Statement from The Canadian Real Estate Association in response to the Conservative Party housing measures announcement

Ottawa, ON, September 23, 2019 — With Election 2019 underway, CREA welcomes today’s announcement that a Conservative government would introduce new measures to make it easier for first-time homebuyers to buy a home.

“REALTORS® have long asked for common-sense solutions designed to help Canadians to purchase a home of their own,” said Jason Stephen, President of The Canadian Real Estate Association. “The measures announced today by the Conservative party include suggestions we’ve been making to policymakers, such as fixing the mortgage stress test and removing it for mortgage renewals. We’re also pleased with the proposal to increase amortization periods, which ultimately provides greater flexibility for home buyers looking at financing to purchase a home of their own.”

The announcement today also included other measures. Surplus federal land being made available for development to increase housing will help with home prices, as increased supply will help satisfy increasing demand for housing across the country. We also welcome the opportunity to address money laundering and other corrupt practices in the housing sector.

Visit CREA’s Election 2019 REALTOR® Resource Hub to find out more about our suggestions.

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About The Canadian Real Estate Association
The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) is one of Canada’s largest single-industry associations. CREA works on behalf of more than 130,000 REALTORS® who contribute to the economic and social well-being of communities across Canada. Together they advocate for property owners, buyers and sellers.

For more information, please contact:
Pierre Leduc, Media Relations
The Canadian Real Estate Association
Tel.: 613-237-7111 or 613-884-1460
E-mail: pleduc@crea.ca

Preparing your Calgary home for sale this fall

Fall is now upon us in Calgary, so if you’re looking to sell your home or are in the process of selling your home on the Calgary real estate market, there are some things you need to do. Here are some tips on how you can prepare your home for sale this fall.

calgary real estate,calgary real estate listings,calgary real estate market,calgary real estate pricesYard Cleanup & Maintenance

The fall brings some of the most beautiful changes to the atmosphere of the city and to the trees in your yard. Although they may look nice, they can also leave a big mess. Make sure you are raking your leaves as much as possible to ensure your yard looks clean. You may also want to trim any bushes that are near windows that could be blocking the potential buyers view.

calgary real estate,calgary real estate listings,calgary real estate market,calgary real estate pricesThoroughly clean the windows

Over the course of the summer dust or dirt may have accumulated on the windows, from the dry summer days and the wind. When people are looking at Calgary real estate listings they are going to notice these things, so make sure your windows are cleaned thoroughly on the inside and out. Let those potential buyers see the amazing views from your windows.

calgary real estate,calgary real estate listings,calgary real estate market,calgary real estate pricesChimney cleaning

Like your windows, your chimney can accumulate dust over the summer from lack of use, and it can actually be quite dangerous if you start to use it without cleaning out debris. It may be a good idea to hire a professional to get in there and clean it out.

calgary real estate,calgary real estate listings,calgary real estate market,calgary real estate prices
Setting the Mood

This one is important and can really help sway people looking at Calgary real estate prices and homes in the fall. Setting the mood for a dark dreary fall day can really help the viewers feel comfortable and happy when viewing your home. Get some wood on that fireplace, and light some scented candles with nice fall scents, to set the mood and make your home feel warm and inviting.

These are just a few things you can do when putting your home on the Calgary real estate market this fall. For more information on this or any information regarding Calgary real estate, contact Patrick Krause today!

Canadian home sales edge higher in August

Ottawa, ON, September 16, 2019 – Statistics released today by the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) show national home sales were up in August 2019.

Highlights:

  • National home sales rose 1.4% month-over-month (m-o-m) in August.
  • Actual (not seasonally adjusted) activity was up 5% year-over-year (y-o-y).
  • The number of newly listed homes climbed 1.1% m-o-m.
  • The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) advanced by 0.8% m-o-m and 0.9% y-o-y.
  • The actual (not seasonally adjusted) national average sale price was up 3.9% y-o-y.

Home sales recorded via Canadian MLS® Systems advanced for the sixth consecutive month in August. Transactions are now running almost 17% above the six-year low reached in February 2019, but remain about 10% below highs reached in 2016 and 2017. (Chart A)

Activity was up in slightly more than half of all local markets, although monthly changes were generally modest across most of the country. Gains were led by a record-setting August in Winnipeg and a further improvement in the Fraser Valley. Moncton posted the biggest monthly decline in sales, returning to more normal levels after having recently jumped to record heights.

