Fraser Valley/Vancouver (BCREA) – Home sales across Canada plummeted to start 2018. The near-coincident implementation of several new federal and provincial housing policies designed to temper BC housing demand has given rise to competing explanations for what ultimately caused the downturn. Was it the B20 mortgage stress test? Higher interest rates? The provincial speculation tax or the expansion of the foreign buyers’ tax?
You can read BCREA’s latest BCREA Market Intelligence Report: The Impact of the B20 Stress Test on BC Home Sales in 2018 (July 2019). Summary findings include: the decline in home sales in 2018 was largely due to market factors like interest rates and affordability; without the stress test, home sales in BC would have been about 7,500 sales—or 10% higher—in 2018; and approximately $500 million in BC economic activity was lost due the B20 stress test.
Additional economics information is available here on BCREA’s website.