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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James feeling optimistic despite projecting economic decline in B.C.

[Vancouver Sun - September 11, 2020] VICTORIA — Finance Minister Carole James cited grounds for optimism Thursday, even as she continues to preside over B.C.’s worst economic and financial crisis in modern times. “I don’t like to sugar-coat things — I am a realist,” James told reporters in releasing the latest economic and financial update. “I am optimistic when it is warranted. … But I am feeling optimistic about B.C.’s economic future. We have started down the road to economic recovery.” Her outlook [...]

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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 year the unemployment rate doubled while [...]

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Mortgage delinquencies expected to jump in latter part of the year, CMHC says

[Globe and Mail - September 10, 2020] Canada’s housing agency said there could be a “significant increase" in mortgage delinquencies later this year as banks’ loan deferrals during the COVID-19 pandemicend and alternative lenders deal with more troubled borrowers. Mortgage Investment Corporations (MICs), which are alternative lenders that pool investor funds to provide loans, were already seeing a rise in delinquency rates before the pandemic struck in March, according to an annual report from the Canada Mortgage Housing Corp. Then, in the [...]

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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 Mayor Kennedy Stewart seeks to permit up to six properties on one residential lot

[Globe and Mail - September 14, 2020] Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart is launching a bold push to create cheaper forms of housing in Vancouver’s single-family neighbourhoods by calling for the city to allow up to six units on any residential lot. The catch is that two would have to be rented or sold at below-market rates permanently. That could be a first for Canada and is only outdone by Portland, Ore., which recently passed a similar policy in mid-August except that it [...]

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Canadians have deferred $1B a month worth of mortgage payments since pandemic began

[CBC - September 10, 2020] Almost 1 million existing loans have been deferred and more people are taking out new loans, too More than three-quarters of a million Canadian homeowners have either deferred or skipped a mortgage payment during the COVID-19 pandemic began, to the tune of about $1 billion a month, Canada's national housing agency says. In a report on Thursday, the Canada Mortgage And Housing Corporation looked at the state of the mortgage market in Canada. The report is annual [...]

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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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