Actual (not seasonally adjusted) sales activity was up 5% from where it stood in August 2018. The number of homes that traded hands was up from year-ago levels in most of Canada’s largest urban markets, including the Lower Mainland of British Columbia, Calgary, Winnipeg, the Greater Toronto (GTA), Ottawa and Montreal.

“The mortgage stress-test has eased marginally and that’s helped some potential homebuyers,” said Jason Stephen, CREA’s President, “but the extent to which they’re adjusting to it continues to vary by community and price segment. All real estate is local. Nobody knows that better than a professional REALTOR®, your best source for information and guidance when negotiating the sale or purchase of a home,” said Stephen.

“The recent marginal decline in the benchmark five-year interest rate used to assess homebuyers’ mortgage eligibility, together with lower home prices in some markets, means that some previously sidelined homebuyers have returned,” said Gregory Klump, CREA’s Chief Economist. “Even so, the mortgage stress-test will continue to limit homebuyers’ access to mortgage financing, with the degree to which it further weighs on home sales activity continuing to vary by region.”

The number of newly listed homes rose 1.1% in August. With sales and new supply up by similar magnitudes, the national sales-to-new listings ratio was 60.1%—little changed from July’s reading of 60.0%. The measure has risen above its long-term average (of 53.6%) in recent months, which indicates a tighter balance between supply and demand and a growing potential for price gains.

Considering the degree and duration to which market balance readings are above or below their long-term averages is the best way of gauging whether local housing market conditions favour buyers or sellers. Market balance measures that are within one standard deviation of their long-term average are generally consistent with balanced market conditions.

Based on a comparison of the sales-to-new listings ratio with the long-term average, about three-quarters of all local markets were in balanced market territory in August 2019. Of the remainder, the ratio was above the long-term average in all markets save for some in the Prairie region.

The number of months of inventory is another important measure of the balance between sales and the supply of listings. It represents how long it would take to liquidate current inventories at the current rate of sales activity.

There were 4.6 months of inventory on a national basis at the end of August 2019 – the lowest level since December 2017. This measure of market balance has been increasingly retreating below its long-term average (of 5.3 months).

That said, national measures of market balance continue to mask significant regional variations. The number of months of inventory has swollen far beyond long-term averages in Prairie provinces and Newfoundland & Labrador, giving homebuyers ample choice in these regions. By contrast, the measure is running well below long-term averages in Ontario, Quebec and Maritime provinces, resulting in increased competition among buyers for listings and fertile ground for price gains. Meanwhile, the measure is well centred in balanced market territory in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia, making it likely that prices there will stabilize.

The Aggregate Composite MLS® Home Price Index (MLS® HPI) rose 0.8% m-o-m in August 2019, the largest increase in over 2 years. (Chart B)

Seasonally adjusted MLS® HPI readings in August were up from the previous month in 14 of the 18 markets tracked by the index, marking the biggest dispersion of monthly price gains since last March. (Table 1)

In recent months, home prices have generally been stabilizing in British Columbia and the Prairies, a measure which had been falling until recently. Meanwhile, price growth has begun to rebound among markets in the Greater Golden Horseshoe (GGH) region amid ongoing price gains in housing markets east of it.

A comparison of home prices to year-ago levels yields considerable variations across the country, with declines in western Canada and price gains in eastern Canada.

The actual (not seasonally adjusted) Aggregate Composite MLS® (HPI) was up 0.9% y-o-y in August 2019. This marks the second consecutive month in which prices climbed above year-ago levels and the largest y-o-y increase since the end of last year.

Home prices in Greater Vancouver (GVA) and the Fraser Valley remain furthest below year-ago levels, (-8.3% and -5.5%, respectively), while Vancouver Island and the Okanagan Valley logged y-o-y increases (3.7% and 1.5% respectively).

Prairie markets posted modest price declines, while y-o-y price growth has re-accelerated ahead of overall consumer price inflation across most of the GGH. Meanwhile, price growth has continued uninterrupted for the last few years in Ottawa, Montreal and Moncton.

All benchmark home categories tracked by the index returned to positive y-o-y territory in August. Two-storey single-family home prices were up most, rising 1.2% y-o-y. One-storey single family home prices rose 0.7% y-o-y, while townhouse/row and apartment unit edged up 0.3% and 0.5%, respectively.

The MLS® HPI provides the best way to gauge price trends, because averages are strongly distorted by changes in the mix of sales activity from one month to the next.

The actual (not seasonally adjusted) national average price for homes sold in August 2019 was around $493,500, up almost 4% from the same month last year.

