'Good news' for B.C. brokers

'Good news' for B.C. brokers

It’s not exactly good news, but for struggling B.C. brokers, it comes close.

CMHC is now forecasting a stable housing market for British Columbia in 2013, with a modest rise in sales and average prices.

"Factors in 2013 driving the housing market are expected to be a little bit stronger," said Carol Frketich, a regional economist for the Crown corporation. "There is expected to be a bit of a pick-up in job growth next year, economic growth and demographic growth as well."

That should help end the kind of price and sales declines that have further challenged brokers on B.C.’s Mainland.

Average prices, which are already down about five per cent in Vancouver this year, compared to 2011, should rise about 2.6 per cent in 2013. The number of sales will continue to drop this year, will also pick up in 2013, according to CMHC.

That’s a slightly rosier picture than the national one CMHC has painted for 2013.

It is forecasting a moderate slowdown in new-home construction starts as well as sales of existing houses.

In contrast, B.C. brokers should benefit from a slightly brisker housing market, with tighter mortgage rules also increasing their appeal for buyers of all strips, say analysts.