Real Estate in Qualicum Beach, Parksville, and Nanoose Bay
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Nancy Smith’s Oceanside Real Estate Blog

Nancy’s Real Estate Market Update

Market Crisis?

Are we in for a Market Crash?

Watching the world news is somewhat depressing, not only in our own world, but fear is keeping people from enjoying life. Everyone's feeling of safety is directly tied to having a home, whether one purchases or rents. Click on "Read more" for a take on the current market regarding Institutional Investors.

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Interest Rate Fallacy

Why are the increasing interest rates NOT cooling the housing market?

The Governments, in their wisdom have been selling us their reasons for interest rate increases, is to cool the inflation rate. This in turn is supposed to cool the housing market, making homes more affordable. CLICK on 'Read more' for our quick summary of further problems.

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Issues with Poly-B, and Home Insurance. (Feb /2021)

Poly-B Water Pipe can Affect the SALE of Your Home

Poly-B plumbing is a type of plastic piping that was commonly used in residential and commercial buildings between the late 1960s and the mid-1990s. This material was used in water supply lines. Unfortunately, this system was found to be susceptible to corrosion, leading to potential leaks and flooding, and has since been banned in many areas. Insurance companies are very aware of the potential for water damage caused by Poly-B plumbing and typically require special coverage for buildings that contain it. Homeowners may also be required to provide proof of a professional inspection to ensure that the piping is still in good condition before they can acquire coverage. In some cases, insurance companies may refuse to provide coverage if they deem the plumbing too old and unreliable, leaving homeowners to foot the bill for any necessary repairs or replacements. (UPDATE: 2,000 sqft two story home, QUOTE to replace Poly-B = $25,000 CAD July 2022) For more click on "Read more" link.

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2023 Is This The Year For Change?

News often obscures the Real Estate Market Data

The Vancouver Island real estate market has been heavily impacted by the pandemic, with low inventory and high price increases making it difficult for potential home buyers to relocate in 2023. This has caused considerable frustration among buyers who are struggling to find suitable housing. Click on 'Read more'

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Chattels: What Goes and What Stays

Items included or excluded from a sale can be a surprise.

Often a real estate purchaser enters their new home to find many surprises, some are delightful, and some are depressing. Buyers and Sellers should take note of what constitutes a Chattel in a real estate transaction. CLICK on "Read more" for an outline.

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Condo Insurance is a Crisis for Some.

Is this a result of BC's inability to control forest fires?

Condo strata insurance is facing major headwinds and potentially could weaken the Condo market.

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Affordability and the Positive Influences of Purchasing a Home

Buyers Requiring Financing, Will Fuel the Market

The current home price increases are not isolated to North America, but are also occurring in many of the 38 countries that make up the OCED. The UK, South Korea, New Zealand, CANADA, and Turkey top the list. Many investors, journalists, banks and financial consultants all try to predict market movements, and often fail.

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Current Assessed Values are Confusing the Buyers.

Local Market Prices can exceed Assessment.

Greater Vancouver is adjusting to market shocks caused by federal mortgage rules and provincial tax policies. Vancouver Island however is enjoying a sustained vibrant market hampered by the lack of quality listings. Qualicum Beach is somewhat untouched by development projects that has expanded the housing base in Parksville. Market pricing in Qualicum Beach can exceed Assessments by as much as $100,000.

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Affordable Homes

It is getting impossible to buy a home, what do I do?

Buying a home requires resources, so it is best to get your 'ducks in a row' first.

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Foreclosure Opportunity

Quality Buys are Available if You Have Patience.

There are benefits and drawbacks to buying foreclosure properties, however the rewards can be well worth it.

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SAVE MONEY, Sell Yourself or Use a Discount Broker?

Some People Refuse to Use a Realtor.

My husband was commenting on a 'discount broker listed' property for sale near our home in Qualicum Beach. He was amazed that there seemed to be no action for months on this property. My husband thinks he is an astute investor and money manager so he regularly observers other people's money habits.

