Mortgage Matters: Is balance returning to the housing market?

As you probably already know, for the first time in five years, Vancouver is now a buyer's market. With Canadians reporting the housing market as balanced between buyers and sellers. 

The makeup of homebuyers has also seen a distinct change from the more traditional trend of buying with a partner/spouse.

Now, 28 per cent of homebuyers are planning to purchase with their family, yet 32 per cent of homebuyers claim that they can purchase solo, according to the latest annual RBC Home Ownership Poll.

More Canadians are taking a non-traditional approach to buying a home

When compared to the past couple of years, buying a home with a partner / spouse has been steadily declining, it is currently at 42 per cent compared to 49 per cent in 2017.

While non-traditional trends, like purchasing a home alone are climbing, at 32 per cent now, which used to be 29 percent in 2017 “We’re seeing a fundamental contrast in who’s at the buying table,” says Nicole Wells, vice-president, Home Equity Financing, RBC. “There is a surge in confident, in-control solo home buyers and, on the polar opposite end, those who are saying they can’t do it alone and need the assistance of family.”

Now that Canadians are challenged with affordability, buying a home and living “house poor’ is or has been a reality for four in 10. Many Canadians tell us that being house poor may be a reality—but it doesn’t have to be. It may just require more effort or time to save more for a down payment. In fact, 47 per cent of survey respondents stated that they plan to put more than 15 per cent down (up 10 percentage points from 2018) and less than one in five (16 per cent) say they will put down only five per cent of the purchase price.

First-time homebuyers—Canadians who anticipate purchasing their first home in the next two years, are most concerned about potential interest rate increases (74 per cent, compared to 59 per cent for all Canadians). More than half of first-time homebuyers (56 per cent) say they may actually buy sooner because of where interest rates are now and concerns of further hikes.

Canadians remain confident and know what they want

81 per cent of Canadians say a home or condominium purchase is still a good investment.
66 per cent of Canadians feel it makes more sense to buy than rent.
71 per cent of Canadians are well positioned to weather a potential downturn in housing prices or an increase in interest rates (63 per cent).
21 per cent want affordability and 20 per cent want to be in a safe neighbourhood.
16 per cent of Canadians are most willing to sacrifice the conveniences of being close to a major highway, 13 per cent for dining and entertainment, 11 per cent for good schools and 10 for public transit.

Tips for success when buying a home

Make sure to get expert advice but always in person, buying a home is one of the biggest decisions and purchases you will make in your lifetime, and for some, potentially several times over. Emotions come into play when the stakes are this high and while modern society tends to gravitate to all things digital, in-person interaction throughout the home-buying journey is essential. Having someone on the other end of the phone or sitting across the table to provide expert advice in real time promotes overall knowledge and confidence in the home-buying process. Matt Gul is a great person to speak to if you need advice on what type of housing would be best for you.

Mortgage specialists and realtors can assist in setting realistic expectations to determine how purchasing a home fits with both your short- and long-term financial goals. It is a real-life conversation for a big life transaction.

Also if you are thinking on buying or selling your properties, or would like to get expert real estate advice, please contact Matt Gul, who is a top luxury real estate agent situated in West Vancouver, who can help you with all of your needs. To contact Matt Gul please call him at 778.888.8888 or email him at

Summarized by: Onur Gul on instagram at @onurguldrone