Happy Friday the 13th!
It’s time for another Friday Free-for-all, 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:
–CRA targets more presale buyers
–Santa Claus may not be coming to town
–international students leave after grad
–ban building on farm land?
–REITs under pressure
–Toronto prices in free fall
So what are you seeing out there? Post your news links, thoughts and anecdotes in the comments section and have a magnificent weekend!
There’s likely more to this story than simple discrimination, but a Vancouver couple is claiming they were denied a housing coop home because their second child was a girl.
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) guideline suggests children of opposite sexes can’t share a bedroom if they are over the age of five, but it’s OK for children of the same sex to do so.
Gottfried and Hurtig believe it should be up to parents to decide when and if children share a room.
“I would describe it as being completely outrageous and appalling and just unbelievable,” Gottfried tells Go Public.
“No matter how I thought about it, I couldn’t really wrap my brain around it,” Hurtig says.
The one-income family says money is tight. Getting the unit would have meant their rent would drop from $1,840 to $895 a month.
“It’s discrimination. We get the room if our children are the same sex and we don’t get the room if our children are not the same sex. It’s very, very clear-cut discrimination,” Gottfried said.
Read the full article over at the CBC.
BC Drivers pay some of the highest car insurance rates in the country while receiving the lowest payouts, and yet somehow ICBC is out of money.
A recent report from Ernst & Young painted a dire picture at the Crown corporation, concluding that rates must increase by 30 per cent by 2019 to cover costs. A separate forecast released last November by ICBC indicated rates would need to increase by 42 per cent over the next five years to make up for expenses.
McCandless pointed to a footnote in the ICBC report that an additional $1.5 billion is required in “capital from other sources” between 2017 and 2020. He calculated the cumulative rate hike to be closer to 117 per cent over four years.
Continue reading Your car insurance is going up.
You can probably handle paying an extra $49 bucks, but George Affleck points out that over the past 10 years the city budget has grown 30% while population has grown 9%.
The $1.32-billion draft 2017 budget was released late Wednesday afternoon. It includes a 3.4 per cent property tax increase and other increases for utility, recreation and permit fees.
The city says the increases will go towards greater costs for existing services that are in line with inflation and new expenditures in other areas like social housing, security and the arts.
According to the city, the property and utility fee increases will amount to an extra $49 in costs for a median homeowner in Vancouver.
Read the full article over at the CBC.
House prices never go down in Vancouver, except when they do.
But what about Toronto? The city that seldom thinks about BC?
Prices are up 11.8 per cent from a year earlier.
“In fact, there’s anecdotal information that suggests that foreign investors … are now turning to other cities that are not as expensive as Vancouver, because even that market’s gotten out of reach for wealthy foreign buyers.”
A separate report from real estate agents showed a 2.4 per cent monthly rise in sales in October and a 14.6 per cent surge in annual prices as buyers rushed to get into the market before tighter mortgage rules could take effect.
Taken together, the data showed Canada’s market cooling in most markets outside of Toronto, where a building boom and rising household indebtedness have spurred fears of a U.S.-style collapse if borrowing costs, already rising, spike further.
“Almost all seems to be well in Canada’s housing market, with most regions enjoying moderate sales activity and price gains, Alberta’s hard-hit market stabilizing, and Vancouver’s zany market returning to earth,” Guatieri said in a research note.
“However, accelerating prices in Toronto and its surrounding areas will only increase the chance of a correction if interest rates rise too sharply … and the chance of that happening is now somewhat higher under a new U.S. president.”
Read the full article over at BNN.ca