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Blog by Kevin Wong

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BC Commercial Leading Indicator Pauses in Q1

May 31st, 2011
Vancouver, BC – May 31, 2011. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) index of Commercial Leading Indicators (CLI) was virtually unchanged in the first quarter of 2011, albeit down 0.1 points to 108.6 from 108.7 in the fourth quarter of 2010. This is the first decline registered by the CLI in almost two years.

The CLI peaked at a level of 115.5 in the second quarter of 2007 before ...

Metro Vancouver Home Starts, Sales To Increase This Year and Next: CMHC

May 31st, 2011
New home construction and existing home sales in Metro Vancouver will grow this year and next, according to a report released Monday by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp.

CMHC's spring housing market outlook concluded that home starts will increase five per cent this year, to 16,000 units and nine per cent in 2012, to 17,500 units.

As well, overall sales will increase six per cent, to 33 ...

RBC, TD Lower Residential Mortgage Rates

May 28th, 2011
The Royal Bank of Canada, TD Canada Trust and Bank of Nova Scotia all announced Friday that they were lowering certain residential mortgage rates by 0.10 per cent, effective May 28.

The banks said the special discounted rates are not its their posted rates. To calculate a rate discount, RBC said, compare the special offer rate against the posted rate for the applicable term.

The Royal ...

B.C. Liberals To Lower HST Rate, Offer Rebates, Hike Corporate Taxes

May 25th, 2011
If British Columbians vote to keep the HST in the referendum next month, the rate will be cut to 10 per cent by 2014, Finance Minister Kevin Falcon announced on Wednesday.

The cut would be in two stages, to 11 per cent on July 1, 2012 and to 10 per cent on July 1, 2014.

In addition, all families with children under 18 and lower income seniors will get by the end of the year a one-time t ...

Canadian Housing Prices Risk Slide: Report

May 25th, 2011
Canada's housing market faces a risk of sliding prices, according to a report released Wednesday that warns the current global economic rebound from the 2008 crisis could falter.

The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development's twice-a-year economic outlook report said the world economy is in an uneven recovery and confronting far more "downside" than "upside" risks.

The n ...

Canadians Putting More Cash Towards Homes: RBC

May 20th, 2011

Canadians are putting a larger portion of their earnings toward their homes, the Royal Bank of Canada said Friday, and interest rate increases are likely to put further pressure on homeowners in the coming months.

The problem is especially pronounced in Vancouver, where the bank estimated families must now dedicate 72 per cent of their household income to pay the mortgage, property ...

Home Prices Continue Climb In April

May 17th, 2011

Canadian home prices continued their upward march in April, driven by strong investor demand in Vancouver, as cracks in the Toronto condominium market may be starting to appear.

The Canadian Real Estate Association said yesterday the average price of a home sold in April in Canada was $372,544, up 8% from a year ago. It was the third straight month that the average price rose 8% on ...

Mortgage Rules Take Wind Out of House Sales

May 17th, 2011

The Canadian Real Estate Association blamed new mortgage rules for taking first-time buyers out of the market, as it reported sales slipped 14 per cent in April from a year ago.

The new rules brought in by the federal government, which took effect at the end of March, eliminated 35-year amortizations as a financing option. The trade association said that likely caused people to bea ...

Homes sales in Canada, Vancouver Soften In April

May 17th, 2011

Sales of existing homes in Canada fell 4.4 per cent in April from March as activity dropped off after a first-quarter rush to buy before the introduction of new mortgage rules.

The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) said on Tuesday that 36,564 homes changed hands in April, down from 38,263 in March.

The national average price in April rose 8 per cent from a year earlier to a ...

Vancouver Homes More Expensive Than New York or London

May 17th, 2011

Sales of detached homes, townhouses and condominiums in metropolitan Vancouver jumped 70 percent in February from January, to 3,097 units from 1,819, and were up 25 percent from a year earlier, according to the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver. In March, sales climbed 32 percent from February, to just shy of a record for the month of 4,371 transactions set in 2004. Sales incre ...

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