on July 29, 2022 Comments Off on Cement Shortage Puts Pressure on the Construction Industry
The construction industry and companies like SilverBeam Homes are currently pressured by the cement shortage.
Cement, a necessary ingredient for concrete, currently in short supply, so we are seeing delays piling up. We are not the only ones behind right now. While we are waiting on deliveries, other like companies and providers are waiting too.
When concrete contractors can’t keep up with the supply, we can’t get the tools we need to continue our construction projects. We have schedules to meet, and these delays impact our scheduled deliverables to our clients.
What Is the Cause of the Concrete Shortage?
The ready mixed concrete Association of Ontario indicates that the culprits are:
With many cement plants having equipment breakdowns and malfunctions, there has been a disruption in supply. Some plants saw these issues in the beginning of July, causing projects to be delayed and some even canceled.
With production slowed, it has been hard for us to stay up to task. With the issues of finding concrete, our project costs can change, which no customer wants to hear right now. The worst part, it seems we are still in the early stages of the shortage.
on July 22, 2022 Comments Off on B.C Buyers to Be Protected When Entering the Real Estate Market
There are some consumer protections being entered into British Columbia that should help new homebuyers entering the housing market. They made it their objective to outline exactly what those protections looked like before they were released.
The details of phase one were announced. The provincial minister made the announcement at a news conference in Vancouver on July 21, 2022. The measures she described are a definite first in the country. And definitely will protect home buyers from the higher risks of the housing market.
Many home buyers feel like they need to waive all conditions when they are buying a home. But these new legal protections will come into effect on January 1st, 2023. This protection will provide home buyers with a non-waivable protection period after their offer is accepted.
There are fees, so the seller is protected to some extent if the buyer chooses to back out. There is a rescission fee of 0.25% of the purchase price of the home. So the seller would get to keep some of the down payment for being inconvenienced.
Introduction as a Cooling-Off Period
Anyone who doesn’t take advantage of this will only have 3 days to arrange financing, home inspection, and other things necessary to complete a home purchase. Buyers still have the ability to make offers, find financing, and schedule home inspections, but the protection period will give them some additional time to ensure they know what they are getting into if they are working with a condition free offer.
The provincial government consulted with the British Columbia Financial Services Authority before creating their final plan. They also consulted with realtors, appraisers, inspectors, financial experts and legal experts.
The BCREA’s Take on the Plan
Even with all the consultations, the plan is still being seen as controversial. This year, the British Columbia Real Estate Association called the plan ineffectual. They also indicated the plan was finalized without enough consultation.
The British Columbia Real Estate Association’s CEO indicates their extreme disappointment in the policy. They indicate it goes against the advice recommended in May for consumer protection measures as a part of an overall package, instead of this a la carte style.
They see this decision as one that undermines the independence and expertise of the regulator, and that the policy addresses concerns that have changed since the first time the cooling off period was brought up.
The BCREA doesn’t believe that the plan will stand up to the test of the market conditions which are ever changing. They additionally indicated that the best protections could not come from government interventions, but from the BCFSA’s research and decision-making.
Without that, there is no real positive change to be expected, Koot said. The BCREA estimates that 10% increase in bids is caused because of this new system, and they indicate this will drive up prices.
The Good and The Bad Of the Policy
One of the biggest failures of the policy is its failure to address housing affordability’s root cause. This is the lack of housing supply in the province. The plan does however give home buyers some peace of mind, and it does this will also protect the seller’s interest.
Another good is that the province indicates they will be monitoring the impacts and will continue to study advice from the BCFSA.
What’s your take on the policy? Are you excited about the change and the possible benefits to buyers and sellers?
on July 15, 2022 Comments Off on Young People Get the Worst of Both Worlds from Canada’s Housing Market
Just a week ago, the Canada Housing and Mortgage Corporation announced 260 new homes. Of the 260, only 86 of them were considered affordable. With 2 million Canadians currently priced out of the housing market, this announcement was nothing short of an insult. It seems the powers that be are more interested in protecting the status quo and are not focused on disrupting a dysfunctional market.
