When buying real estate in BC it is important to look at how much the strata fees are, as they can range from low to high and can include different benefits such as heat or hot water. Not all buildings have strata fees. A strata title building is a multi-residence complex or multi-suite building, where all the units are owned by their individual owners.

What are strata fees?

Strata fees are basically the monthly fees collected from each owner, usually in proportion of the square footage of the units, or which are calculated in accordance with the requirements of the Strata Property Act. The strata fees for a strata lot's share of the contribution to the operating fund and contingency reserve fund are calculated as follows: unit entitlement of the strata lot, divided by total unit entitlements of all strata lots, multiplied by the total contributions and then divided by 12. The expenditure is administered by the strata council. The strata council sets the budget for the year, with a breakdown of costs.

Strata fees cover ongoing costs and general maintenance (hallway cleaning, lights, security, insurance) and contingency funds accumulated for large expenses, like re-roofing, snow clearing or parking lot paving. 

There are two concepts here that often get confused: the strata council and the strata corporation.

The Strata Council:

The strata council’s role is to:

  • act as the managing body for the strata corporation;
  • make daily decisions that enable the strata corporation to operate smoothly;
  • operate within any restrictions created by the Strata Property Act, Regulations, bylaws, or a majority vote of the owners.

The Act states that the strata council’s role is to: “exercise the powers and perform the duties of the strata corporation, including the enforcement of bylaws and rules”.The strata council can hire a strata manager to perform some or most of the functions of the strata council. However, if a strata council has delegated its powers to a strata manager, the strata council is still ultimately responsible for ensuring that its obligations under the Act are fulfilled.

The Financial Institutions Commission (FICOM) strata council guide.

Strata Corporation: The strata corporation is a legal entity with all of the powers of a natural person who has full capacity. This means that it can sue others, be sued by others, enter into contracts with others and hire employees.

The owners of the strata lots are the members of the strata corporation. The strata corporation is responsible for managing and maintaining the common property and assets of the strata development for the benefit of all of its owners.The specific obligations of the strata corporation are usually performed by the strata council, or agents or employees which it hires.Additionally, the strata council will also perform its own obligations which are imposed by the Act and Regulations on the strata council, and will benefit the strata corporation.

The Financial Institutions Commission (FICOM) strata corporation guide.

What if I don’t pay my strata fees?

If an owner fails to pay their strata fees they are contravening the strata corporation’s bylaws and are subject to fines. The Strata Property Act requires a strata to give two weeks written notice demanding payment and noting that further action may be taken. This further action can be in the form of suing, seeking arbitration or putting a lien against the owner’s strata lot.

Kristy Mattiazzo, REALTOR®, ABR®,SRES®, CCSP™
REALTOR®, Accredited Buyer's Representative®,
Seniors Real Estate Specialist® &
Canadian Certified Staging Professional™
Sutton Centre Realty
PRIVATE PROPERTY Realty
PRIVATE PROPERTY Staging
T) 604-831-7321
F) 604-936-9412
E) kmattiazzo@shaw.ca
W) www.privatepropertyrealty.com

Read Full Story
Burnaby

There was a recent article on the Burnaby Now website titled 'Industrial real estate booming in Burnaby'. The same can be said for the residential real estate market in Burnaby.

According to the Burnaby Now article Burnaby industrial real estate sales in 2010 passed the $100-million mark for the first time since 2006, to a total of $100.6 million, with 41 transactions.

It said that Burnaby industrial sales did well in 2010 because of a number of factors, including the recovering market, good value properties, and Burnaby's proximity to port operations, downtown Vancouver, YVR airport, and the two highways.

"All in all, it's a desirable location," was one quote from the feature. Although this article was purely about commercial real estate, the exact same things can be said about the residential real estate market here.

Some of the reasons to buy property in Burnaby:

  • Burnaby has some great value properties.
  • Burnaby is a desirable place to live.
  • Burnaby has excellent shopping malls and services.
  • Burnaby has excellent recreational facilities.
  • Burnaby has excellent transportation options.
  • Burnaby is close to downtown Vancouver, YVR and the main highways.

