Calgary sees another record breaking month
Calgary’s luxury market has seen another record broken, according to local realtor Mike Fotiou of First Place Realty. Mr Fotiou says that so far this month there have been 75 MLS sales over $1 million. That breaks the previous June record set last year, with almost a week left in the month. This has been a good year for the city’s luxury market, hitting peaks every month with May reaching 94 sales. Read the full story.
Confidence at lowest point in a year
Despite some positive economic markers and the reassurances from economists and Joe Oliver, Canadians confidence is at a low. The Bloomberg Nanos Canadian Confidence Index ended last week at its lowest point since August last year; the index measures people’s confidence in their personal financial position. Confidence is being hit by high gasoline, food and energy costs and uncertainty in jobs. Despite reassurances, there is underlying concern over the housing market, with many Canadians still concerned about a price crash leaving them with negative equity in their properties. Read the full story.
Ottawa opens the secret door to planning mysteries
Normally only city planners and developers get to be at pre-planning meetings but a pilot scheme is going to change that. The one year experiment will allow a representative from a registered community association to attend the meeting. As with any new idea there are concerns about how (and whether) it will work and there are bound to be teething problems. The main issue being raised is confidentiality, with city officials and developers concerned about sensitive information being made available, and community groups concerned that they may not be allowed to discuss what they’ve heard with the wider community. The scheme is due to start in one part of Ottawa this August. Read the full story.
The other side of the ‘affordability’ story
The stories usually paint a gloomy picture of affordability of homes in the majority of Canada, especially metropolitan areas; however there is always another side to any story. In Vancouver for example, although some will struggle to afford to buy and some will have to tighten budgets to afford repayments, many people can afford their mortgage payments or have no mortgages at all. Read the full story.
Scotiabank changes ruling on injured soldier
An injured soldier, who moved back home after no longer being fit for active service, has had fees for breaking his mortgage cancelled by Scotiabank. The lender had previously told Master Cpl. Martin Pitre, who fought in Afghanistan, that he would be charged $7,000 for breaking the mortgage on his current home. This three month interest penalty was being applied as Mr Pitre was being released from the military rather than being posted. Although the army pays expenses for a ‘final move’ it doesn’t include mortgage penalties. Mr Pitre is financing his new home with Scotiabank so is questioning why there should be a fee at all. The bank has now cancelled the fees and apologized to Mr Pitre, saying they are proud supporters of Canadian Armed Forces and says it ‘erred’ in not offering to port the mortgage. Read the full story.