Metro Vancouver Housing Still Not Affordable

New Constructions Starts on the Rise Again

Recent data shows that the housing boom across Greater Vancouver is continuing to reach new heights with a huge amount of new construction now underway. As of February 2017, new construction was up by 30 percent year-over-year.

The Greater Vancouver area is about to see a large amount of new supply on the market – 2017 has a projected 23,575 housing starts. Housing starts are currently seeing a slowdown in their completion rates – whether due to intentional slowing, lack of resources, or for other reasons.

With the number of starts compounding, a huge amount of supply is going to soon be hitting the Greater Vancouver market – news which will come as a relief to many.

Are you awaiting new starts to come underway in order to get into the market? Share your thoughts with us below!

Vancouver Is About to Become Rental-Only City

Vancouver Is About to Become Rental-Only City

The Vancouver Real Estate Forum met on April 11th with builders and brokers in order to discuss how to survive in today’s market with land in short supply, but financing still cheap. The consensus focused on long-term holds of hard-to-replace income-producing properties and low yields.

The forum discussed the likelihood of home prices continuing to rise for the next 25 years – citing the fact that from 1961 to now, home prices have risen from $12,000 average to $700,000 – at the same time, B.C’s population has risen from 1.6 million to 4.7 million. The forecasts say that the population will likely reach 6 million by 2041.

Speakers on the Forum’s closing panel concluded that Vancouver City prices aren’t for everyone – but that they are here to stay, and noted that Vancouver could easily become a rental-only city in a matter of just a few years.

Homelessness, as well, came up as an issue of how city and provincial agencies have not been properly addressing the needs of the least fortunate – with homelessness now up by 30 percent in Vancouver.

The forum called for stakeholders to act towards solving a huge social issue of homelessness and how it effects the real estate community.

Toronto Realtors Urging Homeowners to Take Advantage of the Market

Toronto Realtors Urging Homeowners to Take Advantage of the Market

According to Canadian real estate agents, Canadians who want to benefit from a windfall in Canada’s housing market should act quickly before the market shifts, or the government further intervenes into the market.

Canadians are seeing opportunities at every corner thanks to the recent gains in real estate in some areas of Canada, particularly the Greater Vancouver and Greater Toronto areas. Some have been taking the opportunity to move a little further out, and begin their mortgage-free life in a new location – and start putting their money towards their retirement instead.

Toronto real estate agents are encouraging the public to sell before the market corrects and take advantage of the enviable position they are currently in.

Did you experience a windfall from the heated market? Are you planning to sell quickly to avoid dealing with a market correction? Share your thoughts below.

Single Canadians Not Letting Independency Stop them from Purchasing Homes

Single Canadians Not Letting Independency Stop them from Purchasing Homes

According to a new survey, single homeowners represent nearly a quarter of all Canadians currently buying or intending to buy a home. A large driving force behind this is due to unexpected life circumstances such as being divorced (69%) or widowed (35%), along with a growing number of Canadians who have decided to face the market alone (67%).

While buying a home alone can be daunting, it doesn’t have to be impossible. Experts say the best thing solo-buyers can do for themselves is to seek advice from a mortgage specialist to draw out a solid plan – including long-term affordability. Of the Canadians who intend to buy a home individually, 86 percent of them say that they are confident in their ability to afford maintenance and ongoing costs of home ownership. Seventy percent of Canadians sat they thought about property taxes, home insurance, and maintenance costs of owning a home well in advance of actually purchasing. Two-thirds of Canadians kept utilities in mind, and only nine percent of Canadians did not think about these additional costs at all prior to buying their home.

About one-quarter of the Canadians who intended to purchase a home by themselves said they do not intend to live alone, or that they would consider having a tenant to make ownership more affordable, and just under one-quarter said they would consider having a roommate in order to help out with paying their mortgage.

Did you or anyone you know purchase a home solo? Please share your stories and thoughts with us below.

March 2017 Record-Breaking for Canadian Real Estate

March 2017 was another record-breaking month for real estate in all of Canada. Home sales increased by 1.1 percent in March to overcome the previous record which was set in April 2016.

Month-over-month sales were up in more than half of the local markets – led by the Greater Vancouver and Fraser Valley regions in B.C; London and St. Thomas, Ontario; and Montreal. Sales in total for Canada were up 6.6 percent comparing to one year ago.

The strength in home sales across the country is led strongly by the areas in and around Toronto and Vancouver. The national average price for homes sold in March 2017 was $528,517 – up 8.2 percent from March 2016. However, excluding Vancouver and Toronto, the average price was much lower at $389,726.

Industry experts have been giving ample warning to the federal government about country-wide impactions of aiming new federal regulations at Toronto’s heated market.

Please share your thoughts with us below.

Gas Prices on the Up and Up – How it will affect you!

Gas Prices on the Up and Up – How it will affect you!

Gas prices are on a springtime rise all over the country this week.

According to a gas price tracker, the average price for regular unleaded in Canada is almost $1.15 per litre – a 19 percent increase from one year ago. This is being attributed to higher ingredient costs for summer fuel and the lower value of the Canadian dollar.

Typically, from mid-April to mid-September, refineries change the composition of their gas blends to combat more volatile warmer weather and to keep the blends more stable.

Currently, Vancouver has the highest average gas prices in Canada aside from the Far North. The lowest prices are currently in the Prairie Provinces – at about $1.03. Industry leaders are warning that gas prices could get much higher than is typical for seasonal changes because the refineries are behind on their summer gas production, with reserves falling pretty drastically in the last eight weeks.

What do you do to prepare for the rising costs of fuel in the summer?

Renting Could Be More Affordable With The NDP

Renting Could Be More Affordable With The NDP

The BC NDP party has promised to introduce a tax credit for renters if they win the election this year. Additionally, they have pledged to amend the Residential Tenancy Act to change the fix-term leases and rent increases based on average prices in the surrounding neighborhood.

Their goal is to make life more affordable for renters by closing loopholes and introducing a credit to help families manage with the high costs of housing. Average cost of rent for purpose-built rental housing in Metro Vancouver has reached $1,223 as of the latest Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation survey.

The overall vacancy rate for these buildings fell to 0.7 percent.

Does the idea of a rental credit help you and your family out? Share your thoughts below.