Category Archives: predictions

Chicken vs Egg: Retail Sales and Housing Bubbles

Southseacompany pointed out this article in the Globe and Mail about the connection between retail sales and household debt.

Falling interest rates between the fall of 2013 and mid-2016 made it easy for Canadians to add debt. The five-year Government of Canada bond yield, on which mortgage rates are based, fell from a high of 2.2 per cent in September, 2013, to a low of 0.49 per cent in February, 2016. This trend made monthly mortgage payments lower and helped spur the housing boom.”

“The reverse process – rising interest rates – is now evident and mortgage debt is getting more difficult to service. The five-year bond yield has climbed to 1.1 per cent and major lenders are slowly raising mortgage rates.

Read the full article here.

Interest free loans get expensive

Bullwhip29 points out an article that says the BC first time buyer loans program will likely cost the government twice as much as they claim.

“The Ministry of Finance estimates that for every dollar of loan proceeds under HOME, taxpayers will lose about 19 cents in administrative costs and foregone interest. This estimate ignores the cost of default losses that may arise if borrowers are unable to repay their loans.”

Read the full article here.

Full-blown crash mode?

Way too early to call this one, but Whistler or Bust points out the steep crash in December prices at the National Bank home price index. This one is interesting because it only measures sales of the exact same property to get it’s numbers.

If you go to housepriceindex.ca and click Vancouver you’ll see a chart that shows the recent dip, which looks like one of the steepest declines on the index so far.

Some realtors have stated that January sales are not looking very good so far and Paul Boenisch posts daily numbers here that are showing listings bumping up in the new year, but not too much on the sales numbers so far.

Paul also has a new website up at clivestevepaul.com if you’re looking for help buying or selling particularly on the north shore.  That’s a shout out to a realtor who has consistently shared daily sales stats for years and years for your amusement and edification. Cheers Paul!

Realtors expect decline in 2017

Praising a forecast market correction in Vancouver as a return to sanity:

Vancouver’s long-awaited housing correction may be around the corner: prices are headed for a double-digit decline in 2017 as buyers drop out of the market, according to the head of Canada’s largest real estate services company.

“Home prices had gotten so out of whack with the growth in underlying wages and salaries that there had to be a correction,” said Phil Soper, chief executive officer of Royal LePage, a unit of Brookfield Real Estate Services Inc. “And it’ll happen in 2017.”

Royal LePage is preparing a formal forecast for release in early January based on data from Brookfield, which also runs the nation’s biggest property valuation company. Those appraisals are used by banks, insurance companies and mortgage underwriters.

Read the full article here.

BC teaser loans panned in media.

The new first time buyer teaser loan program announced by the BC government has met a suprisingly negative reaction in the media, but some online polls show voters approve.

This move seems designed to undo some of the federal ramp back of housing market fuel. Bearvancouverite points out this might help developers who are seeing people backing out of presales agreements.

This might be exactly why Christy did it. Developers were panicking that presales won’t close because mortgage qualifications would be so different in the next few years, they need to dangle a carrot to make sure speculators don’t just walk away and first time buyers can be convinced to take over presales from flippers.

Scoop points out why this program should be referred to as a “teaser loan” as made popular in the US housing bubble:

Definition of “teaser loan” from investopedia: An adjustable-rate mortgage loan in which the borrower pays a very low initial interest rate, which increases after a few years. Teaser loans try to entice borrowers by offering an artificially low rate and small down payments, claiming that borrowers should be able to refinance before the increases occur.

http://www.investopedia.com/terms/t/teaser-loan.asp

Let’s all call start calling this new program what it is: Christy’s Teaser Loan Program.