Buying a home in West Kelowna, B.C. today could be infuriating after contacting insurance companies and not being able to get coverage for your property.


a plane flying in the air with smoke coming out of it: With wildfires expected to occur more frequently, experts say builders and buyers could face even more difficulty finding insurance in the future.


Potential homebuyers and home buildings in areas near wildfires are struggling to find insurance because insurers won't issue new coverage for properties or construction sites that are within a certain distance from an active blaze. Sometimes that certain distance could be 25 kilometers, or 75 kilometers or even 100 kilometers.


The remains of a classic car is seen on a property destroyed by the White Rock Lake wildfire in Monte Lake, east of Kamloops, B.C., on Saturday, August 14, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck.


The reasoning why insurance is being withheld is unforseen risk.

Buyers who are dealing with accepted offers and can't find coverage for their new home can face a breach of contract if their mortgage company refuses to finance them - and mortgage companies insist on the properties being insured.

Realtors are being forced to include special clauses in purchase agreements that allow buyers to extend the closing date in the event of an act of nature that prevents them from getting insurance.


BC transportation wildfire photo


Getting insurance for homes at risk is not a new phenomenon. As the climate is changing, we are seeing hotter, drier conditions lasting longer, and the wildfire risk is going to increase moving forward.

Today, there really isn't much that can be done for the buyers and builders currently stuck in limbo - except to wait until the wildfire situation improves - which usually happens in early fall.

At Keith Vines and Associates, we offer good old fashion service, working with our home buyers and sellers in a relaxed, friendly manner, applying every available tool available to achieve the best possible outcome. Please take a moment to sign up for Keith’s Grapevine – a periodic eletter full of interesting market news, advice and tidbits

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Despite car sales dropping by 20% in 2020, some of the best selling electric, plug-in hybrid, and hybrid vehicles saw an increase from 2019. 

In order for Canada to hit our 2030 Paris Agreement goals, ZEV's (Zero Emission Vehicles) are going to need to make up 40% of total passenger car sales in 2030.

The good news is that owning an electric car is becomiing easier in Canada. In the first quarter of this year, there were 13,230 EV charges at 6,016 public stations across the country - up 15% since March 2020.

Canada's most popular Zero-Emission Vehicles:

6. Tesla's Model S


2020 Tesla Model S


Total units sold in 2020: 961

Probably the first of the "cool' electric vehicles, with 0-60 time in 2.3 seconds, a 17-inch tablet with an infotainment system. The new Long Range Plus feature will get you 646 kilometers with every charge.


5. Nissan Leaf


2020 Nissan LEAF


Total units sold in 2020: 1,535

If you are looking for a modestly priced EV that's perfect for city driving, this car might be your fit. You'll get 241 kilometers per charge, which is slightly more than similar prices EV's. The 2020 model also has more airbags and standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone intergration.


4. Chevrolet Bolt


2022 Chevrolet Bolt EV: What We Know So Far


Total units sold in 2020:4,026

Bolt is a good example of how Detroit based automakers are responding to a rapidly growing market. With a nice 416 kilometers per charge and a cabin that's far more spacious than you would think - this is a fun car to drive.


3. Hyundai Ioniq


2020 Hyundai Ioniq Hybrid


Total units sold in 2020: 5.117

Sure, it's not a full EV, but its fuel ecomony is outstanding, using just 4L per 100km in combined city and highway driving - and it starts at $25,649.


2. Tesla Model 3


2020 Tesla Model 3


Total units sold in 2020: 6,151

This is Tesla's most popular car and among the few vehicles in Canada that saw an increase in sales from 2019 to 2020. It is expected to crack the top 10 list of Canada's best selling cars in the next year or 2.  The Model 3 makes purchasing a high end EV much more accessible for the average Canadian.


1. Toyota Pruis Family


2020 Toyota Prius


Total units sold in 2020: 6,417

This electric care continues to be the go-to EV for Canadians. This year marks its 20th year on the Canadian market and sales continue to grow. 


At Keith Vines and Associates, we offer good old fashion service, working with our home buyers and sellers in a relaxed, friendly manner, applying every available tool available to achieve the best possible outcome. Please take a moment to sign up for Keith’s Grapevine – a periodic eletter full of interesting market news, advice and tidbits

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A light industrial property in the Downtown  Eastside of Vancouver is being considered for a temporary modular housing site


.

The plan is to provide housing at 323 Alexander Street for the city's homeless. But first the city has to apply to modity the Regional Official Development Plan to allow residential use.

