Trending This Week: Interest Rates Rise, Condo Nation, January Market Chill

Now at the home-buying age, millennials will be closely watched in 2018. Experts say this generation plays a key role in shaping real estate this year.

Toronto

‘Peak millennial,’ condo nation, and other Toronto real estate trends to watch in 2018 (CBC News) 

While avocado toast emojis may be “peak millennial” for some, the term has a different meaning in the real estate world.

It refers to the largest cohort of millennials, born between 1987 and 1993.

Rising mortgage rates unlikely to slow down hot Toronto housing market (The Toronto Star)

A booming Canadian economy has prompted the Bank of Canada to hike its lending rate a quarter of a point for the third time since last summer.

In the near-term, it will likely mean some belt-tightening among those with variable rate mortgages and lines of credit, and with more increases expected, some consumers will be scrimping further as the year goes on.

Toronto home sales shook off summer slump in December, but brace for January chill (Financial Post) 

Resales of Canadian homes rose 4.5 per cent in December from November, the fifth straight monthly rise, likely because activity was pulled forward to avoid mortgage rule changes that hit in January, the Canadian Real Estate Association said on Monday.

The industry group said actual sales, not seasonally adjusted, rose 4.1 per cent from December 2016, while home prices were up 9.1 per cent from a year earlier, according to the group’s home price index

Canada

Canadians more anxious about higher interest rates, monthly bills – survey (Canadian Real Estate Magazine) 

In the latest quarterly survey conducted for MNP LTD by Ipsos, more and more Canadians have expressed concerns about their ability to absorb higher interest rates and service their monthly bills.

Fully half of the Canadian respondents said that they are more concerned about their ability to repay debts, representing a 3-point increase since September. Meanwhile, one-third of those polled said that they would be unable to cover their monthly bills, up by 8 points since September.

Blockchain technology threatens the middleman in real estate transactions (The Globe and Mail)

In Canada’s commercial real estate market, there are countless extra fees and processes involved in purchases that go beyond the price of the property. But blockchain technology could hold the key to cutting down some of those costs by reducing the intermediaries.

Blockchain is essentially an online ledger that manages recorded transactions. What makes it innovative is that the ledger is distributed, meaning anyone connected to the network has a copy of it. The implications of this in commercial real estate are numerous, from purchasing to leasing to management.

Kingston makes top-10 list of best places for millennials to live (Global News)

According to a new ranking by real estate portal Point2 Homes, Kingston is the eighth best city in Canada for millennials to live. The survey looked at the country’s 85 largest municipalities.

In addition to home affordability, Point2 Homes also looked at eight other criteria including incomes, health care, the crime rate, life satisfaction, education, the unemployment rate, climate and what percentage of the population are millennials.

USA

24 Percent of All U.S. Homes Sold in 2017 Were Above Asking Price (World Property Journal) 

According to a Zillow, U.S. homebuyers paid more than the asking price in nearly one quarter (24 percent) of U.S. home sales in 2017, netting sellers an additional $7,000 each. Five years ago, 17.8 percent of final sale prices were higher than the asking price.

Over the past year the American housing market has been struck by the combination of strong demand and limited supply. Young adult renters are increasingly feeling confident enough to buy, but they are entering a market with very few homes for sale, as inventory has been steadily declining for almost three years. Low interest rates have buoyed buyers’ budgets, raising the limits on what they can afford – and may be willing – to pay.

US housing starts down sharply on drop in single-family units (CNBC)

U.S. homebuilding fell more than expected in December, recording its biggest drop in just over a year, amid a steep decline in the construction of single-family housing units following two months of hefty gains.

Housing starts decreased 8.2 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.192 million units, the Commerce Department said on Thursday. November’s sales pace was revised up to 1.299 million units from the previously reported 1.297 million units.

International

Annual house price growth in key global cities falls for third quarter in a row (Property Wire)

Mainstream house prices in key cities across the world have seen annual price growth fall for a third quarter in a row but cities in the United States and Canada are bucking the downward trend.

Overall annual house price growth increased by 4.7% in the year to September 2017, down from 5.8% in the previous quarter, led by Reykjavik with a rise of 21.3% and the only city to record annual price growth above 20%.

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