(Black Press Media files)

Mortgage stress test losing impact on B.C. housing sales: BCREA

Housing sales have been increasing each month since June across British Columbia cities

The impacts Canada’s mortgage stress test has had in calming the hot housing market by reducing demand are in the rear view mirror, according to the B.C. Real Estate Association.

In its monthly report on August’s housing climate, it saw a 26 per cent decrease in housing sales from the same month last year. But seasonally adjusted, housing sales have been increasing by two to three percentage points since June.

“The B.C. housing market is evolving along the same path blazed by Ontario and Alberta, where the initial shock of the mortgage stress-test is already dissipating, leading to increasing home sales,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA chief economist.

In its quarterly forecast in August, the association reported MLS residential sales are expected to be 21 per cent lower by the end of this year compared to 2017. That’s a drop from more than 100,000 sales to 82,000 in 2018.

In that report, the BCREA placed blame for the sales decrease on the mortgage qualification stress that was introduced in January, which requires all mortgage applicants qualify for a mortgage at a higher rate than they will actually pay. The idea is to ensure the new home buyer can pay in anticipation of rising interest rates.

Muir said static sales, as well as new home starts, have led to a more balanced supply in market conditions in many B.C. regions, compared to earlier this year. That means less competition and multiple offers that typically drive up prices.

The average price for a home also edged back 1.2 per cent from the same time last year, at $669,776.


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Not to become bored the game plan for COVID-19

Board game developed by Crofton family just the remedy for filling time at home

Nanaimo, Royal Jubilee to be Vancouver Island’s COVID-19 frontline hospitals

Other Island hospitals will be admitting COVID-19 patients and will be used in a support role

75-year-old woman rescued from Cowichan Lake

Victim taken to hospital, but expected to recover

March precipitation way below normal

A 36.3 mm total in the Chemainus Valley a far cry from the usual 132.3 mm

Proposed tax increases not sustainable

Seniors’ quality of life taking a hit year after year

Long list of events disrupted by COVID-19 around the community

Challenging situation affecting fundraisers, entertainment, sports and more

B.C. clears more acute hospital beds as COVID-19 case growth slows

Province holding about 40% of beds empty for peak still to come

As 500K+ apply for emergency benefit, Trudeau says aid coming for Canadians left behind

Canada Emergency Response Benefit provides $2,000 per month

UPDATE: UK PM Boris Johnson moved to intensive care after COVID-19 symptoms worse

He has been quarantined in his Downing St. residence since being diagnosed with COVID-19 on March 26

Travellers, travel agents ‘in agony’ over refund policies and customer service

Many Canadian carriers are offering customers flights rebookings or travel vouchers — but not refunds

Introverted and extroverted kids likely to react differently to COVID-19 restrictions

B.C. child psychologist says your parenting approach can’t be one-size fits all in social isolation

B.C. begins taking submissions for $2M COVID-19 research fund

Rural health, impact of shifting hospital resources among priorities

Wearing non-medical masks can stop spread of COVID-19 before symptoms start: Tam

Health officials had previously not recommended wearing them

Most Read