Jan 2010 18

‘Aparments shortfall’ after Olympics

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Vancouver will face a shortfall of apartment units following its hosting of the Winter Olympic Games, according to one leading designer and analyst.

Bob Rennie, boss of Rennie Marketing Systems, predicts that by the first quarter of 2011 the shortfall in apartment units will be noticeable in downtown Vancouver as there are very few major sites left to develop.

Despite recent forecasts that city prices would rise 7.2 per cent this year, Rennie claims that Vancouver properties would conservatively rise 4 to 4.5 percent in 2010, which would present an ideal opportunity for investors.

The high-profile designer and marketer of condominium developments said with the city going through a difficult economic downturn in 2008, in Greater Vancouver alone the construction of between 4,000 to 6,000 apartments units had been put on hold.

He added that banks would remain conservative, and with a lot of money on the sidelines earning low interest, coupled with a low supply of available properties, this would put added pressure on the market.

Another consideration facing Vancouverites is the July 1 introduction of the harmonized sales tax (HST). British Columbia, Vancouver's home province, is following Ontario's lead in implementing the HST, a blending of the seven per cent provincial sales tax and five per cent federal goods and services tax. The move will increase the price of new properties by two per cent.  

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