Event Draws Parallels Between Seattle and Vancouver as International Buyers Divert South of the Border
On July 15th and 16th, several members of the Seattle-based sales and marketing team for NEXUS borrowed scale models and exhibits from the NEXUS Sales Center to create a pop-up showcase in downtown Vancouver. Held at the Burrard Building, owned by NEXUS developer Burrard Group, the central location helped draw dozens of curious consumers as well as top brokers and prospective homebuyers.
“What an appropriate venue for our pop-up event,” said Dean Jones, President and CEO of Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty. “NEXUS was right at home being surrounded by world-class retail brands in one of the most iconic locations in downtown Vancouver. It was especially interesting to discuss the state of the two markets with local brokers and prospective buyers knowing that Seattle appears to be following in Vancouver’s footsteps.”
Both Cannon and Jones are former residents of Vancouver, BC so both draw upon the many parallels found between these sister cities. Downtown Vancouver is about the same island-like size as downtown Seattle and both markets are surrounded by waterways and geographic barriers that promote a dense, urban environment. In 2006, the Center City Plan adopted by Seattle City Council permitted “taller” and “slender” towers with prescribed tower spacing, inspired in large part from successful real estate developments in Vancouver, BC.
Above: Vancouver residents flocked to the pop-up shop to learn about the opportunities still available at NEXUS Condominiums.
“I really feel both the trend for urbanization and preference of overseas buyers that Vancouver has enjoyed for 20 years is now taking place 150-miles south in downtown Seattle,” adds Jones. “In fact, these trends are being led by Canadian developers that all see the same opportunity.”
Above: Michael Cannon discusses the parallels between Vancouver and Seattle at the NEXUS event.
Currently, Burrard Group is the only Canadian developer offering new construction condominiums while several others are building apartments for rent. Unlike in Vancouver, where buyer deposits can tally 20 to 30-percent or more, purchasing during presales at NEXUS only requires a 5-percent earnest money deposit that is held in escrow with another 5-percent earnest money deposit increase by June 29, 2018.
“Our contracts and deposit structure is one of the most buyer friendly and attractive on the West Coast,” says Michael Cannon, Sales Director for NEXUS Condominiums. “Our value proposition is also very compelling with presale pricing about half the cost of like Vancouver projects, not to mention our propensity for capital appreciation with no purchase taxes.”
Above: Cannon shows a potential buyer the available units at the 83-percent sold NEXUS Condominiums.
Specifically, foreign buyers that purchase new construction condominiums in downtown Vancouver face a combined taxation of more than 20-percent thanks to the adoption of the 15-percent Foreign Homebuyer Tax on top of provincial sales taxes. Seattle currently has no such tax, although several mayoral candidates are raising this discussion as part of their election platform.
Among the many visitors was Tina Mak, a well-respected real estate agent that specializes in international homebuyers but also consults with developers and US brokers that are presenting properties in Canada. Mak is also an active member of the Asian Real Estate Association of America (AREAA) and happened to be traveling to Seattle on July 21st and 22nd to attend a Pacific Northwest Town Hall meeting hosted by the local AREAA Chapter. She was so impressed with NEXUS, it was decided on the spot that the NEXUS Sales Center would be host to the AREAA leadership group that was convening in Seattle the next week.
Above: Tina Mak was eager to discuss the NEXUS project and Vancouver market with Dean Jones.
Of course, all work and no play wouldn’t be fair. The NEXUS Sales Team managed to enjoy a beautiful harbor tour aboard a private yacht and take in the extraordinary skyline of downtown Vancouver, which many believe is a harbinger of what’s to come for downtown Seattle.
Above: The NEXUS Sales Team enjoyed a sunset harbor tour to cap off a successful trip to Vancouver.