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Stronger Economy Forecast for 2015

VRBA’s Crystal Ball Housing Forecast was presented last week by:

  •  Mayor Lisa Helps, City of Victoria
  • Mayor Ryan Windsor, District of Central Saanich
  • Cameron Muir, Chief Economist, BC Real Estate Association
  • Eric Bond, Senior Market Analyst, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

The consensus is our economy is growing stronger and employment should increase this year.

BC’s economy is expected to post a 2.7% increase outpacing the national average of 2.2%. Important to our exports is the U.S. economy which is expected to grow 3.2%

Greater Victoria’s 1,315 housing starts in 2014 should rise to 1,825 in 2015. Single detached starts increased to 551 last year and will continue to improve. This category is important because it reflects more young people able to secure jobs and start families.

It’s expected that 1,942 new households will form annually during the next five years, a significant improvement over the 1,320 average in the past five years.

In 2014, housing sales transitioned from a buyers’ market to balanced which is good for increasing skilled jobs.

Mayor Helps and Mayor Windsor expressed strong interest in boosting housing affordability in their communities through creative solutions, more efficiency, and partnerships with industry.

Diverse affordable housing is necessary for aging baby boomers, young families, and growing companies seeking employees.

All agree that affordable workforce housing is critical for jobs and a healthy community.

The housing forecast for Greater Victoria is continued improvement and greater opportunity, especially if we work together.

Our column runs Wednesdays in the Times Colonist. 

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