The aftermath of the coronavirus pandemic has altered our lifestyles, the economy and even the housing sector. A new normal has spawned in the wake of the public health crisis. It might take time to adjust, especially if the virus outbreak lingers as many health experts forecast. This means that face masks, social distancing and working remotely will inevitably be a major part of our lives for quite a while.
As a result, certain trends are beginning to form, including within real estate. Whether it is because office policies have changed or because families think it would be best to steer clear of hyper-dense locations, a lot of households are packing up and moving to rural areas. One of these top destinations is the Kawarthas, with homeowners drawn to the area’s more than 250 lakes and rivers, fresh air and incredible natural sights.
Also known as the City of Kawartha Lakes, the Kawartha real estate market is recovering at a record pace after experiencing a modest decline in March and April. Since then, sales activity, listings and prices have been soaring upwards.
According to the Kawartha Lakes Real Estate Association, residential home sales surged 39.5 per cent in July from the same time a year ago. This also happened to be a new record for July. The median price rose 12.4 per cent to $495,000, up from $488,482 in July 2019. But how could this rural region be skyrocketing amid an economic downturn and in the middle of a public health crisis? Let’s explore.
Why Is the Kawarthas Real Estate Market So Strong Right Now?
A new trend is the growing number of city dwellers escaping the urban centres for the quiet life in suburban locations. This is what is occurring across the Kawarthas, as well as within a plethora of other small towns across Ontario.
“We definitely see the influence of people from the GTA moving here,” said Chiarina Payne, president of Peterborough and the Kawarthas Association of Realtor, in an interview with MyKawartha.com.
Some industry experts were expecting these trends to unfold, given that so many companies have instituted work-from-home policies, allowing many professionals the freedom to work anywhere they want without having to reside close to the city. Plus, with plenty of jurisdictions improving their public transit systems, homebuyers planting roots outside the Greater Toronto Area can still easily commute to the downtown core when they need to.
With demand going through the roof, prices are expected to surge even higher in the coming months within the local Kawarthas housing market. The number of new residential listings is down 18.9 per cent from last year, while the supply of available homes slumped 49.4 per cent. Until new supply comes to market, prices are unlikely to ease.
The other element that is affecting the overall Canadian real estate market is borrowing costs. Earlier this year, the Bank of Canada (BoC) reduced the benchmark interest rate to 0.25 per cent, and the central bank recently cut the five-year mortgage rate to below five per cent. This injection of cheap credit is making borrowing cheap, giving homebuyers more choices and opportunities.
Real estate experts had been warning since the spring that pent-up demand would play a significant role in the industry’s post-coronavirus recovery, whether it is the condominium market in Toronto or a detached house in Kawartha. And sure enough, these forecasted trends have been playing out in real time, with pent-up activity skyrocketing in late spring and well into the summer. But could this continue into the fall season?
Payne is already assuring buyers and sellers that real estate agents will be ready if the second wave of COVID-19 strikes. At the height of the pandemic, realtors kept the sector afloat by embracing digital tools and technology, and employing the necessary public health measures to keep buyers and sellers safe.
Will Kawartha Remain a Top Destination?
The Kawartha Lakes region is more than just a vacation getaway for families in big cities. The Kawarthas affords its residents the chance to trade hectic and fast-paced city living for a slower and quieter lifestyle. Typically, cottage-goers think fondly of the fishing, swimming, kayaking and hiking. But Kawartha also has plenty to offer its year-round residents, including tight-knit communities, little to no traffic congestion, and history dating back to 19th century pioneer days. As the area grows, boutique shops and gastro-pubs have sprouted up along the small-town streets, boosting the local economy.
Industry experts have their eyes glued to the sizzling rural markets, eager to see if this heightened real estate activity will continue into the colder months of 2020.