If you are thinking about living in Burnaby, or you already live here and are thinking about upsizing or downsizing then contact me for a list of available properties that suit your needs.
Read Full Story

Property Photo: # 2002 811 HELMCKEN ST in Vancouver

I have listed a new property at # 2002 811 Helmcken St. Vancouver. It is an amazing property.
Penthouse apartments in Vancouver are rare these days and this is a gem in the Vancouver real estate market.
This penthouse has three bedrooms with a view of English Bay and North Shore Mountains. it has a small outdoor balcony with amazing views to watch the fireworks during the Symphony of Fire. It has nine foot ceilings, laminated floors throughout and a great layout between the beddroom and kitchen/living area. There are fantastic views from every room. The amenities included feature games and fitness rooms, a sauna with showers, and a secured terraced garden. This spectacular building has a recent new key fob security system with locked-off elevators. The building has underground and visitor parking and a live-in caretaker. This building is located in the heart of downtown Vancouver and just walking distance to the beach, restaurants and the main shopping areas such as Pacific Centre, Yaletown, Robson, Granville and Davie.
Make sure you don't miss out on this amazing piece of Vancouver real estate.

Contact me for Open House details:

 

Kristy Mattiazzo, REALTOR®, ABR®,SRES®, CCSP®
REALTOR®, Accredited Buyer's Representative®,
Seniors Real Estate Specialist® & Canadian Certified Staging Professional®
Sutton Centre Realty
PRIVATE PROPERTY Realty
PRIVATE PROPERTY Staging
T) 604-831-7321
F) 604-936-9412
E) kmattiazzo@shaw.ca
W) www.privatepropertyrealty.com

Read Full Story

Property Photo: 7010 GRIFFITHS AV in Burnaby

I have listed a new property at 7010 Griffiths Avenue in Burnaby.

This is a real Burnaby real estate showcase. Make sure you don't miss out on this dream home.

This amazing hownhouse is located at Highgate Mall, not far from Edmonds Skytrain station. This brand new three level heritage style townhome consists of a living room/dining room, powder room, and kitchen on the main floor. This property is huge at 1400 square feet--it has three bedrooms and three bathrooms. Two bedrooms and an insuite laundry are on the second floor, the huge master bedroom with ensuite is on the third floor. It has an open sundeck with a really nice view. Hardiplank materials were used on all outside walls. There are quality features throughout the house including granite countertops in the kitchen and marble granite in all the washrooms, with extensive use of crown mouldings, laminated flooring, and white kitchen cabinets.
Don't miss out on this beautiful piece of Burnaby real estate.

Contact me for Open House details:

Kristy Mattiazzo, REALTOR®, ABR®,SRES®, CCSP®
REALTOR®, Accredited Buyer's Representative®,
Seniors Real Estate Specialist® & Canadian Certified Staging Professional®
Sutton Centre Realty
PRIVATE PROPERTY Realty
PRIVATE PROPERTY Staging
T) 604-831-7321
F) 604-936-9412
E) kmattiazzo@shaw.ca
W) www.privatepropertyrealty.com

Read Full Story

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) released a preliminary report on the MLSLINK Housing Price Index for February 2011. This report showed that demand for detached homes continues to be strong across Greater Vancouver with particularly high sales in some areas.

Real estate sales in the Tri-Cities area of B.C. (which includes the cities of Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam and Port Moody) remained strong. Coquitlam real estate in particular showed high benchmark prices for all property types mentions in the report--detached homes, attached homes, and apartments. The benchmark price for a detached home in Coquitlam is now $708,297, the benchmark price for an attached home in Coquitlam is now $454,968, and $300,679 for an apartment.

Property Photo: 676 COLINET ST in Coquitlam

676 Colinet St., Coquitlam.

One detached home on the market in Coquitlam that is well below the benchmark price at $550,000 is 676 Colinet St. This house is located at the corner of Colinet St. and Cottonwood St. on a huge lot. It is close to all amenities, including a great daycare. This two level, two bedroom, 1697 square feet original Character home amazing value in today's real estate market!

The excellent features in this home include hardwood flooring and trim. a really bright and open kitchen, good sized rooms and new furnace. There is great sun exposure in the backyard. The huge lot features a storage shed, a two-car garage, metal roof and lane access. With the options to hold or build now, you will have to hurry because this won't last!

Contact me for full details:

Kristy Mattiazzo, REALTOR®, ABR®,SRES®, CCSP?
REALTOR®, Accredited Buyer's Representative®,
Seniors Real Estate Specialist® & Canadian Certified Staging Professional?
Sutton Centre Realty
PRIVATE PROPERTY Realty
PRIVATE PROPERTY Staging
T) 604-831-7321
F) 604-936-9412
E) kmattiazzo@shaw.ca
W) www.privatepropertyrealty.com

Read Full Story

In order to establish a recommended Selling price for a home, Kristy will gather information from a few sources such as:

1) The economy
2) BC Assessment
3) Multiple Listing System (MLS - recent sales in your area)
4) Landcor (Kristy has access to private sales)
5) Property evaluation of your home and its features and upgrades
6) Home Staging

Kristy will first analyze the economy. Are prices rises or falling? How much inventory is on the real estate market? Which season are we in (fall, winter, spring, summer).

