Whistler Real Estate Coporation

604.905.8438 | davebrown@wrec.com
Whistler, BC, canada

Whistler Real Estate Coporation
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Whistler Real Estate Market Report- August 26 to September 1, 2019

It was a busy week for property sales in the Whistler real estate market with 16 sales for the week of August 26 to September 1, 2019.  This was the second-highest total number of sales for a week thus far in 2019!

We saw 4 condo sales between $355,000 and $5,225,000, 7 townhouse sale between $507,000 and $3,700,000 and 5 chalet sales between $1,850,000 and $3,101,000.

20 new property listings hit the Whistler real estate market. Click here to view the new listings for the week and the total active listings total is at 294.

Want a more detailed update on the market, contact me directly for more information. 

1Sep

Whistler Real Estate Market Report- August 19 to 25, 2019

It was another double-digit week for property sales in the Whistler real estate market with 11 sales for the week of August 19 to 25, 2019.

We saw 5 condo sales between $388,000 and $1,720,000, 4 townhouse sale between $645,000 and $2,100,000 and 2 chalet sales between $1,350,000 and $2,075,000.

17 new property listings hit the Whistler real estate marketClick here to view the new listings for the week and the total active listings total is at 283.

Want a more detailed update on the market, contact me directly for more information.

25Aug

Whistler Real Estate Market Report- August 12 to 18, 2019

It was a double digit week for property sales in the Whistler real estate market with 12 sales for the week of August 12 to 18, 2019.

We saw 6 condo sales between $210,000 and $1,150,000, 2 townhouse sale between $755,000 and $2,685,000 and 4 chalet sales between $1,600,000 and $3,100,000.

20 new property listings hit the Whistler real estate market.. Click here to view the new listings for the week and the total active listings total is at 290.

Want a more detailed update on the market, contact me directly for more information.

18Aug

Whistler Real Estate Market Report- August 5 to 11, 2019

We saw 8 property sales in the Whistler real estate market for the week of August 5 to 11, 2019.

We saw 3 condo sales between $512,000 and $850,000, 4 townhouse sale between $615,000 and $1,170,00 and  1 chalet sale at $3,125,000 and 1 vacant lot sale at $1,400,000.

11 new property listings hit the Whistler real estate market.. Click here to view the new listings for the week.and the total active listings total is at 283

Want a more detailed update on the market, contact me directly for more information.

11Aug

Whistler Real Estate Market Report- July 29 to August 4, 2019

It was busy start to August 2019 with 10 property sales in the Whistler real estate market for the week of July 29 to August 4, 2019.

There were 6 condo sales between $236,000 and $1,730,000, 1 townhouse sale at $770,000 and 3 chalet sales between $1,562,000 and $7,988,000.  The last sale being the fourth highest dollar sale in 2019 in Whistler!

17 new property listings hit the Whistler real estate market.. Click here to view the new listings for the week.and the total active listings total is at 280

Want a more detailed update on the market, contact me directly for more information.

4Aug

Whistler Real Estate Market Report- July 22 to 28, 2019

We saw 5 property sales in the Whistler real estate market for the week of July 22 to 28, 2019.

We saw 2 condo sales between $488,000 and $492,000, 1 townhouse sale at $500,000 and 2 chalet sales between $1,580,000 and $1,970,000.

15 new property listings hit the Whistler real estate market.. Click here to view the new listings for the week.and the total active listings total is at 283

Want a more detailed update on the market, contact me directly for more information.

28Jul

Whistler Real Estate Market Report- July 15 to 21, 2019

We saw 8 property sales in Whistler real estate market for the week of July 15 to 21, 2019.

We saw 5 condo sales between $206,000 and $949,000, 3 townhouse sales between $739,500 and $2,375,000.

19 new property listings hit the Whistler real estate market. Click here to view the new listings for the week.and the total active listings total is at 283

Want a more detailed update on the market, contact me directly for more information.