This isn’t unfamiliar ground though. The last time the government invested a sensible amount into co-operative housing was in the early 1990’s. So a $1.5 billion dollar investment by the government is the biggest investment in 30 years. How far will this investment go? It will go into 6,000 new co-operative housing units. The truth is that City Councils in Vancouver, Montreal, and Toronto are refusing to end exclusionary zoning.
Young Buyers Suffering the Most
Who is bearing the brunt of all this? Younger buyers who have put all their chips to the middle of the table. These young buyers are now experiencing rising mortgage payments and are watching as their equity disappears. Even those who were waiting for the market to get better find themselves getting behind, with rising rates crushing their ability to afford their potential home.
First time homebuyers are not seeing too much of a break, and existing homeowners are realizing an erosion in their equity as much as 30%.
It has been a long time since we have seen a major housing announcement that helps potential homeowners get into their home. What we can’t have is business as usual. Until our government is willing to accept lower prices in British Columbia and other key markets to lower housing prices.
Until our government is willing to make the decisions that will be unpopular, you do have the option to build your own home. Here at SilverBeam Homes, we can help you with that. Give us a call today, and let’s see how we can help you make your dream of owning a home a reality.
on July 8, 2022 Comments Off on Rate Hikes and the Housing Market
It was the intention of the Bank of Canada to do a rate hike that would cool the housing market. While also curbing inflation. We are starting to see that these high interests are subduing some sales activity. But the pain for homebuyers is now starting, as well as for homeowners too.
Interest rates are climbing, and inflation rates are climbing as well. Homebuyers are left to carry heavier financial burdens if they decide to go ahead with their goals of owning a home. Especially affected are first-time home buyers, since they are just entering the market with no equity coming in.
The Double-Whammy Effect
The situation is discouraging for many homebuyers. The interest rates are increasing, but the prices for homes are still high. This means down payments and mortgage payments are going to be higher.
Many expected the higher interest rate to affect home sales. But even though there is a slight shift to more balanced conditions, sales are still at record levels and prices are above the 2022 expectations.
Vulnerabilities for Homeowners
Some strategists expect to see a 0.75% increase in the policy rate by the Bank of Canada. But they are also not discounting the fact that there could still be a full-point hike. The most vulnerable Canadians are those with a Home Equity line of credit or HELOC.
Many HELOCs have variable-rate interest rates, and so when interest rates rise, buyers may find themselves with higher payments out of nowhere. In these cases, the principal is sensitive to the rate hike. This is because a bank’s interest rate on HELOcs is tied to their prime lending rate.
Even if the lender offers a specified period where they offer a fixed-term home equity loan. This is true regardless of the increase or decrease on the principal.
In late 2023, it is expected that the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI) will need borrowers to pay principal and interest when they have a combined loan that is above 65% of the value of the home.
The real estate sector has been underperforming on the stock market with a 22.67% year to date. It is actually the 3rd worst performing sector, coming in after healthcare and technology. However, we are still seeing a popularity in income investigation, especially for choice properties.
The 5.27% dividend is at $14.09 per share, and there has been the return to profitability of the $4.62 billion REIT in Q! Of 2022, thanks to positive leasing momentum and rent collections. The net income for the quarter was almost at $387 million, compared to a net loss of $62.2 million in Q1 of 2021.
The core assets for this REIT are industrial and retail properties, but we see that the residential platform is seeing some amount of growth. Core assets and the development pipeline are or should be focused in the near term.
Rate Hikes Have Consequences
The rules are being tightened by the OSFI. Some mortgage products are seeing this tightening to ensure that homeowners do not end up drowning in a debt that continues to place them into deeper debt. If we are to see a supersized rate hike soon, this could completely freeze the housing market and cause a decline in the value of homes on the market.
on June 27, 2022 Comments Off on Major Canadian Cities – Worst Spots to Buy
Vancouver and Toronto are some of the hottest markets in the country when it comes to real estate, but they have also been ranked some of the worst places in the country to make a purchase.
