This week’s news: Toronto-area couple loses $30K deposit after bad advice from double-ending real estate agent

Toronto couple lose 30k and on top of that, the house of their dreams. The two went through a very depressing period of time, and they're telling their story.
A Toronto-area couple, who went through a “really depressing time” after they said they received bad advice from their real estate agent, hired a lawyer to fight for a $30,000 deposit they lost on a home.

Toronto

Toronto-area couple loses $30K deposit after bad advice from double-ending real estate agent, lawyer says (CBC News)

A Toronto-area couple is speaking out after they say they received bad advice from a double-ending real estate agent and lost a $30,000 deposit, along with the home of their dreams.

“We went through a period we never experienced before, like a really depressing time and really like a time that we were under a lot of stress, because this money was my hard work,” said the husband.

If You Own Toronto Real Estate, This Might Be Your ‘Scariest Chart Ever’ (The Huffington Post)

If you followed the financial drama of 2008-09, you might remember “the scariest chart ever” — a graphic comparing U.S. jobs losses during the crisis to those in previous downturns. The ’08-’09 crisis was by far the worst since the Great Depression.

That “scariest chart” is now history as the U.S. has regained all those job losses. But Capital Economics has published a new one that might just might deserve that same name — if you’re a real estate owner in Greater Toronto.

Toronto home sales decline continues into June (The Toronto Star)

Toronto-area lawns are still sprouting “For Sale” signs even as the number of home purchases continued to decline into June, says online brokerage Realosophy.

It found that sales of houses (detached, semi-detached and towns) across the region were down 44 per cent last week compared to the previous week.

Canada

Chinatown decision: Vancouver council rejects controversial 105 Keefer St. proposal (Vancouver Sun)

“It’s bigger than Chinatown,” said Andy Yan, director of the City Program at Simon Fraser University, minutes after the mayor and council voted. “It’s a signal to the development community that you must consider the surrounding neighbourhood that you’re working in.”

The application, by Vancouver developer Beedie, sought rezoning to allow a 12-storey mixed-use building at 105 Keefer St., with commercial uses on the ground floor, 25 units of social housing, and 106 market condos. Tuesday, after 26 hours of heated council debate and public hearings over the past three weeks, the mayor and councillors voted eight to three against the project, citing the building’s height, lack of adequate social housing and deep community opposition.

Boomers, millennials filling downtown core in Halifax (The Chronicle Herald)

After decades of unplanned urban sprawl, Halifax is starting to grow smart by “filling in the missing teeth” in the downtown core and building out from there — just as planned.

Bill MacAvoy, managing director of the commercial real estate company Cushman and Wakefield, said Halifax is joining the global trend of “repatriation to the core.” He sees two main societal drivers: baby boomers leaving empty nests in the suburbs for a renewed life downtown and millennials who don’t aspire to own a home or vehicle but do want an urban life.

Canadian home prices settle comfortably among the world’s 5 priciest markets: report (Global News)

It’s often said that the third time’s the charm.

And for Canadian home prices, a third consecutive fourth-place ranking out of 55 countries suggests the Great White North’s real estate has settled comfortably among the world’s most expensive housing markets.

USA

Restored Old-World Brooklyn Townhouse Hits Market for $10M (Mansion Global)

A townhouse in historic Brooklyn Heights has hit the market for $10 million, Mansion Global has learned.

The home is part of a larger portfolio Kushner Companies bought from Brooklyn Law School for $36.5 million in 2014 when President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner was then the chief executive. The developer sold another townhouse, one of the six properties in the portfolio, in April for $12.9 million.

America’s Hottest Real Estate Market Is Cooling Off (The Epoch Times)

San Francisco, which had the greatest uptick in home values in recent years, now has the weakest market out of the nation’s top 100 metropolitan areas, with annual prices falling for the first time since 2011.

Single-family house prices in the San Francisco-Redwood City-South San Francisco area fell 2.5 percent in the first quarter of 2017, according to a report by the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA). Meanwhile, home values in the United States rose 6 percent from a year earlier.

‘Uber of real estate agents’ Purplebricks set to launch in California (Proactive Investors)

British real estate disruptor Purplebricks Group Plc (LON:PURP) has its sights on California as it prepares to launch in the United States.

The online agency, which charges a ‘low, flat fee’ for every listing rather than larger fees only to those that actually sell, has proved to have had a winning model in the UK and last year expanded into Australia.

Commercial, Multifamily Mortgage Debt in U.S. Tops $3 Trillion (World Property Journal)

According to the Mortgage Bankers Association, the total commercial/multifamily debt outstanding in the U.S. rose to $3.01 trillion at the end of the first quarter of 2017, the first time it has broken the $3 trillion mark.  Multifamily mortgage debt outstanding rose to $1.17 trillion, an increase of $23.4 billion, or 2.0 percent, from the fourth of quarter of 2016.

“The amount of commercial and multifamily mortgage debt outstanding continued to grow during the first quarter,” said Jamie Woodwell, MBA’s Vice President of Commercial Real Estate Research.  “Almost two-thirds of the growth came from increases in multifamily mortgage debt outstanding, and 80 percent of that growth came from portfolios and MBS held or guaranteed by federal government agencies and the GSEs.”

International

Australia risks housing correction with foreign buyer tax hike (Economic Times)

Soon after Australia’s New SouthWales state announced it was doubling the tax for foreigner homebuyers earlier this month, calls started flooding into Sydney-based real estate agent Shan Lin.

“My phone never stopped, I charged my phone three times, nokidding – overseas clients, overseas agents, my channels inChina,” said Lin, who deals mostly with Chinese-based investors.

Chinese market slows in wake of cooling measures (Independent)

Annual growth in China’s real estate investment slowed in May, the first fall-off in three months, as government curbs cooled an overheated market and undermined investment, taking a toll on new developments.

Worries over the potential bursting of price bubbles in China’s biggest cities have led to a flurry of government cooling measures in recent months as buyer demand appeared to be more resilient than expected.

Is Germany the new safe haven for investors in Europe? (The Investor)

In the wake of heightened political and economic instability across parts of Europe and beyond, Germany is earning itself a reputation as a safe haven for investors.

According to JLL’s Capital Flows Report, the country’s real estate market recorded transaction volumes of 12.6 billion euros in the first quarter of 2017—its strongest Q1 on record. Office real estate continues to take the lions’ share of investment.

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