Home prices inflated by 35 per cent: Economist
In a global tracking of housing prices, a prominent British publication says properties in Canada are overvalued by 35 per cent when compared with income and rent. The Economist’s latest housing index figures found prices are rising in 19 of 26 markets surveyed around the world.
Brace yourself – the waters ahead are looking choppy
Is Canada’s housing market at a point where affordability issues just don’t make it sustainable without a significant correction? The International Monetary Fund says the Canadian housing market is overvalued by seven to 20 per cent. The Bank of Canada puts it at as much as 30 per cent.
Home-buying frenzy defies Bank of Canada’s view of soft landing
At the central bank in Ottawa, officials are forecasting a soft landing for the housing market. On the ground in Canada, brokers and homebuyers see prices that keep going up. Re/Max, the country’s largest residential real estate agency, raised its forecast for home price growth to three per cent from 2.5 per cent on Friday.
The real reason mortgage rates are so low in Canada
Canada’s overheated housing market is starting to feel the effect of Europe’s negative interest rates. Yields on about $8.8 billion of Canadian mortgage bonds denominated in euros and francs are being pushed below zero as European Central Bank asset purchases help to drive down borrowing costs worldwide.
Buy a Vancouver condo if you want to hoard your wealth
Gold’s traditional role as a store of wealth has been usurped by contemporary art and apartments in cities such as New York and London, according to Laurence D. Fink, head of the world’s largest asset manager. “Historically gold was a great instrument for storing of wealth,” the chairman of BlackRock Inc. said at a conference in Singapore on Tuesday.
TO, Vancouver prices spill over to nearby regions
Realtor group Re/Max says home prices soared in Toronto and Vancouver in the first quarter with some of the effects spilling over into nearby regions. The average sale price of a home in Vancouver grew seven per cent year over year to $874,869. In the Greater Toronto Area, the average residential sale price grew eight per cent from a year ago to $594,827.
Low oil convinces people to stay put in B.C.
British Columbia’s housing market, already the country’s most expensive, may end up even stronger because of the impact oil prices are having on Alberta’s economy. The flip side of the weakening oilpatch, which has seen housing sales plummet in Calgary, has been to create a little more bounce in B.C.
Apartment boom builds in Toronto
A new survey out Wednesday points to a massive surge in apartment construction, as inventor demand from pension funds competes with traditional condominiums. Toronto-based Urbanation Inc. says the current development pipeline for units, either under construction or proposed, is up 75 per cent compared to the number of purpose-built units constructed over the past 10 years.
TO condo rental market less competitive due to glut
A new report by condo research firm Urbanation suggests Toronto’s condo market has become more renter-friendly due to a glut of supply and shifting demographics. Although the number of units rented in the first three months of 2015 grew by 11 per cent compared with a year ago, new listings shot up by 21 per cent.
Bidding wars push TO homes past bank valuation
A Toronto photographer recently decided to sell his Victorian-era rowhouse in the vibrant Queen Street West neighbourhood. His real estate agents, Ingrid Furtado and Christian Torok of Real Estate Homeward Brokerage, figured a house in that location would appeal to artists and hipsters.
Two apps that aid homeowner-contractor relationship
Unforeseen changes to a construction project are a common cause of friction between homeowners and contractors, condo buyers and developers – particularly when communication efforts go off the rails. Now, there is an app to help smooth over those differences.
Vancouver developer ‘bullish’ on Calgary luxury condo market
The Vancouver-based developer of a luxury condo tower in Eau Claire remains “bullish” about the market despite the volatility in the energy sector. Grant Murray, vice-president of sales for Concord Pacific, which is building The Concord luxury condo complex in Eau Claire, said the first phase of the project has sold 50 per cent of its 105 residential units.
Calgary enters next wave of housing redevelopment
As Calgary’s pace of densification begins to pick up speed, a picture is beginning to form of how growth will reshape the city. Current redevelopment efforts have been centred on inner-city historic neighbourhoods such as the Mission, Bridgeland and Kensington. But the next wave of densification will break on the postwar neighbourhoods further from the centre.
New apartments help push up Saskatoon rental vacancy rates
Investment in multi-family housing developments is stronger than ever with more buildings being sold and new product coming into the market. In 2014, 176 new rental units were completed in the city and another 340 units began construction, according to Colliers International’s latest Saskatoon Multi-Family Market Report.
