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CategoryReal Estate Trends

Tighter Mortgage Rules…Higher house prices…Higher home sales..

TIGHTER MORTGAGE RULES

Too many articles this week about possible changes coming from the Minister of Finance, Jim Flaherty, on budget day March 4th.   Globe and Mail and CTV.ca Where there’s smoke, there’s fire… or at least there is some serious consideration being given to changes in mortgage lending. If you’re a first time homebuyer that’s looking to buy this year, you may want to get your mortgage preapproved sooner than later… talk to your Mortgage Broker.

HIGHER HOME SALES AND HIGHER HOUSE PRICES

And how about the effect of CREA making the MLS public or more accessible?  Will this affect house prices?  Some think it will fuel house price increases…. Read this article from the Financial Post.

Here’s an article from The Star that shouts out ‘home sales skyrocket 87%’.  Wow, that’s a scary number…And here’s another article from The Star that paints a clearer picture… ‘Some encouraging news and numbers’ they say…it can be confusing … but here’s an article with a good graph from  The Financial Post .. look at the figures.. we are still below pre-recession figures…  January 2010 sales were about the same as January 2008 sales..   maybe the market isn’t on fire, maybe it’s just active?

Public mls… $400 flat fee?

Lots of talk about the MLS being challenged to go public or at least become more accessible…. Currently, it’s only available through members.  The Competition Bureau is concerned it may be a monopoly. … read more in the Globe and Mail.  There is talk of a $400 flat fee offer to list your home.

We all want to save money, but be careful…. there is a saying..’You get what you pay for’.

There is also concern that a potentially cheaper MLS will drive house prices higher…. Globe and Mail.

A new Public mls?

Article from Globe and Mail…There has been a lot of pressure on the Canadian Real Estate Association to make the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) more accessible.  The Competition Bureau says Agents that want to charge a flat-fee are being excluded from MLS.   The Competition Bureau says this restricts competition.

This could be the case of winning the battle but losing the war.   A good realtor is someone that can give you the background information about a neighborhood.  All those little things that we forget to ask during the frenzy of negotiating an offer and a mortgage.

Your realtor should be able to tell you about the schools, the local businesses, crime and safety issues, industry concerns, etc.  This is where the true value of a realtor comes in to play.   But I also like freedom of choice… perhaps there is a compromise.

It would be a shame to see a realtor’s services diminished because their incomes go down…  An interesting subject for discussion…

December ’09 best ever for home sales

Hard to believe that we were or are in a recession when you hear reports like this one in the media.   It’s easy to say that this market is interest rate driven…. there’s a lot of truth to that, but there must also be some level of consumer confidence… confidence in having a job, being able to pay the mortgage…   We’ll have to watch and see how the Feds will view these numbers…

Remember, inflation will surely cause the government to raise rates.. up til now, no inflation concerns… Personally, I think it was partly driven by pent-up buyer demand…the market was much slower than normal in September, October and November…  we’ll be watching and reporting…stay tuned..

Real Estate prices expected to remain strong…

Here’s a little more good news…. Real estate prices are expected to remain strong in the first half of 2010 according to an article in the Canadian Press.

Did you know….. a 0.25% rate difference on a $250,000 mortgage adds up to a $3,100 savings over a typical 5 year term?   Factor in that your principal residence mortgage is not tax deductible and add in a 40% tax bracket and you are talking around a $5,000 difference…