US construction spending fell 2.1% in May

US construction spending fell 2.1% in May
WASHINGTON — U.S. construction spending fell 2.1% in May with both home building and nonresidential activity declining. The Commerce Department said on Wednesday the May decline followed an even larger 3.5% fall in April. Construction spending was also down in March, falling 0.3%. The construction industry has been rocked by the shutdowns triggered by the coronavirus pandemic and with cases... Read More

CMHC expects lower demand for housing as economy takes COVID-19 hit

CMHC expects lower demand for housing as economy takes COVID-19 hit
OTTAWA — Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. expects a drop in home prices in the country’s biggest cities amid “severe declines” in home sales and construction. The federal housing agency says a combination of factors related to the pandemic, such as higher unemployment and lower income, will slow housing starts and push sales and home prices below pre-COVID levels. CMHC says the market likely won’t see a return to... Read More

Five things to watch for in the Canadian business world in the coming week

Five things to watch for in the Canadian business world in the coming week
TORONTO — Five things to watch for in the Canadian business world in the coming week: May home sales Canadian Real Estate Association expected to release home sales figures for May on Monday. The organization’s report for April revealed that Canadian home sales plunged to levels not seen in almost 40 years as the COVID-19 outbreak forced distancing measures and... Read More

Genworth Canada says it won’t follow CMHC in tightening mortgage insurance eligibility

Genworth Canada says it won’t follow CMHC in tightening mortgage insurance eligibility
TORONTO — Genworth MI Canada Inc. says it’s holding steady on its credit score qualifications, despite a move by one of its main competitors to toughen mortgage lending standards. The Oakville, Ont.-based company said Monday its insurance subsidiary, which is among the country’s largest insurers to residential mortgage lenders, “has no plans to change its underwriting policy, related to debt service ratio limits, minimum credit... Read More

Five things to watch for in the Canadian business world in the coming week

Five things to watch for in the Canadian business world in the coming week
TORONTO — Five things to watch for in the Canadian business world in the coming week: Housing starts Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. will release preliminary housing start data for May on Monday. The country’s national housing agency announced last week that it was increasing qualifying credit score for mortgage insurance and limiting gross and total debt servicing ratios in... Read More

Metro Vancouver homes sales fall 44 per cent in May, but prices are high as ever

Metro Vancouver homes sales fall 44 per cent in May, but prices are high as ever
VANCOUVER — Home sales in the Greater Vancouver area continued their steep year-over-year drop last month amid confinement measures and physical distancing requirements. The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver says residential sales totalled 1,485 in May, a nearly 44 per cent decrease from May 2019 and 54 per cent below the 10-year average for the month. However, the figures marked... Read More

CMHC says housing prices won’t have fully recovered by end of 2022

CMHC says housing prices won’t have fully recovered by end of 2022
OTTAWA — Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. says it expects home prices and sales to decline substantially this year and still won’t have recovered by the end of 2022. The federal housing agency says in a special housing market outlook that it expects home prices to decline between nine and 18 per cent, and as much as 25 per cent in oil-producing regions, before... Read More

Tempted by low mortgage rates? Consider fees, penalties for refinancing first

Tempted by low mortgage rates? Consider fees, penalties for refinancing first
Amid plunging interest rates in the wake of the economic devastation wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic, many homeowners have felt tempted to break their mortgages in order to lock in a better rate and save big money. However, those looking to refinance need to understand that there’s more than just the interest rate to take into account when switching mortgages. “Refinance activity has... Read More