Toronto monster mansion fails to sell at auction
A monstrous Park Lane Circle mansion remains unsold after a Thursday auction – the second for the troubled property whose owners have ended up in bankruptcy proceedings. While there were multiple bids for the 21,000-square-foot, eight bedroom home, fashioned after the Palace of Versailles, none exceeded the undisclosed minimum reserve price.
|Real Estate Forums 2015 – Winter / Spring Program|
|Green Real Estate Forum||Toronto||April 23, 2015|
|Saskatchewan Real Estate Forum||Saskatoon||April 28, 2015|
|Edmonton Real Estate Forum||Edmonton||May 14, 2015|
|Calgary Real Estate Leasing Conference||Calgary||June 2, 2015|
|Atlantic Real Estate Forum||Halifax||June 9, 2015|
|Land and Development Conference||Toronto||June 16, 2015|
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GTA low-rise pricing reaches new heights
The Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD) announced today the supply of new low-rise homes in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) hit a record low in March 2015, causing average prices to rise dramatically. According to RealNet Canada, BILD’s most trusted source for new home market intelligence, the supply of new low-rise homes fell 33 per cent to 5,711.
Real estate sales up on Hamilton Mountain
The real estate market in Hamilton is doing well — and the Mountain is doing a bit better than the average. According to MLS sales reported by the Realtors Association of Hamilton-Burlington (RAHB), there was a 13.2-per-cent increase in sales city-wide in the first quarter of 2015.
Regina average home price falls in Q1
Higher-than-normal levels of homes listed on the market going into 2015 have caused the average residential sale price in Regina to fall by six per cent in the first quarter compared with the same period last year, according to the ReMax spring market trends report.
House prices edge up in Winnipeg: Re/Max
House prices were up one per cent in Winnipeg in the first quarter, a Re/Max 2015 spring report says. The firm reported sales remained on par with the previous year, despite 25 per cent more inventory. Re/Max is forecasting sales volumes and average prices will remain stable year-over-year and are expected to remain so throughout 2015.
U.S. homebuilder confidence, outlook surge in April
U.S. homebuilders are feeling more optimistic about their prospects for a strong spring home-selling season. The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo builder sentiment index rose this month to 56, up four points from March.
April U.K. house price average at all-time high
A lack of sellers and a huge surge in the number of people looking to buy a home has pushed the average asking price of homes coming on to the market in April up to an all-time high of just over $522,000 Cdn, according to the country’s biggest property website, Rightmove.
How much does it cost to break a mortgage?
VIDEO: Personal finance expert Preet Banerjee explains the two formulas you need to know: Three Months’ Interest and Interest Rate Differential (IRD)
Loan sales help HUD more than homeowners
The U.S. Housing and Urban Development Department has sold $3.7 billion of soured loans since late 2012 to aid homeowners in communities hurt by foreclosures. So far, the government agency has mostly helped itself. Borrowers resumed payments on fewer than 13 per cent of the mortgages as of February, according to a department report.
Seniors’ residence to be built in Montreal
Baie d’Urfé has accepted a purchase offer for two lots as part of a proposal to build a private assisted living seniors’ complex. Last week, town council, albeit with one dissenting vote, agreed in principle to accept a $1.2 million purchase offer made by Farzad Shodjai, who operates the Maxwell Residence, through a public tender.
Symphony Tower brings luxury living to downtown Edmonton
Edmonton’s Symphony Tower, a new luxury 27-storey highrise, plans to hit all the right notes when it comes to downtown living. The Symphony offers sophistication, panoramic views, and unique architectural details. The project breaks ground soon and is expected to be a 27-month build. More than 65 per cent of the 143 suites have been sold, including a $3.5-million penthouse.
Rental building to replace former B.C. trailer park
After more than two years of presentations to Langford council; assessments, appraisals and negotiations with tenants, the way is paved for a former trailer park to become a major apartment complex. Property on which the now-closed Shirlmae Mobile Home Park sat has been sold to Vancouver’s Molmar Group by local partners who bought out the residents.
B.C. celebrates a housing disgrace: Opinion
Housing Minister Rich Coleman celebrated last week’s official opening of 53 units of seniors’ housing on Vancouver’s Little Mountain as “a milestone” and “a rebirth of a community.” But a better description of the long-stalled redevelopment of Vancouver’s largest social housing site might be a disgrace or, at very least, an embarrassment to the province and the city.
Canadian snowbirds squeezed out of south Florida housing market
Canadian snowbirds are starting to look north for affordable property, says the head of Florida’s largest real estate board. A sinking loonie and rising home prices are making south Florida more expensive for vacation property than it has been in years. Chris Zoller, residential president of the Miami Association of Realtors, says that by north, he means Orlando.
Six big home insurance misconceptions
What’s common practice isn’t always common knowledge in the home insurance business, as an elderly woman battling cancer learned recently. Ivy Scotland, 84, was stunned when she was saddled with an $11,000 repair bill after she left her Pembroke, Ont., home for treatment near her hospital.
