A message from HAVAN CEO Ron Rapp

Monday Morning Briefing


Ron Rapp, CEO | Twitter: @havan_ceo                                                             Volume #22 | Issue #15



Please allow me to begin this week’s MMB with an apology for the brevity of last week’s message, and for the delay in issuing this newsletter, but C19 and or its variant finally caught up with yours truly and the whole HAVAN GR team last week and getting past it has been a little challenging.
The HAVAN GR Team of Diana Dilworth, and Jay Chadha did prior to being sidelined with C19, issue the latest quarterly report with this edition focusing on, “Are We Building Enough Housing Supply”. This report dated April 20, 2022 was released to municipal delegates attending the Lower Mainland Local Government Association (LMLGA) that took place in Whistler May 4-6, and followed up to our 2019 report on the same issue.
The 2022 version expresses the results as a percentage of Housing Above or Below Metro Vancouver 2040 Regional Growth Strategy Projections broken down on a per municipality basis, and the results, despite elevated efforts to increase through put, still reflect a region that is falling short by an average of 8.4% below meeting their own projections. Even cities like Burnaby and Coquitlam who have extended efforts to facilitate new construction are still far behind their projections and or requirements at -14% and -17% respectively. Only City of North Vancouver (CNV), who have previously positioned themselves to facilitate measured growth, exceeded their projections by 7%, and are repeat positive performers having also exceeded their projections per our 2019 report.
Our report by no means suggests that municipalities are not producing any new homes as the number of dwelling units per 2011 to 2021 in Burnaby was 101,136, but the projection was 117,800. Most other municipalities that are behind also made efforts to meet their targets but fell short despite those efforts, and more often than not became impeded with their own layered policies and procedures.
Business in Vancouver (BIV) presented the results of a survey conducted by the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade as to what their members saw as the most significant business issues to be considered per the Municipal Elections in October, and 50% of those surveyed cited permitting, licensing, and “red tape” being of greatest concern. Other top issues:

  • housing (49 per cent);
  • public safety and crime (44 per cent);
  • economic and general business-friendly policies (44 per cent);
  • taxes (35 per cent);
  • homelessness (33 per cent); and
  • public transportation (29 per cent).

In fact “… 83 per cent of those surveyed said that the region's high cost of living has had an effect on being able to hire staff. Another 71 per cent of respondents said that they believe the region's quality of life and affordability will diminish in the next five years.” Additionally, “ … Only 13 per cent of (businesses) thought that their representatives were suitably planning for the housing, infrastructure and services growth required to meet the needs of the growing population. Another 16 per cent were unsure, while 72 per cent said they did not think that the municipal politicians were sufficiently forward thinking."
Most municipalities are now embracing the efforts to streamline and expedite their approvals, but it is excruciatingly slow and while municipal communication suggests significant improvements it has not yet really been felt on the ground. BIV additionally published an article outlining this very issue and interviewed yours truly, and the GM for Vancouver Permits and Licensing, Andrea Law. Per Law: “So far, we … with the changes we’ve made, we’ve sort of saved about 14,000 weeks of processing time and more than 10,000 hours of review time. We’ve had to shift our model and really look at how we do our work.”
The article touches on the need to create a more transparent and collaborative system to streamline and expedite approvals, and we do acknowledge the efforts being made in Vancouver and other municipalities, and we recognize that re-casting this process will take time, but that time is both frustrating and costly. The efforts required by staff at all municipalities to overcome an entrenched inertia, and compounded layers of policy accumulated over time is huge and time consuming and our members are becoming increasingly frustrated especially in the face of media/news releases suggesting progress is being made, and improvements are significant.
Last week HAVAN member, renovator and builder Avi Barzelai operating in East Van took to Twitter @EastVanBuilder to relate his own direct experiences but also quoting from Vancouver’s Open Data on issued permits that provides the “number of elapsed days” to get specific permits. The counts are very high in every category with an average of 200 days for a new home permit plus at least 14 days with the intake process in 2022 to date. Laneway homes are averaging 288 days plus intake, and simple renos averaging 103 days. Issues with applications and more complex applications can add to this timeline, and there are permits on that list where the wait times exceed a year.
Avi in a different Twitter post listed a series of suggestions as to how the backlog and process could be improved and most if not all of those suggestions are accurate, appropriate, and reflect the very issues we have brought to, and are actively discussing with, senior CoV staff, but it is important that all members seeking to affect changes use all available channels to illustrate the problem, and provide us the feedback to bring to the table as we meet with staff.
Vancouver is Awesome reported on a “townhall” type meeting held with a number of CoV councillors and two developer/ builders operating in Vancouver including HAVAN member Jake Fry of Smallworks, a leading builder of laneway homes, and architect, Mary Pynenburg. Jake described the system that is fraught with layered requirements, guidelines and regulations as “regulating into dysfunction” and accurately described it as: “… as an environment which is very protective, very regulatory and it’s been this way for the last five decades … It’s a very entrenched position.”  Participants on the panel and those participating virtually were asked what can the city do to make housing more affordable: “… 32 per cent said simplify regulations, followed by speed up approvals (28 per cent) and approve more supply (24 per cent)."
The upshot of all of this is that the issues inhibiting permits and process are real and still being resolved and while we wish to see this happen in a collaborative and constructive manner, it is important for members to share their experiences both good and bad to ensure that the facts are not obscured via “news releases”. It is also vital to the interests of our sector that, like Avi, members are voicing their concerns and comments, and that they seek out and support candidates running in the municipal elections in October that clearly support the need to reform and our industry. Please watch the GRU and this space as we outline the issues moving forward.