The annual ranking done by Zoocasa Realty and MoneySense, which puts together the report “Where to Buy Real Estate in Canada”, lists 45 regions. Vancouver was marked as one of the most financially challenging housing markets in the country, and both prospective buyers and residents are not surprised.
The data used in the report shows the average home price for last year at $1,230, 200. This represents a 19% increase over a period of three years. The rankings looked at a number of factors. These include:
Price growth over time
Value and demand
Other Major Cities Considered Worst to Buy
In Ontario, the regions of Oakville and Milton received low ratings, as well as Mississauga and Burlington. Burlington buyers saw the most growth in three years, with the average home price seeing an increase of 67%.
On the West Coast, the report showed that Victoria and Fraser Valley were both bad places to make a home purchase. Fraser Valley includes Abbotsford, which is a city in British Columbia. The numbers indicate that buyers are spending around 34% more than they were spending three years ago. These regions were given ratings of 1.5 and 1.7 stars respectively.
In Calgary, the rating was 1.8 stars, even though there was only a 11% increase in the average price.
Where Should Buyers Look?
The report also indicated the top 10 communities to make a home purchase. Among the top ten were Ontario and New Brunswick.
In New Brunswick, the Greater Moncton area is where buyers can purchase a home at a benchmark price of $302,400. Leading cities in New Brunswick include Fredericton and Saint John. The Ontario cities of Branford and Grey-Bruce Owen Sound areas were among the top 10 as well. This was leading areas in Ontario to include Quite West, North Bay, Huron, Perth, St. Thomas, London and Tillsonburg.
Among the lowest ratings for cities when sorting the list by value were the cities of;
Chilliwack, Kamloops and Vancouver Island were in the middle with Halifax. Quebec City and Charlottetown did not make the list, neither were any territories included.
on June 17, 2022 Comments Off on Desjardins Latest Report – Vancouver Housing Market Correction Underway
Seems each week a new report comes out, giving us hope about the housing market. And the most Desjardins report is in favor of a housing correction on the horizon. Their report covers what the future can look like, as well as how the Vancouver market may change.
Like many other parts of Canada right now, it has become cheaper to live outside of a city. According to the British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA), there is an increase in home prices across the province. The places seeing more of an increase include
Northern British Columbia
The suggestion by Desjardins is that whatever goes up must come back down. And so they expect to see a correction of the housing market in short order. They caution though that there is no need to panic, as the price drops won’t be enough to be considered a collapse of the housing market. You can read up on their Canadian Residential Real Estate Outlook
When Bank of Canada Hiked Interest Rates
Before the interest rate hikes brought on by the Bank of Canada, there was a rush of people trying to purchase homes. Then when the costs of borrowing rose, many potential homeowners no longer wanted or could afford to purchase. This helped to quell the Canadian housing market somewhat. The rise in borrowing costs may even go up further, predicts Desjardins, as depicted by their graph below.
Expectations for the Near Future
It is expected that housing prices will fall by about 15% in BC by the end of the year 2023. This estimated fall will still not match how much house prices rose during the pandemic.
With renewed international immigration, Vancouver is expected to reap some positive results to the housing market. This is because the immigration will limit how hard the market correction hits. Interprovincial migration also plays a small factor, though it appears to affect other provinces more drastically than other provinces.
National average increases saw existing homes rising approximately $530,000 in price towards the end of 2019. At its peak in February 2022, this increase was a bit over $790,000, which is equivalent to a 50% increase in the span of just two years.
In previous months, we have seen prices falling all across Canada, and they have fallen fast as well. In March, we saw a slide of 2.6%, and in April it was down by 3.8%. Even the prices of existing homes have dropped. In March, those declined by 5.9%, and then in April they went down a whopping 12.6%.
Trends in Different Provinces
Every province sees a different trend, but those provinces that saw the biggest increases during the pandemic will likely see the largest corrections. There is however no expectation for prices to fall below what they were pre-Covid.
We are by no means calling two months of data a trend, but we think this is a solid indication that the Canadian housing market is now at an inflection point.
