Become property investor
Special to Okanagan Edge - Jul 17 - Think Local

Image: Contributed

Evest Funds’ first two information sessions for a new Kelowna development were a smashing success, so they’re going to have another one later this month!

The Vancouver company is working on a project in the city’s Clifton Road neighbourhood called “Promontory.” It is located on the southeast slope of Knox Mountain, just five minutes from downtown. It is an exciting investment opportunity in a 120-unit townhome development at the corner of Highpointe and Boynton.

“We’re tracking great success,” Evest Funds founder and CEO Robert Fraser says. “A lot of people are subscribing, entering as a limited partner, but it is a large project, so we’ll probably be taking reservations for another two or three months.”

The minimum investment is $25,000, and being a limited partner gives the investor a five per cent discount as well as first choice on the best units should they decide to purchase one.

*“The project takes place over 24 months, and the projected return is at or over 29* per cent,” Fraser says. “It’s based on our strategy of acquiring land at a very favourable price at the right time and then turning it around, subdividing and then building a community.

“… So basically you’ve generated the return from $25,000—let’s say 29* or 30 per cent—plus you’re given the five per cent discount. This pretty much brings you to a down payment for a unit. It’s a nice way to offer the general public an opportunity to become an investor and property owner.”

Photo: Contributed

Fraser is Promontory’s General Partner, and he has been responsible for numerous projects across B.C., from resorts to townhouses to single-family dwellings.

Fraser reports there is a large number of investors from Vancouver and Alberta, and that the project is expected to attract future retirees, young families and post-secondary students. The project is affordably priced and well located, which creates an excellent opportunity for everyone to make business as well as buy a home.

The next Promontory project presentation will be held in Kelowna at Coast Capri Hotel on July 25 at 7 p.m. We look forward to hosting and sharing this exciting opportunity with you. To sign up for the presentation or to get more information, please click below:

Register now

Discover Promontory, a unique investment opportunity in coveted Kelowna!

If you can’t attend the project presentation, visit the website at www.investinkelowna.com.

*This disclosure contains forward-looking information is not complete and that complete forward-looking information is included in the Issuer’s current offering memorandum. The forward-looking information is management’s projections based on project planning and analysis using industry accepted assumptions and analysis techniques for the real estate market in Kelowna and the project area in particular. While management believes its assumptions and analysis are valid and reasonable, actual results may vary from the forward-looking information and there are a number of inherent risk factors, such as variability in real estate pricing, prices for construction materials, and government policy that could have a negative impact on the Issuer and could cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking information. The Issuers undertake no responsibility to update their forward-looking information. This is not a public offering or solicitation of securities and is for informational purposes only. The reader is directed to the Issuer’s current offering memorandum for a more full consideration of the risks, assumptions and forward-looking information, and should first consult with a qualified licensed investment advisor prior to considering any investment.

Special access to new ciders
Special to Okanagan Edge - Jul 09 - Think Local

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The farmers of BC Tree Fruits Cooperative have been growing fruit in the Okanagan for more than 100 years, so it only makes sense that when they took those centuries of knowledge into the cider business the result was truly special.

What began as one apple cider in 2014 has since expanded to three distinct varieties: Broken Ladder Apples, Broken Ladder Apples & Hops, and Broken Ladder Pears & Peaches.

The industry has taken notice, and the cooperative’s ciders have won dozens of awards across North America.

But BC Tree Fruits is, of course, deeply rooted in the Okanagan. That’s why the cooperative has now found a way to give locals a special sneak peek at its newest creations.

As the cooperative’s Shannon Forgues explains, BC Tree Fruits’ Kelowna tasting room offerings have been expanded. It now boasts a whopping eight taps, allowing it to offer exclusive selections from its small-batch, cider-makers’ select series for both tastings and growler fills.

“The cider makers have been set loose and given free reign to play with new recipes, and they are creating some uncommonly delicious ciders,” Forgues says.