Thunder Bay approves condos in former high school
Thunder Bay city council has approved a plan to turn the former Hillcrest High School into condominiums during Monday night’s meeting. Council unanimously supported the project, which calls for 75 condo units and two non-retail commercial spaces. Most of the units will cost $200,000 or less, with a premium on those with a view of Lake Superior.
Will Hydro One sale raise electricity rates?
The proposed privatization of the Crown corporation that delivers Ontario’s electricity isn’t necessarily a bad thing for consumers’ pocketbooks, analysts say. But the province and its taxpayers will still be on the hook for Hydro One’s massive debt load if much of the quick cash from the sale goes towards new infrastructure, as Premier Kathleen Wynne intends.
Pay less taxes when selling real estate
Time is running out before the April 30 deadline to file your personal income tax and, if you sold an investment property in 2014, you’ll need to gather a bit more paperwork than the regular T-slips (such as your employer-issued T4, the investor-focused T3 and the interest and dividend showing T5 slips being the most common).
We should tax smarter, not harder: Opinion
There really is such a thing as a tax on everything – or at least everything to do with the economic side of the myriad things that make life worth living. And this tax really does drag down growth and prosperity.
Victoria property taxes to rise 2.2 per cent
Victoria property owners will face a 2.2 per cent tax increase this year on a $213-million city operating budget that allocates $1 million to social-housing initiatives, $1 million to tax relief and $7.2 million to cycling infrastructure.
Saskatchewan RM of Cupar facing severe flooding
The Rural Municipality of Cupar is experiencing heavy flooding this spring, with several residents facing the possibility of their homes being damaged. “They’re doing up berms and there’s been sandbagging and pumping and anything they can do to stay out of water, but it’s not good,” said Nikki Czemeres, the R.M. administrator.
Windsor seeks to tweak boulevard bylaw
The little girl crashed to the ground after her bike pedal glanced against a railroad tie used along a sidewalk as part of a Windsor home’s landscaping. The young cyclist broke her wrist in the tumble. The railroad tie, concealed under tall grass, may have been part of an adjacent private home’s garden, but it was on the public right-of-way.
Delays put real estate clients at risk, N.L. warned
They’re tardy deeds but they’re not dirt cheap. Staffing shortages at the province’s Registry of Deeds created a paperwork backlog last fall, and sparked a series of warnings from the legal community to the government about how those delays could hit their clients in the pocketbook.
CREA peeved over email asking for ‘suspicious’ records
Hours after a gunman fatally shot a soldier and stormed Parliament Hill last fall, the director of Canada’s financial intelligence agency sent an email to all businesses that report to it urging them not to wait to flag suspicious transactions. The email peeved a senior member of the Canadian Real Estate Association.
How to deal with a condo board run amok
VIDEO: The Globe’s Rob Carrick speaks with Audrey Loeb, lawyer at Miller Thomson LLP, about your options in a disagreement with your condo board.
Condo falling apart? Here’s what you’re covered for
VIDEO: The Globe’s Rob Carrick speaks with Audrey Loeb, lawyer at Miller Thomson LLP, about condo warranties.
Condo Smarts: Transferring bylaws has risks
Dear Tony: Our strata corporation is considering adopting a rental restriction, a 45-plus age restriction and a no-smoking-onstrata-property bylaw. We asked our strata manager to draft the bylaws, but they are saying this is not a service they provide.
Our underground garage flooded and damaged my car. Who pays?
Q Recently there was a flood in our underground parking garage. This flood caused severe damage to my car and it is a write-off. I called my insurance and they will pay for the amount equal to the value of my car. I feel the condominium corporation should take some responsibility for this damage, due to the fact it happened in the underground garage.
To borrow for condo’s failed reserve fund needs?
Q We just found out our reserve fund is not up to par and there are necessary repairs that cannot wait. Our board of directors wants to issue each of us a special assessment. Some of us owners would like the board to consider borrowing the required funds instead of issuing a special assessment.
Condo developer must allow access for telecom hookups
The federal telecom regulator has ordered a Toronto real estate developer to give Bell Canada access to a new condominium building in a case that has highlighted the tension between offering customers a choice of telecom providers and the property rights of building owners.
Slow progress on Winnipeg rooming houses
There’s been slow progress on a task force whose goal is to find ways to preserve and encourage “good” rooming houses. “A lot of the rooming houses in the West Broadway and Spence neighbourhoods are being lost and there is a lack of affordable housing,” Coun. Jenny Gerbasi, chairwoman of the Winnipeg housing steering committee, said at a meeting Monday.
