Advocacy

Safety and Manufactured Homes Pilot Project: Resources for Sellers and Buyers

Between April 11 and October 28, 2022, a pilot project is underway in the Association of Interior REALTORS® Southern Peace area regarding manufactured homes and electrical safety. Normally, before a manufactured home can be listed for sale, a valid electrical safety certification or approval label or mark has to be in place. During the pilot

How the 2022 Federal Budget Impacts BC Real Estate

UPDATE – April 12, 2022: This post was updated to correct a figure related to the Multigenerational Home Renovation Tax Credit. The tax credit is up to $7,500, not $50,000 as previously stated. Budget 2022 was introduced on April 7 with a significant focus on the supply and affordability of housing in Canada. BCREA was encouraged

Only 35 Per Cent of British Columbians Support Government’s Cooling-Off Period According to Recent Polling

On behalf of the province’s eight real estate boards and 24,000 REALTORS(R), the BC Real Estate Association (BCREA) supports the Government of British Columbia’s intent to introduce a “Homebuyer Protection Period.” However, the BC Government’s cooling-off period fails to meet the needs of British Columbians. A recent independent survey of 1,157 British Columbians shows that only 35

BCREA Addresses Minister Robinson’s Announcement

Yesterday, Minister of Finance Selina Robinson announced plans to amend the Property Law Act to pave the way for the introduction of a “Homebuyer Protection Period” in real estate transactions. While the Government’s announcement lacked detail, the Homebuyer Protection Period will give buyers the right to rescind offers in real estate transactions. While governmental language

Pre-offer vs Cooling Off: Communicating with Clients

In February, BCREA has published more than 30 recommendations to the BC Government and the province’s real estate regulator, the BC Financial Services Authority, to help guide their decision making to better protect consumers in the real estate transaction process.   A key recommendation we made is for government to mandate a “pre-offer period” instead

BCFSA Proposes Changes to Real Estate Teams

On February 23, the province’s real estate regulator, the BC Financial Services Authority (BCFSA) released proposed amendments to the Real Estate Service Rules intended to clarify the role and duties of real estate teams and team members. Teams play an important role for licensees; they can allow families or partners to work together, facilitate larger

Summary of Recommendations from A Better Way Home for BC REALTORS®

On February 28, BCREA released a comprehensive white paper titled A Better Way Home: Strengthening Consumer Protection in Real Estate, which includes a set of recommendations for the BC Government on better-protecting consumers in real estate transactions and addressing the root causes of BC’s lack of housing affordability.  The white paper was developed in response

Few New Promises to Increase Housing Supply in BC’s 2022 Budget

BC’s 2022 budget is very much a recovery budget. There are significant investments in continued recovery from this past year’s extreme wildfire and flooding events, as well as the COVID-19 pandemic. The budget acknowledged that BC’s “record-low supply and strong demand for homes” led to large price gains in 2021, across all major regions and

Get to Know BCREA Government Relations: The Voice of BC’s REALTORS®

When there are more than 23,000 REALTORS® in British Columbia, having a collective, industry voice can be difficult. This is why BCREA has a dedicated Government Relations department to support BC Realtors. Sometimes, new Realtors overlook the importance of public policy related to the real estate industry, affecting the profession—especially now, when change has dawned

2021 Advocacy Year-In-Review

This year was full of significant changes for the real estate sector in BC. REALTORS® continued to navigate the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic and many assisted communities hit by historic rainfalls in a number of ways, including fundraising to support the Red Cross. 2021 was also filled with significant government interventions impacting the sector.

“Cooling Off Period” With No Details Creates Uncertainty and Concern in Real Estate Sector

In November, the BC Government announced it will be introducing a “cooling off period” for real estate transactions involving residential resale properties and newly built homes in BC beginning next spring. BC Minister of Finance Selina Robinson announced the policy without any details or advanced consultation with the public or real estate sector, resulting in

What is “Blind Bidding?” An Introduction for REALTORS®

As a result of competitive market conditions and escalating housing prices, BC’s real estate regulator, the BC Financial Services Authority (BCFSA), is developing a consultation on “blind bidding” to understand whether regulatory changes to real estate transaction could improve protection for homebuyers. This announcement was paired with news in early-November that the BC Government intends

