All Blog Entries by Steve Harmer

Found 542 blog entries published by Steve Harmer.

CMHC Mortgage Insurance CanadaCanada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) has defended mortgage stress test rules and warned federal policymakers to hold the line amid calls from industry associations to ease the rules.

“My job is to advise you against this reckless myopia and protect our economy from potentially tragic consequences,” Evan Siddall, CMHC’s president and CEO, said in a letter to the Standing Committee on Finance dated Thursday.

Siddall urged the committee to “look past the plain self-interest” of the parties lobbying for easing the rules. The Mortgage Professionals Association of Canada (MPAC), the Canadian Home Builders Association (CHBA), and the Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA) have all called for such change, according to a report by The Canadian

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Real estate association offers optimistic forecast, saying buyers are gradually “adjusting” to mortgage stress test

Home sales in B.C. are likely to rise slightly this year, and more in 2020, according to a forecast released February 25 by the B.C. Real Estate Association (BCREA).BC home sales 2019

 

The association said it expects residential sales in the province to rise two per cent to 80,000 units this year. This follows a slow 2018 in which 78,345 homes traded hands on B.C.’s MLS®, which was 24.9 per cent lower than in 2017.

BCREA also predicted home sales to increase a further 6.9 per cent to 85,500 units in 2020. This would be a very normal level of activity, as the 10-year average for home sales in the province is 85,800 units.

 

The association

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Kamloops SeniorsFollow This Simple Recipe to Safely Age in Place

Written by Karen Weeks for Kamloops Property For Sale.

Most of us want to remain in our homes throughout our senior years. Thankfully, there are often simple home modifications to help turn that goal into reality. Here are some key ingredients in creating or finding an appropriate home for aging in place.

Older and Better

As the general population ages, the housing market is working to keep up, and many people are choosing to remain in their homes throughout our golden years.

In order to realize that goal, many people are making their homes more accessible to accommodate the changes minds and bodies experience with age. Some people are referring to the trend as “aging in place,” some call it

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Cost of borrowing in KamloopsThe cost of borrowing for a home is predicted to get a little cheaper this year.

That's according to the latest mortgage rate forecast from the B.C. Real Estate Association.

"The average contract rate for 5-year mortgages has declined about 30 basis points from its peak in 2018, reaching 3.44 per cent in March," the BCREA states in a two-page report. "Unfortunately, this still means a stress test rate of 5.44 per cent, even for the highest quality borrowers."

However, the association points out that if five-year bond yields remain at the current level, "a 5-year qualifying rate of under 5 per cent should follow suit." The contract rate refers to the interest percentage listed on the face of a note or a bond.

The qualifying rate refers to a

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BCREA BC real estate newsVancouver, BC – March 12, 2019.

The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) is calling on the federal government to revisit the B-20 stress test so that more BC families can achieve their dream of home ownership. Mortgage lending rules, known as the B-20 stress test, have eroded housing affordability by reducing the purchasing power of families by as much as 20 per cent. Introduced last year, the stress test forces even the most credit-worthy borrowers with large down payments to qualify at an interest rate that is two percentage points above the rate they negotiate with their bank.
 
“We would like to see a review and reconsideration of the current mortgage underwriting ‘stress test,’ as well as a return to 30-year amortizations for

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The Housing Cycle is Entering A Big Shift In Key Cities Across North America

Who is generation YIf you are a baby boomer, this might sound familiar: You moved out of your parent’s home as soon as you graduated from high school; you lived in a place you rented – maybe even a ‘room’ in a larger house, where you shared the bathroom with the other tenants; you could put all your belongings in one small bag; and you saved up to buy a car.

That was the ideal lifestyle of the largest demographic ever to populate the world. It’s estimated that 9.6 million baby boomers are in Canada today and they are rapidly becoming the senior population – a population whose living conditions are far different today.

But did you know that there is another demographic as big as – if not

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Kamloops Real Estate BC

The B.C. Real Estate Association has released its first quarter housing forecast summary and it's projecting a slight boost in the number of sales and a steady increase in the price of homes in Kamloops and across the province.

"We've seen a tremendous amount of growth the last few years, and the unemployment rate is incredibly low right now. So it certainly signals full employment in many sectors, which is certainly positive for consumers, for housing demand," noted the chief economist for the B.C. Real Estate Association Cameron Muir, who is predicting the growth over the next two years.

Kamloops is following the downward trend of housing sales in 2018 — down 10.8 per cent in housing transactions last year compared to 2017. But housing sales

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British Columbia Real EstateEverybody knows that British Columbia in Canada takes pride in its most temperate climate and the most breathtaking views. But everyone also knows it is the most expensive province to live in Canada.

Despite higher costs of living, BC is still a top choice for many Canadians and immigrants to relocate. 

Why Choose British Columbia for Relocation

If you are planning a move anywhere in British Columbia, you are about to discover one of the most spectacular places in Canada. British Columbia has a pretty diverse climate, depending on where you choose to live. Near the coast, you’ll experience dry summers and wet but mild winters. Near the Okanagan or Cariboo, winters are warm and summers quite hot. In contrast, the northern coast gets more rain and

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BC Real Estate AssociationReal estate association offers optimistic forecast, saying buyers are gradually “adjusting” to mortgage stress test

Home sales in B.C. are likely to rise slightly this year, and more in 2020, according to a forecast released February 25 by the B.C. Real Estate Association (BCREA).

The association said it expects residential sales in the province to rise two per cent to 80,000 units this year. This follows a slow 2018 in which 78,345 homes traded hands on B.C.’s MLS®, which was 24.9 per cent lower than in 2017.

BCREA also predicted home sales to increase a further 6.9 per cent to 85,500 units in 2020. This would be a very normal level of activity, as the 10-year average for home sales in the province is 85,800 units.

BC Home salesThe association said that

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Canada Vacation Rental

Are you thinking about renting out your home?

Guest article written by Karen Weeks from www.elderwellness.net

Vacation rentals are becoming a lucrative investment these days. With more travelers looking for houses rather than crowded hotels, there’s no better time to get your home ready to rent. However, what are the best ways to prep your home and maximize your rental income potential? Here are a few things you may want to focus on when turning your home into a profitable vacation property.

Use Color to Set The Right Mood for Potential Renters

Whether your renters are traveling for business or leisure, they’re going to be looking for accommodations that help allow them to relax and have fun. That’s why you should be intentional with the

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