Why health and wellness will dictate real-estate planning post pandemic – Yahoo Canada Finance
HONG KONG, Oct. 27, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Tailor Insight, the fintech market research organization, recently released a research report ‘Tencent and WIMI Hologram Continue to Explore in the Field of Unmanned Driving’. The so-called AR navigation, just as its name implies, uses augmented reality technology to display ordinary navigation content in the form of AR real-world presentations. By deeply fusing the real road conditions captured by the on-board camera in real-time with the AI, a virtual navigation guidance model is generated, and superimposed to the real road to create a navigation screen closer to the real vision of the driver. The newly released AR navigation by Tencent adopts lane-level precise positioning technology, which makes the navigation guidance signs “fit” more accurately and realistically as if they were on the road. Users do not need to think and react, instead, they can make the right decision according to the guidance of navigation intuitively, which greatly reduces the reaction cost of users.The AR navigation system is part of the Internet of vehicles. The new AR navigation released this time adopts the lane-level precise positioning technology, which is more in line with the needs of users and strives to enable drivers to intuitively judge the navigation route. Meanwhile, it can provide practical information such as the number of remaining parking spaces.The navigation information can be directly projected in the front of the front windshield through the mobile vehicle-mounted projection equipment. In specific applications, the AR navigation can not only display basic travel guidance such as navigation arrows and traffic signs, but also combine scene prediction and personal preferences of the user to provide targeted information that the user needs or is interested in. For example, when the user wants to buy clothes, AR navigation will present nearby merchants/discount information. When a user wants to drink milk tea, it presents nearby shops, or even enters an indoor parking lot, and guide the vehicle to an available parking space, while telling the user where the nearest elevator is. In addition, Tencent also allows merchants to update dynamic information, which means that it has bred countless possibilities for commercial realization. According to Wang Wanxin, the general manager of Tencent Auto Union, mass-produced models equipped with Tencent’s AR navigation will be on the market this year.WIMI focuses on computer vision holographic cloud services. WIMI found that the application layer has gradually become the advantage of unmanned driving in this industry, and then some demands for unmanned driving will be discovered from this industry. In fact, every step WIMI has taken so far is to respond to the market demand and to cope with it.From the perspective of the value of the industrial chain, WIMI Hologram acts as an intermediate supplier, connecting the SDK operating platform and application developers. Apple, Google, Baidu, and Tencent all have their own AR SDK platforms. While WIMI Holographic, as an intermediate platform, is a supplement to the basic toolkit provided by the SDK platform, allowing users to complete software applications more conveniently. The holographic image processing function of WIMI is regularly optimized and improved, including two core technologies: holographic AI face recognition technology and holographic AI face change technology. Due to the development of video processing and recognition technology, WIMI’s holographic AR advertising and holographic imaging services based on image detection, recognition, template matching, image dynamic fusion and replacement are currently in a leading position in the industry.With the development of autonomous driving, people will see various applications and implementations of AR technology in the industry, and automotive equipment requires after-sales updates, which provides necessary opportunities for the corresponding upgrade of AR content and software. Therefore, AR has great development potential. It can be predicted that the market will soon need a platform related to automotive AR. Now, what still needs to be considered is the formulation of a common standard, which means that manufacturers, software developers, and content developers must work together to build a common ecosystem for the upcoming automotive AR.In short, autonomous driving has brought real impetus to the development of AR, but at the same time, AR may also be a key factor in helping the market transition from manned to unmanned driving. In the long run, automotive AR only opens the practical application market of the AR industry, paving the way for AR applications in other industries.About Tailor InsightTailor Insight provides easy and quick solutions that allow customers to capture, monitor, and audit market data from a holistic view down to an individual task on market research and industry trend insights. For more information, please visit http://www.Tailor Insight.comMedia contact Alex Xie, Senior Analyst Fintech Research Team, Tailor Insight Research info@Tailor Insight.com http://www.Tailor Insight.com
Brookfield to acquire mortgage lender Genworth/Sagen | RENX – Real Estate News EXchange
Brookfield Business Partners (BBU.UN-T) announced Monday morning it plans to purchase all outstanding shares of Genworth MI Canada, the country’s largest private sector residential mortgage insurer, in a deal which values the firm at about $3.8 billion.
Brookfield already owns a controlling 57 per cent share of Genworth, which recently rebranded and is now operating as Sagen MI Canada (MIC-T). Brookfield and a group of affiliates and institutional partners will pay $43.50 per share for the outstanding Genworth/Sagen units.
Buying the remaining units will cost about $1.6 billion, of which Brookfield will fund about $606 million and its affiliates and other investors the remainder.
Brookfield’s initial Genworth investment
“The transaction, together with our company’s recent rebranding as Sagen MI Canada, represents an exciting new chapter for the company,” said Stuart Levings, president and CEO of Genworth/Sagen, in the announcement. “We look forward under Brookfield’s ownership to continuing to work with lenders, regulators and mortgage professionals to help people responsibly achieve and maintain the dream of home ownership.”