Kristy will review the Property Assessment Notice.
Your taxes are based on the value of your home determined by the BC Assessment, the BC government agency responsible for classifying and assessing all BC real estate property. Has the value increased or decreased?

Kristy will examine the most recent comparable information from MLS. Kristy will scrutinize the homes that have recently sold within your neighbourhood and the homes that are currently on the market in your area. Both selling and asking prices are reviewed along with the condition and time spent on the market.

Kristy invests in obtaining information from private sales. Along with the MLS, Kristy invests in Landcor to provide her with the most up to date information relating to the most recent property sales in your area. This allows Kristy to have an edge while negotiating for her Buyers and is more accurate when pricing a home for her Sellers.

Kristy will visit your home and do a full property evaluation.

Kristy will examine the exterior and walk room by room in your property to note the features and condition of your home that will affect your home's value.

Kristy will discuss the option of home staging in order to increase value and maintain equity. Information from the National Association of REALTORS prove that homes sell an average of 50% faster and for 7-10% higher sales price, Kristy will recommend Home Staging in order to increase value and maintain equity in your home. Vacant homes that are staged prior to listing sell in an average of 42 days and occupied homes sell in 39 days.

Kristy Mattiazzo, REALTOR®, ABR®,SRES®, CCSP™
REALTOR®, Accredited Buyer's Representative®,
Seniors Real Estate Specialist® & Canadian Certified Staging Professional™
Sutton Centre Realty
PRIVATE PROPERTY Realty
PRIVATE PROPERTY Staging

T) 604-831-7321
F) 604-936-9412
E) kmattiazzo@shaw.ca
W) www.privatepropertyrealty.com

 

Read Full Story
When it comes to buying and selling property there are literally hundreds of things to think about. Some of these things might not be so obvious, but a good REALTOR will make sure you are aware of things as trivial as numbers in an address.

An article in the Province newspaper a while back talked about how having certain numbers in your address could increase the value of your property--by thousands of dollars potentially. How so you might ask?

Real Estate Numbers

Numbers have certain meanings and associated superstitions, especially in certain Asian communities. Having a number eight in the address can be worth an average of about $10,000 or more if you are selling your home, according to the article. 

This article was based on a report published by researchers at the University of B.C. economics department. The UBC report was based on 115,000 residential Greater Vancouver real estate sales from 2000 to 2005.

Back to that lucky No. 8--the Chinese superstition that eight is lucky relates to the fact that it is phonetically similar to the Chinese word for prosperity or wealth. Superstitions and beliefs come into play more often than we might expect; the No. 4 on the other hand is considered unlucky. This is why many residential towers in Metro Vancouver have no 4th, 14th or 24th floors.

Apparently this is a big issue when it comes to Richmond real estate, where a high percentage of the city’s population is of Chinese background. So many people have requested a change in their house number that the Richmond City planning department had to create a brochure on the matter. Needless to say there is a lot of bureaucracy and fees to to discourage people from changing their numbers.

All the same, it's just another thing to think about, and ask your REALTOR about when it comes to buying and selling real estate in Greater Vancouver.

Read the full report titled Superstition in the Housing Market. It is an interesting read for anyone interested in the real estate market.
Read Full Story
236 1252 Town Centre Boulevard Coquitlam is a great example of a new property listing in beautiful Coquitlam, BC. 

This 976 square feet two bedroom, two bathroom West-facing unit in "The Kennedy" building is a great opportunity to get on the property ladder and is a great example of Coquitlam real estate on the market today. 

The apartment has warm colour tones throughout, and the kitchen features ample counter and cupboard space with an opening into the dining and living room. The suite also features in-suite laundry. Cozy up to a gas fireplace or just enjoy the view of Hoy Creek Trail.

This unit is close to shopping, recreation, Douglas College and transportation. If you are looking for a property in Coquitlam then this is an ideal choice. If you are a pet lover, good news-pets are allowed with restrictions, as are rentals.

This is a new listing, so photos are not up yet, but click on the link for map and walk score: 236 1252 Town Centre Boulevard Coquitlam

If this unit is too small, then there are lots of other real estate listings on offer in Coquitlam, just get in touch for lots more options.

