A home is a personal statement and a safe shelter from the world, but it also the largest investment many people will ever make.
As co-owner and lead designer of Lanefab Design/Build, Bryn Davidson knows about real estate and the impact it can have on a person’s daily living and long-term prosperity. Lanefab puts clients into custom homes specifically designed for their needs. From conceptualization to permit reviews to handing over the keys to the front door, the Lanefab team knows all the ins and outs of homebuilding. Davidson says Vancouver is an ideal place to be in the real estate business.
Vancouver Welcomes Passive Homes
“There’s a really great culture of green building amongst clients, professionals, city staff and policy,” he says. There is ample support for passive house design, and the policies that are in place make it simpler than in some other locales to build with the environment in mind.
Passive home design uses 90 percent less energy than the typical home, leaving less of a footprint on the environment for everyday necessities like heating and cooling. Passive homes can be built to be very comfortable, quiet and durable, but still save on energy.
Lanefab’s homes are works of art, featuring graceful proportions and amenities that make for pleasant daily living. Such design expertise comes at a cost, as does living in a high-demand city like Vancouver. But with wise planning and investment, anyone could work their way into a custom home.
Cracking Open the Market
Davidson reflected on IMBY, a system that allows investors to dip a toe into the real estate market for as little as $1, sharing the risk and the rewards and building a portfolio to be proud of.
“I think that it’s a really interesting model given that the point of entry has become so high,” he says. With such high values in Vancouver overall, many people find themselves shut out of the market.
“Only people with generational wealth can participate, which creates a dividing line between those who have family money and those who don’t,” Davidson says.
When investing, choosing real estate means that your dollars are being used to support your community at a very basic level.
“I think that real estate is an interesting investment option in comparison to say stocks or bonds or other kinds of investment avenues,” he says. “You are investing in your local community and building something tangible,” he says. Vancouver is a choice spot for this sort of investment, Davidson says.
Vancouver Promises Long Term Demand
“The tax rate on property in Vancouver is quite low,” he says. “Looking at the big picture in terms of how Vancouver is positioned relative to other cities in the world, I feel fairly confident that there will continue to be a lot of housing demand for this city in the long term.”
Builders in Vancouver continue to innovate. Many of Lanefab’s clients are creating units with suites or laneway houses behind an existing property in order to make the most of space and house extended families in close proximity. This can result in expensive dwellings and shared mortgages, but it also allows people to live just that way they’d like. With a program like IMBY, perhaps more and more people will be able to design their own homes and thereby design their own lives.
“I think it’s nice if people have an option to be able to invest in the city that they live in, even if they don’t have rich parents,” Davidson says.
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