The national average price is heavily skewed by sales in the GVA and GTA, two of Canada’s most active and expensive housing markets. Excluding these two markets from calculations cuts more than $100,000 from the national average price, trimming it to less than $393,000 and reducing the year-over-year gain to 2.7%.

 

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PLEASE NOTE: The information contained in this news release combines both major market and national sales information from MLS® Systems from the previous month.

CREA cautions that average price information can be useful in establishing trends over time, but does not indicate actual prices in centres comprised of widely divergent neighbourhoods or account for price differential between geographic areas. Statistical information contained in this report includes all housing types.

MLS® Systems are co-operative marketing systems used only by Canada’s real estate Boards to ensure maximum exposure of properties listed for sale.

The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) is one of Canada’s largest single-industry trade associations, representing more than 130,000 REALTORS® working through 90 real estate boards and associations.

Further information can be found at http://crea.ca/statistics.

For more information, please contact:

Pierre Leduc, Media Relations
The Canadian Real Estate Association
Tel.: 613-237-7111 or 613-884-1460
E-mail: pleduc@crea.ca

Quarterly Forecast

CREA Updates Resale Housing Market Forecast

Ottawa, ON, September 16, 2019 – The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) has updated its forecast for home sales activity via the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) Systems of Canadian real estate boards and associations – for the rest of 2019 and looking ahead to 2020.

Economic fundamentals underpinning housing activity remain strong outside of the Prairies and Newfoundland and Labrador. Population and employment growth have both remained supportive and the unemployment rate remains low. At the same time, expectations have become widespread that the Bank of Canada is unlikely to raise interest rates over the rest of the year and into next.

More importantly for home buyers and housing markets, longer-term mortgage rates have been declining. Among those that have declined is the Bank of Canada’s benchmark five-year rate used by banks to qualify mortgage applicants.

Additionally, the Federal Government has recently launched its First-Time Home Buyer Incentive, a shared equity program in which the federal government finances a portion of a home purchase in exchange for an equity share of the home’s value.

Of these factors supporting Canadian housing activity, the decline in mortgage rates is arguably the most important development since the release in June of CREA’s most recent forecast. The decline in the benchmark five-year mortgage rate has marginally relaxed the B-20 mortgage stress-test, which has dampened housing activity more than other policy changes made in recent years.

Home sales have improved by more than expected in recent months and there are early signs that home price declines in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia and across the Prairies may be abating. Meanwhile, home prices are re-accelerating across Ontario’s Greater Golden Horseshoe region.

Strong economic fundamentals, previously unexpected declines in mortgage interest rates and stronger than previously expected housing market trends in British Columbia and Ontario have resulted in CREA upwardly revising forecast home sales in 2019 and 2020. Nonetheless, the overall level of national sales activity this year and next is anticipated to remain below levels recorded prior to the implementation of the B-20 stress test.

National home sales are now projected to recover to 482,000 units in 2019, representing a 5% increase from the five-year low recorded in 2018. While this is an upward revision of 19,000 transactions compared to CREA’s previous forecast (85% of which is due to upgraded British Columbia and Ontario forecasts), it represents a return of activity to its 10-year annual average. It also remains well below the annual record set in 2016, when almost 540,000 homes traded hands. Notwithstanding the upward revision, the forecast for 2019 on a per capita basis remains the second weakest since 2001.

British Columbia is expected to continue to weigh on national figures in 2019, with a decline of 5.4% compared to 2018. This is expected to be more than offset by gains in Ontario (+8.3%) and Quebec (+9.7%).

British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Newfoundland and Labrador are all forecast to come in at or near multi-year lows in 2019. By contrast, Manitoba, Quebec and New Brunswick are expected to set new annual sales records. Activity in Ontario is forecast to be in line with the 10-year average for the province.

The national average price is still projected to stabilize in 2019, though with a small 0.5% increase compared to the previously forecast 0.6% decline. The national average home price is projected to come in at $491,000 amid diverging trends in eastern and western provinces. In line with the balance between supply and demand across the country, average prices in 2019 are expected to fall in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan while rising in Ontario, Quebec and the Maritimes. In keeping with an elevated inventory of listings relative to sales, the average price in Newfoundland and Labrador is anticipated to fall for the fifth consecutive year.

Sales are forecast to continue to improve through 2020, albeit slowly. National home sales are forecast to rise by 7.5% to 518,100 units next year, with most of this increase reflecting a weak start to 2019 rather than a significant change in sales trends out to the end of next year. Indeed, an anticipated increase of 14.3% in British Columbia’s sales returns activity in line with the province’s 10-year average.

