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Very interesting read!
Carmen Leal Personal Real Estate Corporation
Sunday, 1 January 2017
A Canadian province has an unusual offer for first-time buyers struggling to enter one of the world’s hottest property markets — a cheap loan to bulk up their down payment.
"If there’s no new supply, giving people more money just leads to higher prices"
Starting Jan. 16, 2017 British Columbia — home to Vancouver, the nation’s most expensive real estate market — will start a program to match the nest eggs saved by buyers for their first house by up to $37,500 or 5 per cent of the purchase value.
The unconventional step comes as policymakers scramble to respond to surging home prices in Vancouver and Toronto that have turned Canada into one of the world’s fastest-appreciating real estate markets. Households have racked up a record $2 trillion in debt amid rock-bottom borrowing costs, triggering concerns about the stability of the financial system.
“Too much encouragement to buy homes exposes vulnerable people to excessive financial risk, pushes prices higher where acute supply inelasticity exists – like here in Vancouver – and jeopardizes our economic prospects.”
"Worse, those poor buyers will end up paying higher property taxes than they would’ve otherwise"
Policy measures to cool the market have all addressed demand, not supply. They include a 15 per cent tax of foreign buyers in B.C., stricter federal government mortgage rules, and plans to tax empty homes in Vancouver.
Supply, on the other hand, has stalled, failing to respond to a nearly 40 per cent increase in Vancouver prices earlier this year. The inventory of homes for sale is at its lowest in almost a decade, even as the price of a typical single-family home surged to $1.5 million, about 20 times what the median household earns in a year.
B.C. Premier Christy Clark, whose Liberal Party faces re-election in May, insisted the new program doesn’t encourage risky loan taking, saying only those who meet the newly tightened federal mortgage rules will qualify. It will also be restricted to households earning up to $150,000 and purchasing a property that’s worth $750,000 or less.
The 25-year loans will have no interest or repayments for the first five years.
Lenders won’t treat that government funding as equity because it’s a loan, meaning it won’t reduce the burden on the buyer of saving up — it just lets them pay less for the first five years.
The Bank of Canada said Thursday before B.C.’s announcement that elevated levels of household debt and imbalances in the housing market remain the primary risks to the country’s financial system, but that new rules — including mortgage-tightening ones introduced in October — will mitigate those dangers.
For further information:
Contact Carmen Leal at Carmen Leal Personal Real Estate Corporation. 604-218-4846 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.carmenleal.ca