21Jul

US Federal Reserve Cuts Quarter Point from Overnight Lending Rate

Interesting commentary from Dr Sherry Cooper the Chief Economist at Dominion Lending Centres on the 25 basis point cut by the US Federal Reserve on overnight target rate:

 

The Fed's Quarter-Point Rate Cut Not the Start of Something Big

The Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) cut the overnight target rate by 25 basis points as expected today. Chairman Jerome Powell, however, said it was designed to "insure against downside risks" rather than to signal the start of multiple rate cuts. President Trump called for "large" rate cuts on Twitter and has for months pressured the Fed to ease monetary policy. It is very unusual for the Fed to cut interest rates in the face of the continued strength in the US economy and the enormous declines in unemployment.

I cannot remember a reversal of policy with so little impetus. Indeed, the opening sentences of the FOMC statement are, "Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in June indicates that the labor market remains strong and that economic activity has been rising at a moderate rate. Job gains have been solid, on average, in recent months, and the unemployment rate has remained low."

The White House pressure is without precedent to the point that Trump publically threatened to demote Chairman Powell if the Fed didn't cut rates. He also proposes to fill vacant seats with known rate doves. This infringement on Fed independence is very dangerous for the credibility of the central bank. Moreover, it will likely weaken the US dollar if additional rate cuts follow quickly.

Consumer spending remains strong; however, a slowdown in business fixed investment was caused by the President's insistence on generating trade tensions with China, Canada, the UK and other trading partners. The global economy has slowed because of this uncertainty. China's economy has decelerated significantly, and manufacturing and agricultural exports to China have been particularly hard hit.

Another issue of concern to the FOMC was the low level of inflation. The Fed targets a 2% inflation rate. The Fed's favourite inflation measure is now running at about 1.4%-to-1.6%.

Two Federal Reserve Bank governors voted against this action preferring at this meeting to maintain the prior target range. It was the first time since Powell took over as chairman in February 2018 that two policymakers dissented.

Today's action was the first interest rate cut since the financial crisis began more than a decade ago. The Fed started to normalize interest rates from historically low levels in 2015 as the US economy was recovering and continued to raise the fed funds rate until December 2018. Normalization of monetary policy also included the gradual shrinking of the Fed's balance sheet--selling bonds into the marketplace, slowly reducing liquidity. Today, the Fed stated it would cease this activity as of tomorrow, rather than the planned date in September.

Bottom Line: The Bank of Canada will not follow the Fed. Canadian interest rates are already below those in the US. While the target range for the US fed funds rate is now 2%-to-2.25%, the target overnight rate in Canada is 1.75%. Moreover, today's real GDP report for May surprised on the high side, suggesting that GDP growth in the second quarter could be close to 3%. This is well above the Bank's earlier estimate and justifies the Bank's remaining on the sidelines.


Dr. Sherry Cooper
Chief Economist, Dominion Lending Centres

Whistler Real Estate Market Report- July 8 to 14, 2019

It was a double digit week with 11 property sales in Whistler real estate market for the week of July 8 to 14, 2019.

We saw 4 condo sales between $216,000 and $490,000, 3 townhouse sales between $929,000 and $1,775,000 and 4 chalet sales between $1,175,000 and .$3,300,000.

18 new property listings hit the Whistler real estate market. Click here to view the new listings for the week.and the total active listings total is at 276

Want a more detailed update on the market, contact me directly for more information.

14Jul

Whistler Real Estate Market Report- July 1 to 7, 2019

There were 7 property sales in Whistler real estate market for the week of July 1 to 7, 2019.

We saw 1 condo sale at $425,000, 5 townhouse sales between $695,000 and $2,100,000 and 1 chalet sale at $2,100,000 .  

8 new property listings hit the Whistler real estate market. Click here to view the new listings for the week.and the total active listings total is at 258.  

Want a more detailed update on the market, contact me directly for more information.

7Jul

Good news for Buyers from the Bank of Canada on qualifying for a Mortgage!

Some really good news for Buyers looking for a mortgage for a property purchase in this update from Dominion Lending Centres. Bank of Canada is dropping benchmark posted 5-year fixed rate from 5.34% to 5.19%.

Here’s some figures from the article on increased borrowing power:

According to Rate Spy, for a borrower buying a home with 5% down, today’s drop in the stress-test rate means:

  • •          Someone making $50,000 a year can afford $2,800 (1.3%) more home
  • •             Someone making $100,000 a year can afford $5,900 (1.3%) more home

(Assumes no other debts and a 25-year amortization. Figures are rounded and approximate.)

