Open House Weekend: Saturday, April 30 and Sunday, May 1, 2011, Aberdeen and North Kamloops

On Saturday, April 30th and Sunday, May 1st, 2011 open houses will be held in Aberdeen and North Kamloops.

North Kamloops House For Sale 451 Alexander AveSaturday, April 30th, 2011: 1:00-2:00: 451 Alexander Avenue, North Kamloops, $229,000

Cute North Kamloops home close to shopping, park & transportation. Some updates done such as flooring & bathroom sink. Pool has new liner & pump in 2010. 70 amp service. Room for a detached workshop. more

26-1555 Howe Road home for sale Kamloops For SaleSunday, May 1st, 2011: 1:00-2:00: 26-1555 Howe Road, Aberdeen Glen Village, $189,900

Spacious three bedroom home in Aberdeen with one full bathroom. Recent updates include roof, all windows, hot water tank, paint, kitchen appliances and more. The rec room could easily be converted to a fourth bedroom or office. more

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Featured Property: 6-726 Dunrobin Drive, Aberdeen, Kamloops, B.C. $299,900

Aberdeen Real Estate 6-726 Dunrobin Amazing view! This updated Aberdeen townhouse has a view from nearly every window. There are 3 large bedrooms (could split 3rd bedroom and make a den & bdrm). There are 2 full 4 piece bathrooms, open spacious floor plan, laminate throughout the home, updated light fixtures, paint, countertops, doors, hardware and bath fixtures. Single car garage and 2nd parking spot right outside the front door. Stainless steel appliances and washer/dryer included. Central A/C. Large patio great for entertaining with sliding glass doors from the living room and door off of the master bedroom. Very spacious home all on one level. Day before notice appreciated.

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Mission Hill Development in South Kamloops To Go To Creditors To Resume Construction

This article appeared in the Kamloops Daily News on April 21st, 2011 and was written by Cam Fortems.

A meeting is set for next week for creditors to approve a deal to resume construction of the incomplete Mission Hill project so it can be marketed and sold this spring.

The creditors meeting April 26 is part of a restructuring of more than $100 million in real estate debt by Kamloops developer Mike Rink.

Christopher Ramsay, the Vancouver lawyer representing Rink’s New Future Group of companies under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act (CCAA) proceeding, said the vote will allow mortgage holders and contractors owed millions to determine the project’s future.

A project evaluation done late last year said even if the first two phases of Mission Hill, a condominium project off Summit Drive, are completed and sold, there is only enough equity to pay the first mortgage from Harbour Capital.

Despite the grim financial prognosis, creditors are being asked to OK new financing to finish the project in hopes it will be more profitable and they will receive some proceeds.

Under the proposal, Harbour receives all proceeds until its $21-million loan is repaid. Other financing and legal costs will be added.

Under the proposal to be voted on, second mortgage holders and contractors owed another $15 million will be given promissory notes that may be redeemed if units are ultimately sold for more than the estimated value.

“The current market value appraisal and the Monitor’s description of costs to complete suggest that there will be no realization for creditors beyond Harbour,” states a report from an accounting firm presented to the B.C. Supreme Court this week.

Despite that forecast, Rink’s lawyer said approval is the most practical measure.

“At the end of the day it’s better to approve an agreement where creditors get something (promissory note) rather than going into bankruptcy, where they get nothing.”

In order for the plan to be approved, a majority of creditors in each class, representing two-thirds of the value, must vote in favour. If it fails, Rink can go back to court to ask for the court to OK it instead.

Ramsay said if the deal is approved, construction will resume quickly with marketing and sales this spring or summer.

City of Kamloops chief building inspector Kundun Bubbar said Rink must show he has financing, along with a project time to complete construction, before construction can resume.

Rink’s companies sought protection from creditors late in 2010. Since then, lawyers and financiers have manoeuvered to refinance, complete construction and avoid bankruptcy on each of seven troubled projects.

A restructuring at one Shuswap project owned by Rink, Carmel Cove, has already been approved. Special financing has also been arranged to complete a condominium project in Kelowna as well as the West Beach RV park in the North Shuswap. Those will come next for creditor restructuring approval.

Ramsay said creditors are being asked to approve restructuring separately in each of the seven projects. If all are successful, Rink and his companies will avoid bankruptcy.


Two Speed Market Continues for BC Home Sales in 2011

The BC Real Estate Association released it’s latest market report on April 18th, 2011. Click on images to enlarge.

Vancouver, BC – April 18, 2011. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that Multiple Listing Service® MLS Residential Sales BC March 2011(MLS®) residential sales in the province continued to climb higher in March. Compared to March of 2010, MLS® residential unit sales increased 11.5 per cent to 8,600 units. The average MLS® residential price rose 15 per cent to $594,157 in March compared to the same month last year.

“We continue to observe a two-speed market in BC, with surging consumer demand in Metro Vancouver overshadowing more moderate demand in other regions,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. “Vigorous consumer demand drove Greater Vancouver to its most active March since 2004, while the Fraser Valley had its strongest March in four years. Conversely, sales activity in other BC markets is expanding at a pace more inline with overall economic growth.”