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Visitors to the tasting bar, at 880 Vaughan Ave. in Kelowna’s north end, now have a chance to discover ciders like the surprise hit Rose, Hibiscus, Double Hopped and others, including the soon-to-be-released Juniper. Every variety on tap is available for growler fills, a convenient way to take home freshly tapped cider. Growlers are available for purchase in the tasting bar in one- or two-litre sizes, or cider lovers can bring in their own growlers.

“People are loving the fact that they can come in and fill their growlers and choose from not only the three core ciders but also a selection of our select series,” Forgues says.

While the three core Broken Ladder ciders are available in four-packs at liquor stores across the province and Alberta, the cider makers’ select varieties are the only ones available at the tasting room.

The small-batch ciders keep to the BC Tree Fruits philosophy. They’re made right on site at the Vaughan Street cidery, using 100 per cent Okanagan fruit.

“BC Tree Fruit ciders are truly orchard to glass,” Forgues says. “They’re free of added water, sugars, colours and artificial flavours, so people know they’re getting something both pure and delicious.”

She adds: “Our cider makers are so excited to share their new blends, but they are made in small batches and supplies are limited, so we encourage cider lovers to stop by frequently and to follow us on Facebook and Instagram @BCTFCider to learn about upcoming releases.”

Perfect time for Getaway
Kirk Penton - Jul 03 - Think Local

Craft beer lovers in the Okanagan are about to get what many of them have been wanting for quite some time.

Prohibition Brewing Company has been producing craft beer in Kelowna since 2014, but this summer it is adding 473-millilitre cans to its production line in two of its most popular flavours: Getaway Session Lager and Bootlegger Amber Ale.

“We are very proud to directly serve high-quality products to those craft beer lovers throughout the Okanagan Valley,” Prohibition director Dan Allen says.

Prohibition launched four years ago with 650 ml bottles, which the company found could be a little too much in one sitting for some consumers. Instead of going with your basic 355 ml can, Prohibition believes it has hit a home run with its 473 ml offering, which is a popular size among beer drinkers these days. The result is a little bit more flavour, a little bit more mouthfeel and a proper, pint-sized pour.

Getaway Session Lager had been available exclusively on draft, notably at The Keg and Gulfstream Lounge and Grill, but it became so popular that consumers demanded it be brought to market in a can. It will launch next week and be available at most liquor stores in the Okanagan. It is described as a nice, easy-drinking North American-style lager.

Bootlegger Amber Ale was also extremely popular among Prohibition fans, so the company decided to put both of them in cans. It is best described as an easy-drinking, full-flavoured, full-bodied, North American-style amber.

Getaway Session Lager, which has an alcohol content of 5 1/2 per cent, is the perfect alternative for those who want something a little more than your generic lager. Prohibition’s mission is to make a working-class, full-flavoured craft beer so that people can have something to transition out of multi-global, big-box brands.

You won’t have to go far in the Okanagan this summer to find Getaway Session Lager and Bootlegger Amber Ale. Prohibition Sales and Marketing Co-ordinator Cassandra McColman will be blanketing the region with samples for everyone to enjoy, including the Tasting Tuesdays event on The Hotel Eldorado Boardwalk on July 31 at 5 p.m.

“Prohibition brings something unique to the current craft beer market here in the Okanagan,” McColman says. “Careful attention is given to each batch that is brewed, providing consumers with a product that we are really excited to see finally come to life.”

Getaway Session Lager and Bootlegger Amber Ale will be available in single cans and in four-packs.

Photo: Contributed

Copper Beech one with nature
Special to Okanagan Edge - Jun 29 - Okanagan Biz

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A new 26-unit, four-storey condominium at the corner of Ethel Street and Saucier Avenue is named in honour of a 100-year-old copper beech tree with an amazing shade of purple leaves that sits on the property.

The tree is so significant to the city’s natural history it’s registered with the city of Kelowna.

Developer LiWell has shaped the building to not only save the tree, but to use it to create a more inviting place to call home.