What is a Cooling Off Period? An Introduction for REALTORS®

The BC Government has announced its intent to introduce legislation in spring 2022 to mandate a cooling off period for buyers of all residential real estate. But what is a “cooling off period” and how might it impact you? A cooling off period, also known as a “rescission period,” gives buyers the right to withdraw from a

Updated CleanBC Roadmap Promises Energy Rating Tool for Homes

This week, the BC Government announced a new CleanBC Roadmap to 2030, with more ambitious commitments to achieve its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions targets. As a result of additions in the plan related to the real estate sector, REALTORS® should expect conversations around energy efficiency to become an increasingly important part of your day-to-day interaction

BC Government Takes Positive Step to Increase Housing Supply, But Incentives Needed to Encourage Action

With demand significantly outweighing supply in many regions across BC, the cost of housing has risen dramatically during the COVID-19 pandemic. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) has maintained that increasing market housing supply is a key to making homeownership more affordable for British Columbians, which is why the provincial government’s recent announcement introducing proposed

Collaboration Between Parties and Levels of Government Key to Housing Affordability in Canada

With another minority government headed to Ottawa after this month’s federal election, collaboration between parties will be key to a functional Canadian government. This is especially true when it comes to making homeownership more achievable in Canada according to the British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA). The Liberals, Conservatives and NDP all made increasing supply

Wildfires in British Columbia

As of August 26 there were nearly 243 wildfires in BC, impacting over 3,700 properties with evacuation orders. According to a recent report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), these sorts of extreme weather events are likely to become more severe in the future. If current greenhouse gas emission levels remain the same,

BC Financial Services Agency Becomes Sole Regulator for Real Estate

On August 1, the BC Financial Services Authority (BCFSA) assumed the Real Estate Council of BC (RECBC) and the Office of the Superintendent of Real Estate (OSRE) to become the only real estate regulator. BCFSA is a ‘super-regulator,’ regulating not only real estate but also credit unions, trust companies, insurance companies, pension plans and mortgage

Comparing Election Promises to Increase Housing Supply

All parties are pledging to drastically increase housing supply, with the Liberal Party leading the race by pledging 1.4 million new homes; the Conservative Party pledging 1 million new homes; and the New Democrat Party (NDP) promising 500,000 new homes. While these lofty ambitions show that housing is top-of-mind for all three parties, it’s important

New BCREA Research Finds Funding is Key to Adequate Floodplain Mapping in BC

Since 2015, only 38.5 per cent of BC communities and First Nations have created or updated floodplain maps, according to new research published by the British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) in the 2021 BC Floodplain Maps Inventory Report (for complete functionality, please download the PDF after clicking on the link). The report, which identifies

Expert Panel Recommends Meaningful Action to Increase Housing Supply

The Expert Panel on Housing Supply and Affordability established by the governments of Canada and BC to examine housing trends for rental and homeownership has published its final report, with 23 recommendations for the provincial and federal governments. The panel was created in September 2019 to explore the issues of housing supply and affordability and

BCREA’s Virtual Government Liaison Days

On May 4 and 5, over 80 attendees from all around BC participated in BCREA’s Government Liaison Days. At this virtual conference, attendees learned about how the government can improve housing supply as well as energy efficiency in homes. REALTORS® then met with their MLAs to discuss the impact in their communities. Energy efficiency Realtors

One Financial Services Regulator Coming This Summer

In March, amendments to the Real Estate Services Act (RESA) received Royal Assent, paving the way for a single financial services regulator in BC, including real estate. On May 19, the British Columbia Financial Services Authority (BCFSA) announced that the Office of the Superintendent of Real Estate (OSRE) and Real Estate Council of BC (RECBC)

Housing Supply Takes Centre Stage During GL Days Live Sessions

BCREA would like to thank all the REALTORS® who participated in this year’s annual Government Liaison (GL) Days live sessions on May 4 and 5. Realtors from across the province convened virtually to learn about policies to address the two issues of improving housing supply and energy efficiency in homes. In addition to discussion around

Sustainable Homes: Understanding What Homebuyers Want

Are homebuyers willing to pay more for a sustainable home than a conventional one? What features do homebuyers value most when it comes to sustainable homes? These are some of the questions students from BCIT’s Sustainable Business Leadership Program are hoping REALTORS® will help them answer by participating in a short online survey. The survey

Federal Budget Recap: Foreign Buyers Tax Concerning, Other Measures Welcomed

On April 19, Canada’s Minister of Finance Chrystia Freeland introduced the Liberal government’s first budget since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. The budget provides significant funds to many programs, including several to assist homeowners and renters, increasing the federal deficit by an estimated $382 billion, but also includes measures which are concerning to BCREA.

