Archive for January, 2019

January 14, 2019

When it comes to determining property valuation, many of today’s real estate professionals are turning to online tools.

It makes sense. Online property value technology is faster and more convenient than a full appraisal. (Note: online property valuation is a nice complement to an appraisal but shouldn’t replace an appraisal entirely.)

Depending on the information source, online technology can be extremely accurate and provide you with an abundance of information at the click of a finger.

But as online evaluations grow, so too do the tools available for the task. What property evaluation technology is best to use? We turned to the reviews for what users had to say.

  1. MPAC Assessment

The Municipal Property Assessment Corporation determines property assessments for municipal tax purposes. It can be useful for real estate professionals determining a property’s value.

That said, MPAC has its limitations. For instance, the tax value can be very different from the appraised value.

“Many clients look at the Assessed Value (which is often publicly available online on your municipality’s website) and assume that the number provided represents the current market value,” wrote Calvert Home Mortgage Investment Corporation.

“While there are a few instances where the Assessment might equal the current value, it is important to understand that this would only be a coincidence as both values are unique and are done for different purposes at different times.”

The definition of market value can assume a hypothetical and perfect market — not taking into account fluctuations or extenuating circumstances.

The Bottom Line: While MPAC can be a good tool in your property value wheelhouse, it shouldn’t be the only tool that you rely on.

  1. emili

emili is the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) decision system for mortgage insurance. It can automatically consider key factors such as the borrower, the property, the market, and the overall risk.

There is one thing that is important to know. If you are using property valuation tools to comply with mortgage stress testing, unfortunately emili is not enough.

emili does not provide a value for a property being financed. Instead it evaluates an area and, based on the value in that area, agrees or disagrees with the value stated on the application. This means that when emili agrees or disagrees with a value, you are not actually obtaining the value of the specific property being financed.

The Bottom Line: While emili has its uses, it shouldn’t be your only online property valuation tool.

  1. ca/MLS

Realtor.ca – the former Multiple Listing Services — is a well-known listing advertising site. But that is where it’s limited. It does not display historical or sold data.

According to reviewers, Realtor.ca:

  • Has limited search functions.
  • Doesn’t always show the newest listings.
  • Isn’t always up to date – some of the listings may have already sold or sold conditionally.
  • Shares incomplete listing info. Public listings don’t include property taxes, number of days on the market, and more.

The Bottom Line: Realtor.ca continues to be a good tool for advertising listings and real estate marketing, but it shouldn’t be used as a property valuation tool. For one thing, it doesn’t always show the most complete listing data. But for another, it is limited. You can only find properties currently on the market — you can’t search for properties that are not yet listed.

  1. GeoWarehouse

GeoWarehouse is Teranet’s property valuation solution, powered by the Province of Ontario Land Registration Information System (POLARIS).

We have worked hard to create a database that is accessible, comprehensive, accurate, and up-to-date. But don’t just take our word for it. Here’s what others have to say:

Elle Peterson, Sales Representative, Kenora Home and Cottage Realty Inc.

“I have found that the GeoWarehouse reports have helped me to be successful in real estate by using the neighborhood sales report when showing clients recent sales in their area.

“GeoWarehouse reports have been helpful in providing the survey of the land and in identifying neighboring lots, as well as in getting particulars on these lots such as who owns them. This is valuable to a buyer, so he/she will know in advance who their neighbour would be. It also helps a seller to have an idea of property lot lines in the event there is no survey.

“I have had success with clients in using the GeoWarehouse reports, specifically the property details to show the particulars of a property including the legal description and how much the property sold for and when it last sold.”

Asghar Jafri

“GeoWarehouse’s map is up to date and it helped me find the location easily. I could not find the same location in TREB’s maps.

“I was able to get a comparables report easily. The report gave me a quick list which I used to hone in on the best comparables.”

Brian Wilson, Broker of Record – GlobeCorp Realty, Brokerage

“I use GeoWarehouse regularly to help me in preparing valuation reports for my clients, both buyers and sellers. It is an invaluable piece of the pie in helping to determine what properties in the area have sold for and helps to form a better picture for my clients about the value of their property (or prospective property). GeoWarehouse has enabled me to provide a higher level of service to my clients, and as such I’m seen as a better educated service provider (REALTOR). Thanks to the GeoWarehouse team!”

Gail Johnson, Sales Representative – Prudential Town Centre Realty Inc., Brokerage

“Your GeoWarehouse on-line course says it all. GeoWarehouse makes my job easier because the database is:

1- Convenient – access the system, with varying degrees of support, for up to 24 hours a day 7 days a week.

2- Timely – Title Data contained in the GeoWarehouse database is current to within 2 to 3 weeks and Parcel Registers are delivered directly from the POLARIS database.

3- Flexible – you can search records by Owner Name, Address, Instrument or PIN or search aerial maps; and

4- Reliable – data is derived from the POLARIS database.”

See more reviews of our GeoWarehouse system here: https://www2.geowarehouse.ca/testimonials/

If you would like to try GeoWarehouse for yourself, get in contact today. We’ll walk you through the features and explain exactly how it all works to help you determine the most accurate property value available.

Call 1-866-237-5937 or visit www.geowarehouse.ca.