The city requires an amendment that would temporarily change the designation of the site from Industrial to General Urban, while the property is occupied with Temporary Modular Housing.

Hopefully this approval will be passed sometime this year. 

Temporary modular homes are located on vacant and underused sites across the city and are typically on site for a period up to 10 years.

The 323 Alexander Street property assessed value fell from $24,708,00 to 17,841,000.

At Keith Vines and Associates, we offer good old fashion service, working with our home buyers and sellers in a relaxed, friendly manner, applying every available tool available to achieve the best possible outcome. Please take a moment to sign up for Keith’s Grapevine – a periodic eletter full of interesting market news, advice and tidbits

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hydrogen cars electric cars


A hydrogen car has a tank that feeds a fuel cell with high pressured hydrogen gas that will mix with oxygen. This mix starts an electrochemical reaction that produces electricity to power the electric moter. These cars are also referred to as FSVs (Fuel Cell Vehicles) or FCEVs (Full Cell Electric Vehicles)

EVs (Electric Vehicles) as we know are powered by electric motors that pull current from rechargeable batteries.


2021 Hyundai Nexo Review, Pricing, and Specs


The Hyundai Nexo (hydrogen powered) can travel around 330 miles or 550 km per tank, similar to the electric Tesla Model S. But most fully electric vehicles can travel between 100-200 miles or 160-322 km on a single charge, and a hydrogen car can get you about 300 miles or 483 km.


Tesla Model S - Wikipedia


With the number of power stations for EVs growing every day, the number of hydrogen refueling stations is extremely small. No question, the infrastructure, supply, and the technology of hydrogen cars are still years behind electric vehicles.


hydrogen cars fuel station


But here is something interesting - the amount of time it takes to pump hydrogen into the tank is about 5 to 10 minutes, just like any gas combustion car.


Tesla reveals smaller Supercharger stations made for cities - The Verge


While Tesla's fast chargers (with 120kW) give batteries 80% power in half an hour, the BMW i3 or the Nissan Leaf can take around 4 or 8 hours, respectively, to get fully charged.

Neither car emits any pollution while being driven. Both do in the production of their energy. But that's another story.

Are you in the market for a new car? Is it still to soon to ponder hydrogen? Maybe.

At Keith Vines and Associates, we offer good old fashion service, working with our home buyers and sellers in a relaxed, friendly manner, applying every available tool available to achieve the best possible outcome. Please take a moment to sign up for Keith’s Grapevine – a periodic eletter full of interesting market news, advice and tidbits

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Luxury Boutique Hotel in Richmond | Versante Hotel


Richmond's latest luxury hotel opened up on July 29th, along with a rooftop pool

The Versante Hotel, close to the Canada Line Bridgeport Station is understood to be the only hotel in the city with a rooftop swimming pool.

The pool has views to the south of Mount Baker and to the northwest and northeast of the River Rock Casino and Capstan Village.


New luxury hotel opening near Bridgeport Station in Richmond this month |  Urbanized


They are doing a gradual opening, after opening half the hotel at the end of July and each week will add on more.


Versante Hotel - Reviews & Photos (Richmond, British Columbia) - Tripadvisor


The hotel has 100 guestrooms and suites, and the second largest suite will roughly cost $5,000 per night. What will the largeest suite cost - and what's really worth $5,000 per night? Forgive me for sounding glum!

At Keith Vines and Associates, we offer good old fashion service, working with our home buyers and sellers in a relaxed, friendly manner, applying every available tool available to achieve the best possible outcome. Please take a moment to sign up for Keith’s Grapevine – a periodic eletter full of interesting market news, advice and tidbits

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Meet Studio McGee: The Stars of Netflix's 'Dream Home Makeover'


If you have ever dreamed about having your home redesigned by Shea McGee on Netfilx's Dream Home Makeover you may soon get your chance.

Netflix has just recently announced that they are casting for the home makeover show and it appears they are taking things international next season. Auditions will be welcome from residents of Ireland, the UK as well as Canada.

The show follows Utah-based designer Shea McGee and her husband Syd, the owners of interior design firm Studio McGee, as they transform other people's homes.  And yes, the result are mostly stunning.


10 Fun Facts From Dream Home Makeover - Studio McGee


The show has featured homes in Utah and California, meaning this would be the first time it's gone outside of the US. 

Although they have worked on some pretty enormous houses, it's definitely not a requirement.

Updated bathrooms? Renovated Kitchen? All good! The show will work with any budget to transform homes into something beautiful.