And of course, purchasing an existing home is not the only way to homeownership. Here at Silverbeam Homes, we can help you build your dream home. If you can’t find what you need in the current housing market, give us a call and let’s work it out.
on June 9, 2022 Comments Off on B.C Housing Market Cools – Economy Falls to Middle of the Pack
British Columbia saw a healthy economy last year when compared to the other provinces. This was largely due to a hot housing market and a global demand for B.C’s commodities. We do not see that pace being kept up in 2022 though.
The Royal Bank of Canada – RBC forecasts a 4.2% expansion for the West Coast economy. This shows a decrease from 2021’s 5.9%. British Columbia registered its highest rate of economic growth of the four Canadian provinces. Its increase was second to Prince Edward Island.
The report from Carrie Freestone and Robert Hogue notes that British Columbia will fall to the middle of the pack this year along with Quebec at +3.6% and Ontario at +4.1%. The market leaders will now be Manitoba, Alberta and Saskatchewan. Manitoba is seeing an increase of +4.8%, Alberta seeing +5.7% and Saskatchewan seeing +6%.
2021 vs 2022
Rising interest rates will also affect home resale activity moderately. This will lead to a broadening of the cooling to other regions. With affordability rapidly deteriorating across Canada and especially in expensive markets, property values will be increasingly more difficult to sustain.
We believe that home prices have already reached their tipping point in a number of markets. British Columbia being one and Ontario being the other as well. Slower activity will reduce the contributions made to the economy by the housing sector that was brought on during the pandemic.
The average MLS price for British Columbia in April was $1.065 million. That shows a 12.9% from the $943,765 in the same month in 2021. This year, the projection is a decline to 97,240 units. This is a 22% percent decrease from the record highs of 2021. This is the information provided by the BCREA’ forecast which was released on May 31st.
MLS sales are forecasted to fall an additional 12.4% which is a decline of 85,150 units between 2022 and 2023.
RBC’s Report Forecast on British Columbia
The report forecasts the province of British Columbia will have the lowest rate of inflation in Canada after tallying the numbers. The percentage is 5.4% for British Columbia whereas the national average is 5.8%.
As of April of 2022 inflation sat at 6.7% – this is the most recent month for which data was released for the West Coast. It is expected that the inflation will gradually decrease across the nation later in the year. We can thank energy prices for stabilizing and high interest rates for tempering the demand by consumers.
The forecast also predicts the resource sector capital investment including a number of LNG projects which will boost the economy of the province.
on June 1, 2022 Comments Off on The 5 Vancouver Neighborhoods With The Biggest Jump in Home Values
Since the onset of the pandemic, we have seen rising house prices everywhere, but these neighborhoods are the five highest. Properly recently released a new report that shows data on a city wide level. The estimated values of homes in these five East Vancouver neighborhoods increased by more than the average 18%. The largest increases could be seen east of Main Street.
Why Does It Increase?
The city is becoming more and more desirable as the pandemic restrictions lift and life is getting back to some resemblance of normalcy. People want to experience the day and night activities of the city, and this is driving up demand as well as value.
The increases seen here show a 36% jump in prices. Information from a 2016 census indicates this area was already seeing high housing costs before the pandemic. The housing stock found in this area includes townhouses, detached homes, as well as low-rise apartment buildings.
You find a low proportion of renters here, with just 41% of households rented, compared to 53% across the city.
This neighborhood can be found south of 41st Avenue. Here saw increases of 35%. This area as shown in the report does not correspond with an area that the city tracks demographics for, so we couldn’t add information on historical demographic data.
This neighborhood is also located south of 41st Avenue. The increases here were close behind South Vancouver at 34%. This area was historically family oriented and very ethnically diverse. The stock here includes duplexes and detached homes. The renters rate here is lower than the citywide average. The 2016 census shows that there are more seniors living alone in his area than in the past.
This area saw an increase of 32% above previous prices. This area does not correspond to a city defined neighborhood, so there are no supporting demographics for the area.
This area saw house price increases of 31% and is another area with no city-defined neighborhood.
We are still just watching the market and don’t know if prices will continue to rise, as they have been doing throughout the pandemic. Many experts are predicting a downturn of the market in the near future, and buyers are hoping for this.
