Vancouver Lower Mainland commercial sales continue to roll

October 17, 2012

Commercial real estate sales across the Lower Mainland continued to climb, hitting a record $5.71 billion over the last fiscal year as property prices and sales rose, according to a new report.

Of those, the majority was intended for housing development, which is counted as a commercial sale if no houses have yet been built. This suggests speculators think the residential slump will be shortlived, said George Carras, president of RealNet Canada, the real estate information services company behind Wednesday’s report.

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Canadian REITs rallys to new high in 5 years

May 7, 2012

Canadian real estate investment trusts have rallied to the highest levels in five years as rising occupancy and investor demand for yield outweigh concern the Bank of Canada will raise interest rates to cool the market.

Real Estate Trusts Surge Near Five-Year High

The investors in properties from shopping centers and office buildings to rental apartments have benefited as the 10-year Canadian bond yield fell by more than half, boosting the value of their holdings.

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Calgary and area MLS sales rise in February, Activity up 11.6% from a year ago

March 9, 2012

CALGARY — MLS sales activity improved across all residential sectors in February compared with a year ago, according to data released today by the Calgary Real Estate Board.  Calgary and area sales growth pushed February total residential activity of 2,160 sales up by 11.6 per cent compared with February 2011.

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Are Fears of Imminent Drop in Canadian Housing Prices Overblown?

February 29, 2012
SUMMARY
• For several months now, various analysts have expressed fears regarding the residential real estate sector in Canada based on ratios of house prices to income or rent. In our opinion, these analyses do not paint a correct picture of the situation in that interest rate levels were not taken into account.
• The recent advance in house prices in Canada is due to recordlow interest rates at a time when the labour market has registered one of the best performances among the advanced countries since 2007. What’s more, Canada’s demographic profile is playing in favour of the housing sector given that the cohort of first-time homebuyers is presently growing at one of the fastest rates among the advanced countries.

Avison Young – Canada Commercial 2012 Forecast

February 10, 2012

Office

Leasing activity was strong across Canada’s office markets in 2011, with vacancy rates decreasing and rental rates trending upward in most markets nationwide. Canada’s overall office vacancy rate has declined steadily from 9.2% at the depths of the recession in 2009, to 8.3% in 2010, to 7.6% in the closing months of 2011 – solidifying the recovery.

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Avison Young – US and Canada Market 2012

February 10, 2012

Cautious optimism to guide Canada and U.S. commercial real estate markets in 2012; solid fundamentals abound in Canada, while U.S. looks for stability

Benefitting from strong fundamentals, Canada’s commercial real estate markets continued to enjoy stability and growth in 2011 despite global economic uncertainty. Meanwhile, the United States suffered from ongoing uncertainty, with limited good news concentrated in a few select markets.

Each country has its risks and concerns, but better days should be ahead for both as the world deals with its financial issues.

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Bank of Canada – Cautions Real Estate Price at Elevated Level

June 27, 2011

Readers may download the entire report from Source: Bank of Canada.  A few worth-mentioning points:

– A home purchase triggers the biggest liability most families will ever take on.  The value of housing-related debt in Canada has nearly tripled over the past decade to $1.3 trillion.  This debt is also the single largest exposure for Canadian financial institutions, with real estate loans making up more than 40 per cent of the assets of Canadian banks, up from about 30 per cent a decade ago.

– Financial vulnerabilities have increased as a result. Canadians are now as indebted (relative to their income) as the Americans and the British (Chart 9). The Bank estimates that the proportion of Canadian households that would be highly vulnerable to an adverse economic shock has risen to its highest level in nine years, despite improving economic conditions and the ongoing low level of interest rates.5

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