10 Things We Learned From Studio McGee's New Netflix Show - House & Home


If you are interested on being on Dream Home Makeover simply submit a one minute video 

If you are selected please let us know. We would love to follow you.

At Keith Vines and Associates, we offer good old fashion service, working with our home buyers and sellers in a relaxed, friendly manner, applying every available tool available to achieve the best possible outcome. Please take a moment to sign up for Keith’s Grapevine – a periodic eletter full of interesting market news, advice and tidbits

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Housing market slowed down in April, but average price still rising at  record pace | CBC News


There were a total of 9,996 housing units sold last month in BC.  This is down signicantly from last March, our best month ever, when 15,073 homes changed hands, beating the previous all-time high of 13,482 home sales in May 2016.

From the peak of 15,073 sales in March 2021, sales fell over the following months with April at 13,683, May at 12,638 and June 11,070. Average prices peaked as well in March and have fallen each consecutive following month to an average price in BC of $891,687 in July 2021, which is a 17.1% increase from $761,772 recorded in July 2020.


Acquisition of a Commercial Legal Practice of Robert M Phelan & Co Pty - EM  Lawyers


But as I have been saying for some time, the supply of homes for sale poses a problem.  While sales remain robust, listing inventories are trending near record lows.

The total active home listings in BC were down 32.2% year-over-year in July, and continue to fall on a monthly seasonly adjusted basis. There were 24,473 active listings last July compared to 36,108 in July 2020.

The July 2021 sales-to-active-listings ratio was 39.5%, which means the market is solidly in seller's terrirtory.

At Keith Vines and Associates, we offer good old fashion service, working with our home buyers and sellers in a relaxed, friendly manner, applying every available tool available to achieve the best possible outcome. Please take a moment to sign up for Keith’s Grapevine – a periodic eletter full of interesting market news, advice and tidbits

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Vancouver, so famous for all the TV and movie productions, has earned the nickname 'Hollywood North'.

There are many locations across the city that have been used in films and TV shows that you can access. Some might be very close to you.


1526 Angus Drive


Vancouver houses


Built in 1912, this extraodinary detached house recently sold for $12 million. Several TV shows and films were filmed here, but the most notable was  probably the 1993 film The Crush, starring Alicia Silverston. 

The TV movie Double, Double Toll  and Trouble was also filmed there in 1993 along with an episode of The Dead Zone and another TV movie called I've Been Waiting For You.


Cecil Green Park House


Vancouver filming


Another 1912 creation, this mansion was originally the home of a prominant lawyer named Edward Davis. Now used for weddings and other events. 

Lucifer, The Flash, Arrow, The X-Files, Fifty Shades Freed and many other shows and movies have been filmed here.

The most interesting piece of history about this house is that the Davis family sold this house in 1940 for a whopping $9,000. Yes, that's Nine Thousand.


Hycroft Mansion


filming in Vancouver


This beautiful home, which was once the haunt for the rich and famous was built in 1911. The house originally belonged to Alexander Duncan McRae, a Canadian Politician.

Stargate SG-1, Charmed and Psych were some of the shows filmed there.


Caretakers' Cottage


Vancouver film


Located in a little more obscure and hard to get spot in North Vancouver at 2720 Pemberton Ave. Caretaker's Cottage is a quaint little spot surrounded by trees, next to a lake. 

It's slightly unnerving, like the cabin in Evil Dead, which probably made it  the perfect spot for the hit TV show Supernatural.

The Flash and Stargate SG-1 were also filmed there.


118 Stevens Drive, West Vancouver


Twilight


If the interior of this swanky West Van home in the British Properties looks familiar, you might be a Twilight: New Moon fan.

This beautiful property is an Arthur Erickson classic. 


2036 West 13th Ave


films van


This is a very unassumng and quaint home located close to Granville shopping district. The home featured multiple episodes of the TV show The Flash, which basically made it famous.


15356 Columbia Ave


Van film


This nice White Rock home, which has a stunning view of the water, was also featured on the TV show Psych.


4053 West 32nd Ave.


Vancouver


Remember the movie Juno? The cult classic featuring a young Elliot Page and the trials and tribulations that followed. The house in the middle of the picture was used for exterior shots of Juno's house in the movie. A different house was used for the interior shots.


At Keith Vines and Associates, we offer good old fashion service, working with our home buyers and sellers in a relaxed, friendly manner, applying every available tool available to achieve the best possible outcome. Please take a moment to sign up for Keith’s Grapevine – a periodic eletter full of interesting market news, advice and tidbits

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