The deal comes as Genworth’s stock price, like many others focused on the real estate sector, remained depressed amid the COVID-19 pandemic and related economic uncertainty. The stock closed at $35.58 on Friday on the TSX after trading as high as $60 in January.
“We are pleased to have reached this agreement, which will provide existing shareholders of the company with price certainty and a meaningful premium in an uncertain market environment,” said David Nowak, managing partner, Brookfield Business Partners, in the release.
Brookfield bought the 57 per cent controlling interest in August 2019 for about $2.4 billion. At the time, it paid $48.86 per share.
The purchase price represents a premium of approximately 22 per cent to the company’s closing share price Friday on the TSX and a premium of approximately 25 per cent to the 20-day volume weighted average price on that date.
Genworth rebrands to Sagen
Genworth MI Canada Inc. changed its brand from Genworth MI Canada to Sagen MI Canada as of Oct. 13. The company operates Genworth Financial Mortgage Insurance Company Canada, the largest private sector residential mortgage insurer in Canada.
It provides mortgage default insurance to Canadian residential mortgage lenders. As at Sept. 30, Genworth had $7.1 billion in total assets and $3.8 billion in shareholder equity.
Genworth is based in Oakville, just west of Toronto.
The transaction requires a number of approvals, including two thirds of Genworth/Sagen shareholders, as well as the approval by at least 50 per cent of minority shareholders (which excludes Brookfield). It is also subject to a series of court and governmental approvals.
The company expects to mail an information circular for a special meeting in November and to hold the special meeting in late December. The transaction is expected to close in the first half of 2021.
During this period, Genworth/Sagen will continue paying its quarterly dividend of $0.54 per share.
Scotiabank is acting as financial advisor to the special committee. Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP is acting as legal advisor to the company and Goodmans LLP is acting as legal advisor to the special committee.
Torys LLP is acting as legal advisor to Brookfield. McCarthy Tétrault LLP is acting as legal advisor to Scotiabank.
About Brookfield Business Partners LP
Brookfield Business Partners L.P. is a business services and industrials company focused on owning and operating high-quality businesses that benefit from barriers to entry and/or low production costs.
Brookfield Business Partners is the flagship listed business services and industrials company of Brookfield Asset Management Inc. (BAM.A-T), a global alternative asset manager with approximately US$550 billion of assets under management.
In pictures: The most expensive real estate listings around the Edmonton region – CTV Edmonton
The COVID-19 pandemic may have some people holding onto their money a little tighter due to economic uncertainty—or dreaming of living the lavish lifestyle.
We broke down the five most expensive homes for sale in the Edmonton region according to Realtor.ca:
As of Monday, 27523 Highway 633 in Parkland County is the regions highest listed property at a cool $8.75 million.
The more than 7,000-square-foot home is nestled on more than 80 acres.
It includes five bedrooms, eight bathrooms and a chef’s kitchen.
Other features include a 9,600-square-foot car showroom, and a second 3,400-square-foot shop.
The second most expensive listing is 16 Windermere Dr.
The 12,890-square-foot home with an acre of gated property is priced out at nearly $6.5 million.
It includes six bedrooms, eight bathrooms and a 20-foot rotunda lit by a custom chandelier.
Other features include an elevator, Italian glass finishing, six-person spa and a memorabilia room.
The third most expensive listing is located at #2 27509 TWP RD 540 in Parkland County, sitting at an even $5.7 million.
The 6,941-square-foot rests on 2.5 acres overlooking a lake and is fully fence. The home was built in 2009 and has three bedrooms and five bathrooms.
It also has a movie theatre and a parking garage that contains 12 parking spaces.
The fourth most expensive listing on 8606 Saskatchewan Dr. is priced out just shy of $5.3 million.
The four-bedroom, nine-bathroom home includes a rooftop deck that looks out on the river valley and has a 10,000 square foot living area.
The fifth most expensive listing is tucked away on 6240 Ada Blvd, clocking in at a casual $4.25 million.
The five bedroom, seven bathroom home was built in 1912 and is in the Highlands neighbourhood and overlooks the river valley.
The 7,385-square-foot home has hand painted linen wall coverings, oak inlay flooring and four gas fireplaces.
All photos from Realtor.ca
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