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Coffee Chatter - Money Laundering and BC's Real Estate.

Do we need more Levels of Government, or Efficiency of Existing Agencies.

Real Estate agents are required to fill out FINTRAC forms to monitor potential money laundering problems.

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Cooler Market Affords Happy Shopping

The Oceanside Area is Home.

It is finally June, but the West coast weather does not feel like June. The news does not feel much better in real estate, as the interest rates have crept up, mortgage qualification is more difficult and for those people who need high ratio mortgages, mortgage insurance is taking a huge chunk of the monthly mortgage payment. Good news for buyers however, there are more property listings and a wider choice of available homes. The frenzy has subsided a bit, though waiting on the sidelines, hoping for a substantial purchase savings may not work. There has been a bit of price softening in the local market, but mostly the lofty hopes of a Unicorn buyer offering a substantial premium above the asking prices has changed. Yes, certain homes are still hot, because they are rarely available, but if you are looking at a fixer-upper, or a home in need of extensive updating, you might be in luck. We say that tongue-in-cheek however, as local builders are still crazy busy with current projects, and material and supplies are still in a supply squeeze. Approach the real estate market with a bit of caution, and work with your Realtor, so the Realtor can work for you. If you have a good working relationship, you will find the home of your dreams and expectations.

Fight or Flight in the Real Estate Market?

During the 2020 Pandemic, is there a Real Estate Market?

What is the real estate market doing right now? What should you do? What will other people do? Hopefully, we have a bit of a light-hearted look at the current situation.

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Flipping Homes can be Profitable.

Buy, Renovate, Sell and make a huge Profit.

HGTV populates their schedule with many renovation adventure show series. While fundamentally on target with the value added benefits of renovating, upgrading and spiffing up a home, it is quite a different process to renovate for profit.

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Foreclosure: Speculation

Are Market Home Prices Dropping Now?

"Real estate prices can not get any higher, the prices are going to collapse soon." Sound familiar? These stories have prospered as much as real estate prices. On topic, will foreclosure activity increase to where bargains can be had? Well, that also isn't quite true or feasible either. Real estate is a market commodity where prices fluctuate depending on demand, as Sellers and Buyers set the values.

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Foresight or Desperation in the Real Estate Market

Low Inventory and Multiple Offers

The 2021 real estate market is spilling into 2022 with very little hope for change. Even with the threats of increasing mortgage interest rates, and other taxes, fees and a market stifled by the ongoing pandemic, buyer are thrashing around every listing, and submitting challenging offers. Please CLICK on "Read more" for a January sales chart and our speculative opinion.

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Hire an Expert when Making Large Property Purchases.

Invest Wisely

I suggest when considering large purchases like property, you should hire a local expert, because they live here, and they have their neighbor's interest at heart.

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Inflation, Market Pricing and Labour Problems

Coping with the Present, Looking to the Future?

The Covid-19 Pandemic has distracted our attention from the realities of Canadian living, living standards and our fractured labour market. Pricing for real estate, goods and services and even a cup of coffee is all over the map.

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We Have Buyers, but How do we Tempt the Sellers?

Low inventory has become more acute due to COVID-19.

*** June/2020 interesting update: Recent offers to purchase have gone multiple, with prices as high as $60,000 over asking in Qualicum Beach. *** You betcha, COVID-19 has created some havoc, but here on Vancouver Island, home for this generation of retirees, we are going to be back to business as usual in a very short time. Of course this optimism is tethered by a potential sudden shock of this pandemic, so we shall take our time and hope for the best.

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Investing in Real Estate is Smart.


Predicting how human lifestyles will change is difficult, but history has proven a continual increase in world population to the tune of 7.5 billion, with two deaths and four births every second. As population continues to grow, real estate continues to be a challenging market because we are confined to existing land mass.

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Is Current Real Estate Marketing and Pricing Practices Deceptive?

Who Sets the Real Estate Sales Price?

