Five hottest editorials of 2017
Western Investor's most-read stories, from strata windup pros and cons to the seismic upheaval of government intervention
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WesternInvestor.com’s most-viewed editorials prove that our readers aren’t interested in commercial real estate articles sugar-coating the state of Vancouver’s market and economy. In fact, all but one of our most-read editorials is written with gusto and frankness by our editor, Frank O’Brien, never one to shy away from the hard truths of Vancouver’s affordability issue. Is Vancouver becoming out of reach for the average person? What can be done to change this, and is government intervention helping or hindering Vancouver’s economy? Our editorials tackled these questions and more, head on.
Here is our second-annual countdown of our five most-read opinion stories in 2017.
Our first editorial is the only one not written by our editor, but provides insight into strata windups from Boughton Law’s Carol Lee. Lee breaks down changes to B.C.’s Strata Property Act that made dissolving a strata corporation possible with 80 per cent of council support, running through the pros and cons. Lee suggests that with high land values and a mounting supply of aging apartments needing costly repairs to be maintained, strata windups may be a win-win for sellers and developers alike.
Our next top story explores whether another B.C. centre would make a more affordable metropolitan hub than Vancouver. Our editor Frank O’Brien claims that “the Vancouver housing market is now officially insane,” and suggests Kamloops or the Sunshine coast as alternatives where families, millennials and seniors can find comfortable, affordable housing.
Much like our previous story, our third most-read story takes a look at what happens to workers when they become priced out of Vancouver real estate. Many people simply can’t afford to work in the province with Canada’s lowest unemployment rate. O’Brien suggest that the solution lies somewhere within unified action and rare sacrifice by industry, government and real estate owners to both raise wages and reduce housing costs.
Our runner up for our most-read editorial of 2017 expands on census demand that shows a slowing of population growth in Vancouver – perhaps indicating a lack of confidence among Vancouverites in Vancouver’s affordability and housing availability. A report revealed that over a third of Vancouverites are considering selling their existing real estate and moving to more cost-affective regions in the province. “The brutal truth is a lot of people are leaving the city and many more plan to follow, which should be an alarming wake-up call for City of Vancouver officials,” O’Brien states.
Our most-read story was published in reaction to the provincial election. The BC NDP and Green Party’s platforms had our editor worries that well-intentioned government intervention will topple the province from its perch as Canada’s leader in job growth and economic vitality. Have all of the government’s original plans materialized, and was our editor right to worry. Read on
to find out.