“Balconies of the units that face the tree are curved to allow the copper beech to continue growing while also providing some welcoming shade in the summer,” Letnick Estates Group JP Letnick said. “Copper Beech is all about ‘Enjoying life’ and ‘Live well.’ We want to be a part of a greener future, and we embrace an active lifestyle.”

Copper Beech is a short walk to the downtown sports, shopping, dining, arts and cultural districts, to the wonderful beaches of Okanagan Lake and to the bustling Capri-Landmark area.

It also sits in the middle of the $12-million Ethel Street upgrade that will transform the already beautiful neighborhood into a corridor of pedestrian-friendly sidewalks, protected bike lanes, parks and park benches that will connect you from the downtown beach district to the hip South Pandosy neighborhood, Kelowna General Hospital, parks, schools and more.

As much as Copper Beech recognizes its history, the building is being built with a firm foundation for the future. It is a high quality and meticulously designed building aiming to provide homeowners with maximum comfort, bright spaces with a chic interior to relax in after work or to entertain friends and families. Copper Beech owners will also enjoy the benefits of substantial energy saving and quality security with some of the latest state-of-the-art SMART home technology and green appliances. Car-charging stations are to be installed to contribute to the reduction of carbon footprints.

Steel frames and concrete will replace wood, and cutting-edge technologies are inside and outside. Homes built using steel are healthier since it is fire, pest and mould resistant. They are also quieter, stronger and have lower maintenance costs since steel won’t crack, warp or split.

Embracing healthier eating and supporting the world-renowned local agriculture are all part of ‘Live Well’ at the LiWell Properties smart condominium. Steam microwaves, wine coolers and VIP memberships to organic farms and wineries are only the beginning of the LiWell ‘Live Well’ story. 

To register for this project, visit http://CopperBeechBC.com.

Image: Contributed

Image: Contributed

Content provided by the Letnick Estates Group, a Kelowna Realtor Team.

Family builds for families
Kirk Penton - Jun 25 - Think Local

Image: submitted

They say good things come in threes.

Rajeev Opal, his mother Geven and his brother-in-law Sam Sandhu—the three driving forces behind family-owned Ocorp Development—are hoping that will be the case with their upcoming three-themed project in Glenmore. It’s called 3×3 (pronounced “three by three”), and it’s all about the number.

Three buildings.

Three phases.

Located at 333 Drysdale Blvd.

The most enticing part? Some of the prices will start with the number three, as in $300,000.

“The biggest draw for us is it being a very high quality development,” says Rajeev Opal, who is Ocorp’s sales and marketing manager. “… We’ve really thought about this over the last three or four years to the point that it’s taken more time than most projects. We’ve invested more time and more effort into making sure that it really fits into the community and that it stands the test of time.”

Pre-sales are slated to begin in August, and the first phase is scheduled to be completed by early 2020. The second phase target date is late 2020, and the third should be finished by the end of 2021.

Ocorp had permission to build as high as six storeys tall, but it decided to spread out the space with their future home owners’ comfort in mind. Instead of jamming as many residences as it could into the project, it decided to go with five storeys to maximize luxury and optimize green space.

“The level of construction that we do is beyond what just the basic requirements are. That’s the big thing for us,” Opal says. “Like sound barriers; not hearing your neighbours on either side, not hearing the people above you, not hearing the people below you.”

“Also the the buildings are situated to maximize views and to give people great sweeping views of the Okanagan and Glenmore Valley.”

The project’s green spaces will feature a dog park, communal barbecues and fire pits. There will also be a party room and a fully equipped gym.

“The gym is a big draw,” Opal says. “There is no gym in all of Glenmore. Ultimately you have to head into central Kelowna or head off the freeway to get to a good, fully-equipped gym. One of the previous developments we did, Mosaic, had a small gym, but this is meant to serve 171 residents rather than just 30-something.”

Each suite will have an underground parking spot, and there will be plenty of guest spaces as well. There will also be underground bicycle storage for those who like to explore their neighbourhood’s green areas. Ocorp is also thinking green when it comes to 3×3; it plans to install solar panels on top of the buildings that will supply the common areas with power. And this will be the first all LED bulb building of its kind in Kelowna.

