It’s that time of the week again, time for another Friday Free-for-all!
This is our regular end of the week news round up and open topic discussion thread for the weekend, here are a few recent links to kick off the chat:
–what happening with housing policy?
–what could be done for housing?
–20% of homeless have jobs
–risk of housing bubble
–lose 25% of buying power?
So what are you seeing out there? Post your news links, thoughts and anecdotes in the comments below and have an amazing weekend!
CMHC has surveyed condo owners in Vancouver and Toronto and found that the number of owners with multiple units is growing.
…the total number of investors in the two regions who say they have purchased at least two condo units in addition to their primary residence has risen nearly 13 per cent over the past two years. Nearly a quarter of condo investors told CMHC that they owned least two units, with close to 10 per cent reporting that they owned three or more condos.
Buyers are looking for both rental income and appreciation, with some interesting math:
Among condo investors in Toronto and Vancouver, half told the federal housing agency that they had bought their investment unit for rental income. Of those, 56 per cent expect the value of their condo to go up, while only 8 per cent thought that it would go down. The share of condo investors in Toronto who expected their unit to increase in value fell to 60 from 64 per cent from a year earlier, while the share in Vancouver who expected their condos to increase in value rose to 50 from 41.5 per cent.
A slightly larger share of investors in Vancouver reported paying higher prices for units than in Toronto, although the survey found that the reverse was true of rents, which were higher in Toronto. Nearly 16 per cent of Vancouver landlords reported charging less than $1,000 in rent for their condos compared with fewer than 5 per cent in Toronto. By contrast, nearly 50 per cent of condo landlords in Toronto said they charged more than $1,500 for their units, compared with 33 per cent in Vancouver.
Read the full article over at the Globe and Mail. So how many condos do you own and how many are you thinking of buying this year?
There’s not a whole lot of hiring going on across Canada at the moment.
For the last 15 months year over year job growth has been under 1 percent. Apparently this makes it the longest stretch of such low growth outside of recessions in almost 40 years of record keeping.
Employers shed 1,000 positions last month, according to Statistics Canada, and the jobless rate rose two notches to a five-month high of 6.8 per cent as more people looked for work. Annual employment growth has hovered at about 0.6 per cent in the 15 months since December, 2013.
The last period of least 15 months of growth below 1 per cent was during the 2008-2009 recession, when often it slumped into negative territory, according to Statistics Canada.
It’s not all bad news though. While full time employment is not seeing gains temporary and self employment is growing:
In the past year, temporary employment has climbed 2.3 per cent while permanent positions are up 0.1 per cent.
Temp employment – which includes seasonal, contract and casual jobs, accounts for 12 per cent of the total. Self-employment has jumped 2.2 per cent in that time, public-sector employment by 1.2 per cent and that in the private sector by by 0.2 per cent.
Read the full article here.
Last week when the Bank of Canada announced their surprise rate cut none of the big banks seemed to be in a rush to announce lower lending rates on mortgages.
We asked which will be the first lender to lower mortgage rates and now we have the answer:
RBC is the first to cut mortgage rates as bond yields plunge.
Royal Bank, the country’s second-biggest lender by assets, offered a five-year fixed rate of 2.84 per cent on Jan. 24, down from 2.94 per cent last week, according to rate-tracking website Ratespy.com. That’s below RBC’s posted rate of 4.84 per cent. The bank also trimmed its three-, seven-, and 10-year rates, according to CanadianMortgageTrends.com, an industry news website.
Race to the bottom or just a good time to renew?
Many Franks pointed out what has to be the most bizarre ‘financial facelift’ feature yet over at the Globe and Mail.
You think you have money troubles? Look at these poor people!
[Eric] earns $200,000 a year working one day a week in a medical clinic. But his real love is teaching, which he does one day a week at a university; this earns him $100,000 a year.
“It is financially possible for them to do the things that are important to them, although by doing so, they will run a cash flow deficit of $50,000 a year until the children leave home,” Mr. MacKenzie says. Over time, their annual deficits will add up to more than $1-million in additional debt.
They are living rent free in a relative’s house (they pay taxes, utilities and upkeep) and “regret not having bought a house years ago,” Eric writes in an e-mail.
Eric and Ilsa are fortunate because their parents are willing to put a home equity line of credit on their own home to extend them the $1-million they need to build, and to finance their annual deficit, the planner notes.