Andreas Nystrom


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Baran Studio Architecture is behind the design of the 62nd Street residence in Oakland, California. Built on a large, urban lot, the house makes the most of every square inch of land possible by spreading out to the perimeter.




Warm wood details are carried from the exterior to the interior of the home and are used to trim out built-in bookcases and to cover entire walls.






Wood beams run in both directions in parts of the main living area.




A series of randomly placed George Nelson Bubble Lamps float above in the dining room and kitchen.








The wooden beams continue from the inside to the outdoors almost creating a pergola over part of the patio.




An exterior, wooden wall is outfitted with shelves that hold plants.















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Last month was the highest selling June and the second highest monthly total on record for the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver. There were 4,375 homes sold last month on the boards MLS. This is an increase of 28.4% compared to June 2014 and 29.1% above the June 10 year average. June also marked the fourth consecutive month that total sales surpassed the 4,000 mark, this is another first in the boards history.


There is a steady stream of new listings hitting the market but the overall homes for sale is not keeping up with buyer demand. There were 5,803 homes listed in June 2015 which is up 8.7% from last year. All totalled there were 12,181 listings in the month of June, which is down 23.9% compared to last year and is the lowest total we've seen in June since 2006.


In short, there is an increasing number of buyers competing for fewer home listings. This is causing increased upward pressure on home prices. The benchmark price for all residential properties rose to $694,000, which is up 10.3% compared to June of last year.


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77% of Vancouverites are in support of the absentee homeowner tax as stated by the latest issue of Insights West poll.

This past May an online survey was taken to determine the support and opinion of the local Vancouverites regarding the absentee homeowner tax to help restrict the amount of foreign real estate investment in BC.  With specific focus to the Vancouver area.

This survey showed that 73 percent of BC residents were in favor of the tax, and the majority of this support came from the residents of Metro Vancouver as 77 percent voted favourably.  Also, the age group that were the most supportive of the new tax were aged 18-34. 

Not everyone is in favour of this proposed new tax though. 35 percent of East Asian residents believe the restriction on foreign ownership is racist, and 21 percent of all BC residents agree with this opinion as well.

Overall though, it is a general thought that absentee owners (or people that do no reside in homes they own) is harmful for the community and neighborhood where their house is a part of.  As a whole, 86 percent of people believe that the absentee owners are speculators and do not become a part of the community. That percentage jumped up to 92 percent among people in the highest income bracket.

When asked about the subject, Mario Canseco, Vice President of Public Affairs at Insights West stated that: “Homeowners actually see some benefits from foreign ownership when it comes to the possibility of an increased value for their property.” But she also went on to say that “still, many residents are voicing dissatisfaction with the fact that these empty homes are having a negative effect on their community.”

One key person strongly in favor of the proposed tax is Mayor Gregor Robertson. He explained in a statement last week that: “Vancouver needs the B.C. Government to take action on creating a speculation tax and recognize that we need a fair and level playing field to make housing more affordable for residents in Vancouver, and throughout the province.”

This opinion of the Mayor and his office was announced a short week after the opposite opinion was stated by Premier Christy Clark.  She stated that the idea of a tax on foreign real estate investors would not be approached as the “housing prices will drop” if these changes are made.

She also went on to say in May that: “that’s good for first-time home buyers but not for anybody who is depending on the equity in their home to maybe get a loan or use that to finance some other projects.”

Time will only tell what decision is reached with regards to this new absentee homeowner tax.

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Ever wonder what it would be like to live on the water but in something more comfortable and luxuries than a house boat? 

Well, the country containing the tallest building worldwide and manmade islands shaped to represent palm trees, the world, and our universe has the answer to your wildest dreams. Dubai has created floating villas just for you.

The Floating Seahorse is the name of this fleet of floating three story palaces, as each house will be unique and stunning while amazing view both above and below the water! Each house will contain glass walls, open sun decks, large rooms, and a bedroom on the bottom floor with an underwater view of the ocean.

Of the 42 individual residences, 35 have already been claimed so there is a high demand for these floating dream homes already. Perhaps Dubai will make more in the future but for now they only have plans to build the 42 homes. Each home will float just offshore of the Main Europe section which is a part of The World Islands in Dubai, and each home is selling for $1.8 million each.

These diverse and intriguing houses will also contain a full kitchen, bathrooms, dining/living areas, a glass-bottom Jacuzzi and floor-to-ceiling windows in every room. The master bedroom downstairs with the underwater ocean view will also have a private tub and shower so you can bath while watching the turtles and fish swimming by.

To avoid unpleasant views from the underwater quarters the developers have stated that they will be installing underwater gardens attached to the bottom section of the houses, so that wherever the house actually is there will always be beautiful plant and animal life floating around.

The release date for these houses to officially open is 2017. 

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