For a borrower buying a home with 20% down, today’s drop in the stress-test rate means:

  • •             Someone making $50,000 a year can afford $4,000 (1.4%) more home
  • •             Someone making $100,000 a year can afford $8,300 (1.4%) more home

(Assumes no other debts and a 30-year amortization. Figures are rounded and approximate.)

Qualifying Mortgage Rate Falls For First Time Since B-20

The interest rate used by the federally regulated banks in mortgage stress tests has declined for the first time since 2016, making it a bit easier to get a mortgage. This is particularly important for first-time homeowners who have been struggling to pass the B-20 stress test. The benchmark posted 5-year fixed rate has fallen from 5.34% to 5.19%. It’s the first change since May 9, 2018. And it’s the first decrease since Sept. 7, 2016, despite a 106-basis-point nosedive in Canada’s 5-year bond rate since November 8 (see chart below).
Five-Year Canadian Bond Yield

bond

 

 

 

The benchmark qualifying mortgage rate is announced each week by the banks and "posted" by the Bank of Canada every Thursday as the "conventional 5-year mortgage rate." The Bank of Canada surveys the six major banks’ posted 5-year fixed rates every Wednesday and uses a mode average of those rates to set the official benchmark. Over the past 18-months, since the revised B-20 stress test was implemented, posted rates have been almost 200 basis points above the rates banks are willing to offer, and the banks expect the borrower to negotiate the interest rate down. Less savvy homebuyers can find themselves paying mortgages rates well above the rates more experienced homebuyers do. Mortgage brokers do not use posted rates, instead offering the best rates from the start.
The benchmark rate (also known as, stress test rate or “mortgage qualifying rate”) is what federally regulated lenders use to calculate borrowers’ theoretical mortgage payments. A mortgage applicant must then prove they can afford such a payment. In other words, prove that amount doesn’t cause them to exceed the lender’s standard debt-ratio limits.
The rate is purposely inflated to ensure people can afford higher rates in the future.

Qualifying

 The impact of the B-20 stress test has been very significant and continues to be felt in all corners of the housing market. As expected, the new mortgage rules distorted sales activity both before and after implementation. According to TD Bank economists in a recent report, "The B-20 has lowered Canadian home sales by about 40k between 2017Q4 and 2018Q4, with disproportionate impacts on the overvalued Toronto and Vancouver markets and first-time homebuyers...All else equal, if the B-20 regulation was removed immediately, home sales and prices could be 8% and 6% higher, respectively, by the end of 2020, compared to current projections."

According to Rate Spy, for a borrower buying a home with 5% down, today’s drop in the stress-test rate means:
• Someone making $50,000 a year can afford $2,800 (1.3%) more home
• Someone making $100,000 a year can afford $5,900 (1.3%) more home

(Assumes no other debts and a 25-year amortization. Figures are rounded and approximate.)

For a borrower buying a home with 20% down, today’s drop in the stress-test rate means:
• Someone making $50,000 a year can afford $4,000 (1.4%) more home
• Someone making $100,000 a year can afford $8,300 (1.4%) more home
(Assumes no other debts and a 30-year amortization. Figures are rounded and approximate.)


Bottom Line: Almost no one saw this coming due to the stress test rate's obscure and arcane calculation method (see Note below). This 15 basis point drop in in the qualifying rate will not turn the housing market around in the hardest-hit regions, but it will be an incremental positive psychological boost for buyers. It should also counter, in some small part, what’s been the slowest lending growth in five years.


Note: Here's the scoop on why the qualifying rate fell. According to the Bank of Canada:

“There are currently two modes at equal distance from the simple 6-bank average. Therefore, the Bank would use its assets booked in CAD to determine the mode. We use the latest M4 return data released on OSFI’s website to do so. To obtain the value of assets booked in CAD, simply do the subtraction of total assets in foreign currency from total assets in total currency.”

The BoC explains further:

“Prior to July 15th, we were using April’s asset data to determine the typical rate as that was what was published on OSFI’s website. On July 15th, OSFI published the asset data for May, and that is what we used yesterday to determine the 5-year mortgage rate. As a result, the rate changed from 5.34% to 5.19%.”

Dr. Sherry Cooper
Chief Economist, Dominion Lending Centres