Transportation in the Fraser Valley

Strategic Review of Transportation

Ways to Commute, Green Your Travel, and Stay on Budget

There are different ways to commute and some modes of transportation are mode budget-friendly and eco-friendly than others. Riding a bike, driving, carpooling, and public transit are ways to commute to work, drop children at school, or go grocery shopping.

By Car

Using your own vehicle is a convenient way to commute and reach almost any destination. There are different ways to finance a vehicle, including leases and car loans. Car leases allow consumers to drive new vehicles by making affordable monthly payments. A down payment of 20 percent or lower is usually required. When the lease term expires, customers are required to return the vehicle. Another option is to contact local lenders like lifeoncredit.ca and apply for a car loan. There are different lenders to choose from, including credit unions, banks, and car dealerships. The terms, payment schedules, and rates vary from lender to lender but many loans have terms of about 60 months. The rate can be as low as 2 - 6 percent. Many lenders offer the option to apply for financing online, and borrowers are allowed to apply together with a co-applicant. They are asked to provide financial and personal details such as their annual income, additional sources of income, date of birth, etc. There are two options if you choose to finance the purchase of a vehicle, used and new car loans. Usually lenders offer new car loans with attractive interest rates, and borrowers benefit from add-ons and additional warranties. On the other hand, used cars are usually cheaper, and the vehicle can cost you half the price. Whatever the vehicle of choice, this is a convenient way to travel long distance and commute.

Green Ways to Commute

Carpool

Carpooling is a great way to reduce gas expenses and harmful emissions. This means less noise, use of nonrenewable resources, and traffic congestions. In Canada, there are carpooling programs offered to employees and students as a cost-effective way to commute. Parking stalls are available to program participants. They are free to state their smoking, gender, and other preferences. Guaranteed home return programs are also available in case of crisis or illness and in case of emergency.

Bike

Riding a bike is a green way to commute and it's fun and very inexpensive. There are paths for cyclists which makes it a green way to go to work or the grocery store. Besides, there are inexpensive bikes and gear. You can get a used bike for just $50 - $100, and there are plenty of benefits to cycling, one being that it is healthier. You inhale fewer toxic compounds and gases when cycling compared to driving. You can also use it as a free gym.

Public Transit

Most metropolitan areas and cities have trains, subways, and buses. The choice depends on distance, fare, time, and destination. Bus and train occupancy levels vary, but the good news is that public transit allows you to experiment with different modes of transportation, schedules, routes, and stations. Public transport is also greener compared to driving and helps avoid congestion. There are other benefits to mention, and one is that you can choose from different types, including:

  • - Monorail
  • - Street Car
  • - Water taxis
  • - Ferris
  • - Paratransit
  • - Van pool

Other modes of transportation include cable cars and street cars, commuter trains, and light rail and trolleys. Public transit offers plenty of opportunities, helps reduce noise, and increases personal mobility. This is also a way to save on fuel and minimize greenhouse gas emissions. Commuters also save on gasoline, and public transit reduces the risk for road accidents.


Transit Service and Housing

What the Transit Service Might Mean for Your House Price?

The 20-minute transit service in the Fraser Valley, BC means quick and convenient transportation for residents commuting to other areas. And for many young people, single-family homes within the city limits of Vancouver are far too expensive to afford, especially those who are new to credit. The Fraser Valley is one place to look for housing options now that the commute is considerably shorter.

Buying Real Estate in the Fraser Valley

Real estate agents report a busy market this spring, and some properties are sold in a matter of weeks and even days. Up to 70 percent of properties are selling in some locations. And if you plan to move in the area, expect to pay about $300,400 for a townhouse, $595,600 for a detached home, and $191,200 for a condominium. You will need a down payment of about 20 percent if applying through a major bank or credit union. If you are new to credit and have no savings, there are several options to look into to cover the down payment. One idea is to apply for a secured credit card, and banks usually offer prepaid and secured versions to consumers with tarnished credit. Customers with a history of delinquencies and foreclosures, maxed out cards, and multiple consumer, student, and car loans also apply for secured cards to improve their ratings and gain access to credit to make purchases and down payments and meet expenses. Another option to find money for the down payment is to apply for an unsecured loan but financial establishments usually require good or stellar credit.

The Housing Market in the Fraser Valley

Developers have started building more houses over the last years, especially condos and townhouses. There is a steady demand for real estate in the Fraser Valley and Greater Vancouver but housing prices have increased only slightly over the last 5 years. Last year, the value of real estate has gone up by 2.7 percent in places like Langley. In contrast, the price of real estate in Vancouver skyrocketed by 51 percent and reached $2.3 million on average. The situation might be changing with the faster transit service this year. The 20-minute service aims to create commuter-friendly communities and will connect Langley, Abbotsford, and Chilliwack. Coupled with low mortgage interest rates, there is a shift in demand in the area. The Fraser Valley Real Estate Board recently reported an active buyer's market which can also be explained with low supply in the City of Vancouver. Real estate prices increased by 37 percent during the last year alone. It is mostly families and first-time homebuyers shopping around for affordable housing to upsize or downsize. Most people are looking to buy a single-family detached home. In terms of sales-to-active listings, the ratio is 12 percent for condominiums, 22 percent for townhouses, and 26 percent for detached homes. The ratio has also increased for Metro Vancouver from 17 to close to 26 percent.