Canadians optimistic about Housing – RBC

Canadians are brimming with optimism regarding the housing market, according to a new poll released by RBC.Looking at things like the value of Real Estate as an investment, the likelihood of being able to manage higher interest rates and payments, as well as Canadians perceived ability to pay down their mortgages, the poll has painted a picture of improvement and of balance having returned to Canadian Real Estate.

According to the poll, An overwhelming majority of Canadians (90 per cent) are confident about real estate in Canada as an investment and 85 per cent feel that they are doing a good or excellent job of paying down their mortgage, according to the 18th Annual RBC Homeownership Study. Almost three-quarters of Canadians (73 per cent) believe that they or their family are well-positioned to weather a housing drop.

“Canadians believe in the long-term benefits of owning a home including the value it can provide, both personally and as a long term investment,” said Marcia Moffat, RBC head of home equity financing. “Last year’s survey showed that people were looking to buy ahead of rising costs. This year marks a return to more normal levels of purchase intentions and recent housing data reflects this move to a more balanced market.”

Although there is a slight drop in numbers of people expressing interest in buying a home, analysts feel that the numbers are still high overall, and are a good indicator of sentiment. 29% of those polled feel that they will purchase; 55% feel that the time to buy is now- and 45% say that they will opt to wait to purchase ; among those that indicate that they will buy now, 57% said that they will buy in the next 18 to 24 months, while 24% state that they will purchase in the next year.
40% of those polled feel that the market has returned to a balanced position- which is a five-point rise from last year; a significant 69% indicate that they believe the value of their home has increased also a five-point rise over last year’s numbers.

Speaking exclusively to, Matt Daniels, Principal Broker/Owner, Ottawa Mortgage Advisors, is encouraged by what he has seen lately; “It is great that Canadians feel so confident in the economy and real estate market. All of our economic indicators are positive and some indicators are vastly higher then anticipated. For example, our employment growth figures were four times higher than projected for January. In spite of the very high debt levels that Canadians are carrying they obviously feel confident in their job security and their ability to make debt payments.”

Looking at specific regions, in B.C, interest in home purchase has remained steady, with 29% of those polled indicating that they will purchase in the next 24 months.

In Alberta, purchase interest has waned somewhat, with 33% indicating that they will buy in the near future- which is a two-point dip from last year. Albertans also feel the mostly strongly that the market has actually shifted to a buyers’ position.

In the Prairies, conversely, there is sentiment that it is a seller’s market.  Ontario believes strongly that the market is balanced.

Most Ontarians (80%) who intend to purchase have indicated that they will do so in the next one to two years.

In Quebec, the emphasis seems to be on buying a bigger home, where 59% have indicated that they wish to do so.

In the Atlantic Provinces, most feel that now is the time to buy- 74% of those polled.