Year-to-date, BC residential sales dollar volume increased 21 per cent to $11.14 billion, compared to the same period last year. Residential unit sales increased 4.7 per cent to 19,147 units. The average MLS® residential price rose 15.4 per cent to $582,021 over the same period.

March 2011 sales to active listings data


March 2011 Residential MLS Data by boardMarch 2011 Year to date Residential MLS by board





















Open House Weekend: Saturday, April 16 and Sunday, April 17, 2011, Aberdeen, Brocklehurst, Juniper Heights and North Kamloops

This Saturday, April 16th and Sunday, April 17th, 2011 open houses will be held in Aberdeen, Brocklehurst, Juniper Heights and North Kamloops.

2247 Omineca Dr Juniper Heights Ridge Kamloops BC For SaleSaturday, April 16th, 2011: 11:30-1:00: 2247 Omineca Drive, Juniper Heights $378,900

Immaculate doesn’t even describe this Juniper Heights home. Beautiful hardwood flooring throughout the main floor that has 3 spacious bedrooms, 1 full bath and a 2 piece master Ensuite. Many recent updates in this home. more

North Kamloops Real Estate 1050 Sherbrooke Ave Sunday, April 17th, 2011: 11:30-1:00: 1050 Sherbrooke Avenue, North Kamloops $329,900

Immaculate, bright second owner North Kamloops home on a large 12,000 square foot lot. This home features original hardwood floors throughout the main floor that are in perfect condition, a large one bedroom inlaw suite more.

Kamloops Home For Sale 2090 Van Horne Drive Aberdeen Saturday, April 17th, 2011: 1:30-3:00: 2090 Van Horne Drive, Aberdeen, $369,900

Private & spacious 3 level split home in Aberdeen. There are 5 bedrooms & 3 bathrooms, including 1 ensuite. Recent updates include outside vinyl “chic” paint with a 20 year warranty, tile flooring & 95% efficiency furnace. more

Brocklehurst Kamloops House For Sale 7-1655 Ord Road Sunday, April 17th, 2011: 1:30-3:30: 7-1655 Ord Road, Brocklehurst $114,900

Completely renovated inside and out. There isn’t a single thing left to update in this spacious 1,100 sq foot home. There are 2 bedrooms and a den and 2 full four piece bathrooms. more

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Important Information If You Are Planning To Renovate Your Kamloops Home

This article appeared in the Kamloops Daily News on April 5th, 2011 and was written by Robert Koopmans. There are many things to keep in mind when renovating your home in Kamloops. This article explains two prevalent issues that I often come across (outstanding permits and liens) and can easily be prevented.

Kamloops Renovation Contractor Real EstateWhen it comes to building or renovating a home, not many people think legal counsel needs to be part of the construction team.

That’s often a mistake, say two local lawyers, as there are many statutes governing differing aspects of the construction industry — failure to be aware of them can prove costly.

Hal Hicks and Sam Dabner, both associate lawyers at Fulton and Company in Kamloops, spoke to a crowd at the Canadian Home Builders Association’s annual home show Saturday, giving people a sense of the kinds of situations when they need to be aware of the law, and when they need to consult a lawyer.

Dabner said one of the big areas people often run into trouble is with permits.

The City requires building permits be sought for all kinds of new construction, as well as renovations that alter the structure of the home.

Any changes to houses that alter internal systems — plumbing and electrical, for example, or modify walls, rooms or the layout — will inevitably require a building permit. It’s possible finished work will also need to be inspected.

As an example of how stringent the permit process really is — Hicks recently obtained a permit in order to install a new dishwasher in his house.

The reason for permits? The City wants to ensure that houses in Kamloops are safe and conform with B.C.’s building codes.

“It’s good public policy,” said Dabner.

And what happens if you don’t get one? Dabner said the City can issue stop-work orders on projects, even if they are already underway. People can also be told they must return their house or structure to its condition before the work began. If work is done without a permit, homeowners can see their insurance affected. Real estate sales documents require owners to declare improvements done without a permit.

The easiest way to avoid problems with the City — ask quetions, said Dabner. There is no need to call a lawyer. Call City Hall. The building department is always prepared to help people sort out when or if they need a permit.

Another area of home ownership that frequently sees people in need of legal help is when they hire contractors or others to do improvements.

The renovation market has been growing by leaps and bounds in recent years and inevitably, not everyone is happy with the work done, its cost or how long it took to get it done.

In these kinds of situations, contracts rule supreme, both lawyers agreed. There is big value in written contracts, as long as the contract is well understood by both parties. People must be careful what they sign to ensure they are not  giving away avenues of recourse should something go wrong.

Unfortunately, much work in homes — especially lower cosy renovations — are often done with nothing more than a verbal agreement. At the least, people should always get a written quote specifying how much a job will cost and how long it will last, Dabner said.

If a dispute arises involving sums less than $25,000, small-claims court can prove a worthwhile option. The court is designed with unrepresented litigants in mind. Most cases are settled long before trial, when parties meet with judges in settlement conferences.

