The dream of homeownership is strong among millennials
Nicole and Matt have two small children. Matt is a welder and Nicole works in a salon. Two years ago, while Nicole was pregnant with their second child, they decided it was time to start looking for a home.
They searched REALTOR.ca for their perfect starter home.They needed a few bedrooms, some space for the kids to play in the yard and, ideally, a garage for Matts welding side jobs. They called a REALTOR, spoke with a mortgage broker and made a decision.
Home ownership was not affordable for them at that time. They moved into Nicoles parents house. Not how you expected that story to end, is it?
Unfortunately, this is the reality that many millennials (born between 1981 and 1996) face in Canada today. In research released in October of 2018, conducted by Abacus Data on behalf of the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA), housing ranked as the top priority for Canadian millennials.
In fact, 86 per cent of Canadian millennials who are not homeowners want to own a home someday and 68 per cent of those are passionate about it.
So whats stopping them? In the survey, millennials stated that saving enough for a down payment, the cost of carrying a home with monthly mortgage payments and mortgage interest rates were the top three factors that impacted their ability to enter the housing market. Saving a down payment was listed by 47 per cent of millennials as the top issue that affects their ability to buy a home.
Researchers also asked millennials what impact recent housing policy changes had on their decisions to enter the housing market. The results were shocking, with more than 60 per cent feeling that interest rate increases and government decisions that make it more difficult for people to get a mortgage have had a negative impact on housing affordability.
There is a clear desire from Canadian millennials to achieve the dream of homeownership. Most millennials want to own a home and will be looking to our elected leaders for progressive policies to make those homes affordable.
Recently, proposals from the Nova Scotia Association of REALTORS (NSAR), in conjunction with the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA), have been implemented by the federal government to improve affordability. In March of 2019, the Home Buyers Plan (HBP) was increased to allow first-time buyers to borrow up to $35,000 from their RRSP towards a down payment.
But more can be done to provide meaningful assistance and allow more Canadians to enter the housing market. In the 2019 election, millennial voters will make up the largest portion of the electorate at 37 per cent. With such a large portion of voters identifying as millennials, housing affordability is expected to become a prominent election issue.
That idea sits well with Nicole and Matt, who are still living in her parents basement apartment looking forward to purchasing their first home sometime very soon.
- Contributed by NSAR
NSAR is the professional association for more than 1,500 REALTORS in Nova Scotia.
Residential permits continue to trend down since March peak
Residential permits decreased 8.3% to $6.4 billion in August, the lowest level since March. Ontario and British Columbia drove most of the decline.
Construction intentions for multi-family units fell 15.9%, largely reflecting Ontarios decline (-24.3%). This was despite the approval of high value condominium projects in the city of Toronto.
In contrast, single family intentions were up slightly (+1.2%), led by a 15.7% gain in Quebec. Additionally, Newfoundland and Labrador (+0.7%) reported the first provincial increase in this component after six consecutive monthly declines.
Price growth continues to decrease in August
In August, the TeranetNational Bank National Composite House Price IndexTM was up 1.0% from the previous month. It is now the third consecutive month in which the monthly price increase is lower than the previous month (2.8% in May, 2.7% in June and 2.0% in July). The August index was led by six of the 11 constituent markets: Ottawa-Gatineau (2.1%), Hamilton (1.7%), Montreal (2.1%), Quebec City (1.3%), Winnipeg (1.3%) and Victoria (1.3%). Growth was equal to the national average in Halifax (1.0%), while it was more moderate in Vancouver (0.8%), Calgary (0.8%), Toronto (0.7%) and Edmonton (0.6%). This is the sixth consecutive month in which gains were observed in all regions included in the composite index.
The slowdown in price growth can be linked to the slowdown in housing sales reported in recent months by the Canadian Real Estate Association. In fact, when analyzing the 12-month growth in the number of sale pairsused to calculate the 11 metropolitan indices, this is the first time in twelve months that they have not increased in all cities. Moreover, this slowdown in price is expected to continue in the coming months as the unsmoothed composite index adjusted for seasonal effects rose only 0.1% from July.