Opal believes young families and those looking to downsize will feel right at home in 3×3 and in Glenmore. It should also appeal to those looking to invest in nearby UBCO housing.

“It’s not too busy, yet you have access to every amenity that you need, mostly within walking distance,” he says. “So it is like a downtown feel in a more community-oriented type of neighbourhood. It’s got a little bit of something for everybody.”

And Opal knows family, considering he works with his mom, who is the main developer, and his brother-in-law, who is the company’s vice-president.

“It’s always interesting,” Opal says. “Never a dull dinner, I’ll tell you that. My mom is the big picture person. She has the concept, and the rest of us make it come to fruition.”

The project’s Discovery Centre, which includes a full 2-bedroom layout, is up and running at 101-385 Glenmore Road, and its website (3x3kelowna.com) will be updated with new information including floor plans and features this week.

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Home buying game changer
Special to Okanagan Edge - Jun 17 - Think Local

Image: Nan Palmero/Creative Commons

The provincial government has made substantial changes to the provision of real estate services that came into effect June 15 with the intention of providing additional consumer protection for those looking to sell or purchase real estate in the province.

Under the new rules, realtors are no longer able to represent both the buyer and seller in the same real estate transaction with the exception of a few very limited circumstances for remote areas with limited access to realtors.

The representation of both parties is called limited dual agency and the government has now banned the practice with the intention of providing better protection and increased awareness to consumers engaging in real estate transactions.

Under the new rules, an agent engaged with a seller to sell their home, will not be able to represent a buyer in an agency capacity and would either need to treat this buyer as an unrepresented buyer or refer them to another licensee.

Chris Grout is the managing broker for Venture Realty Corp, a boutique brokerage in Kelowna, that specializes in representing home buyers.

He says that, in the past, people often ended up in dual agency situations simply because they didn’t fully understand what that meant and in some cases likely ended up getting a sub-par deal.

“If they were hunting for a home and they saw a ‘For Sale’ sign or online listing their first reaction was usually to call up the listing agent,” he says. “Typically these buyers were not aware that it was the listing agent’s duty to get the best possible price for their seller, so they’re not going to have the buyer’s best interest in mind.”

Buyers would often get into situations where they went through the deal as an “unrepresented buyer,” with the listing real estate agent taking care of the entire deal. Grout says that’s problematic because, in those cases, the agent can’t give the buyer any professional advice on price, and has no obligation or duty to protect their privacy or information.

“That unrepresented person comes in and asks, for example, if the seller would take a slightly lower price, or discloses crucial information about themselves or their motivations. That listing agent now has a duty to take that information back to the seller and tell them ‘here’s absolutely everything I know about this person; this is what they told me; this is what I think we can get out of them.”

Someone with a buyers agent, however, has access to an agent that can provide expertise, will collect and interpret information, make recommendations, ensure a deal is structured in a way that is beneficial to the buyer and negotiate the best possible price.

“It’s basically having someone in your corner to guide you through the process of purchasing real estate and ensuring your best interest is at the forefront of the transaction,” he says.

Grout added that with new rules now in place, it is important to talk to a realtor and understand what the new real estate landscape looks like—and what it means for you.

More information about dual agency and buyer agency is also available on Venture Realty Corp’s website.

Image: Contributed
The team at Venture Realty

The Uber of real jobs
Special to Okanagan Edge - Jun 04 - Think Local

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Kelowna is a city brimming with businesses desperate for workers, yet many in the region still struggle to find work that fits their needs and schedule.

For local entrepreneur Daniel Rondeau that’s a problem, especially in an age when anyone can connect to essentially anything with just a few swipes on a smartphone.

That’s why he, with the help of his business partner Alex Saunders, created 925, a new freelancing app that Rondeau says could fundamentally change the way people look for work.

Rondeau created the app in part to honour his late father, who he says always had a tough time pinning down a job.

“After dad passed away I just thought, you can touch a button now and get anything you want, but not a job,” he recalls. “And I wanted to make that happen, for my old man but also people like him whose lives might be a little better because of something like this.”

