire founder Hussain Sajwani. Sajwani owns nearly four-fifths of the company through various investment firms.

DAMAC stock traded up Thursday over 3% on the news. The firm has a market capitalization of over $2 billion.

DAMAC is known in Dubai for a development that features a Trump-branded golf club surrounded by villas and apartments, making it the only one of its kind in the Middle East that bears the Trump logo.

The company’s partnership with the Trump Organization to manage and run the golf course was struck before Trump’s election as U.S. president.

The Associated Press

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