What to Know About BCREA’s Government Liaison Days Happening in May

Government Liaison (GL) Days is an annual event where REALTORS® meet with MLAs across BC, speaking with a united voice to advocate for key housing-related issues and improving Quality of Life in BC communities. This event has a long history, first taking place in Victoria in 1988. Due to COVID-19, participants won’t be able to

Teams Consultation: BCREA-Real Estate Board Response

On April 1, BCREA and the ten BC real estate boards made a joint submission to the Office of the Superintendent of Real Estate (OSRE) and the Real Estate Council of British Columbia (RECBC) in response to their consultation on regulating real estate teams. The regulators’ interest in teams came up as a result of

BCREA Advances Anti-Money Laundering Recommendations

Illegal funds have no place in BC’s real estate market. Real estate playing an important role in the lives of British Columbians, serving as one of the key economic drivers in the province. BCREA shows leadership on behalf of REALOTRS® by advocating for smart policy to ensure integrity and transparency and supporting Realtors to help

OSRE Wants Your Input Into Real Estate Teams

The Office of the Superintendent of Real Estate (OSRE) invites REALTORS® and others to give input into the regulation of real estate teams by participating in a survey open until Friday, April 2, 2021. OSRE has been working with the Real Estate Council of BC (RECBC) to consider how to enhance the regulation of teams

OSRE Announces Five Recommendations to Support Managing Brokers

On Tuesday, February 9, the Office of the Superintendent of Real Estate (OSRE) announced five preliminary recommendations to support managing brokers as part of a report into the role of managing brokers in real estate transactions.  The study was completed in collaboration with the Real Estate Council of BC (RECBC) and with input from BCREA,

Administrative Penalties Expanded

Today, the Office of the Superintendent of Real Estate (OSRE) and the Real Estate Council of British Columbia (RECBC) announced changes to the Real Estate Rules to expand the use of administrative penalties (APs). OSRE first proposed these rule changes in September 2020, in a consultation that attracted nearly 600 responses – including a detailed

RECBC Approves 10 Per Cent Hike in Licensing Fees

Effective April 1, 2021, The Real Estate Council of BC (RECBC) will increase their biennial licensing fees from $1,800 to $2,000. RECBC members approved the proposed increase on January 18, following a short consultation beginning in December 2020. The new fee structure will be implemented, subject to objections from Minister of Finance Selina Robinson. Licensing

How REALTORS® Help Prevent Money Laundering in Real Estate: Identifying and Reporting Suspicious Transactions

By: Ellen Baragon, guest contributor Brokerages, managing brokers, compliance officers, brokerage staff and REALTORS® are uniquely positioned to assess certain aspects of a real estate transaction that others may not have access to. By complying with your professional obligations to file a Suspicious Transaction Report (STR) and share suspicious transaction information with the Financial Transactions

BCREA Advocacy 2020 Year in Review

2020 was an eventful year that required BCREA to adapt to many unexpected challenges. As with most British Columbians, the COVID-19 pandemic required changes how we conduct our practices. We have learned just how resilient and adaptable BC’s Realtors can be, showing leadership and coming together to help flatten the COVID-19 infection rate. Below are

CleanBC Rebates Doubled

To help BC’s economy recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, many CleanBC rebates are doubled until December 31, 2020. These initiatives will help homeowners save energy and will also help the province meet its new emissions target rate to be 16 per cent below 2007 levels by 2025. The increased rebates are available for: switching from

New Cabinet Will Lead BC’s Economic Recovery

After the BC NDP won a majority of legislative seats, Premier John Horgan has announced the new provincial cabinet. The BC NDP’s cabinet positions will play a key role in economic recovery and are an important conduit for BCREA to advance our advocacy issues. Below is a summary of ministerial appointments affecting real estate. Hon.

