Real Estate in the News

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This week’s top real estate news in Ontario and how your real estate business could be affected.

Toronto leads Vancouver in luxury home market
Sales of $1-million-plus Toronto-area single-family homes rose 83 per cent year over year in July and August. That’s 3,026 homes, with 55 per cent of them inside Toronto’s borders. Meanwhile, Vancouver saw a decline of 30 per cent in July and 65 per cent in August, for a total of 288 sales of $1-million-plus homes.

Tarion needs to increase homebuyers deposit protection
Tarion’s limit for deposit protection is fixed at $20,000 on condominiums and $40,000 on homes. This protection hasn’t been changed in years, while home prices and deposit amounts have skyrocketed.

Fintrac found ‘significant’ deficiencies at nearly 500 real estate firms: data
Canada’s anti-money laundering agency conducted on-site examinations of more than 800 real estate companies over four-and-a-half years and found “significant” or “very significant” deficiencies during 60 per cent of those visits, new data shows. A document obtained by The Canadian Press through an Access to Information request shows that Fintrac conducted 823 examinations of companies in the real estate sector between 2012 and mid June of this year. The federal anti-money laundering watchdog found “significant” deficiencies with the anti-money laundering and anti-terrorist financing controls at 468 of those companies, while 28 companies had “very significant” deficiencies. Meanwhile, 324 companies had only “limited” deficiencies. None of the companies were named in the document.

BC’s foreign buyer tax has ‘little’ to do with Vancouver sales slump and GTA spike: economist
“The foreign buyer tax had very little impact on Vancouver home sales, which have been on a downward trend since February,” writes Paul Ashworth, chief North American economist for Capital Economics. “That supports our claim that, rather than foreign buyers, it is irresponsible lending and rising domestic debt that has been driving Canada’s housing bubble,” he continues.

Toronto’s new home prices are rising faster than Vancouver’s, but don’t blame speculation — yet
An economist with one of Canada’s biggest banks predicted yesterday that prices for homes on the resale market could start rising faster in Toronto than in Vancouver as early as 2017. But when it comes to new home sales, this is already a reality, according to Statistics Canada’s latest New Housing Price Index, released this week. In July, new home prices rose 7 per cent in the combined metro region of Toronto and Oshawa — the latter is part of the GTA but is a separate census metro area — compared to where they stood a year ago, according to the index.

New park to transform Toronto and attract investors
Rail Deck Park, recently announced by Mayor John Tory, is a 21 acre green space that will cloak the railroad tracks between Blue Jays Way and Bathurst Street in Downtown Toronto. It has developers and investors excited about the prospect of condo towers overlooking a large green space ala Central Park in Manhattan.

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