Vancouver real estate: early September numbers show steep drop in sales from August highs

[Georgia Straight - September 25, 2020] Home sales in the city of Vancouver are dropping big time.  This is based on tracking by real-estate site fisherly.com as of late morning Friday (September 25). Compared to record highs in August, early numbers for September show a steep decline in transactions. In August, a total of 490 condo units sold in Vancouver. As of this posting September 25, fisherly.com recorded 202 condo sales so far this month. Last month, 212 detached homes changed owners. September sales so [...]

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Home prices to drop, new report predicts — and even Toronto and Vancouver won’t be immune

[Financial Post - September 23, 2020] Moody's predicts prices for all housing types to fall more than 7 per cent The pandemic will punish Prairie house prices the most in Canada, but even hotspots Toronto and Vancouver will see prices drop on the back of rising rental market vacancies and lower immigration rates, according to a new report. Average single family detached house prices will fall by 6.7 per cent next year as the recovery stalls, economic stimulus fades and debt problems [...]

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Toronto and Vancouver now joined by two more Canadian cities with ‘overvalued’ homes

[Financial Post - September 21, 2020] Canada's housing market moderately vulnerable, CMHC says Overvalued homes continue to be a feature of Canada’s largest cities during the second quarter as the pandemic bit into the number of houses entering the market, according to the country’s largest public mortgage provider. And other Canadian cities are also seeing home prices heat up. “There was sharp pullback in new listings and resulting low levels of inventory,” the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation said in its second [...]

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Canada real estate: RBC Economics observes growing preference for single-detached homes over condos

[Georgia Straight - September 8, 2020] Last July, Statistics Canada predicted a shift in demand from condos to single-detached homes. “As working from home becomes more prevalent,” the agency stated,” we may see an increase in the demand for larger living spaces that single-family homes can offer, causing a shift in demand from condominium apartments towards single houses.” A recent housing commentary released by RBC Economics appears to validate the forecast. “Buyers nationwide are demonstrating a stronger preference for single-detached homes,” bank economist [...]

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Why real estate prices continue to rise despite the pandemic

[CBC - September 20, 2020] Opinion - Mark Ting, CBC's finance columnist, on the connection between unemployment, government aid, and real estate. Last May, I wrote an opinion piece titled "Time to buy? What the pandemic means for Vancouver's real estate market" where I explained that historically for every one per cent rise in unemployment there is a four per cent decrease in housing prices. However, this is not what has happened during the last several months. Between February and August this [...]

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How the pandemic has put flexibility front and center in home design

[Washington Post - September 17, 2020] Six months ago the coronavirus pandemic turned the entire nation into homebodies. Now architects, builders and interior designers are addressing the pain points that emerged when our homes became our offices, schools and entertainment venues. It’s a little too soon for completely new model homes to be built that take the new normal into account. Still, incremental changes in floor plans and interior design have been made that point the way to the future. “While there are [...]

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Rental sector navigates perilous times

[Globe and Mail - September 9, 2020] It’s been a year fraught with uncertainty and challenges for landlords and tenants, and it’s far from over. The data has yet to come in on the exact vacancy rates, or the number of tenants who haven’t been able to pay rent since the pandemic began. And the landscape changes yet again as government lifts a ban on evictions and rent increases. As of Sept. 1, landlords were able to evict tenants for failure to [...]

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Vancouver market on the uptick, but worries persist

[Globe and Mail - September 16, 2020] In downtown Vancouver, the condo market has softened considerably, with prices coming down as more units come onto the market. And although the detached house market is robust, the number of houses for sale could increase once the people who took mortgage deferrals have to start paying again. If cash is tight, they might choose to unload their houses, increasing supply. The key word for the current state of the housing market is uncertainty. [...]

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Bankruptcies expected to increase in fall months

[Toronto Sun - September 13, 2020] A lot of Canadians are in financial trouble because of COVID-19 closures. Maybe you’ve lost your job or your business as a result of the pandemic. You’re not alone. COVID has wiped out businesses big and small, pushing companies into insolvency. Although personal bankruptcies have not yet increased — partly thanks to the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) and other government financial help — a significant spike in financial turmoil is expected when those supports disappear. Nobody could [...]

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B.C.’s devastated tourism industry faces bleak outlook after summer season that never was

[CBC - September 7, 2020] Some businesses have tried to adapt, others face prospect of closure As summer winds down, tourism operators across the province are looking at staggering losses from a season constricted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Royce Chwin, the president of Tourism Vancouver, says 98 per cent of his group's members have reported a drop in revenue — at 50 per cent or more — for the first half of this year. "With the borders being shut down, either the U.S. or the [...]

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