Regulator Takes a Step to Curb Strata Insurance Costs

Rising insurance costs are a major concern for many of the approximately one-quarter of British Columbia’s residents who live in strata properties. This issue was a significant advocacy point for BCREA during the recent provincial election campaign, and it will continue to be a key issue as we work with the new government. The recent

Continuing Strata Insurance Issues

Widespread, significant increases in the cost of insurance have plagued many BC strata corporations for more than a year. BCREA and other stakeholders have raised concerns and offered potential solutions to this complex problem. During the provincial election campaign, we educated candidates about strata insurance. These high costs are ultimately paid for by strata unit

Climate Priority for BC Government

Throughout the election campaign, all three main BC parties made promises to be leaders in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. While all parties agreed incentives for retrofitting homes were important to meet climate change goals, BCREA knows the government needs to make significant improvements if it’s going to meet current carbon reduction targets. Government incentives for

Solutions to Address BC Housing Supply

As Canadians recognize the important work done by housing partners on National Housing Day (November 22), BCREA acknowledges that there is still much work to do to ensure affordable, appropriate housing. In spite of the BC housing market’s record pace in October, supply continues to be limited. Lack of adequate supply causes affordability issues, especially

New Commercial Rent Assistance Program

Canadian businesses, non-profits and charities experiencing financial hardship from COVID-19 may be eligible for a subsidy to cover part of their commercial rent through the Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS). This program, in effect since November 23, replaces a previous commercial rent assistance program (CECRA) that had lower pickup than the government expected. The goal

Finding Floodplain Maps

While COVID-19 may pose the greatest risk right now, floods also do significant damage regularly in BC and across the country. Economic, social and environmental impacts can take many years to reverse and BCREA believes smart planning to avoid, or at least minimize, flooding is a better approach. Floodplain maps can support local government decision

The Provincial Election’s Over – Now What?

Well, wasn’t that an amazing election? OK, perhaps it wasn’t exactly a barn-burner result, and the degree of policy discussion was, shall we say, disappointing. While we don’t know the final results yet (an estimated 500,000 mail-in votes are still to be counted), we do know the NDP will form a majority government. There are

UPDATE: Have Your Say on Changes to Administrative Penalties

The new deadline for this consultation on changes to administrative penalties is November 13, 2020 (announced by the Office of the Superintendent of Real Estate and Real Estate Council of British Columbia on October 27, 2020). In mid-September, the Office of the Superintendent of Real Estate (OSRE) and the Real Estate Council of BC (RECBC)

Webinar Recording: BC Real Estate and the Election on Our Doorstep

On Wednesday, October 21, BCREA hosted a webinar and panel discussion to explore the impacts of the upcoming provincial election on the BC real estate sector. We discussed the key asks that BCREA and real estate boards will make of any new provincial government; the risks and opportunities for the real estate sector arising from

Comparing Provincial Party Housing Platforms

Below is a comparison of the three main party’s platforms’ impact on real estate and housing. COVID-19 Economic Recovery Green Allocate $300 million to create a six-month rent subsidy program for small businesses. Liberal Eliminate the Provincial Sales Tax (PST) for one year and then set it at three per cent for subsequent years. Permanently

September Survey Results on Economic Impacts of COVID-19

In mid-September, over 1,200 REALTORS® took BCREA’s third survey on the economic impacts of COVID-19. Many Realtors are still experiencing financial difficulties, with 16 per cent reporting no income from transactions in August and September. This number is down from 26 per cent of respondents who reported receiving no income from transactions from May to

Webinar: BC Real Estate and the Election on Our Doorstep

Join the BC Real Estate Association (BCREA) on Wednesday, October 21 at 10:00 am PT to explore the impacts of the upcoming provincial election on the BC real estate sector. During this 75-minute webinar and expert panel discussion, we will review the key asks that BCREA and real estate boards will make of any new

