Surge in Housing: CMHC
Data released on Monday by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) showed an increase in housing starts in May, and revised figures show better levels for April. Overall, the housing market is roughly in line with last year and still lower than 2012 – the ‘soft landing’ we’ve been expecting. Although increasing figures are good to see, they should be taken in the context of the harsh winter and its effect on construction, with the better weather providing conditions to catch up on lost time. Single detached housing saw the main growth, condos slipped back. Read the full story
Credit Unions Take On Banks
With mortgage wars between banks seeing rates fall to as low as 2.97 per cent for a five-year deal, they are now facing increased competitions from credit unions. With lower burdens of regulation and structural costs, credit unions are now offering home loans for as little as 2.79 per cent on a five-year deal and some brokers are reducing their commission to cut the rate to 2.69 per cent. Read the full story
Mortgage Insurance – Is it Necessary?
A large percentage of us take out mortgage insurance when buying a property as it seems the sensible thing to do. We’re making our largest investment, taking on a big debt, and apart from that, this is about the security of our home. But is there a better way of looking at mortgage insurance? Should we have it at all, and do we actually need it? Some people may find they are already covered in the event of loss of income, illness or death. Read the full story
Your Historic Winnipeg Property – Or Is It?
New rules came into effect at the start of this month which changes the way Winnipeg designates historic buildings. City officials say the change has cut the number of properties awaiting assessment by 70 per cent but that it does not mean that Winnipeg’s heritage will suddenly start to be demolished. Although it means that many properties will no longer have the special protection afforded by the previous rules, any changes to those buildings will still be subject to the usual planning laws of the city and assessed accordingly. Read the full story
Flood Protection for Calgary to Be Scaled Back
The City of Calgary will have to scale back its plans for flood protection after the provincial government announced its grant scheme yesterday. The total amount of grants available to towns and cities in Alberta is $325 million over the next three years; Calgary’s plans alone amount to over $300 million. City officials say that although they will, of course, apply for as much funding as they need for projects, they do not expect to get the entire amount they had hoped for and will therefore have to make adjustments. Read the full story
More growth for the housing market, but is it just a post-winter catch up? ... Credit unions undercut banks on mortgage rates ... Is mortgage insurance really necessary? … And why that historic property may not be special any more…