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CMHC Roundtable on Housing in Victoria

Victoria Residential Builders Association attended an industry roundtable organized by Canada Mortgage and Housing. Here is a brief snapshot of some of the discussion:

Low mortgage rates will continue for some time, inflation is contained

BC is experiencing the strongest job growth in 20 years and leads Canada at 3.2%

Unemployment remains at about 6% – not declining because workforce is expanding

Job growth is 5.9% in Vancouver, 3.6% in Victoria

Weaker in resource-based communities but still improved over previous years

Victoria is a sellers market with 48% improvement in home sales over last year

Low inventory for both sales and rentals

There are 26,000 purpose-built rentals in Victoria and another estimated 26,000 secondary suites, both legal and illegal

Houses continue to sell quickly, however there appears to be a reduction in number of offers vs spring

Listings are down -38%, prices are up 12%  year-to-date

Avg price for single detached is $683,584, condo is $340,590

Housing starts are forecast to be 2,100 – 2,300 for 2016

Rising government fees, regulations, amenities, taxes and obstructions to rezoning continue to present challenges to affordability

Skill shortages are exacerbated by the combination of a strong market and retiring baby boomers

Governments’ inability to effectively address homeless challenges are having a significant negative impact in Victoria’s core

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