As usual, it's much better to view this property in person so call me to arrange a private showing.


Read Full Story
8035 GOVERNMENT Road Burnaby V5A 2E1 : Government Road

Amongst the new Burnaby real estate listings, I've found this brand new home that I just had to share. If you seek luxury Burnaby property, then bookmark this page. This quality built home includes eight bedrooms and 8.5 bathrooms and is found in the desirable Government Road area near Costco and many Burnaby schools. Italian tile and hand-scraped engineered hardwood floor throughout with detailed finishings, high end appliances and a dreamy gourmet kitchen for the cook in the house.

This is Prime Burnaby Real Estate

Click on the link to view 10 photos, click map for street views and even aerial views: 8035 Government Rd., Burnaby

Make sure to see the stunning back yard for family and friends. Much better view in person so call for a private showing.
Read Full Story
7308 Ridge Drive Burnaby is a real gem when it comes to real estate in Burnaby. This property has an amazing ocean view of the Burrard Inlet and the Northshore mountains. 

Built by a top-notch European builder, this property is huge at 4,700 square feet! This home has a grand high-ceiling foyer,  large living and dining rooms--both with water view. There are three fireplaces. The solid oak wood kitchen has lots of storage and a pantry. There is a bedroom on the main floor with a full bathroom. There are four good size bedrooms and three full bathrooms on the second floor with private water views. 

This is a Luxury Burnaby Property 

The property has a basement with a separate entry that has a hot-tub, sauna, games room with wet-bar, and a built-in projector and 120" screen (virtually a home cinema). It also has a workshop, wine cellar and a three car garage.

This really is a quality built home in good condition. For golf lovers, there is a golf course nearby.

For more information contact me at:

Kristy Mattiazzo
Sutton Centre Realty
Tel:604-831-7321
kmattiazzo@shaw.ca
Read Full Story
22884 124B Avenue Maple Ridge has just come on the market. This is an example of a beautiful home for sale in Maple Ridge, BC.

This is a lovely rancher on a 8,000 square foot lot in a quiet cul-de-sac. Nice floor plan with three bedrooms, two full bathrooms and a five foot crawl space. This property is bright and spacious. Updates to the property include a four year old roof, newer laminate flooring and a newer water tank. Year Built: 1986

Maple Ridge real estate like this does not come up often.

Features include a clothes washer/dryer, fridge, stove, dish washer, drapes and window coverings, garage door opener, and security system.

Presently rented to a good tenant with monthly rent currently at $1,600. 

Please contact me for more information:

    * Kristy Mattiazzo
    * Sutton Centre Realty
    * Tel:604-831-7321
    * kmattiazzo@shaw.ca
Read Full Story
63 2000 Panorama Drive Port Moody has just come on the market. This is a much sought-after end unit townhouse nestled in Heritage Woods' Mountains Edge. This community has lots of privacy yet has a welcoming community vibe. A montessori, Aspenwood Elementary School and Heritage Woods High School are all within walking distance. 

This immaculate property has lots of extra windows allowing for an abundance of natural light while maintaining its private cozy feel. Other features of this property include clothes washer/dryer/fridge/stove/, fireplace, pantry, security system and smoke alarm.

The large garage has plenty of extra room for storage and the good sized backyard is perfect for hosting a summer weekend BBQ. 

In addition to its welcoming community vibe, Montessori, Aspenwood Elementary School and Heritage Woods High School are all within walking distance. 

Port Moody Real Estate Like this is Rare

Don't miss out on the opportunity to see this rarely available piece of Port Moody real estate! Call me today for easy showing. There is a public open house scheduled for Saturday December 11th, 1-4 PM.

Contact me for full details:

* Kristy Mattiazzo
* Sutton Centre Realty
* Tel:604-831-7321
* kmattiazzo@shaw.ca

Read Full Story
301-3388 Morrey Court, Burnaby has just come on the market. This residential attached apartment unit is a prime example of the kind of Burnaby real estate listings on the market today.

This spacious and sparkling clean, corner suite has a convenient layout with two bedrooms and two bathrooms on both sides of the unit. The master bedroom has a full sized bathroom with soaker tub and over-sized patio and another patio off the dining area. The apartment has an open concept kit, the dining and living area is bright and airy with loads of windows for amazing light.

