Bridging the gap between renters and landlords

Mark Hawkins talks about how Rentfaster.ca evolved from a small local website to a national brand by stressing customer service

Bridging the gap between renters and landlordsMark Hawkins is president and owner of Rentfaster.ca. What is RentFaster? When did it start and how does it work? Hawkins: Technically, Rentfaster.ca is an Internet listing service (ILS), but really it’s a website that’s designed to help landlords and renters connect. Rentfaster.ca started in 2003 and has evolved over the years to really help…

Housing collapse in Canada unlikely

Significant differences between Canada today and the 2008-2009 U.S. housing market crash: CPA Canada report

Housing collapse in Canada unlikelyThe biggest risk to Canada’s housing market has always been its most obvious risk: a high household debt-to-income ratio. A report released on Monday by CPA Canada (Chartered Professional Accountants Canada) cited a recent Bank of Canada study estimating that the total household debt-to-income ratio exceeds a record 170 per cent. But it also says…

Young entrepreneur crowdfunding to launch home in a bag concept

Prototype aims to provide protection and connection for those who are affected by displacement and natural disaster

A former Calgary Bow Valley College student is testing out his “LO8OP Home in a Bag” concept until the end of the month to brave the elements and raise money to move the idea to commercial production. Micah Louison, 24, is camping outside his family’s northeast Calgary home in the Bridgeland area until the end of…

Millennials giving up on ever owning a home in a Canadian city

It now takes 53.5 per cent of your income to service the costs of buying a single-family home

Millennials giving up on ever owning a home in a Canadian cityThe proportion of household income needed to service the costs of a single-family home grew to 53.5 per cent in the first quarter of 2018, according to a report released Wednesday. And that is one reason Canadians, especially millennials, are abandoning their dream of ever owning housing in the city and and are now looking to…

Mortgage stress test suppressing housing activity, says report

A Mortgage Professionals Canada report says the effects of federal policies are especially concerning in areas already dealing with economic instability, notably Alberta

Mortgage stress test suppressing housing activity, says reportA report by Mortgage Professionals Canada says new federal government policies are suppressing housing activity in the country. The Report on the Housing and Mortgage Market in Canada, which was released on Wednesday, also said the overall strength of consumer sentiment has been weakened by increasing interest rates and the new rules making it more…

CMHC mortgage changes aimed at helping self-employed own homes

Changes target Canadians who may have difficulty qualifying for a mortgage as their incomes may vary or become less predictable

CMHC mortgage changes aimed at helping self-employed own homesCanada Mortgage and Housing Corp. is making it easier for self-employed people to own homes. The federal agency has introduced some changes to help self-employed Canadians who may have difficulty qualifying for a mortgage as their incomes may vary or become less predictable. The CMHC said on Thursday that self-employed Canadians represent about 15 per…

City hall holds the key to solving Canada’s urban housing crisis

As centres for jobs, education and innovation, municipalities play an outsized role in Canada’s continued prosperity

City hall holds the key to solving Canada’s urban housing crisisBy Kenneth P. Green and Josef Filipowicz The Fraser Institute For mayors, councillors and city staff in Canada’s largest cities, housing affordability is – or should be – top of mind. With the cost of owning a home out of reach for many, and the ability to rent hampered by virtually non-existent vacancies in the…

Saskatchewan budget misses opportunity on rental housing assistance

It’s more effective to supplement rents in times of high vacancy because each dollar spent gets the tenant more

Saskatchewan budget misses opportunity on rental housing assistanceIn the recent Saskatchewan budget, the government made the surprise announcement that it would slowly phase out a rental housing assistance program known as the Saskatchewan Rental Housing Supplement. Given current rental housing market realities, the government ought to have done the complete opposite and expanded the program. High vacancy rates create a desirable climate…

In Florida, they’re snowbirds, in B.C., they’re speculators

Penalizing foreign homebuyers fails to address the fundamental problem: a lack of available houses

In Florida, they’re snowbirds, in B.C., they’re speculatorsBy Josef Filipowicz and Steve Lafleur The Fraser Institute Florida is a popular destination for retirees and vacationers. Not surprisingly, many people from colder northern states and Canada either rent or own property in Florida to escape harsh winters. In fact, temporary residents in Florida (also known as snowbirds) number more than one million by…

How B.C. can escape its painful housing trap

Instead of targeting affordable housing, B.C. government should be targeting housing affordability

How B.C. can escape its painful housing trapBy Josef Filipowicz and Steve Lafleur The Fraser Institute The B.C. government’s recent budget included a 30-point plan aimed at the province’s housing woes. The aim was off the mark. Most of the plan’s points fit into two broad categories: reducing demand by raising property transfer taxes, for non-residents and on homes over $3 million,…

CMHC lending practices threaten Canada’s economy

Canadians need to ask if they should own a Crown corporation that could cost them dearly or if they prefer to have that money invested in more secure places

CMHC lending practices threaten Canada’s economyThe Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. (CMHC) represents a significant risk to the Canadian economy. It’s dangerous for government to be involved in a venture that monopolizes a significant part of an economy. Canadians are exposed in much the same way Americans were when the U.S. economic bubble burst in 2008. What’s the alternative? Selling…

Non-permanent residents most likely to hold mortgages in Canada’s major centres

Report released on Tuesday by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp.

Non-permanent residents most likely to hold mortgages in Canada’s major centresA report released on Tuesday by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. says the share of mortgages held by non-permanent residents is most evident in Canada's major metropolitan areas. The Rise of Non-Permanent Residents and Their Effect on Housing report found that in 2016, 3.9 per cent of mortgages issued in Vancouver were held by non-permanent…

Calgary housing market moderately vulnerable: CMHC

‘Growth in employment and in the young adult population have helped support housing demand and price levels in Calgary’

Calgary housing market moderately vulnerable: CMHCThe latest Housing Market Assessment report by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. indicates Calgary's real estate market is experiencing a “moderate degree of vulnerability.” The objective of CMHC’s assessment is to identify locations in which there are heightened vulnerabilities to housing market instability from the level of house prices and/or from factors that are known…

King-for-a-day solutions to homelessness don’t work

If we’re serious about ending homelessness, we need to institute long-term solutions across all levels of government

King-for-a-day solutions to homelessness don’t workThree years ago, I set out for clinic on the kind of morning like those we’ve been having in Toronto lately, where the hair in your nostrils freezes with each breath. I had walked about two intersections before I realized my fingers were stiff from cold – of course, I had forgotten my gloves. So…

The urban squeeze myth laid bare

Concerns about density are misplaced – Toronto and Vancouver have plenty of room to grow up and grow more affordable

The urban squeeze myth laid bareBy Josef Filipowicz and Kenneth P. Green The Fraser Institute Headlines about housing affordability in Canada mainly concern two cities – Toronto and Vancouver. In both cities and their surrounding areas, rental vacancies hover at or below one per cent, and home prices remain historically high. So Canada’s most desirable markets face tremendous pressure to…
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