While officials are expecting the Canadian housing market to take a real hit because of the COVID pandemic, Ontario realtors are still taking steps to protect those who want to buy or sell a home.
The Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA) has issued a series of guidelines to protect the health and safety of not just those in the market to buy or sell, but the realtors doing the deals too.
Most home showings have been done virtually since the emergency was declared in Ontario, and the OREA says that should become standard practice for now. Documents, forms, and acknowledgments should be processed electronically according to these guidelines. The OREA asks that physical home showings should be preceded by thoroughly disinfecting surfaces, and a physical distance should be maintained while interacting with clients directly. The OREA asks that personal protective equipment be used when distancing isn’t possible. A complete list of the OREA’s recommendations can be found on its website.
Now that the Ontario Government has announced a phased reopening, the OREA feels many consumers are looking to get back into the market in person. “The health and safety of our Realtors and their clients is OREA’s top priority during this pandemic,” says Sean Morrison, President of OREA. “As Ontario’s economy reopens, many Ontarians are looking to get back into the real estate market. Realtors are here to help make home buyers and sellers feel comfortable and safe while they work to find their dream home. OREA’s guidelines have been informed by up-to-date information from public health, best practices from the industry and experiences in jurisdictions across North America.”
RELATED: HOUSING MARKET TO BE HIT HARD BY COVID PANDEMIC THROUGH TO THE END OF 2022, ACCORDING TO CMHC HOUSING OUTLOOK
On Wednesday, the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation released a housing market outlook that shows the impacts of COVID-19 will be felt on the industry right through to the end of 2022. Housing starts, sales, and prices within Ontario will be more impacted than some, including B.C. and Quebec, but less than those of oil-dependent Alberta or Saskatchewan.
Real estate listings up in June 2020 over last year, housing report says | CTV News – CTV News
While more homes were sold last month, total sales figures are still off from last year and COVID-19 has a lot to do with it, again.
The Calgary Real Estate Board (CREB) says monthly sales were down by two per cent in June compared to 2019.
Experts say price declines, easing mortgage rates and fewer social restrictions have helped.
“However, the market remains far from normal. Challenges, such as double-digit unemployment rates, will continue to weigh on the market for months to come,” said Anne-Marie Lurie, chief economist for CREB.
The report shows six per cent more homes were listed last month over June 2019, but the benchmark price of a home in Calgary is still down from last year.
The benchmark price is $411,300 while the average home price in the city of Calgary is $460,442.
Sales in other regions outside of Calgary weren’t much better, CREB says. Airdrie’s sales activity was eight per cent lower than last year and sales in Okotoks are well below the 2019 levels and long-term trends.
The housing market in the town of Cochrane fared a bit better, but the increased sales (76) did little to offset inventory, considering 136 new listings were added in the month.
Mississauga man accused of using real estate transactions to commit sexual assaults in Hamilton – Global News
Hamilton police have made an arrest in what they say is a string of sexual assaults that were allegedly committed under a ruse involving real estate transactions.
Detectives say the investigation started last November after reports of two sexual assaults at homes in the area of Pearl and Peter streets.
On Monday, there was a similar complaint about an incident in the same area.
No one was physically injured in any of the incidents.
The investigation led to a Mississauga man being identified and arrested without incident at his home.
Mordecai Berlad, 58, has been charged with three counts of sexual assault and one count of forcible confinement.
Officers think there may be other victims and are urging anyone with more information to contact Det. Const. Buszkowski of the HPS sexual assault unit at 905-540-5543 or anonymously contact Crime Stoppers online or by calling 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS).
© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.
Guelph, Ont., is the best place to buy real estate in Canada: MoneySense – Globalnews.ca
Guelph, Ont., has been named the best place to buy real estate in Canada by MoneySense magazine.
The southwestern Ontario city has topped MoneySense’s Where to Buy Top 35 ranking after coming in second place last year.
MoneySense says current Royal City residents won’t be surprised at this victory, as the average price of a house is listed below $530,000, but added that the real reason is because of strong economic fundamentals.
Some of those fundamentals include Guelph’s 2.1 per cent unemployment rate before the novel coronavirus pandemic and its GDP of 1.9 per cent, higher than the national average of 1.7 per cent in 2019.
“Strong employment and decent average annual incomes give Guelph residents a chance to pay off their mortgage faster,” MoneySense said.
It added that Guelph’s home-to-income ratio is significantly lower than Toronto and Vancouver, where it takes much more time to pay off a mortgage debt.
COVID-19 impacts Canada’s real estate markets
MoneySense also said Guelph’s high buyer demand and strong employment heading into the pandemic will mean the market should eventually rebound once life returns to normal.
According to the magazine, housing prices dropped five per cent between February and March.
The article also noted Guelph’s proximity to Toronto, which is less than an hour’s drive.
London, Ont., came in second place, while Victoria, B.C., Ottawa and Kingston, Ont., rounded out the top five. Waterloo Region came in eighth place.
© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.
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