By Jeff Brocklebank.
To invest in Vancouver real estate, you need hundreds of thousands of dollars, right? Not anymore. IMBY, which stands for In My Back Yard, makes real estate investing affordable, fun and accessible. This online platform breaks down barriers to property investment. Anyone can invest for as little as $1.
Because financial and other obstacles stand in their way, most people can’t take advantage of the lucrative real estate investment opportunities in Vancouver and other Canadian cities. Meanwhile, property developers reap the lion’s share of profitable opportunities. IMBY aims to make these opportunities available to ordinary citizens in our communities.
HOW IMBY WORKS
IMBY lets homeowners list their properties on its platform. It works by creating a corporation that buys the property from the owner. After purchasing the home (the asset) at current market value, the new corporation then issues shares back to the owner that match its value dollar for dollar.
The original owner is now the recipient of all (but one) of the corporation’s shares. The owner can then sell a portion of their property to the public on the IMBY platform. And now, investors can buy a portion of real estate as part of their portfolio. They no longer have to purchase the entire property.
Currently, IMBY has just one Vancouver home on their website, but there are more to come. A rental property in Vernon is being onboarded to the platform, where investors will earn a monthly income from their investment.
To purchase shares of property on IMBY:
- Create an account at imbyx.com
- Choose a real estate property to invest in
- Send an Interac e-transfer or use an electronic funds transfer for the amount you want
- Sign the purchase agreements and you’re done!
WHERE IS IMBY TODAY?
In March 2018, IMBY listed its first property, a home at 1956 East 13th Avenue in Vancouver with a market value of $1.6 million. The property purchase completed on May 31 and was financed by IMBY and its principals.
Through a private issuer exemption, which allows a private placement of any amount with no disclosure, this project, which does business as IMBY (1956 E13th) Real Estate Corp, collected approximately $115,000 from exempt investors. Upon issuance of its Offering Memorandum, IMBY E13th has collected an additional $170K to date from third-party investors. IMBY now has over 300 investors on its platform.
WALSH KING’S ROLE
The Walsh King team worked with IMBY’s principals and law firm Fasken Martineau’s Mike Stephens to prepare and audit IMBY’s statement of financial position for IMBY E13th’s Offering Memorandum.
Along with audits on new property corporations, Walsh King’s future services for the IMBY team will include tax advice and accounting services. With Vancouver now a hotbed of fintech and blockchain entrepreneurship, the Walsh King team is prepared to guide, advise and work with a range of companies providing similar opportunities via online platforms.
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