Three Election Questions REALTORS® Can Ask Candidates

BC voters go to the polls on October 24, 2020

As all parties focus on COVID-19 economic recovery in the lead-up to October’s provincial election, BCREA is advocating for market housing affordability to be a key part of the next government’s post-election plans. For BC’s REALTORS®, meeting with candidates is a great opportunity to ask questions and suggest that the next government focuses on these

Planning for Post-COVID-19 Economic Recovery

BCREA’s Recommendations for the Next Provincial Government With British Columbians being asked to head to the polls on October 24, BCREA is advocating with all parties to ensure that market housing affordability is a cornerstone of the province’s COVID-19 economic recovery plan. “The COVID-19 pandemic has made market housing affordability inequities more apparent than ever,”

Federal Throne Speech Includes Housing in Economic Recovery Plan

On September 23, Governor General Julie Payette presented the Speech From the Throne, providing an overview of many programs the government has enacted in the last six months as well as providing an outline of the government’s upcoming agenda. Several of the announcements will impact real estate in BC. On market housing, the government promised

New COVID-19 Presumption in the Workers Compensation Act

As of August 20, 2020, REALTORS® have yet another reason to maintain high standards of hygiene and safety. Schedule 1 of the BC Workers Compensation Act includes a new presumption for infections caused by communicable viral pathogens, such as COVID-19, that are the subject of a Public Health Act notice or a declared state of

Transparency Registers Effective October 1

As of October 1, 2020, all BC companies must maintain transparency registers in their offices along with their other corporate records. A transparency register is a list of all significant individuals connected to the company and the requirement applies to real estate brokerages and personal real estate corporations. To get started, the BC Government recommends

Strata Insurance Update

For several months, BCREA and other stakeholders have drawn the government’s attention to significant increases in the cost of strata property insurance in BC. This is a complex issue and, while it can’t be solved quickly, actions are underway. Initial research findingsThe BC Financial Services Authority (BCFSA), BC’s financial services regulator, published a brief interim

Action Plan for Economic Recovery to Achieve CleanBC Goals

In August, BCREA interviewed the Pembina Institute’s director for buildings and urban solutions, Tom-Pierre Frappé-Sénéclauze, to understand their perspective on making homes and buildings in BC low carbon, healthy and resilient. Tom-Pierre was a coauthor of a July submission sent to the BC Government, “Accelerating BC’s economic recovery through building retrofits.” Closely aligned with BCREA’s

Monitoring COVID: BCREA Develops New Economic Resources

The COVID-19 Reopening Dashboard allows readers to monitor the evolution of the BC economy as the province gradually reopens. The dashboard focuses on the sectors and activities that have been most significantly impacted by the pandemic and the province’s subsequent state of emergency. The most recent update shows that home sales have more than fully

Anti-Money Laundering Resources

Background Resources Advocacy Last updated: February 10, 2021 Ensuring REALTORS® have the resources to meet anti-money laundering requirements is an important step towards keeping money from criminal activity out of BC’s housing market. BCREA has created this dedicated page to help Realtors access BCREA’s anti-money laundering resources. Throughout the fall, we’ll add to these resources

Province Revises Strata Property Act in Response to Insurance Crisis

The Province of BC has changed the Strata Property Act and the Financial Institutions Act in response to the recent escalation of insurance premiums and deductibles. In a communication to Strata Managers, the Real Estate Council of BC (RECBC) highlighted that now: Strata corporations are required to inform owners as soon as it is feasible

BCREA Combats Money Laundering Through Participation in Cullen Commission

As a participant in the Cullen Commission, BCREA is providing information about the daily practice realities in real estate. Our participation will help strengthen consumer protection measures and limit money laundering in the real estate sector. The Cullen Commission, established in May 2019, is conducting videoconferencing hearings from May 25 to June 30, 2020. BCREA

REALTORS® Advocating for Affordable Strata Insurance

Strata insurance costs are rising in many parts of the province, threatening families’ housing affordability. With at least one-quarter of British Columbians living in strata units, BCREA is looking for solutions to this housing crisis. Rising strata insurance costs are a complex issue requiring a basket of solutions to foster a robust, economically viable market.

