Trends in Housing

The Newsworthy – April 15, 2018

Kathy McWilliam Trends in Housing April 15, 2018 Leave a reply

In this issue:

What Are Millennials Worrying About RIGHT NOW?


The housing market?

Featured Links

  1. The Rental Crisis
  2. Can you even buy a condo in the GTA these days?

Millennial Special!  What’s on your Mind?

# 1 JOBS?

Where are the best places to find jobs right now in Canada? The answer might surprise you!



Here’s a list of the Top Ten, from Huffington Post, April 10:


  1. Moncton, NB
  2. Abottsford, BC
  3. Oshawa, ON
  4. Vancouver, BC
  5. Kelowna, BC
  6. Toronto, ON
  7. Quebec City, QC
  8. Saskatoon, SK
  9. Edmonton, ALTA
  10. Halifax, NS

That’s right – two of the top ten are in Atlantic Canada, where house prices are lower!

Somebody Said Something about the Millenial Workforce

‘Young millennials are on track to surpass four job changes by the age of 32, and that will only increase thanks to  global competition. More than ever, ‘learnability’ and agility is critical. Don’t limit or pigeon-hole yourself to one role. Look at the big picture and how to apply your skill set to different roles to open up your horizons.’

The woman who said that is Cathy Preston, Vice President of Individual Markets at RBC Insurance. She has put a lot of thought into how you can put your ‘picked-up-on-the-fly’ skills to use, to create your own niche and carve out growth, and, ultimately, your own success. She sensed something that I feel about millennials, as an aged boomer who has had the opportunity to work temp with lots of you: that you have super-valuable soft skills AND tech-skills galore, that you are tolerant, hard-working and intelligent. The world will be an undeniably better place when you take your turn at the wheel. (You could definitely read more, but that’s just me, and I understand – who has time?)

Below, I’ve included a link to her full article, but I’ll sum it up here:

Cathy Preston says there are 5 skills millennials need in order to survive in today’s economy:

  1. Build your social skills
  2. Build your network – personal contact is still the easiest way to get work
  3. Keep learning and don’t get stuck by thinking that you can’t gain new and better skills by starting at the bottom
  4. Be professional – make sure you always look and act like whatever part you’d like to play
  5. Find a mentor – successful people are great sources of knowledge about how to get some success of your own

To read the whole article and hear about Cathy’s personal journey, click on this link:    5 Skills


There is a chart in the BuzzBuzz news article (link below) ‘Millennials Really Do Have It Harder in Today’s Housing Market’, by Penelope Graham, who explains why it is tougher for millennials to break into the real estate market that even those groups who had to pay much higher interest rates when they were doing it.

Even the use of the term ‘break into’ implies that it’s a struggle, and some one or something is trying to prevent entry. In fact, an industry exists that makes the job really hard, for obvious reasons: banks hate to lose money, and they like sure bets.

The chart was built with Toronto data, but the general principles apply to any area of the country. All agree that millennials have it tougher than any other group that made the chart and here are the reasons why:

  • Home prices vs Income growth – the minimum household income required to handle the cost of housing is not keeping up with housing costs
  • It’s getting harder to pay off debt – household debt, including increasing consumer debt, is getting harder to manage, and the average debt-to-income ratio is now hovering around 59%. Banks don’t want it to be more that 43%.

Here’s How I See It

There is no quick fix, despite the government’s attempts to cool the market. It takes a while before demand results in lower prices across the board, and these years are your prime years. There are so many factors over which you feel you have no direct control.

But what you can control is your own spending, income-production, debt-reduction, and savings. Maybe it’s time to look back in history and read up on the attitudes that resulted from the experiences of The Great Depression: no credit purchases then, by gum! If you didn’t have cash money, you just didn’t shop!

So what is a millennial to do? Fix your debts the hard way, with self-control and self-denial. Do you know of anyone with a property to sell that you would like to buy? Make a deal, mano-a-mano. Look into lease options and make your own agreement. Shake it up! Skip the banks, for now. They are not the solution – you are.

To read the source article for this outburst, click on the following link  Why You Can’t Make Headway

Featured Links

Affordable Housing Crisis

Rent Jumping in Toronto

Can’t Even Afford a Condo In the GTA


Microflats for Millennials

Kathy McWilliam Trends in Housing February 13, 2018 Leave a reply

Did you or someone you know live in a communal rooming or apartment situation during your college days? If so, you are familiar with the set-up: individual rooms, with shared kitchen, bath and living areas. It had its benefits, like manageable costs and guaranteed companionship (even if you didn’t always love your roomies!).

Traditionally provided by rooming houses or private homeowners, enterprising investors and builders in London, England have recognized a market opportunity and are creating apartment developments around this communal concept. They have been dubbed ‘Microflats’, and are marketed as a way to provide reasonably-priced housing for millennials.  No more solitary Movie Nights!

Bonus? Could also work for seniors on fixed incomes!

Small Package, Big Punch

Kathy McWilliam Trends in Housing February 13, 2018 Leave a reply


Can you imagine yourself fitting your life into a 250sq. ft. space (including sleeping loft)? On wheels? The lovely little structure pictured above is called the Nest and it is the creation of Nest Tiny home Builders of St. Margarets Bay, Nova Scotia. It is designed to satisfy the souls of those who strive to live a rational, simplified, but grace-filled life. And, according to their website, it was for sale for $37,900 in February of this year.

I have to admit a fascination for tiny homes – they first caught my attention while flicking through the real estate, renovation, flip, etc. offerings on cable TV. At first I saw tiny homes on wheels as appealing primarily to those with gypsy hearts – freedom-loving individualists who are not to be tied to concrete foundations and community suppers.

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