Avoid Costly Mistakes When Building a New Home

General Greg Weaver 20 Feb

Building a new home is a super exciting endeavour as you opt to create the perfect space for you and your family. However, building a home is not without its costs and potential surprises… to mitigate bumps on your homebuilding journey and avoid costly mistakes, consider the following tips:

Set a Realistic Budget

When building your own home, it is vital to be realistic about your budget and what you can afford. Making a list of wants versus needs can be a good way to determine what is required, and where you can spend extra money should your budget allow for it. When constructing your budget, don’t forget to include construction costs from materials to labour, as well as permits, inspections, landscaping and unforeseen contingencies. The contingency fund should be approximately 10-15% of your budget put aside to cover unforeseen issues or changes.

Hire Reputable Individuals

From your architect and your contractor to your landscaper and inspector, it is vital to have the right people in the right positions. This will ensure that you not only get the best advice, but experienced individuals will also help to steer you through the process and mitigate potential issues. Be sure to do your research, ask for references and ensure the individual(s) you hire are licensed and insured.

While you’re researching individuals, it can also be a good idea to get multiple quotes. While you may have a contractor you like, reaching out to other individuals can help ensure you’re getting the best rate.

Review Contracts Carefully

Read and understand all contracts and agreements thoroughly between your contractor and yourself, your designer, your home inspector, etc. Ensure that everything is in writing and that you and your builder are on the same page regarding expectations, timelines, and costs.

Make and Follow Your Plan

Once you have your budget and the right people on the project, it is time to make a plan. You must work with an architect or designer to ensure that your new home aligns with your needs, lifestyle and budget. This should also include future plans – do you want to have children? Plan on adopting a pet or two? Possibly need space for an older family member in a few years? Getting this right from the beginning will help to avoid potential changes to the plan down the line, which will reduce expansions to cost and timelines.

Choose Your Materials Carefully

Choosing to invest in energy-efficient features and materials can help you to reduce long-term utility costs. While initially, these installations may be more costly, they will work to save you money in the long run. Whenever possible, make sure these materials are also as durable as possible to ensure longevity and low maintenance requirements.

Secure the Necessary Permits

Ensure that you obtain all required permits and approvals before starting construction. One of the most important reasons to do this is to ensure that the work being done is safe, but having permits and inspections is also vital to ensure you can get insurance on your new build. Non-permitted renovations or build additions, changes, etc. can result in trouble securing insurance, on top of fines and other potentially costly issues.

Invest in Inspections

Having inspections done throughout the process of building your home can save you issues down the line by ensuring that all the installations are done correctly and safely and that your house meets the proper codes for electrical, plumbing, etc.

By taking proper steps and being proactive throughout the home-building process, you can minimize the risk of costly mistakes and ensure that your new home meets your expectations while staying within your budget.


Published by DLC Marketing Team


Mortgage Renewal Benefits

General Greg Weaver 11 Jan

Is your mortgage coming up for renewal? Do you know about all the incredible options renewing your mortgage can afford you? If not, we have all the details here on how to make your mortgage renewal work for you as we start 2024.

Get a Better Rate

Are you aware that when you receive notice that your mortgage is coming up for renewal, this is the best time to shop around for a more favourable interest rate? At renewal time, it is easy to shop around or switch lenders for a preferable interest rate as it doesn’t break your mortgage. With interest rates expected to come down as we move into the New Year, taking some time to reach out to me and shopping the market could help save you money!

Consolidate Debt

Renewal time is also a great time to take a look at your existing debt and determine whether or not you want to consolidate it onto your mortgage. For some, this means consolidating your holiday credit card debt into your mortgage, for others it could be car loans, education, etc. Regardless of the type of debt, consolidating into your mortgage allows for one easy payment instead of juggling multiple loans. Plus, in most cases, the interest rate on your mortgage is less than you would be charged with credit card companies.

Start on that Reno

Do you have projects around the house you’ve been dying to get started on? Renewal time is a great opportunity for you to look at utilizing some of your home equity to help with home renovations so you can finally have that dream kitchen and updated bathroom, OR you can even utilize it to purchase a vacation property!

Change Your Mortgage Product

Are you not happy with your existing mortgage product? Perhaps you’re finding that your variable-rate or adjustable-rate mortgages are fluctuating too much and you want to lock in! Alternatively, maybe you want to switch to a variable as interest rates start to level out. You can also utilize your renewal time to take advantage of a different payment or amortization schedule to help pay off your mortgage faster!