Real Estate Regulatory Changes on the Way

Last year, Minister of Finance Carole James announced that the BC Government intends to integrate the Office of the Superintendent of Real Estate and the Real Estate Council of British Columbia into the BC Financial Institutions Commission (BCFSA) by 2021. Minister James, 2019 BCREA President Michael Trites and BCREA CEO Darlene Hyde at BCREA’s 2019

Get Flood Ready

So far this year, BC’s River Forecast Centre has issued ten flood or streamflow advisories and watches. As spring draws closer, snowmelt and heavy rain may result in seasonal flooding in areas of the province. Anyone concerned about flood risks to their property should consider how to minimize potential damage. A few years ago, BCREA

BCREA Calls for Increased Federal/Provincial Cooperation to Tackle Money Laundering in BC

Vancouver, BC – February 26, 2020. Today, the BC Real Estate Association makes our opening statement to the Cullen Commission of Inquiry into Money Laundering in British Columbia. “We are committed to working with government to better understand this issue and address any pre-existing vulnerabilities within our sector,” says BCREA CEO Darlene Hyde. “It is our hope

BC Government Presents Stay-The-Course Budget

Minister Carole James delivers the 2020 Budget to stakeholders and journalists.

BC’s Budget 2020 offers some new investments to assist homeowners and their communities, but falls short of substantial changes to improve housing affordability. We’re pleased by the promise of an additional $419 million investment over three years to support CleanBC for home and workplace electric vehicle charging stations and new pilot programs to further reduce

Changes to Stress Test Mean Good News for British Columbians

Canada's Parliament Hill and Parliament Buildings, the seat of the federal government of Canada, taken from the back side of the building

The advocacy of BCREA and other stakeholders has resulted in the Federal Minister of Finance Bill Morneau announcing changes to the mortgage stress test. The stress test is used to determine the minimum qualifying rate for mortgages. The new benchmark rate will be the weekly median five-year fixed insured mortgage rate from mortgage insured applications,

Strata Insurance: Action from BCREA

Insurance agent complete wooden model of the house with last piece with text insurance.

Many strata owners are facing significant increases in insurance premiums and deductibles. While the word “crisis” is used often in media articles, BCREA believes long-term government policy changes should be made very carefully and with as much information as possible. There are about 30,000 strata corporations in BC and at least one-quarter of the population

BCREA Submits Recommendations for New Regulator

On December 16, 2019, BCREA submitted 18 recommendations to Minister of Finance Carole James to help guide the government as they work towards a new regulatory structure for real estate professionals. This follows Minister James’s announcement in November that the Office of the Superintendent of Real Estate (OSRE), which currently oversees the Real Estate Council

Improving the Role of Managing Brokers

In October at BCREA’s Managing Brokers’ Conference, the Office of the Superintendent of Real Estate (OSRE) reported on work to review the roles and responsibilities of managing brokers in BC. They released a discussion paper and asked for feedback on five short- and medium-term actions as well as three long-term concepts. BCREA worked with member boards to

Getting it Right: Real Estate Regulation and Commercial Licensing

In 2021, the BC Government intends to integrate the Office of the Superintendent of Real Estate (OSRE) and the Real Estate Council of British Columbia (RECBC) into the BC Financial Institutions Commission (BCFSA). According to the November 12 news release, this move will satisfy a recommendation made by Dan Perrin in 2018 to create a

New Anti-Money Laundering Initiatives in Development

The issue of money laundering continues to be one of ongoing governmental and public concern. BCREA have taken an active role in the Cullen Commission of Inquiry into Money Laundering In BC, having applied and received formal standing to partake in the process and represent provincial real estate interests. We have also been attending the

Reforming the Regulator

In 2021, the BC Government intends to integrate the Office of the Superintendent of Real Estate (OSRE) and the Real Estate Council of British Columbia (RECBC) into the BC Financial Institutions Commission (BCFSA). According to the December 12 news release, this move will satisfy a recommendation made by Dan Perrin in 2018 to create a

Brokering a new deal for Managing Brokers

At BCREA’s second annual Managing Brokers’ Conference in October, Superintendent of Real Estate Micheal Noseworthy introduced a new discussion paper: “Reframing the Role of Managing Brokers in BC.” The discussion paper is part of a managing broker consultation process by the Office of the Superintendent of Real Estate (OSRE) that began in fall 2018 with