This Blog is in reference to a recent Globe and Mail article, which can be found online: I can not answer this question, but here are a few ideas to consider from a REALTOR's point of view. 1) Homes are not something you buy off the shelf at a store, and when inventory is low, the store reorders more of the same product. Real estate is location dependent, and desirability and a fat wallet determines the value. 2) REALTORs do not set the selling price, as that could be considered an issue with the Competition Act. REALTORs can only research past sales to decern a probable market price, but it is the Buyer who actually decides the final price. 3) Sellers do not set the selling price, as proven by over-priced properties that languish on the market. Location, condition of property and buildings is a fluid assessment, in that no two properties are identical. 4) It is suggested that all offers be open to viewing by all prospective Buyers. This creates a scary situation in that every offer on the table can be upped. Closed offers creates a barrier and puts each Buyer on the same level, in they can put their best offer forward, based on their own research and needs. There are numerous ways to achieve a real estate sale or a purchase, and using a REALTOR and the MLS is just one way. Often the disgruntled will lobby for change based on their personal experiences. However, as a Buyer, it is still their own responsibility to fact check, research and ultimately make a final decision. Buying real estate is not as easy as buying a jug of milk. Click on Read More to view the Globe and Mail Article.

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Multiple Offers and Deposit Requirements (Feb /2021)

Not offering an excessively high deposit, can lose a deal.

In the current 2021 Qualicum Beach area market, many choice homes are receiving tens of viewings and multiple offers. Many of the prime offers have been 'cash' purchases, offers with no subject-to-sale clauses. A recent situation happened where many offers were nearly identical cash offers, the only difference was the deposit. The successful and accepted offer had a substantial Deposit declared. In this situation, once the offer has been accepted, the binding deal would complete within weeks. Why didn't other offers include a substantial Deposit, and why does it matter?

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Millenials are About to Enter the Single Family Home Market (Sept /2020)

Compounded on the Retiring Baby-Boomers, will Impact the Sellers Market

Millenials... living in mom and dad's basement are coming into their thirties and maybe so is their desire to live in a single family home. Of course everyone would love their own safe space in this world, and maybe living in mom and dad's basement has driven their desire to avoid condominiums, apartments and row homes, and are striving to own their own piece of land.

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Market Craziness, Difficult to Understand

When a REALTOR says JUMP, ask How High?

With all the chatter about real estate listing shortage, one glaring fact is shown in the following graph. As we navigate the current pandemic restrictions and travel restrictions, the difference in available listings and the immediate sales graphic lines, are nearly overlaid, leaving many buyers standing on the sidelines. In a few examples, buyers are nearly in panic mode as some are making financing-free and subject-free offers to nail down a home.

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More Price Increases

Potential New Crisis in Home Building and Renovations.

UPDATE NOTE: Aug26/2020 Our listings were absolutely current two days ago, but half of these listings are already UNDER OFFER. Pent up demand is exploding. With the after-effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, many businesses have either shut down or greatly reduced output, so building materials are in short supply. The supply problem will be greatly affected by California wildfires and storms along the Eastern coast. (disclaimer, we hold WEF shares, which have jumped on this recent news)

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Mortgage Stress Test

A Few Mortgage Conditions.

Press Release today: Today, Minister of Finance, Bill Morneau, announced changes to the benchmark rate used to determine the minimum qualifying rate for insured mortgages, also known as the “stress test.” These changes will come into effect on April 6, 2020. The new benchmark rate will be the weekly median 5-year fixed insured mortgage rate from mortgage insurance applications, plus 2%. A few quick mortgage facts:

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NANCY SMITH addresses the current confusion Market Prices / Assessments.

Vancouver Island Prices are Trending Up

Confusion reigns when Property Assessment values have declined, but according to the Vancouver Island Real Estate Board(VIREB), property prices have INCREASED in 2019!

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Offers to Buy, Subject to Financing Fails.

How to Navigate the Current Market.

