Whether it was the intended consequence or not, Canada’s tough new mortgage qualification rules have made it harder for many people to buy homes, which has led to a lull in activity in the country’s hottest real estate markets.
In B.C., “less frenetic housing demand” has resulted in July home sales across the province dropping 23.9 per cent compared with July last year, according to B.C. Real Estate Association (BCREA) figures released August 13.
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Cameron Muir, BCREA chief economist, said, “The B.C. housing market continues to grapple with the sharp decline in affordability caused by tough new mortgage qualification rules. However, less frenetic housing demand has created more balanced market conditions in many regions, leading to fewer multiple offers and more choice for consumers.”
The BCREA’s graph below shows how July’s sales compare with provincial sales totals since 2002.