Ontario and Quebec are predicted to see sales rise by about 7% in 2020, while activity in Alberta will recover by about 5% compared to 2019. The number of homes trading hands in other provinces is predicted to edge up or down only marginally.

The national average price is forecast to advance by 2.1% in 2020 to $501,400, remaining below its 2017 level. Average price trends across Canada in 2020 are generally expected to be more moderate versions of those in 2019, with small declines in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Newfoundland and Labrador, and modest gains in Ontario, Quebec and the Maritimes. In British Columbia, the average home price is expected to stabilize next year following this year’s decline.

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About The Canadian Real Estate Association
The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) is one of Canada’s largest single-industry associations. CREA works on behalf of more than 130,000 REALTORS® who contribute to the economic and social well-being of communities across Canada. Together they advocate for property owners, buyers and sellers.

For more information, please contact:
Pierre Leduc, Media Relations
The Canadian Real Estate Association
Tel.: 613-237-7111 or 613-884-1460
E-mail: pleduc@crea.ca

Statement from The Canadian Real Estate Association in response to the Liberal Party FTHBI announcement

Ottawa, ON, September 12, 2019 ⁠— With Election 2019 barely underway, CREA welcomes today’s announcement that a Liberal government would extend the eligibility requirements for the First Time Home Buyers’ Incentive (FTHBI) so that Canadians in higher priced markets can take advantage of the program.

“REALTORS® welcomed the FTHBI when it was announced in the spring because it represents tangible support for millennials, new Canadians and other first-time buyers hoping to fulfill their home ownership dreams,” said Jason Stephen, President of The Canadian Real Estate Association. “The extension of eligibility requirements is great news that will allow Canadians in Canada’s highest priced markets take advantage of the program and start building their lives in a home of their own. We have long pointed out that housing markets vary from region to region and market to market. Today’s announcement shows that policymakers are receptive to that message.”

The announcement today also included other measures aimed at housing affordability. Further analysis of regional markets across the country is required to understand if a new speculation and vacancy tax will help increase the supply of available housing over the long term or aid with affordability.

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About The Canadian Real Estate Association
The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) is one of Canada’s largest single-industry associations. CREA works on behalf of more than 130,000 REALTORS® who contribute to the economic and social well-being of communities across Canada. Together they advocate for property owners, buyers and sellers.

For more information, please contact:
Pierre Leduc, Media Relations
The Canadian Real Estate Association
Tel.: 613-237-7111 or 613-884-1460
E-mail: pleduc@crea.ca­

The Canadian Real Estate Association launches its Election 2019 REALTOR® Resource Hub

Ottawa, ON, September 12, 2019 — The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) has launched an Election 2019 Resource Hub for REALTORS® called REALideas to share policy proposals to help Canadians achieve their homeownership aspirations.

“Housing affordability is top of mind to Canadians who have been shut out of housing markets across the country. REALTORS® know that all real estate is local, and during this campaign we want to have a conversation about how politicians can help Canadians who face obstacles to homeownership in different parts of the country,” said Jason Stephen, president of CREA. “All parties proposed solutions in the last Federal election, including various REALTOR® recommendations, to address housing issues and we expect Election 2019 will be no different.”

CREA’s proposals include encouraging the construction of new housing supply, regionally sensitive adjustments to lending rules and mortgage regulations which will help to improve housing affordability right across the country.

“CREA is proposing policy solutions on behalf of REALTORS® and their clients. We’re presenting responsible ideas that will help more Canadians achieve their dream of homeownership,” Stated Michael Bourque, CREA’s CEO. “As we discuss these ideas in the coming weeks, we want to ensure all political parties keep in mind that no two housing markets are the same, and regional and local factors matter when you implement policy.”

The hub centralizes CREA’s policy ideas and the major parties’ platform commitments related to housing, which will be updated regularly as more announcements and commitments are made by the major parties.

REALideas is online at https://realideas.ca/.

 

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About The Canadian Real Estate Association
The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) is one of Canada’s largest single-industry associations. CREA works on behalf of more than 130,000 REALTORS® who contribute to the economic and social well-being of communities across Canada. Together they advocate for property owners, buyers and sellers.

For more information, please contact:

Pierre Leduc, Media Relations
The Canadian Real Estate Association
Tel.: 613-237-7111 or 613-884-1460
E-mail: pleduc@crea.ca­