Landmark deals in the Vancouver real estate market due to land assembly sales

WATCH: Some Metro Vancouver residents are discovering their house has become more like a winning lottery ticket. John Hua explains.

There is power in numbers. That’s translating into some landmark deals for sellers in the Vancouver real estate market — it’s called land assembly sales.

As the city pro-actively rezones areas around the city’s main corridors allowing them to potentially be turned into higher occupancy buildings like town homes and condos, developers are quick to seize the opportunity.

Before the developers would divide and conquer. Knocking on the doors of individual homeowners picking them off one at a time. Now, realtors who recognized the potential in the market are getting to the homeowners first teaching them the potential power in selling as part of a package deal.

“They find out if they’re doing land assembly, the value is amazingly higher than what the market value is,” says Michelle Yu of RE/MAX Real Estate Services.

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Yu is currently representing more than a dozen land assembly sales in Vancouver. She says the trend of land sales has been picking up over the past five years.

Yu sold nine homes on Granville with an appraisal value of about $1.7 million each. Sold together as a land assembly deal, the cut for each homeowner was an average $3.7 million.

A current 11-property land assembly on Oak St. and 67th Ave. is listed with an average property assessment value of $1.24 million. The average asking price for the deal is $3.08 million.

By the series of ‘for sale’ signs lining major Vancouver corridors like Cambie St., Oak St. and Granville St., there’s no indication land assembly sales are slowing down.

Yu says developers looking into land assembly sales are widespread with an estimated breakdown of 60 per cent local, 25 per cent overseas and 15 per cent out-of-province.

Yu says depending on the type of zoning the City of Vancouver continues to allow, the return from a land assembly sale could triple or more.

Alice Pisarek is still getting used to the ‘for sale’ sign in front of their home on 41st Ave. They bought the home 10 years ago with plans of staying there for a long time. In fact, Pisarek says her husband has spent the past couple of years completely renovating the home.

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The idea of a land assembly started with Pisarek’s neighbours. While they’d be happy to stay, the comforts of home could be traded for the right price.

“The numbers are attractive… if we got the right price, we would sell,” says Pisarek.

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