“We want to make the whole process of finding a job easier. For a lot of people, when they need work they don’t want to wait for weeks to put together a resume and do interviews and eventually get put on the payroll,” he added.

925 streamlines that entire process, taking care of everything from the job search to background checks and payment, so both the business and freelancer can focus on the work and not the tedious details surrounding it.

Rondeau says there are some similar apps out there giving people the chance to earn a little money (think Uber and Skip the Dishes), but making any kind of useful money off the scant commissions those services pay can be tough.

925 Freelancing operates similarly to Skip the Dishes and Uber. Users simply download the app and fill out a short profile telling potential employers a little about themselves.

With their profile done users can immediately begin browsing the available jobs in their area. When they find one they simply click a button to connect to the employer, and it’s off to the races.

Rondeau explains 925 Freelancing has partnered with local employers looking to fill out gaps in their workforce. These aren’t permanent positions, so 925 Freelancing users can pick up as many or as few shifts as they need—anything from a day or two to top op their bank account to more long-term gigs.

The developers have partnered with local businesses eager to fill gaps in their workforce, and the app features work like construction labour, fruit harvesting, shifts at manufacturing plants, restoration companies, and more.

For now, 925 Freelancing is limited to general labour jobs in the Kelowna area, but Rondeau says plans are already in the works to expand, covering more industries across a wider region.

For more information, or to try out the app yourself, check out 925 online.

Next phase of learning
Special to Okanagan Edge - Jun 03 - Think Local

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It’s already one of the most impressive schools in the Okanagan, but Aberdeen Hall Preparatory School will take its campus and programming to a new level this year when it undergoes a massive expansion of its Kelowna campus.

Aberdeen Hall began in 2004 as a small organization serving 70 Kindergarten-to-Grade-3 students out of a handful of rented classrooms.

But over the last decade-and-a-half, the school has seen steady expansion as it has cemented its stellar reputation in the community. Today, more than 650 students of all ages attend classes at Aberdeen Hall.

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As its enrollment has grown, the school has steadily transformed its campus into a premier educational facility. Over the years it has added a junior hall, an early learning centre, a great hall, as well as other improvements.

Now, it’s taking the next step—and building something truly spectacular.

As Aberdeen’s director of development Sean Ayers explains, the school’s continued success has seen it reach the limits of its teaching space. That’s why it’s moving forward with a Phase V expansion that will see it add 11,000 square feet of new facilities to its campus.

Included in the project will be an impressive, 130-seat teaching theatre, a much-anticiapted gym studio, and 10 state-of-the-art teaching spaces.

“The very best education is made possible through the very best facilities,” Ayers says. “Rarely are we awarded the opportunity to make such a direct and dramatic impact on a community, and that’s exactly what we are doing.”

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Ayers explains that the staff at Aberdeen Hall see first-hand the tremendous advantages an inspiring, purpose-built facility brings.

Along with creating a more flexible educational environment, the Phase V expansion will allow the school to bring thought leaders from around the world to the Kelowna campus through cutting-edge audio-visual equipment.

It will supercharge the school’s athletic programmes with better equipment and more space for physical education, as well as add a library and research centre for the entire student body to enjoy.

By drawing on the latest in empirically proven methodologies for teaching and learning, Ayers says the school’s reputation for individualized programming, passionate teachers, and dedicated parents has lead to continued growth.

He encouraged anyone interested in learning more about Aberdeen Hall, touring the new campus, or enrollment to visit Aberdeen Hall online or reach out to him personally.

Hope for home ownership
Special to Okanagan Edge - May 31 - Think Local

There’s a patch of land in Kelowna, snuggled next to Munson Pond in the city’s Mission neighbourhood, that could very well be one of the last hopes for residents yearning for a chance to one day own their own home.

If you’ve been by recently you will have seen things starting to change there, as workers prepare the land for what could be one of Kelowna’s most important developments.

It’s called Osprey Landing, and if the developer has his way its 48 energy-efficient homes will soon help a lucky group of buyers finally own their own homes.

