McMansions and possible District actions to make new housing better fit existing neighbourhood character.
In West Vancouver there's this mentality that renters are an unruly, degenerate dirty bunch who will settle for anything (as interpreted by the state of the rental portfolio and letters to the editor of the North Shore News). Those of that particular mind set aren't reading this blog so telling them to get their heads out of their (gl)ass (house) won't matter. It also shouldn't give them the right to try and rent us a termite infested crack house off the highway for $3000 a month (such as one on Palmerston & 14th we saw recently) or this black mold mid-century we looked at in 2012.
Just because we live in West Van doesn't mean we're going to pay you more to rent your 'tear down' house you just bought until you can afford to put up your 'trophy house'. You know what we see when we're out there snooping around at architecture, kids (usually baby boomers) whose parents just died that are eager to sell off what they perceived as the tacky family home they grew up in. Don't just blame the buyers of these properties for the 'ugly' neighbourhoods that are transforming West Van, take a look at the sellers.
Generation X is just now hitting the peaks of our careers and we are all looking for homes - homes that we can rent and live in for many years. We can't afford down payments for overpriced homes - remember, we moved out of our parents' house when we graduated from high school, worked three jobs and put ourselves through university instead - because that's what you did. We'd love to rent your well loved, well kept, clean, tacky family home and make it our home but we're also not stupid enough to pay over $3000 a month for it - the bloody thing was probably paid off forty years ago. So West Van, if you want to keep, or try to attract, a younger demographic with extra money to spend in the community (not on renting a crappy house) get it together because we're getting fed up with this - and because we rent - we can just up and leave, whenever we want. You're losing your history and your future community all at the same time.
Check out the Facebook group, I Grew Up in West Vancouver.
Interested in moving to West Van to rent but you're not sure what's going on here?
The first of two info sessions on the state of West Vancouver housing is happening: Monday, February 24th 4-8pm at the West Van Community Centre.
See you there.
PS coach houses shouldn't cost $1.0 million or $4500 a month to rent.
images Stacy Reynaud