  • If you really need another reason to ensure your vote counts in the upcoming municipal elections please see these stories from CBC, Daily Hive, and a second from CBC that can best be classified as “politicians behaving badly”, and this list did not include many other issues and or elected officials who are stepping over a line of some kind such as Port Moody’s mayor. Are we all really prepared to accept acclimation wins, unbecoming conduct, and potential suppression of accountability and oversight from the elected officials that most directly influence our lives? October 15, 2022 – please Vote!!

  • BC Housing has released the April 2022 New Homes Registry Report that reviews registrations by region and housing genre. Some highlights include:

    • In the first four months of 2022, 20,757 new homes were registered in B.C., including 3,787 single detached3 and 16,970 multi-unit homes.
    • So far in 2022, total home registrations are up 17.4% from 2021. Registrations for multi-unit homes increased 28.0%, while registrations for single detached homes decreased 14.4%. 
    • In April, 5,006 new homes were registered in B.C., a 52.2% increase compared with April 2021. 
    • Using a 12-month moving average, there were 4,686 new registered homes in April, a 3.1% increase from March.

  • An insightful presentation from Business In Vancouver (BiV) on how Virtual reality might be shaping the future of real estate sales and operations. Per BiV:
    Remote work and online sales received a boost during the pandemic and led to changes in how real estate was sold. Virtual tours and remote signing became options for many buyers as the industry pivoted to address the new environment. A number of builders share their comments and how they are applying this new tech to reaching purchasers and effectively demonstrating and communicating their marketing. 

  • Labels with respect to architectural and housing styles are often thrown around casually and are often misrepresenting the actual style of the building and or home. So to provide everyone a handy visual reference please see this from the Vancouver Heritage Foundation.



The 2022 line up includes: Rick Illich, CEO, Townline Homes, Robyn Adamache, Senior Specialist, Client Relations, Multi-Unit Housing Solutions, CMHC, and Peter Wood, Director of EWP Sales – Canada, Weyerhaeuser. A few tickets remain. Registration closes Monday end of day.


MEMBERS' EXPO - June 8: Booking Deadline this Friday!

The Members Expo is back for its 15th year because it works. The Expo brings together hundreds of industry professionals for one exciting day! Showcase your products and services, and build your membership alliances. Book your booth by Friday May 20 to secure your spot! Sponsorships also available. Don't miss out!


