Port Moody Living
"City of the Arts" - Located at the head of Burrard Inlet, this vibrant city is rich in history and modern development. Steps from seaside parks, mountain trails and lakes, Port Moody is a nature lovers paradise.
Port Moody Real Estate News
Saturday, August 29, 2009
Prices Expected to Increase in 2009
VANCOUVER — Spurred by record-low mortgage rates, provincial real estate sales should continue to rise through the remainder of 2009 from last year’s market fall, according to the B.C. Real Estate Association’s latest forecast.
Home sales have doubled since January’s near collapse in sales, association chief economist Cameron Muir said in a news release. He expects transactions recorded through the Multiple Listing Service to climb some 15 per cent from 2008 to 79,400 units.
Prices, although edging up from their declines through the last half of 2008, will remain below last year’s levels before showing slight gains again in 2010, according to Muir’s forecast.
The provincial average price for a home of $451,200 will be one per cent below the 2008 level, and should show a one-per-cent gain to $457,600 in 2010.
“When we look at the economy itself, we’re coming out of the recession, albeit slowly,” Muir said in an interview. “And the amount of demand we’ve obviously seen — year-to-date and going forward — [justifies] sales around or below the 10-year-average.”
B.C.’s 10-year average for housing resales is about 83,000 units.
Economic forecasts continue to indicate that the province’s recovery from recession will be slow, however. Central 1 Credit Union was the latest with its forecast that B.C. will experience below-average growth until 2012.
Muir’s expectation is for provincial unemployment to average 7.7 per cent this year, and go down only marginally next year.
However, he does expect the slow recovery from recession to start creating jobs that will help support demand for housing at that 10-year-average level.
Muir sees housing as a brighter spot in the economy, which will likely spill over into other areas, such as retail sales.
However, economist Helmut Pastrick, with Central 1 Credit Union, believes Muir’s forecasts are somewhat conservative given the pace of sales in recent months.
In answer to the question why, Pastrick replied, “Interest rates. It’s amazing the power of those low mortgage rates.”
Over the short term, with the Bank of Canada vowing to keep its trend-setting overnight rate at 0.25 per cent until the middle of next year, there seems to be little risk of mortgage rates rising.
Muir noted that most first-time homebuyers lock in mortgages for five-year fixed-rate terms, so they should be insulated from rising rates.
However, “if interest rates climb higher than expected, that’s going to pull demand out of the market as [a buyer’s ability to pay mortgage costs] is eroded.”
In a recent report, Scotiabank Economics senior economist Adrienne Warren noted that the average new mortgage payment in Canada in 2009 declined 26 per cent from its peak in 2007, due almost entirely to the reduction in mortgage interest rates.
Pastrick said the increase in interest rates should “be a self-correcting mechanism,” and if the province does not fall into the dreaded double-dip recession, they should rise as the overall economy improves.
“In a broader sense, at some point [low rates] run their course,” Pastrick said. “We know there will be a rate-normalization phase when economic growth does pick up.”
The recovery of sales, however, hasn’t been shared equally across the province. Metro Vancouver, Victoria and the Fraser Valley have seen relatively sharp rebounds, while the South Okanagan, the Kelowna to Vernon region and Kamloops are forecast to see much slower recoveries.
Muir expects housing starts to remain depressed for the remainder of this year, and not recover by a lot next year.
His forecast is for 14,800 new -home starts by the end of 2009, which is only slightly higher than the most recent low of 2000.
Muir added that if some of those starts do not materialize and they fall below 14,400, that will be the lowest level of new-home construction in the province since 1962.
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
Opposition to More Port Moody Highrises
Some Port Moody residents are concerned the city intends to designate a piece of land in the Inlet Centre area for more highrises.
Several people expressed their opposition to tower developments during a council meeting Tuesday night, saying they felt their input was not included in the draft of the official community plan (OCP).
Port Moody resident Claire Cummings told council the neighbourhood is opposed to construction of more towers and that development on the land north of Newport Village should be used for maximum four-storey apartments.
"Mayor [Joe] Trasolini, you are always saying publicly that in Port Moody we always listen to the citizens," Cummings said during the public input opportunity at the beginning of the meeting. "In this case, perhaps you are listening but you are not hearing."
Last Saturday, council took its first look at the draft OCP during a public meeting. But that review session was abruptly concluded when council decided it could not debate a planning document until more information on various transit infrastructure projects is available. The city has been waiting for the province and TransLink to commit to constructing the Evergreen Line and the Murray-Clarke Connector before it can proceed with its OCP.
Trasolini said there will be plenty of opportunity for residents to raise their density concerns when the OCP review resumes after Oct. 31.
Trasolini added that he would not be in favour of more high-density development if the province does not follow through with its promise of funding for the Evergreen Line and the Murray-Clarke Connector.
Earlier this week, Eric Stansfield, a Newport Village resident, told The Tri-City News that homeowners in the area believe there is no more room for condo towers. He said with improvements to the Pitt River Bridge and new towers in Coquitlam the municipality is already bracing itself for increased traffic.
His concerns are backed up by city studies, which have found 70% of vehicle traffic going through Port Moody originates from outside the municipality.
Thursday, August 13, 2009
Summer Port Moody Real Estate Market
Many of our clients and general public are asking about the market right now. How does it compare to last year at this time? How do prices compare to the peak of 08'?
Well...the answer is not a simple one. There is no question that the market has been busier since the spring, however, how do prices compare as of now? Even amongst Realtors® there is difference of opinions. We have witnessed some properties sell for what we thought were unrealistically high asking prices, and others for what we thought were well below market value.
Perhaps this is due to area specific sales compared to the Real Esate Board's HPI (housing price index) that is published every month. There seems to be a large variance in pricing and list to sales ratio, even within each city in Greater Vancouver. Typically, each city within Greater Vancouver follows each other to some degree. More desirable neighborhoods lead pricing trends and the other areas follow. Now we are seeing a bigger variance from area to area, and even significant differences from attached to detached housing.
Click here to see the Real Estate Board's stats for July 09.
The best answer may be to consult with a Realtor® that specializes in your area.