We have become so used to the record breaking prices, bidding wars, and low time on market these days, nothing comes as a surprise. Now there are increasing interest rates, as well as changing buying and selling behavior. We are all hoping for a more balanced market and hoping this will arrive soon.
Don’t Be Outbid – Let’s Build You A Home
It’s true that prices are rising everywhere, in every sector and in every industry, but you don’t have to throw away your dreams of owning a home. Here at SilverBeam Homes, we can help you build the home you need from the ground up. Give us a call and let our team take you through the process of building your home with us.
on May 21, 2022 Comments Off on The Housing Market is Cooling Down – What Now?
The housing market all across Canada appears to be cooling down. This is according to the Canadian Real Estate Association’s latest statistics. April 2022 saw a 12.6 percent drop in home sales all across the country compared to March 2022. Not only has sales declined, but the average price of homes has also dropped.
As we see the market change slowly into a buyer’s market, many are excited, and some who were considering listing their homes may even now start reconsidering. We think the best decision for everyone on the scene right now is to consider their personal needs more than the market conditions.
Trying to time the market is very risky, since nobody knows where the market will be a couple weeks from now. The decision to sell or buy a home is to be approached on a case by case basis, taking into consideration the needs of the seller or buyer. The decision really should be a personal one.
What This Means for Sellers
When there is less activity on the market, it is harder for sellers to set their properties apart. They will face more pressure to stage and make homes stand out more so they can sell. And also have to invest in cleaning and maintenance to keep a home up to par while still on the market.
Potential buyers often decide within the first 30 seconds of entering a home whether it is a contender or not. So sellers have to make a big impression, and an even bigger one when in a buyer’s market. When a potential buyer sees a home in good condition that is well taken care of, their perceived value is higher.
For sellers in this market, they will have to go back to promoting homes for longer times before selling. This means more posting on social media and having high quality photos to help seal the deal. For buyers, the dream of owning a home is looking a lot more tangible now too. We hope the market stays this way, at least for a while, so people can get back on their feet and find their homes.
on May 9, 2022 Comments Off on Many Feeling Owning a Home is Out of Reach
Experts in the real estate market are calling for more supply to help quell the rising prices of homes. This is happening all across Canada, and interest rates are rising, showing us that the market is cooling off. But even so, we are seeing more and more people with a lost hope of owning a home. There are some that don’t even see changing their rental situation in the near future.
And this is not just Canadians that are in the low income bracket. Persons making “a good income”, even those who have money saved up for a down-payment are finding it hard to afford homes in their communities. More people are living with parents and hoping to purchase homes, but the dwindling list of available homes is getting worse and worse as the days go by. After all, when you move, you will have more than a mortgage to pay. There will also be other living expenses, and current inflation levels are so high, so is the cost of living.
Many people have downsized their house wish list to fit owning a home into your budget, and it is still not enough.
Why is the Market so Hot?
It’s all due to the lack of supply, says economists, politicians and advocates, but others like us here at SilverBeam Homes believe it is the lack of affordable housing that is preventing people from making the step into homeownership. This is actually pushing people out of the market as they get pre-approved and see what they can really afford. It is sad, because a place to live/sheltered is a basic human right. Sadly, many have been outpriced out of the housing market.
Affordability and 30% Pre-Tax Income
The CMHC – Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation defines affordable housing as being less than 30% of an individual’s pre-tax income. This doesn’t just refer to home ownership, though, it also refers to market-rate rentals and subsidized housing as well.
The median pre-tax household income in 2020 was $55,700. This would make an affordable housing option slightly under $1,400 per month. Many people, even in double income households, think it will be well into their 40’s before they can afford a nice home, or even a good enough one. For many, the only way they may be able to afford a home is to move out of the country, or so many people think. But what if we told you you had another option?
Building a Home
Here at SilverBeam Homes, we can help you make your dream of owning a home a reality. Choose us to build you a more affordable house, and also a custom built house with the features and amenities that will meet your specific needs. If you feel like the current housing market is simply not meeting your needs, we may be able to help you. Housing is essential, and we can help you achieve your goals to own a home.