Helmut Pastrick, the chief economist for Central 1 Credit Union, has calculated housing prices in the Okanagan will more than double in the next 25 years. That, he said, will mean a significant shift in the housing market as more and more people get priced out of the market and are forced to rent.

With the prospect of home ownership starting to slip away, many who call Kelowna home are desperately seeking an affordable way into the housing market that still provides the quality home they desire.

Steve Shoranick and the team behind Osprey Landing believe their development will be one of the last to offer that.

Osprey Landing sits beside Munson Pond, at Burtch Road, and is built to the “legendary quality” the Munson Park Development Corporation has become known for.

The stylish complex features 48 energy-efficient homes built with an eye carefully cast to the living experience many expect from the Mission.

Quartz countertops; European-style cabinetry; spacious bathrooms; sizable balconies; and bright, comfortable designs will make Osprey homes a joy to live in. Shoranick’s commitment to value, meanwhile, means people will actually be able to afford them.

Shoranick has decades of experience creating homes and says his goal has always been to give his homeowners the best value for every dollar they spend.

These are more than just words. Shoranick challenges anyone looking for a new home to check out Osprey Landing and compare its value to anyone else’s. He’s confident, he says, Osprey homes will come out on top.

Shoranick encourages anyone interested to act quickly because only a handful of each type of unit is available, so the longer they wait the fewer options they will have.

Everything they need to know, he says, is available at the Osprey Landing presentation centre at 3090 Burtch Rd., or by registering online. The presentation centre is open seven days a week, Monday to Saturday from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. and Sundays and holidays starting at noon.

The centre can be reached at 250-469-2127.

Best-selling homes still open
Special to Okanagan Edge - May 30 - Think Local

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Kelowna’s “best seller” is more than living up to its name.

Last Friday, sales officially opened on homes in One Water Street’s highly anticipated West Tower.

Buyers hungry for a home in downtown Kelowna’s most coveted tower flocked to the One Water Street sales centre and, by the end of the weekend, 140 units worth approximately $70 million had been sold.

Combined with previous sales for the now-nearly full East Tower, buyers have snapped up a total of 344 homes, valued at $200 million, in just eight months.

With last weekend’s performance, developers Henry Bereznicki and Russ Watson of North American Development Group and  Kerkhoff Construction are comfortable reaffirming ONE Water Streets standing as the city’s best-selling development.

“We were right in anticipating there would be strong demand for the kinds of homes many were unable to buy in the East Tower,” Watson says. “Add the fact that many West Tower homes have larger balconies, some of the best lake views in the city, and come with amenities rivalling the best resorts, and the value is undeniable.”

Construction has already begun on One Water Street, and once it’s done the project will boast the tallest towers between Vancouver and Calgary, stretching 29 and 36 storeys high.

 

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Those towers will be built atop “The Bench,” a massive, 1.3-acre landscaped amenities space inspired by outdoor living at first-class resorts.

Two swimming pools, a generously sized hot tub, a pickleball court, an outdoor patio with tables and couches, a dog park, barbecue and grilling stations, picnic areas, and fire pit enclaves can all be found there.

Indoors, residents will have access to a large private health club (featuring pilates, yoga and stretch studios), a multi-purpose and entertainment room, two guest suites for out-of-town visitors, and a business centre.

While homes at One Water Street are now two-thirds sold, there is still a chance for buyers to get in on the ground floor and take advantage of pre-construction pricing—but that chance won’t last forever.

Bereznicki says construction will start this summer, a year ahead of schedule, based on the sales success he’s already seen.

Until then, a selection of great homes remains for sale, including two-bedroom lake-view homes (some with flex spaces and dens) from the mid-$500s.

North American Development Group and Kerkhoff Construction have also just released the One Water Street Reserved Collection in the West Tower, featuring townhomes with gorgeous views generously priced in the mid-$700s to $1.5 million range.

Anyone interested can visit ONEWaterStreet.ca or phone 778-940-8385 to register for priority selection.

Imae: Contributed

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