Keeping Clients Out of Hot Water Over Groundwater Licencing

Droughts, water restrictions and wildfires have all become part of a typical BC summer, just like Okanagan cherries or a BC Day barbecue. Despite all of BC’s lakes and rivers, the truth is that water scarcity is a serious concern. That’s why the provincial government introduced the Water Sustainability Act in 2016, which requires anyone diverting and

Revised Council Disclosure Forms Better Meet Consumer Needs

Recent changes to three Real Estate Council of BC mandatory disclosure forms are a significant improvement on previous versions, which were launched as part of the June 2018 Rule changes. The revised forms, which came into effect September 30, 2019, include the Disclosure of Representation in Trading Services, Disclosure of Risks to Unrepresented Parties and Disclosure to Sellers of

BCREA Brings REALTOR® Perspective to Inquiry into Money Laundering

In late October, BCREA began its involvement in the Cullen Commission of Inquiry into Money Laundering in British Columbia by attending a series of public meetings which were held throughout the province. Trevor Hargreaves, BCREA Vice President of Government Relations and Stakeholder Engagement, attended the meetings in Vancouver, Victoria, and Richmond on behalf of BCREA,

BCREA Prepares Recommendations for Province’s Review of Managing Brokers

BCREA is preparing a response to the Office of the Superintendent of Real Estate (OSRE), in light of its recent discussion paper, Reframing the Role of Managing Brokers in BC. BCREA’s response will provide evidence-based insights and industry-focused recommendations and context to the review process and will be based partly on feedback from and consultation with

Ministry of Finance Announces Shift to Single Regulator

Earlier this week the Ministry of Finance announced their intent to shift to a single regulator, wrapping real estate oversight into the BC Financial Services Authority (BCFSA). They are aiming for this new legislation to be tabled by Fall 2020, with implementation in 2021. Under this new structure the Office of the Superintendent of Real

BCREA Calls for Safer Homes at the 2019 UBCM Convention

British Columbia Real Estate Association’s (BCREA) Government Relations team attended the annual 2019 Union of BC Municipalities (UBCM) Convention in Vancouver from September 23 to 27. On the first day of the convention, VP of Government Relations and Stakeholder Engagement Trevor Hargreaves participated in a panel presentation on anti-money laundering, along with Attorney General David

Money Laundering in Canada 2019

Join ABC solutions in Victoria, BC on September 23-25 for Money Laundering in Canada 2019, Canada’s premiere event in the field of money laundering compliance. This year’s theme is Compliance: Making Sense of the Details. The conference promises to be informative and pragmatic, looking at trending crimes, risks, compliance practices and regulatory change. Speakers include

Stronger Consumer Protection for Healthy Homes

BC needs a provincial framework for remediation to ensure homes that have been used to produce drugs are safe from mould, pesticides and electrical and fire hazards. BC’s neighbours have made significant strides towards these goals. In Alberta designated officials conduct an inspection, issue an order to vacate and outline the required procedure to remediate

B-20 is Stressing Potential Home Buyers

The federal B-20 stress test is preventing many British Columbians from achieving their dream of home ownership. The Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions enacted new mortgage rules in 2018, requiring borrowers to qualify for a mortgage at the higher of either the rate they’ve negotiated with their bank plus two per cent or

How to Fund Flood Mapping

Flooding poses significant risks to communities, and the effects can be widespread and last for years. Floodplain maps illustrate where floodwaters are expected to go, which makes them the most logical first step in flood management. To be effective, these maps also need to be updated regularly. Unfortunately, there hasn’t been a coordinated program in

First-Time Home Buyer Incentive Launches in September

Help your clients understand the incentive and whether they can benefit In September, the federal government will launch the First-Time Home Buyer Incentive, an interest-free loan that doesn’t require monthly payments. The incentive is intended to help reduce monthly mortgage payments without increasing the amount needed to save for a down payment. How does it

Floodplain Maps Action Plan

When floods strike, individuals and communities are subject to significant economic and social costs. Many British Columbians are unaware of the flood risk they face, due to out-of-date floodplain maps. BC has the opportunity to take steps to minimize damage from future floods—this is the purpose of the British Columbia Real Estate Association’s (BCREA) initiative