Just inside the entry is a perfectly tucked away den with built in cherry oak desk and shelving. The unit has insuite laundry, storage locker and stainless steel appliances which includes a microwave. The property also comes with two parking spaces.

This property is located in Sullivan Heights--a very central of beautiful Burnaby BC, only five minutes walk to Lougheed Mall, Skytrain, recreation, and schools. SFU is just a few mins' drive or bus ride away. The unit is on the quiet side of building. Pets and rentals are allowed.

From the moment you walk through the door, you will feel like you are home.

Burnaby Real Estate Listings like this don't come along every day!

For a property in Burnaby with two bedrooms, two bathrooms, two balconies, plus two parking spots the price is unbelievable! Hurry before it's gone!

Contact me for full details and open house information.
Read Full Story
The Tri-Cities area of BC includes the cities of Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam and Port Moody.

Find out more about the Tri-Cities real estate market and homes for sale in the Tri-Cities area, including the latest MLS listings. Here is just one example of the quality real estate available in the Tri-Cities are; this one is in Coquitlam. 

New Coquitlam Real Estate Listing

223 Jackson Street Coquitlam is a new listing which represents unbelievable value. This is a brand new craftsman home. The attention to detail throughout this home has to be seen to be believed. The design is fabulous with great flow - 2,684 SF, 3 levels, 5 bedrooms & 3.5 Baths. It also has a legal 1 bedroom suite. 

The main floor is great for family and entertainment; it really is a great room concept. The kitchen has granite counters with a centre island, with antique white cabinets. The top floor has 3 large bedrooms - all with vault ceilings. The master bedroom has a beautiful en-suite and 2 rooms with a Jack & Jill bath. The lower floor has a nice flex room which could be used as extra owner's bedroom or for the extra suite that will easily rent for $1000/month and cover a $200K Mortgage. 

The property has a large covered deck for BBQ all year round. There is a big 2 car detached garage and a fully fenced yard. This really is an amazing property. Contact me for warranty and open house details.
Read Full Story
If you are interested in the latest Coquitlam real estate listings then check out 105 1189 Eastwood Street, Coquitlam. This is a beautiful residential attached three bedroom, two bathroom apartment that has just been listed. This property was built in 1993, and is located across from Glen Elementary School. 

This fabulous property has two parking stalls, three spacious bedrooms, a huge patio, granite countertops, and real hardwood floors. The building is in a quiet corner away from the street noise and away from the lobby. 

Please contact me to find out more details about this wonderful Coquitlam property for sale. 
Read Full Story
The rest of 2010 and the start of 2011 are looking good for the Greater Vancouver real estate market. A new report by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) says that low mortgage rates combined with a growing population and an improving economy are good indicators for Metro Vancouver property sales.

Continued low mortgage interest rates, a steady flow of migrants to the Lower Mainland, and a growing job market are all positive factors that influence home sales according to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. It concluded that sales will remain stable until mid-2011 before trending higher. The B.C. Real Estate Association also predicted in its fall housing forecast that B.C. housing sales will increase six per cent to in 2011.

You can find detailed listings for all areas in the Greater Vancouver area by clicking on the links below:
Read Full Story
Property Photo: 218 220 NEWPORT DR in Port Moody
I have listed a new property at 218 220 NEWPORT DR in Port Moody.
Bosa built, well maintained, 2 bdrm/2 bath unit w/ patio opening out to large ground level oasis for you & your guests to enjoy the extra outdoor space. Unit is located next to the elevator has open concept featuring newly installed dark chocolate laminate floors throughout. Kitchen updated w/ Everwood espresso cabinets, tiled backsplash, couintertops, stainless appliances & tiled floors. Mbdrm features ensuite & slider glass doors to private patio. Spacious dining room for plenty of entertaining. Living room highlights huge bay windows, gas fireplace w/ loads of room for large TV/bookcase. Access to clubhouse, exercise centre, swirlpool/hot tub. Call realtor for private showing.
Read Full Story
Property Photo: # 206 14988 101A AV in Surrey
I have listed a new property at # 206 14988 101A AV in Surrey.
LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION! Fabulous 2 bedroom, 2 bath condo located in the heart of GUILDFORD. This home features a bright and spacious floor plan, newer laminate flooring, gas fireplace and very large wrap around covered deck. The kitchen has been updated with new counter tops, new stainless steel sink and new dishwasher. In suite laundry featured in the large storage room. This building has been rainscreened. Great complex conveniently located close to the mall and all amenities. Close to Green Timbers park. Call today for your personal tour!
Read Full Story