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THE BROKER : Chasing the dream of homeownership

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THE BROKER : Chasing the dream of homeownership

By Matthew Ablakan
Millennial’s Choice Brokerage

As the housing market in Ontario continues to deteriorate, industry watchers are questioning whether millennials will be able to afford to live in their own homes. More millennials are living at home with their parents, whether their choice or because of circumstance and some researchers are wondering if millennials are giving up on their dreams of homeownership altogether.

However, a recent study dispels this belief.

According to a new study from private insurance provider Genworth Canada and the Canadian Association of Credit Counselling Services, nearly one-in-three Canadian millennials are planning to buy a home in the next two years.

This marks a 7 per cent increase over the 23 per cent of Canadians looking to purchase a primary residence in 2018, according to a recent survey from BMO. The 30 per cent figure supports the findings of Zoocasa’s 2018 Housing Trends Report, which found that 84 per cent of millennials surveyed felt that owning a home was an important life milestone.

The Zoocasa report is corroborated by a new report from Ryerson University’s Centre for Urban Research and Land Development, which has found that over the next 10 years, 700,000 millennials will be looking to move into their own homes in the GTA. That could work out to 50,000 new millennial households every year.

“The needs and wants of millennials are a little different than generations that have come before them,” reads the report. “Many of them are entering a stage where they will prioritize space and affordability over amenities and access to transit. … In an unconstrained market, the homeownership rate for millennials in the GTA could rise from 40 per cent in 2016 to 60 per cent in 2026.”

As millennials in the GTA start to make their housing dreams a reality, more pressure will be placed on an already tight marketplace.

“There will be even stronger demand for the limited supply of ground-related homes across the region, putting continued upward pressure on prices over the long-term, leading millennials to take on high debt loads to take on homeownership,” reads the report.

The report also notes that Ontario has been losing millennials to other provinces as they look for more affordable housing options. This suggests that in the near future employers will have to consider affordable housing if they want to remain competitive.

“Ontario … loses individuals between the age of 25 and 44 to other provinces in search of more affordable housing and jobs,” reads the report. “Retaining this talent and attracting them to the major city centres will require offering them better job prospects and more housing choice, especially lower density housing.”

“Homeownership remains a coveted goal for many Canadians,” reads the Zoocasa report. “However, achieving this perceived life milestone remains as challenging as ever in 2018, as increasing home prices and a rising interest rate environment present obstacles to ownership.”

Over half of millennials surveyed reported that housing is unaffordable in their respective neighbourhoods.

Over 58 per cent of non-millennial Ontarians also stated that housing is unaffordable in their neighbourhood, with 41 per cent citing down payment as the largest barrier to owning a home, according to a OREA/Nanos survey.

“The dream of homeownership is slipping away from an entire generation of young people,” writes OREA CEO Tim Hudak. “Nearly half of Ontarians between the ages of 25 and 34 are still living at home with their parents. We need to take action to address this problem.

For more information on Canadian millennials and how they exist in the real estate marketplace, or if you are looking to explore potential real estate opportunities yourself, please contact us at info@millennialschoice.com

Matthew Ablakan is Broker of Record for Millennial’s Choice Mortgages Inc. Brokerage and Millennial’s Choice Insurance Inc. www.MillennialsChoice.com

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Special Report: A Changing Market

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Special Report: A Changing Market

Millennials are Facing New Challenges

But there are plenty of options for first-time buyers to enter the real estate market

By Mathew Ablakan

Last year, we experienced many significant changes with regards to qualifying for a mortgage. In addition, the Bank of Canada increased their overnight rate twice in 2017 for the first time since 2008. What does this mean for first-time homebuyers? A more difficult process to qualify for a mortgage, less purchasing power and more compromise.

As of January 1, buyers that have a down payment of less than 20 per cent will have to qualify using the Bank of Canada’s Benchmark Rate, which is currently at 4.99 per cent, or 2 per cent more than the interest rate they are being offered by their lending institution (whichever is higher). And the Bank of Canada has already signaled that Canadians should prepare for a series of interest rate hikes in 2018.

So, it seems that this year will be filled with optimism as well as uncertainty. But there are still plenty of opportunities for first-time homebuyers to enter the market. With financial support such as the Land Transfer Tax rebate, HST rebate, Home Buyers’ Tax Credit and the ability to use your RRSPs for your down payment, there is still a lot of hope.

I recommend using a licensed broker who has great relationships with builders as well as banks and alternative lending institutions. This will give first-time buyers more flexibility, as well as options when it comes to making a purchase.

Some lending institutions — not the big banks — have more flexible guidelines that allow them to make certain exceptions when it comes to qualifying for a mortgage. And some builders offer incentives especially for first-time homebuyers.

Purchasing pre-construction real estate, whether a condo or a new home, offers flexibility as well as different options for first-time homebuyers. You have the opportunity to enter into the marketplace without having to dish out money for a mortgage and other expenses right away. All you need to worry about is the deposit the builder requires, as well as a mortgage pre-approval. This gives you lots of time to prepare for your final closing.