In our local area, time and time again, offers to purchase a new home, subject to financing fails. There is a lot of frustration not only for home buyers in our current market, but also for REALTORS who put in hours and hours of research, effort and mountains of paperwork, only to be trumped by a Cash Offer without any Subject to Sale clauses.

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Overpriced Markets are Now Feeling the Pinch

Market is Settling

Statistics can provide helpful information based on our past, but it is impossible to predict future trends as market influences change daily. Despite the gloomy outlook of the recent press release, what is missing from the analysis is a comparative market price prior to the COVID pandemic. During this period, interest rates were low, making business and residential borrowing easy and cheap. Now, we must face a period of reckoning where these cheap loans will have to be paid back. However, those without mortgages may still be able to purchase homes in desirable locations like Vancouver Island, where property values remain relatively low compared to Vancouver and Toronto. Click on 'Read more' for November data from the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV)

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Previously Undocumented Homes Now a Concern

Experts Weigh in On Population Growth

Concerned posted by the Town of Qualicum Beach regarding undocumented homes are now being monitored.

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Pricing UP.

Tricks to Help Buy an Affordable Home

Many people start their home shopping by looking at price, to find the best value. The simple fact is, most homes at the lower price points, do not have current features most people want, they are not usually current homes.

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Real Estate Market is Crashing - Not!

Do You Qualify for a Mortgage?

June 24 /2022 The Market is Crashing - - - no it is not! There is a lot of hype about the current market, especially in the USA. People are not buying homes due to high interest rates and increasing prices, also leading to vehicles being repossessed. However, the truth is that qualified buyers have not stopped buying. Sub-prime buyers who cannot afford a proper down payment and mortgage rates are not able to make purchases. Buyers with their finances in order have more time to shop and negotiate, as the influx of new listings in the market gives them more breathing room. The resale inventory in Vancouver Island is still 50% below what is considered a balanced market, making it a seller's market. Real estate professionals are still facing a lag of two to three days on their new listings, which would normally take 60-90 days to sell in a balanced market. US news, the internet and shows such as Stephen Colbert Late Nite are focusing on politics and trends for ratings, so it is important to look at the real market to understand which information is truth and which is hype. We still believe that hiring a competent professional is the best way to achieve the best results for money and dreams. Work with a Realtor, so a Realtor can work for you.

Real Estate Prices, the Ukraine Crisis, Gold and Stocks

Home is Where the Value Is

February 2022 has brought new concerns to our financial wellbeing, with the current stock market volatility, skyrocketing gold prices, Russian military action in Ukraine and people still dealing with this pandemic crisis. International borders are opening up, air travel is climbing, transportation and supply of materials and consumer goods is improving, but we still are having shortages in raw industrial material and energy. Oil prices are heading into unknown territory while refinery production can not keep up to demand. There has been an abundance of natural weather catastrophes with forest fires, flooding, wind and cold weather events. The world is feeling a little topsie-turvy. What will happen with Vancouver Island real estate?

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Reduce the Stress.


A real estate agent can reduce client stress and smooth the transaction process.

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Realtor Regrets

No Safety Net for Commission Salespeople

Since the start of the pandemic, many people have seen real estate as a viable career option, resulting in a boom in the market for Realtors. Unfortunately, Realtors are self-employed entrepreneurs and do not have the same protection as other employees, as they are commission-dependent. With mortgage rates on the rise, the stock market declining and supply chain issues, consumers are pulling back on spending, meaning Realtors, especially those who recently became licenced, will feel the effects of this pinch. Click on 'Read more' for an opinion piece, By Kira Mason, Gritty City Real Estate, Fringe Finance, Philadelphia USA

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Vancouver Island Real Estate Price Forecast to 2025

'Buy the Dip' is unlikely.

Where are home prices headed in the next five years?

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Reduce the Stress, Hire the Best. (March /2021)

A REALTOR can be a Necessary Tool in Today's Market

Many people start their real estate education by visiting Google, and other web sites. However, real estate transactions have become very regulated and quite complicated in British Columbia, Canada. Buyers and seller often feel over-stressed making Johnny-on-the-spot decisions, and it has never been more stressful than during 2020.

