Canadian Housing Market Trends To Look Out For In 2020 – The slowdown seems to be over.

[Huffington Post - November 3, 2019] The floodgates have officially opened for Canadian housing market forecasts for the next year. We’ve already heard that interest rates will likely sink lower in 2020 as the housing market continues to rally through the first half of the year. There’s also speculation around how the Liberals’ October election win will impact housing affordability and whether the NDP will play a bigger role in setting the housing policy agenda within the new minority government. Now the Canada [...]

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Federal election 2019: Where do the parties stand on housing and real estate?

[Globe and Mail - October 1, 2019] Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau wasted no time making real estate an election issue. On the first morning of the campaign, he stood outside a townhouse development in Victoria and unveiled his policies on housing affordability. It was an acknowledgment that the issue is top of mind for many Canadians, especially those living in urban areas where home prices have soared. In big cities and suburbs, young people worry they’ll never be able to afford a [...]

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Tories pledge to boost mortgage repayment periods for first-time buyers

[Globe and Mail - September 23, 2019] Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer said a Tory government would review the mortgage stress test and expand repayment periods, proposals that would partly reverse Ottawa’s efforts to discourage homebuyers from taking on too much debt. Mortgage brokers warned that Mr. Scheer’s plan could push housing prices higher, if consumers used their expanded purchasing power to buy more expensive homes. Much like a Liberal announcement earlier in the election campaign, the Conservatives’ housing plan is geared primarily [...]

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Non-bank lenders attract wave of money, CMHC report on mortgages says

[Globe and Mail - July 16, 2019] Mortgage Investment Corporations have provided billions of dollars in new lending to Canadian home buyers since 2016 as tougher mortgage qualification rules have driven far more business to private lenders, according to a new report from Canada’s national housing agency. Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. released data Tuesday from its first survey of Mortgage Investment Corporations (MICs), which are companies that raise financing for mortgages from pools of investors. CMHC said a sample of 100 [...]

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Selling real estate? The CRA is watching

[July 18, 2019 - Advisor's Edge] When your client sells property, the transaction must be correctly defined and reported for tax purposes. Failure to do so may result in unwanted audits, potential back taxes, and related interest and penalties. Such negative outcomes occur regularly. Last spring, the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) announced updated results of its audits in the real estate sector, which resulted in over $1 billion in additional gross taxes since 2015. During the same period, CRA auditors reviewed over [...]

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Mortgage Stress Test Gets A Little Easier As BoC Lowers Rate

[July 19, 2019 - Huffpost] The Bank of Canada's posted mortgage rate is used in the stress test that many say has cooled Canada's housing markets. OTTAWA — The Bank of Canada has lowered the rate used by mortgage stress tests to determine whether would-be homeowners can qualify, marking the first drop in three years. The central bank’s five-year benchmark qualifying rate is now 5.14 per cent, down from 5.34 per cent. It’s the first decrease in the five-year fixed mortgage rate since September [...]

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Dirty money: it’s a Canadian thing

[Macleans - June 12, 2019] Canada’s housing markets are rife with shadowy buyers and greasy cash. B.C. was just the beginning. On paper, Peter Zhang and his wife, Judy Wang, were models for the type of newcomers Canada wanted to attract with its immigrant investor program. Before it was scrapped in 2014, the program’s aim was simple: lure the world’s wealthy to Canada’s shores with the promise of a passport. In return they would bring their business savvy, invest in the [...]

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CMHC defends mortgage stress test changes amid calls for loosening rules

[CTV - May 23, 2019] The CEO of Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation is forcefully defending mortgage stress test rules and warning federal policy-makers to hold the line amid calls for softening the measure from industry associations. "My job is to advise you against this reckless myopia and protect our economy from potentially tragic consequences," wrote president and CEO Evan Siddall in a letter dated Thursday to the Standing Committee on Finance. He urged the committee to "look past the plain self-interest" [...]

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B.C. Real Estate Association forecasts lower mortgage rates in 2019

[Source: Georgia Straight - March 28, 2019] That's according to the latest mortgage rate forecast from the B.C. Real Estate Association. The cost of borrowing for a home is predicted to get a little cheaper this year. "The average contract rate for 5-year mortgages has declined about 30 basis points from its peak in 2018, reaching 3.44 per cent in March," the BCREA states in a two-page report. "Unfortunately, this still means a stress test rate of 5.44 per cent, even for [...]

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First-time home buyers big winners in budget, but will incentives work in B.C.?

[Vancouver Sun - March 19, 2019] The federal budget offers incentives aimed at making housing more affordable for first-time buyers, but it remains to be seen whether they’ll work in the overheated B.C. housing market. “We’ll want to look at the details, we’ll want to take a look at whether it will assist people in communities where unaffordability really is a crisis and housing prices are very high,” said B.C. Finance Minister Carole James. “I think that will continue to be a challenge.” The [...]

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