With that being said, if you purchase a condo that is going to be ready in three to four years, you might be able to afford something a little more expensive than if you were to purchase it right now. In the intervening years, you may be more established in your career, have a spouse who can contribute and you may be starting a family. All of these factors play a role in purchasing a home. Purchasing a new home or condo gives you flexibility in the event these things change.

But it is important not to overextend yourself when making a purchase. There are more costs to owning a home then just your mortgage payment. You must be prepared for things like property taxes, utilities, maintenance and upkeep, as well as things like cable, Internet and phone bills.

Another helpful tip is to move away from your parents’ way thinking. What your parents were able to purchase just doesn’t exist anymore. That is a fact. That is the reality that first-time buyers are faced with today. There is nothing wrong with purchasing a one-bedroom condo to get your foot in the door. This will allow you to build wealth and help you get one step closer to that dream home.

When it comes to purchasing real estate, there are many different factors involved. I strongly recommend you do your own research as well as consult with different experts. There are some professionals who offer things like buyer seminars.

It is also important to know what you qualify for before you start your search. This will save you lots of time. Also, ask your real estate broker if he/she can recommend a lawyer as well as a mortgage broker. This will save you the hassle of finding someone that is trustworthy and reliable. Always remember that a real estate salesperson or broker cannot provide you with legal advice. The onus is on you to show your contract to a lawyer, who can then provide you with that peace of mind.

MATTHEW ABLAKAN is the founder of Millennial’s Choice, a team of experienced real estate and mortgage brokers dedicated to serving the millennial generation.

MillennialsChoice.com

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First-time homebuyers face new challenges in 2018

First-time homebuyers face new challenges in 2018

Latest News


First-time homebuyers face new challenges in 2018

There are still plenty of opportunities for first-time homebuyers to enter the real estate market.

by Matthew Ablakan

Last year, we experienced many significant changes with regards to qualifying for a mortgage. In addition, the Bank of Canada increased their overnight rate twice for the first time since 2008. What does this mean for first-time homebuyers? A more difficult process to qualify for a mortgage, less purchasing power and more compromise.

As of January 1, 2018 buyers that have a down payment of less than 20 per cent will have to qualify using the Bank of Canada’s Benchmark Rate, which is currently at 4.99 per cent, or 2 per cent more than the interest rate they are being offered by their lending institution (whichever is higher). And the Bank of Canada has already signaled that Canadians should prepare for a series of interest rate hikes in 2018.

Matthew Ablakan, founder of Millennial’s Choice
Matthew Ablakan, founder of Millennial’s Choice

So, it seems, that this year will be filled with optimism as well as uncertainty. But there are still plenty of opportunities for first-time homebuyers to enter the market. With financial support such as the Land Transfer Tax rebate, HST rebate, Home Buyers’ Tax Credit and the ability to use your RRSPs for your down payment, there is still a lot of hope.

I recommend using a licensed broker who has great relationships with builders as well as banks and alternative lending institutions. This will give first-time buyers more flexibility, as well as options when it comes to making a purchase.

Some lending institutions — not the big banks — have more flexible guidelines that allow them to make certain exceptions when it comes to qualifying for a mortgage. And some builders offer incentives especially for first-time homebuyers.

Purchasing pre-construction real estate, whether a condo or a new home, offers flexibility as well as different options for first-time homebuyers. You have the opportunity to enter into the marketplace without having to dish out money for a mortgage and other expenses right away. All you need to worry about is the deposit the builder requires, as well as a mortgage pre-approval. This gives you lots of time to prepare for your final closing.

With that being said, if you purchase a condo that is going to be ready in three to four years, you might be able to afford something a little more expensive than if you were to purchase it right now. In the intervening years, you may be more established in your career, have a spouse who can contribute and you may be starting a family. All of these factors play a role in purchasing a home. Purchasing a new home or condo gives you flexibility in the event these things change.

But it is important not to overextend yourself when making a purchase. There are more costs to owning a home then just your mortgage payment. You must be prepared for things like property taxes, utilities, maintenance and upkeep, as well as things like cable, Internet and phone bills.

Another helpful tip is to move away from your parent’s way thinking. What your parents were able to purchase just doesn’t exist anymore. That is a fact. That is the reality that first-time buyers are faced with today. There is nothing wrong with purchasing a one-bedroom condo to get your foot in the door. This will allow you to build wealth and help you get one step closer to that dream home.

When it comes to purchasing real estate, there are many different factors involved. I strongly recommend you do your own research as well as consult with different professionals. There are some professionals who offer things like buyer seminars. It is also important to know what you qualify for before you start your search. This will save you lots of time. Also, ask your broker if he/she can recommend a lawyer as well as a mortgage broker. This will save you the hassle of finding someone that is trustworthy and reliable. Always remember that a real estate salesperson or broker cannot provide you with legal advice. The onus is on you to show your contract to a lawyer, who can then provide you with that peace of mind.

Purchasing a home is supposed to be fun. It represents the start of a new chapter and adventure. Compromise does not mean settlement. When you are in your home, it should feel like home.

Matthew Ablakan is the founder of Millennial’s Choice, a team of experienced real estate and mortgage brokers dedicated to serving the millennial generation.



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