I suppose it wouldn’t be a normal week in Canada if there wasn’t some sort of debate surrounding the so-called housing bubble that was supposed to have “burst” many years ago. However, if you take away some of the noise, and the politics, there are some truths about our market that should become clear.
First, Canada really hasn’t experienced a significant “bubble” burst in the past. Yes, the global recession of 2008 and beyond, which was in part caused by an American housing and banking bubble, that spread worldwide, affected Canada, but only for a short period of time, and only because our economy has obvious links to the outside world. But our housing and banking sectors remained relatively strong, and have certainly bounced back and then some, which is why the debate keeps raging on.
Our good track record
In fact, this point should not be glossed over. Historically speaking, our housing sector, banking sector, and mortgage sector have been relatively stable. And, although we’ve certainly experienced our challenges, our economy still tends to be well regulated. In fact, some people think it’s overly-regulated. Nevertheless, our exposure to risk has been less than in other regions.
Which brings us to current measures being used to “stabilize” Canada’s housing sector. Again, there is much debate about whether these measures are needed, and what impact — good or bad — they’ll have on the economy as a whole. They have been implemented — in British Columbia, Ontario, and by the federal government — and even more measures appear to be on the way.
This is not 2008
Yet what gets lost in all this debate is one rather indisputable fact: demand remains strong, even with the implementation of these measures. Furthermore, unlike the 2008 housing bubble in the United States, where there was little or no warning before the crash, in Canada, we don’t have subprime mortgages, or bundled securities schemes that undermine the health of the housing sector.
We’re simply worried about there being too many buyers in the market. In the grand scheme of things, there are greater worries on the horizon, aren’t there?
ASCEND MIC is a mortgage investment corporation, with offices in Toronto and Richmond Hill, that specializes in various aspects of mortgage investing, lending, administration and more.