News

News

Our recipe: Valuing an apartment building

This article was written and published in the 2016 Year-End Goodman Report.

What goes into the mix when we decide what a building is worth? Here’s our stew:

Location: It’s not just about municipality. Neighbourhood, street, corner or midblock position – they all matter too. We get into the nitty-gritty, converting the property’s location into a quantified value.

Improvements/Condition: Any deferred maintenance? If the large items have been completed (think roof, piping, elevator, any structural requirements), then investors will view the property with greater pricing consideration. Is it a legal non-conforming structure, or does it conform? Any unauthorized suites?

Read article

New rentals are coming! New rentals are coming!

This article was written and published in the 2016 Year-End Goodman Report.

The shortfall in rentals hasn’t been merely a Vancouver problem. Municipal governments outside the city’s borders haven’t been coping well with their aging rental stock either. Though a bonanza for rental owners in terms of soaring valuations and sharply escalating rents, the dire shortage in the region has been disruptive, indeed disheartening, to segments of society needing affordability. These include students, young families and seniors, as well as employers looking to attract and retain talent. New supplies of market rentals would help ease these severe pressures.

And now?

Read article

The Rental Housing Crisis: So what else is new?

This article was written and published in the 2016 Year-End Goodman Report.

Have the proverbial lights finally flickered on at the corner of Vancouver’s West 12th Avenue and Cambie Street? And have our elected officials and their advisors (read: spin doctors) acknowledged at last that we are in the midst of a rental housing crisis?

Under unrelenting pressure from a vast body of our citizenry – including students, new families, seniors and employers – the news media, BC Housing, the Urban Development Institute, landowners and the odd, very irritating commercial realtor, Vancouver’s municipal leaders after years of ruling in a vacuum of denial have now changed their tune. Even Mayor Robertson, after eight years at the helm, has admitted as much. As quoted in an article in The Guardian by Ashifa Kassam, Robertson said he “wouldn’t have dreamed the [housing] crisis would get this intense” (November 21, 2016). The Mayor artfully deflected blame away from his office by claiming that the crisis was owing to the impact of global capital and the fact that the provincial and federal governments were not doing enough.

We disagree.

Read article

The Story Behind the Stats: 2016 vs. 2015 Comparison

This article was written and published in the 2016 Year-End Goodman Report.

Since its implementation on August 2, 2016, B.C.’s 15% foreign buyer tax has had a notable cooling effect on the residential housing market and, some might argue, on the multifamily rental investment sector as well. While very few of the 124 buildings sold in the first half of 2016 actually went to offshore buyers, the newly introduced tax has nevertheless served to dampen the normally high enthusiasm for this asset class. In the second half of 2016, only 50 buildings were sold: clear evidence of slowing activity.

Still, 2016 was very active, indeed one of the liveliest in 25 years. Building sales and total dollar volume came in close to the banner year of 2015. For 2016, however, the key value indicator of average price per suite rose dramatically in most communities tracked.

Read article

The Tail Doesn’t Wag the Dog

This article was written and published in the 2016 Year-End Goodman Report.

Since 1983, the Goodman Report has clung to the position that socioeconomic and political events transpiring at least outside the borders of Metro Vancouver and B.C., if not of Canada, have played a major role in establishing and maintaining the status of our region. While the Vancouver brand is recognized, if not envied worldwide, our financial and political clout, by comparison, is considerably less so.

The recent American election only reinforces this view. Under a Trump-led administration, our next-door neighbour is about to undergo a political and economic metamorphosis that is likely to produce a spillover effect of considerable magnitude on Canada and Vancouver. Should the incoming administration live up to its “America first” protectionist rhetoric, it stands to reason that nations with longstanding treaties in place, including ours, will be required to make economic concessions to the U.S. In other words, we could very well experience potential disruptions to trade and commerce, quite possibly triggering higher deficits and interest-rate increases here at home. In addition, our competiveness could be sorely tested as the U.S. begins deregulation and major reform of both personal and corporate taxes. We’re in for a bumpy ride: bet on it.

Read article

Opinion: Industry expert says sell, sell, sell

The following article was published in an earlier version in The Province on December 28, 2016. It has been penned by a prominent financial advisor and is intended to offer a vivid alternate perspective to the market.


Over my lengthy 45-year career as a financial advisor, I have been a strong advocate of owning apartment buildings.

Yet now, as much as it pains me, I am recommending to clients not to buy any further residential revenue properties in Metro Vancouver. More importantly, though, I am also recommending to them to consider putting their apartment holdings on the market to take advantage of this overheated apartment feeding frenzy that we are currently experiencing.

This decision has not come lightly, nor did I wake up one morning and decide to sell. Many of my colleagues have been shocked that I, as a financial advisor and experienced real-estate professional, should have come to this conclusion. My detailed research and the current geopolitical climate have made it obvious to me that the values associated with apartment buildings just do not make any economic sense. To quote Judge Judy, “If it doesn’t make sense, it cannot be true.”

Is there a bubble about to burst? No. Is this a crisis similar to the U.S. sub-prime fiasco? No. Then where has my epiphany come from?

Read article

Local buyers help drive B.C. apartment sales higher in 2016

Peter Mitham, Business in Vancouver
January 24th, 2017

Billion-dollar year

Apartment sales logged another blockbuster year in 2016, even though numbers didn’t quite match those logged in 2015.

A total of 174 purpose-built rental properties worth nearly $1.5 billion changed hands in 2016, according to numbers compiled by David and Mark Goodman, who recently added Cynthia Jagger to their team at HQ Real Estate Services Ltd. This was down 4% from 2015.

Read article

Metro Vancouver’s rental housing, industrial property sectors see continued short supply

Chuck Chiang, The Vancouver Sun
January 25th, 2017

Metro Vancouver’s rental housing and industrial markets remain highly active, with demand outstripping supply on both fronts, leading to sales and price surges in some areas and low vacancy rates in others, according to recent reports.

CBRE’s Q4 market review of Metro Vancouver’s industrial real estate sector showed that the region saw industrial leasing space vacancy rates drop to 2.4 per cent at the end of last year, the lowest level since 2007. Sales, meanwhile, reached a record $1.2 billion in 2016, up nine per cent from the previous year.

Read article

Year-end report shows landlord-friendly rental market into 2017

Tanya Commisso, Western Investor
January 25th, 2017

Investors looking to purchase or develop rental housing in Metro Vancouver can look forward to an attractive return despite slowing sales, according to a recent year-end market review.

The Goodman Report released its 2016 Greater Vancouver Rental Apartment Review this month and found owners are in for a favourable year, with a regional vacancy rate below one per cent that’s only expected to continue to drop.

Read article