In The News
September 16-20, 2019
Toronto & GTA
Government-related fees can add an additional $222,652 and $124,582 to the cost of new detached homes and condos in the Toronto region, reports Altus Group. This accounts for 50 per cent more than the average unit in the U.S. metropolitan centres and about 30 per cent higher than other Canadian cities.
Elevated activity in Toronto and Vancouver metropolitan centres has forced the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) has revised its price and sales forecast for the remainder of the year. CREA predicts prices will rise 0.5 per cent and home sales to increase five per cent from the five-year low of 2018. Previously, CREA predicted only a 1.2 per cent gain in home sales.
Homebuyers from Toronto continue to move to more affordable regions of the province. Housing prices in the Greater Toronto Area have increased 57 per cent over the past five years to an average of $801,200; whereas, the average price in regions like Niagara remain below half a million and Hamilton-Burlington are under $650,000.
A report released by Rentals.ca in conjunction with Bullpen Research and Consulting found that the average rental rates declined in Canada for the second month in a row after two straight months of increases. 91 per cent of the cities on the list with the highest monthly average rent for a one-bedroom are in Ontario with nearly 46 per cent of renter households in Mississauga spending more than 30 per cent of their income on rent.
Compared to the same month last year, reverse mortgages in June increase 22 per cent. Reverse mortgages account for less than one per cent of the residential mortgages issued by chartered banks totalling $1.2 trillion. HomeEquity bank is the largest originator of reverse mortgages at $3.11 billion on its books followed by Equitable Bank with $10.1 million on its books to date.
Exhibitions of Canadian property in Hong Kong increase 55 per cent over the first six months of 2019 as compared to the preceding six months. Juwai.com reported that Applications for foreign visas increased 12 per cent in June, 41 per cent in July, and 48 per cent in the first two weeks of August, compared with a year earlier. 320,000 Hong Kong residents already hold a Canadian passport. The choice may boil down to people choosing between earning greater income in Hong Kong or “living in a stable place like Canada but with less pay and higher taxes.”
Blackstone is seizing an opportunity to expand its reach by acquiring Canadian real estate investment trust Dream Global for $3.3 billion at a time when the market is poised to experience lower interest rates moving forward. This represents a growing trend of increased interest in Canadian REITs.
Three-quarters of Canadians say money laundering is an issue within their own province. And. Nearly half of Canadians (47%) are dissatisfied with the efforts of the federal government to combat money laundering. BC is highest at 90 per cent followed by Quebec (83 per cent), Alberta (73 per cent), and Ontario (72%) rounds out the top four provinces that see it as an issue.
Demand for the services of architectural firms for commercial real estate was negative in August, slowing the expansion that began in the middle of 2012. The decrease comes from firms specializing in commercial and industrial facilities as well as those located in the Midwest.
Blackstone Real Estate Partners Europe, a unit of US private equity firm Blackstone Group, has agreed to purchase five hotels in Greece for over $260,000. The five hotel businesses are all located on the Greek islands of Corfu, Zakynthos, and Crete.
China’s economy is being bolstered by the real estate industry amid trade tensions with the United States. Property investment in August increase 10.5 per cent year-over-year adding to the 8.5 per cent rise a month prior. Much like other developed nations, this elevates risks of desk management and a potential bubble.
Apartments valued at S$10 million (C$7.3 million) have hit an 11-year high sales high, with a direct correlation with increased demand from China. 68 condominium units sold in the first eight months of 2019.