Three award-winning affordable multi-family developments
The American Institute of Architects (AIA) selected the winners of its 2015 Housing Awards. The competition honored 10 projects across the country, including three affordable projects in the Multifamily Housing category. The Multifamily Housing award recognizes outstanding apartment and condominium design.
The real problem with American housing policy
The United States spends more than four times as much on homeowner subsidies as it does on affordable housing for those most in need. That stat comes courtesy a detailed NBER working paper by Robert Collinson and Ingrid Gould Ellen, my colleagues at NYU, and Jens Ludwig of the University of Chicago.
Selling density as a means to affordability Vancouver’s myth
Remember EcoDensity™? It was June, 2006, when Vancouver mayor – now (seldom seen) B.C. Liberal MLA – Sam Sullivan introduced the brand to Vancouver and the entire planet as the city played host to the World Urban Forum. Despite the gloss of the hot-off-the-press brochure, critics accused him of rebranding an idea already in practice: Increasing density would reduce the city’s environmental footprint with the secondary benefit of making housing more affordable.
Tiny house movement calls for big thinking
I love the tiny house movement.But when I think about it for my lifestyle, it would be darling – for about the first week. Then, after tripping over my family, I’d start thinking about an addition or maybe a new house.
How Cabbagetown got its name
Originally considered Toronto’s “skid row,” Cabbagetown has evolved into a “living museum” featuring some of Toronto’s most well-preserved Victorian homes, the manicured St. James Cemetery, Riverdale Farm, and a number of interesting community events including an annual international short film festival.
Toronto learning from Cleveland’s return to prosperity
If you’ve ever imagined a worst-case scenario for Toronto, it probably looks something like this: a burst housing bubble, massive job losses, crumbling roads, rapid economic decline and spiralling inequality. That’s the nightmare Cleveland has already lived in spectacular style.
Seattle’s micro apartment size restriction blamed for rising rents
New rules on micro apartments set by the Seattle City Council last fall are receiving some of the blame for higher rents – as much as 72 per cent higher — in the city. The new rule says that efficiency-style apartments have to measure at least 220 square feet. Seattle’s city planner recently said the council’s new rules have made small apartments more expensive to build.
Calgary struggling to find homes for its aging population
VIDEO: The number of seniors in Calgary is growing at a rapid rate and the city is trying to find a solution for affordable housing.
Lobby group opposes Saanich environmental protection bylaw
About a dozen Saanich residents have created a lobby group against an environmental protection bylaw they say might reduce property values for no reason. The Environmental Development Permit Area bylaw intends to protect sensitive natural areas by requiring homeowners to obtain permits for everything from disturbing soil to building a deck.
Skinny homes part of Edmonton’s housing solution: Opinion
Edmonton homeowners now have two excellent new opportunities to make more out of their residential properties. If you want more living space in your home, you’re not just stuck any more with developing your basement, or with building an addition, or with tearing down and building a bigger home.
Home buyer’s guide: Signing the deal
Sophia Hamilton admits she became “a little bit obsessive” when it came to buying her first place. Although barely 24 and waiting for a permanent job while working as a special education supply teacher at Sir Guy Carleton Secondary School, she knew she was ready to become a homeowner.
Will your home be a good investment?
You believe you are ready to invest and buy a house, the largest purchase you will probably ever make. You need a place to live and you are tired of “throwing your money away” each month to your landlord. Your home purchase will make a great investment, right? That depends.
Honouring the end of real-estate racism in Canada
Across Canada there are thousands of bronze plaques marking historic designations but, until now, not one of them has commemorated a court case. That changed this past week when a plaque was unveiled at the Wolf Performance Hall in the London Public Library, marking the national historic significance of the Supreme Court of Canada decision in the 1950 case of Noble and Wolf v. Alley.
Few who lost U.S. homes will buy again soon
Only about one in four former homeowners who lost property during the housing crash will soon become buyers again as tight credit keeps many out of the U.S. real estate market, according to a National Association of Realtors study.
B.C.’s Sunshine Coast attracts entrepreneurs
When it rains, it pours. The adage may be true in the metropolitan mecca of Vancouver, but not so for the neighbouring communities ribboned along Vancouver’s adjacent mainland peninsula just 40 minutes north of the city. The Sunshine Coast, as it is aptly coined, enjoys a temperate and mild coastal climate with warm and dry summers.
An anthropological view of the condo
I recently had the chance to sit down with one of the world’s foremost anthropologists to talk about condos. Based in New York City, Dr. Lionel Tiger is very familiar with condos and their relations, co-ops, and has some interesting theories on why they are reaching higher and higher.
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