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Village real estate challenge raises $18K for Mustard Seed – Saanich News

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The third annual Oak Bay Village real estate Food Bank Challenge helped spread a little Christmas cheer to those in need.

A total of $18,647 was raised by Engel and Volkers, RE/MAX Camosun and The Agency, with 245 pounds of food collected.

Additionally, a collection box on the front lawn of the municipal hall collected 513.3 pounds of food donations.

The money and food were delivered to the Mustard Seed Food Bank.

“It’s an extraordinary response and is going immediately to help people in our community. Donations are still coming in so there will be even more as a result of everyone’s efforts,” said Heather Leary, project manager for the Oak Bay Business Improvement Association, who are behind the food drive. “A huge thank you to the three real estate agencies, the Island Equipment Owners Association and MoBox who all stepped up to adapt to current circumstances and make this a big success.”

Engel and Volkers raised the most with $7,500 and 60.8 pounds.

Donations are still being accepted by The Agency, at 2185 Theatre Lane, Engel & Vokers, at 2249 Oak Bay Ave., and RE/MAX Camosun at 2239 Oak Bay Ave.

READ ALSO: Oak Bay real estate agents rekindle annual food fight

reporter@oakbaynews.com

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Canadian commercial real estate services firm acknowledges cyberattack – Saskatoon StarPhoenix

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The spokesperson was mum when asked to confirm if the attack was ransomware, that files had been copied, whether the information affected was corporate or personal, and, if personal, did it involve current and former employees.

In its most recent quarterly financial statement for the period ending September 30, 2020, Colliers said it had a net income of just under $32 million on revenues of just over US$692 million. According to its 2019 financial results at the beginning of last year, it had about 15,000 employees.

Colliers performs a number of services for real estate firms including property management, sales and appraisals as well as tenant representation.

The Netfilim website entry for Colliers has the headline “Part 1,” suggesting the two files it has posted proves the firm was compromised and could be followed by more trouble.

According to Brett Callow, a British Columbia-based threat researcher for Emsisoft,  Nefilim was first noticed in the spring of last year and has since racked up a string of enterprise-space victims including Whirlpool, MAS Holdings, Luxottica and Australian logistics company Toll Group. “Unlike most other big game-hunting groups, Nefilim appears to be a closed shop rather than a ransomware-as-a-service provider, which may explain why the group is less active others,” he said in an email. “The group typically uses Microsoft RDP (remote desk protocol) and other public-facing applications for initial access of victims. Frequently, it also exploits unpatched versions of Citrix’s Application Delivery Controller going after CVE-2019-19781.”

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Local firm anticipates Spring surge in Fort Saskatchewan real estate market – Mayerthorpe Freelancer

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“Looking at the cyclical nature of the real estate industry, combined with suppressed demand during lockdown, we’re going to see an uncapped demand. People are antsy and they want to get looking for their new home.”

Revere Real Estate is a local real estate firm, tracking market trends in order to give their clients the best home-buying experience possible.

Records have been set in real estate throughout COVID, including in November 2020, which Blais pointed to as an “historical month,” with an increase in sales of 27 per cent over the same timeframe in 2019.

Similarly, October 2020 home sales in the Edmonton region grew by 26 per cent compared to the same month in 2019. “The numbers we saw were unheard of for the fall,” he said. “November is typically the month that things really cool off, but sales remained steady.”

The new surge could prove hugely beneficial for Fort Saskatchewan, specifically, Blais said, as suburbs and more rural areas surrounding Edmonton could see significant real estate gains through COVID.

“Anecdotally, I was helping a client out in St. Albert look for a home in the range of $450,000, and every home we identified had offers accepted within three days of going to market,” he said. “It was crazy, and I think we’ll see that again in certain areas in and around the city.”

Noting that similar experiences are being had in Fort Saskatchewan, Blais pointed to anticipated growth in the Fort come the spring. “There’s quite a bit of development that continues outside of the City of Edmonton, and we’re also seeing what I call ‘perpetual urban sprawl’ in Edmonton,” he explained. “Developers have met that demand pretty well, expanding into regions that used to be farmland, so you can now get into single-­family homes for under $425,000 just west of the city.

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Canadian pension funds hunt for pandemic real estate bargains – CTV News

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TORONTO —
Canadian pension funds are seeking to boost their real estate investments, betting the slumping property market will recover as the COVID-19 pandemic recedes and office workers and city dwellers return to downtown properties.

Canadian pension funds held $278.7 billion in property assets in 2019, up 4% from 2018, according to the Pension Investment Association of Canada, making them the country’s largest real estate owners.

In a world of slower economic growth, very low interest rates, volatility in equity markets, real estate offers an attractive opportunity for pension funds, which take a long-term investment horizon, say market participants.

“We’re looking for buying opportunities,” said Hilary Spann, head of Americas real estate at CPP Investments, which manages $456.7 billion. CPP’s real estate portfolio generated 5.1% return for the year ended March 2020.

CPP announced a U.S. joint venture with Greystar Real Estate Portfolio to build multiple separate housing units this month, a deal that was initiated pre-pandemic.

In November, it signed an agreement with Hudson Pacific Properties to acquire an office tower in Seattle. Spann said a lot of buyers that would have been competitive in the Seattle deal were temporarily on the sidelines. “So we were able to step in and pick up that asset at yields that we thought were quite attractive.”

OFFICE VACANCIES CLIMB

As the pandemic forced many staff to work from home, the office vacancy rate in Canada hit a 16-year high of 13.4% in 2020, according to data from broker CBRE. Downtown offices were hit harder.

“I think pension funds are very well aware that…there are times when values dip a bit and vacancies go up but overall real estate assets are a great part of any pension fund portfolio,” Paul Morassutti, CBRE Canada vice-chairman said.

CPP’s Spann said while both rental markets and office may suffer in the short-term, it was expected that both markets would return when the pandemic comes to an end.

“Office may fall in the short term but in the long term, as everybody does start coming back to the office, I think it’s fair to say you may see a reversal,” she said, adding that the things that made places like New York and San Francisco vibrant will remain.

Kristopher Wojtecki, managing director for real estate at PSP Investments, told Reuters the fund had been increasing exposure in select sectors including single family rental and production studio real estate during the pandemic.

However, Canada’s second-largest pension fund, Caisse de depot et placement du Quebec, is taking a contrarian approach. A spokeswoman for Ivanhoé Cambridge, the real estate subsidiary of Caisse, said the fund is cutting exposure in traditional asset classes and prioritizing opportunities in growth sectors which include logistics and residential office buildings among others.

Grant McGlaughlin, partner at law firm Fasken, said he did not see any drastic moves on pension funds getting rid of their real estate portfolios.

“I think that’s the right thesis that there is no point selling into a low,” he said.

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