“If someone’s (claim) is way off base, the judge will usually tell you you are not likely to win or are going to lose,” Dabner said.

There is one last area of the construction industry many homeowners are not aware about, an area that bears great potential to cause grief.

B.C.’s Lien Act is designed to protect contractors or suppliers from doing work or providing materials and not getting paid. The act allows people who are owed money for work or materials to place a lien on a property’s title.

Liens can cause homeowners problems, by preventing them from taking measures that involve changes to title — the sale of property being the most common.

Hicks said the most common scenario that affects homeowners is when they hire a contractor to do work but that contractor fails to pay his sub-contractors or suppliers.

A lien is placed on title by those who are owed money by the contractor, Hicks said, and the homeowner is stuck, unable to clear their title until the debt is paid.

The remedy? Holdback. The act allows homeowners to withhold 10 per cent of a final bill for a maximum of 55 days, in order to protect against the possibility of seeing titles locked by lien.

In such cases, holdback money can be diverted to unpaid sub-contractors and suppliers. Keeping holdback on the bill protects homeowners from paying twice for the same work, or seeing their titles locked up in protracted disputes between other parties.

The bottom line — homeowners who are ignorant of the laws that govern the construction industry run the risk of bearing costs or other down the road. When in doubt, ask a lawyer, both agreed. The cost of seeking advice early will always be more cost-effective than hiring a lawyer to sort through problems after the fact.


Construction and Home Sales are Stable in Kamloops

This article came from the Kamloops Daily News and was written by Michelle Young on April 8th, 2011.

Steady. If there was one word that described both home construction and real estate sales in Kamloops, it’s steady.

City construction figures for March show permits were issued that month for 17 houses and 38 apartment style multi-family units, as well as two secondary suites and two single multi-family units.

That brings the year-to-date total to 84 housing units, matching the number from March of 2010. The difference is, last year’s housing included more single-family and less multi-family.

Kamloops and District Real Estate Association president Brian Ledoux said Friday the numbers reflect what he’s seeing and hearing about in the buying and selling market.

For sale signs are sprouting like tulips and daffodils (and this year, federal election signs) around town as homeowners come out of hibernation and turn their thoughts to upgrading or moving, he said.

Some of them are relisting after taking their houses off the market for the winter. “Right now, we’re tipping on more listings than sales, so it’s a slight buyer’s market,” he said.

Real estate agents are seeing the median price of house sales rise slightly, which indicates that more high-end homes are selling.

He recently had a client who moved here from Vancouver after selling in the hot market down there.

But there are still lots of first-time buyers shopping, too.

Ledoux said the economists that his association consults are predicting exactly what appears to be happening.

“It’ll be pretty steady for the next few years,” he said.

On the commercial construction side, the City’s permit numbers show there is still some lagging behind last year’s pace.

The first three months of this year saw $16.1 million spent on commercial and industrial projects, compared with $19.2 million in the same period in 2010.

Paul Fabri, market analyst with Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp., predicted detached housing construction will pick up later this year.

The best word to describe the forecast for 2011 in the Thompson Okanagan is “stable,” he said. “I expect a strong market in Kamloops.”

That strong market has led him to anticipate 550 housing units being built in town this year. So far, the City has issued permits for 84.

More severe winter conditions than usual have slowed construction in the region, he noted.

City building inspector Kundan Bubbar said at this point, multi family housing is up because of affordability.

A few large multi-family projects are expected to start later this year, including a commercial and 38-unit residential project by Mike Culos at Summit and McGill, and 38 apartments on Harrison Way in Aberdeen.


Kamloops Recognized in ‘Top Ten Cities of the Future In the Americas’

This article came from Venture Kamloops on April 12, 2011.

View of North Kamloops from South KamloopsKamloops, BC – Kamloops, British Columbia has received a prestigious recognition from Foreign Direct Investment Magazine. The first ever Americas Cities of the Future 2010/11 competition which publishes a ranking of the economic business and financial strengths of cities across the American Continent (both North and South) has recognized Kamloops as 9th overall in their Micro Cities Category, 2nd for its Foreign Direct Investment Strategy and 5th for its Cost Competitiveness in their Micro Cities categories. Micro cities have a population of less than 100,000.

Foreign Direct Investment Magazine – Americas Cities of the Future 2010/11 shortlists were created by independent data collected by fDi Intelligence division across 405 cities across North and South America. Six categories were evaluated: Economic Potential, Human Resources, Cost Effectiveness, Quality of Life, Infrastructure and Business Friendliness. A seventh category was added to the scoring – FDI promotion strategy. In this category, 100 cities submitted details about their promotion strategy and this was judged and scored by our independent judging panel.

“This recognition of Kamloops’ efforts is well deserved. Our growth in infrastructure and business opportunities, our ideal location as a transportation hub as well as our superior quality of life amenities all contribute to Kamloops being a great place to invest. Having such a prestigious ranking will only enhance our efforts to attract international investment into our community,” said Dan Sulz, Executive Director Venture Kamloops.

A more detailed list of the winners and categories can be found in this month’s Foreign Direct Investment Magazine – April 2011 or on their website at


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