2012: A Year of Developments and Defiance for Canadian Real Estate Sector

July 04, 2014
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We made it! 2012 comes to close and 2013 races into view, with Mayan and Canadian media prophecies of doom and gloom in the increasingly distant past. Now it’s time to glance back and review the changes that the year brought to the Canadian real estate industry. There have been many great successes this year, both for the Canadian economy as a whole and hardworking Canadians across the country on a local level. Let’s take a look at how the major events unfolded, with the Canadian Real Estate 2012 Year in Review.

Let’s start with Canada on an international level.  The country has become an economic powerhouse in the last year, while countries across the Eurozone struggle to return to their best after the financial crisis.  In November of 2012, the Organization for Economic Corporation and Development released a reportsaying that Canada will lead the G7 nations in terms of growth over the next 50 years. The reasons behind this positive opinion of Canada’s economy were stated by the OECD as the following:

For Canada, it’s a fairly young population, fairly well-educated workforce and you have all these natural resources that give you higher growth than other countries.”

Matthias Rumpf – OECD Spokesman

In contrast to Canada, the economies of Spain, Italy and especially Greece have fallen victim to years of imprudent planning and structural deficiencies that continue to plague the world’s stock markets.

Perhaps the momentous change that took place this year from an industry point-of-view was the introduction of new mortgage rulesThe rules, announced in June 2012 were aimed at safeguarding the strength of the Canadian real estate market for the long-term future; in essence preventing it overheating in 2012. Some may say that the changes have worked as designed, with the market slowing down over the final few months of the year, albeit simply cooling downrather than coming to a screeching hot halt as predicted by some misguided analysts.

The housing market has softened somewhat in part because of steps that I’ve taken and I’m happy about that. Less demand, lower prices, modestly, in the housing market are much better for Canadians than a boom followed by a bust. So I’m all for a soft landing.

Canada Finance Minister Jim Flaherty

While the market nationally began cooling as the changing mortgage rules began to take their intended effect, local markets across the country began experiencing an upsurge in their numbers. In Hamilton, Ontario particularly many within the real estate field were surprised at the growth achieved. However, those that followed the trends in the market could predict the upward momentum for the city as residents continued to uproot from the GTA and make Hamilton their home in 2012. The average price for homes in the Hamilton/Burlington market appreciates 7% to $358,000 in 2012, up from $333,498 in 2011. It’s clear that 2012 has been a stellar year for Hamilton and the city is thought to be for another strong showing as we head into 2013.

As the year comes to a close, with the Canadian real estate sector evolving at rapid pace amidst proactive changes to secure the future of the market and the country’s economic stability as a whole, there is a fresh excitement building on a local level. In our position in the industry, we’ve noticed more and more people are becoming aware of the opportunities available to them as investors. And we’ve been delighted by the responses we’ve received within our communications with those in the real estate field.

There’s nothing quite like the excitement of a new year and the potential it holds. While many stories have been written and many successes achieved this year in the industry, there is more positivity than ever about the bright future of Canadian real estate investment. We would like to thank you all for your support in 2012 and we look forward to taking the wheel alongside our investor-partners and becoming a driving force for great returns in the coming year of 2013.