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SOLD - over 5 acres of beautiful homestead land, room to grow a family.

NANCY SMITH loves living in Qualicum Beach.

No, we are not encouraging people to move to our sweet town, but as an enthusiastic resident who vacationed here as a child and moved here in 2014, I can not imagine living anywhere else.

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Vancouver Island, the place to live.

Canadians love the lifestyle in Qualicum Beach

As posted by, there were thirteen incredible pink super moon pictures, one of which was taken by David Chang in Cowichan Bay. We live on Vancouver Island to enjoy the lifestyle, the climate and to enjoy all the important little things in life. Here in Qualicum Beach we have amazing natural beauty and prolific vegetation and wild life. No wonder many Canadians want to move here. Click on 'Read more (PDF)' to view a copy of the moon shot.

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The Building Inspection shows Material Defects: What should I do? (Dec /2020)

As an Interesting 2020 Closes, We Ponder Our Future.

Many homes for sale are generally in good condition, whether 100 years old or brand new. Many purchase offers contain conditions of sale based on financing, building inspection, geological concerns, and water and sewage issues. However, as shown in the current 2020 market, often an offer to purchase contains a cash offer with no 'subject' conditions.

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The Forgotten City

Port Alberni can tickle your fancy.

Port Alberni is a forgotten jewel of Vancouver Island. When the mills were running full tilt, Port Alberni was a prosperous town. But, the mill outputs have decreased and the local residents are still lamenting the loss of activity and economic prosperity. However, Port Alberni is also the forgotten city that is slowing being re-born.

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The HOT Vancouver Island Real Estate Market Explained. (Oct /2020)

Will Real Estate Prices Continue to Climb ?

As real estate prices continue to climb, one has to wonder either how much higher will prices go, or are we in a bubble resulting in huge price drops? In many cases, either answer is not relevant when there is a need for housing. Click 'Read More' for one explanation that can not offer a decisive answer.

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The Value of Money: Buying Real Estate

If There Were No Mortgages, Real Estate Prices Would Drop.

What makes homes and property affordable? What does affordable mean?

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When will home prices drop?

Do Negative Internal Economic Conditions Exist?

May 19/2020 CMHC President E. Siddal predicted a housing price drop between 9 - 18% over the coming twelve months to May/2021. It is now September/2020, nearly four months later, and prices in Canada have not dropped, though a few higher end listings have undergone price haircuts, to come back to fair market value. In the Vancouver Island market, there has been very little reprieve in home pricing, with a robust market, tight listing inventory and with the unknown factors of the Covid-19 pandemic some buyers are still wondering, "when will prices drop?"

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Why does a Real Estate Deal hinge on a TV or Planter Pot?

To Chattel or Not to Chattel

Everyone loves to shop for a deal, and claim bragging rights. It is human nature. Over the course of my career in real estate sales, some deals just will not come together while sellers and buyers argue over incidental chattels. We are talking about properties valued at $400,000 and even $800,000 and the only division is that ceramic plant pot or LED 50" television set. CLICK on "Read more" for the rest of the article.

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Will cash help secure a buyer's offer?

Prepare in Advance When Purchasing a Home.

Question: Will a cash offer provide more leverage when buying a home?

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Will the Real Estate Market Soften

Too Many Factors to Guess Market Direction

Though spring has arrived, it seems our favored spring weather has not. It seems we are getting our April rains, and East of us is getting winter snow. I would rather be here. We saw a few weeks of listing flurry, bringing out meager 100 listings up to 140 for our area. This is still much below the 400 - 500 listings that defines a balanced market. Prices are not adjusting to the increased listing inventory, but rather the desirable homes have been snapped up as we leave Easter weekend. USA tax deadline was April 18, and for some reason, April 20 is projected to be an inflection point, to the upside. CLICK on "Read more"

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