Have you logged into your NEW HAVAN CRM? In addition to accessing your directory listing, plus resources including your HAVAN logo and builder contract order forms, we now offer an updated career listings page, and an EXCLUSIVE Member to Member Marketplace, where you can provide member-only deals!

Note: Create a New Account by selecting, ‘Don’t have an Account? Create One’, if you have not yet logged into our new CRM system. 



The Properties are located in the Dundarave neighbourhood immediately next to Brissenden Park and within the vicinity of several schools.  All of the lots are newly serviced with water, storm and sanitary sewer connections.  An information package is available for download directly from the City of West Vancouver website or on BCBid.gov.bc.ca


PASSIVE HOUSE CANADA “In the Face of Climate Change”

May 25 - 27 | Online and In Person (Victoria, BC)

Limited tickets are available for the in-person, event, however, virtual tickets are available for those unable to travel! Hear the latest insights from industry leaders across Canada, addressing the increase in adverse climate change, and how Passive House design and technology can create healthy, climate resilient buildings and homes.



HAVAN Members SAVE $100! - Join us at The Art of Leadership for Women in Vancouver on June 8 for a full day of world-class leadership development, networking and championing change for women. Use code HAVAN40 Purchase a Silver ticket to reserve your seating with the Women's Council!


Becoming a HAVAN Awards Winner for our recent Olives in the City project with Designs by KS is one of Niky's proudest moments. When not building or renovating, Niky enjoys racing cars and motorcycles.


PODCAST: Measure Twice, Cut Once

Season 3 EP # 22: Healthy Renos

Renovating to higher performance levels with lifestyle benefits included requires thoughtful planning. Henri Belisle, president of TQ Construction and homeowner Dr Janet Simons discuss the planning process of a 1912 character home renovation.


Listen and like Measure Twice, Cut Once for your chance to win a gas BBQ compliments of our Podcast Partner FortisBC.



Committee meetings are being hosted online and in-person. Contact staff liaison for log-in details.


YOUNG PROFESSIONAL COMMITTEE: Thursday, May 19, 8:15am - 10:00am, Designs by KS Office. Contact Vanessa@havan.ca


DESIGNERS COUNCIL: Tuesday, May 31, 9:30am - 10:30am, online. Open to Designer Company owner members only. Contact Dawn@havan.ca 
RENO COUNCIL: Tuesday, May 31, 5:30pm – 7:30pm, Online: Open to Renovator Company owner members only. Contact Sonali@havan.ca 
MEMBERSHIP COMMITTEE: Contact Renee@havan.ca 




EDUCATION: Featured Course


Shifting Home Construction, Sustainability and Affordability with BOSS

Chris Hill from bCollective will be joined by Sophie Mercier, Principal, EVOKE to discuss the prefabricated system – how to start the process, and how offsite construction can address sustainability, affordability, and solutions to build the ‘missing middle.

Thursday, May 26, 7:30-9:30am, online. Builders Breakfast Series.



CHBA Home Buyer Preference Survey Results


Want to know what home buyers are looking for in a new home?  What features they are willing to trade-off to get what they want?  And what they’re willing to pay?  If you’re looking for powerful insight into today’s new home buyer market, then CHBA’s nationwide market research study – powered by Avid Ratings Canada – is a must read. CHBA members can access the latest survey results for free.


HAVAN is a symbol of integrity and trust. Consumers turn to HAVAN to source builders, renovators, products and services to build their homes which help shape the communities where people want to live. As Canada's second largest, fastest growing home builder association, HAVAN attracts the industry's best, providing leading advocacy initiatives, education and resources to help our member companies thrive. A not-for-profit association, HAVAN is proudly affiliated with both the provincial CHBA BC, and national CHBA offices. Together, we are building excellence.  


Contact us: info@havan.ca | 778-565-4288 | www.havan.ca

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