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January 14, 2019

JANUARY 14, 2018

Home prices trended down in the second half of 2018

The Teranet–National Bank National Composite House Price IndexTM for December was down 0.3% from the previous month.[1] It was the third consecutive monthly retreat. The component indexes were down for seven of the 11 metropolitan markets surveyed: Edmonton (−1.4%), Vancouver (−1.2%), Winnipeg (−0.9%), Calgary (−0.6%), Victoria (−0.4%), Hamilton (−0.4%) and Quebec City (−0.4%). Indexes were up for Ottawa-Gatineau (1.0%), Montreal (0.4%), Toronto (0.2%) and Halifax (0.1%).

The recent trend of home prices is clearly downward in most metropolitan markets. For Calgary December was a sixth straight month without an index rise, a cumulative decline of 2.0%; for Vancouver a fifth straight month and a cumulative loss of 2.9%; for Edmonton a fourth straight month and a cumulative loss of 2.7%. For Victoria, Winnipeg and Hamilton it was a third straight month, with cumulative losses of 0.5%, 1.6% and 1.0% respectively. The Halifax index was down 1.6% from five months ago, Quebec City and Toronto were down −0.8% and −0.2% respectively from four months ago. Only the Ottawa-Gatineau and Montreal indexes finished 2018 in strength, rising 7.9% and 4.8% respectively from March to December and both ending the year at all-time highs.

Teranet-National Bank National Composite House Price Index™

 

 

 

The weakness of most of the country’s large urban markets in the second half of the year meant, as table below shows, that the index was down of flat for five markets for calendar 2018Calgary (−2.6%), Edmonton (−0.9%), Winnipeg (−0.5%), Quebec City (−0.1%) and Halifax (flat). For a calendar year, it was the narrowest diffusion of 12-month gains since the recession year of 2008. Up from a year earlier despite second-half retreats were Victoria (6.0%), Hamilton (4.4%), Toronto (3.7%) and Vancouver (1.4%). As expected, Ottawa-Gatineau (5.9%) and Montreal (4.4%) were among the leaders. The 12-month advance of the composite index, at 2.5%, was the smallest since 2009.

Besides the Toronto and Hamilton indexes included in the composite index, indexes exist for seven other urban areas of the Golden Horseshoe. From August to December, indexes were down for Brantford (−4.0%), Oshawa (−2.1%), Barrie (−2.1%), Guelph (−1.1%) and Kitchener (−0.3%). From September to December, the Peterborough index fell 5.1%. Only the St. Catharines index with its 12-month gain of 8.6% ended the year at a record.

Indexes not included in the composite index also exist for seven markets outside the Golden Horseshoe, five of them in Ontario and two in B.C. From August to December, indexes were down for Thunder Bay (−5.3%), Abbotsford-Mission (−1.7%) and Sudbury (−1.2%), and from September to December the index for Kelowna was down 2.0%. Three of these indexes did not display weakness in 2018, finishing the year with strong 12-month gains: Windsor (14.7%), London (10.7%) and Kingston (9.9%).

For the full report including historical data, please visit www.housepriceindex.ca.

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Good news for those who have resolved to buy a house in 2019: the Bank of Canada overnight rate is staying the same for now.

On January 9, 2019, the Bank of Canada (BOC) announced that the overnight interest rate would stay at 1.75% (the rate set in October of 2018) for the time being.

Part of the reason for the hold was Canadian housing investment.

“…consumption spending and housing investment have been weaker than expected as housing markets adjust to municipal and provincial measures, changes to mortgage guidelines, and higher interest rates,” the BOC stated in a release.

“Household spending will be dampened further by slow growth in oil-producing provinces. The Bank will continue to monitor these adjustments.”

Between mortgage guidelines introduced in January 2018, interest rates increasing from 0.5% of 1.75% from July of 2017 to now, and other measures, such as the foreign buyers’ tax, the Canadian housing market has been slowing down.

But it’s not just the real estate market. With higher interest rates and less disposable income to spend, consumers are spending less on non-essential goods. While there are other factors that drive the economy, the drop in consumer spending is having an effect.

The real estate market wasn’t the only reason for the BOC’s decision. Two other factors were the global economic outlook – particularly the U.S.-China trade conflict — and global oil prices. The BOC has said it will continue to monitor these items.

Interest rate increases have been predicted to slow down in 2019, but the BOC doesn’t think they’ll stop altogether.

“Weighing all of these factors, Governing Council continues to judge that the policy interest rate will need to rise over time into a neutral range to achieve the inflation target,” the BOC stated.

“The appropriate pace of rate increases will depend on how the outlook evolves, with a particular focus on developments in oil markets, the Canadian housing market, and global trade policy.”

The next Bank of Canada interest rate announcement is scheduled for March 6, 2019. View the full text of the BOC’s January 9 decision here: https://www.bankofcanada.ca/2019/01/fad-press-release-2019-01-09/.

No matter what changes with interest rates, or the Canadian real estate market, GeoWarehouse has tools that can help. Our property information enables you to stay on top of a changing market.

Contact us today to learn more about becoming a subscriber. Call 1-866-237-5937 or visit www.geowarehouse.ca.

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