Economist calls for full Census

Economist calls for full Census

Economist calls for full Census A full Census would better help the industry understand the mortgage habits of retirement age Canadians – a growing segment for brokers, one economist argues.

“A full Census in 2016 (rather than the partial Census that occurred in 2011) would allow us to address some important questions about mortgages in Canada,” writes CAAMP Chief Economist Will Dunning. “I am hopeful that we will collectively decide than an investment in data collection can help us all to make better decisions.”

According to Dunning, 2011 homeownership grow to 58% from 55% in 2011 due, in large part, to increased ownership among older Canadians.

“While there was a substantial rise in the percentage of retirement age homeowners that have mortgages, the share remains fairly low,” Dunning writes. “Unfortunately the data from this source does not give us enough details to assess whether risk has been increased.”

Some questions around this market segment remain, according to Dunning; such as reasons why these older Canadians have mortgages, amounts of outstanding principal, and the affordability of payments today and in the future.

Dunning argues the Census data starts to address myths about mortgage growth among retired people, but that more is needed to fully capture that segment’s mortgage habits.