Hopes dashed for would-be Lower Mainland condo buyers

Murrayville House’s condos are finally up for sale.

The beleaguered Murrayville House condo complex in Langley is up for sale, after a judge nullified all previous pre-sale contracts.

Pre-sale buyers will now be given the first opportunity to buy units, but at much higher prices than their original contracts.

“I think there’s only going to be one or two people who are going to take the offer,” said Nolan Killeen, who represents one of the groups of would-be buyers. “The rest are going to be priced out.”

The condo project was slated to have been finished in early 2016, but it was plagued with delays and then thrown into limbo when it was placed in court-ordered receivership.

The prices of condos rose rapidly during that time. Condo units were originally listed for sale at between $199,900 and $358,900.

An appraisal earlier this year showed units were 46 per cent more valuable than contract prices.

Some pre-sale buyers are still dealing with the surprise of the court ruling, said Killeen.

“Now they’re having to find some alternative solution,” he said.

Some buyers are having to head farther east in search of affordable housing, to Abbotsford, Chilliwack, or even Cultus Lake in one case, said Killeen.

Others are scaling back what they can afford, going down from a two-bedroom, two-bath condo in Murrrayville House to a studio condo in Langley City.

The pre-sale buyers had been fighting in court to have their contracts honoured.

But the mortgage lenders to the developer argued that they had legal priority, and B.C. Supreme Court Justice Shelley Fitzpatrick has agreed in a series of court rulings through the spring and summer. The July 25 ruling wiped out the last few pre-sale contracts.

READ MORE: Buyers hope for court win in Langley condo case

“Again, this is an unfortunate result for those purchasers under the pre-sale contracts,” Fitzpatrick wrote in her ruling. “This is particularly evident for those individuals who thought they had ‘bought’ into the rising market at an opportune time in order to secure a home.”

The Bowra Group, which is acting as the court-appointed receiver for the condo project, is now marketing the units at murrayvillelangley.ca.

Bowra is sending out offers to all the pre-sale buyers, who have right of first refusal on their units, but at current prices.

More than 152 pre-sale contracts of various types existed for the 92 units in the condo complex near Langley Memorial Hospital. Some units had two, three or in one case four contracts for their sale.

Bowra will essentially act as the developer for the project, said company vice-president Mario Mainella.

Once the project is sold, Bowra will likely be asked to hold the sale proceeds in trust while litigation continues over who is owed what.

Murrayville House was originally developed by a numbered firm controlled by Mark Chandler.

Chandler was ordered extradited to the United States to face a fraud charge in California. He remains in Canada while he appeals the ruling.

The Langley RCMP announced earlier this year that an investigation had been opened into Murrayville House.

READ MORE: Contentious condo project under investigation: Langley RCMP

READ MORE: Langley developer under RCMP investigation

Just Posted

SFU unveils new lab at Surrey Memorial Hospital

Combination of MRI, MEG allows for ‘best possible windows’ intro brain function

Surrey First vows to expand city efforts to make kids with autism ‘feel at home’

Initiative would include staff and coach training, as well as a sensory room in Clayton Community Centre

Surrey goalie gets a shot with NHL Boston Bruins on China trip

On tryout contract, Derek Dun practiced with team ahead of pre-season game

White Rock mayor attacks ‘fearmongering’ candidates

Wayne Baldwin condemns anti-highrise petition, saying Democracy Direct candidates ‘not fit for office’

‘Memory Socials’ to record oral histories of Surrey locals

Historical organization wants to hear your memories of life in Surrey

U.S. congressman issues dire warning to Canada’s NAFTA team: time is running out

Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland is expected to resume talks with the U.S.

Researchers tag great white shark in Atlantic Canada

Information will be used to learn more about where white sharks move in Canadian waters

Mix-up of bodies leads to funeral home reforms in Nova Scotia

One woman was was mistakenly cremated, another was embalmed and presented to family members during a visitation that went horribly wrong

B.C. RCMP turn to Const. Scarecrow to shock speeders into slowing down

New addition will watch over drivers from a Coquitlam median for first-of-its-kind pilot in Canada

Cyclists finish North America trip to highlight Ukraine struggle

The 10,000 bike ride raised over $10,000 for victims of the war in Ukraine.

21 new paramedics promised for B.C. Interior

A total of 18 new full-time paramedics will be hired for Kamloops and three are being hired for Chase.

Drop-in to a Cloverdale Library Philosophers Café

First cafe of the fall is Tuesday, Sept. 18

Federal stats show slight increase in irregular migrant claims in August

113 extra people tried to cross the Canadian border last month

Most Read