Change Your Lender

Not happy with your current lender? Perhaps a different bank has a lower rate or a mortgage product with terms that better suit your needs. A mortgage renewal is a great time to switch to a different bank or credit union to ensure that you are getting the value you want out of your mortgage if you are finding that your needs are not currently being met.

Regardless of how you feel about your current mortgage and what changes you may want to make, if your mortgage is coming up for renewal or is ready for renewal, please don’t hesitate to reach out today! We’d be happy to discuss your situation and review any changes that would be beneficial for you to reach your goals; from shopping for new rates or utilizing that equity! Plus, we can help you find the best option for where you are at in your life now and help you to ensure future financial success.


Published by DLC Marketing Team

Mortgage Portability

General Greg Weaver 13 Oct

When it comes to getting a mortgage, one of the more overlooked elements is the option to be able to port the loan down the line.

Porting your mortgage is an option within your mortgage agreement, which enables you to move to another property without having to lose your existing interest rate, mortgage balance and term. Thereby allowing you to move or ‘port’ your mortgage over to the new home. Plus, the ability to port also saves you money by avoiding early discharge penalties should you move partway through your term.

Typically, portability options are offered on fixed-rate mortgages. Lenders often use a “blended” system where your current mortgage rate stays the same on the mortgage amount ported over to the new property and the new balance is calculated using the current interest rate. When it comes to variable-rate mortgages, you may not have the same option. However, when breaking a variable-rate mortgage, you would only be faced with a three-month interest penalty charge. While this can range up to $4,000, it is much lower than the average penalty to break a fixed mortgage. In addition, there are cases where you can be reimbursed the fee with your new mortgage.

If you already have the existing option to port your mortgage, or are considering it for your next mortgage cycle, there are a few considerations to keep in mind:

  1. Timeframe: Some portability options require the sale and purchase to occur on the same day. Other lenders offer a week to do this, some a month, and others up to three months.
  2. Terms: Keep in mind, some lenders don’t allow a changed term or might force you into a longer term as part of agreeing to port you mortgage.
  3. Penalty Reimbursements: Some lenders may reimburse your entire penalty, whether you are a fixed or variable borrower, if you simply get a new mortgage with the same lender – replacing the one being discharged. Additionally, some lenders will even allow you to move into a brand-new term of your choice and start fresh. Keep in mind, there can be cases where it’s better to pay a penalty at the time of selling and get into a new term at a brand-new rate that could save back your penalty over the course of the new term.

To get all the details about mortgage portability and find out if you have this option (or the potential penalties if you don’t), contact Greg Weaver for expert advice and a helping hand throughout your mortgage journey!



Published by DLC Marketing Team

September Home Sales Weaken in Canada As New Listings Surge.

General Greg Weaver 13 Oct

Increasing mortgage rates weighed heavily on housing in September

Mortgage rates continued to rise in September after BoC tightening and one of the largest bond selloffs in history. Yields have retraced some of their rise more recently, but demand for new and existing homes has slowed. According to data released by the Canadian Real Estate Association, national home sales declined 1.9% m/m in September, its third consecutive monthly decline. At least September’s drop was about half as large as in August, dominated by weakness in the Greater Vancouver and the Greater Toronto Area. Sales gains were posted in Edmonton, Montreal and the Kitchener-Waterloo region.

The actual (not seasonally adjusted) number of transactions in September 2023 came in 1.9% above September 2022, but that was far less than the growth in the Canadian population over that period.

The CREA updated its forecast for home sales activity and average home prices for the remainder of this year and next. They commented that the national sales-to-new listings ratio has fallen from nearly 70% to 50% in the past five months, slowing the price rally in April and May. The CREA has cut its forecast for sales and prices, reflecting the marked slowdown in Ontario and BC. The expected rebound in activity next year has also been muted as interest rates remain higher for longer than initially expected.

New Listings

The big news in this report was the surge in new listings as sellers finally come off the sidelines. The number of newly listed homes climbed 6.3% m/m in September, posting a 35% cumulative increase from a twenty-year low since March. New listings are trending near average levels now.

With sales continuing to trend lower and new listings posting another sizeable gain in September, the national sales-to-new listings ratio eased to 51.4% compared to 55.7% in August and a recent peak of 67.8% in April. It was the first time that this measure has fallen below its long-term average of 55.2% since January. There were 3.7 months of inventory nationally at the end of September 2023, up from 3.5 months in August and its recent low of 3.1 months in June. That said, it remains below levels recorded through the second half of 2022 and well below its long-term average of about five months.

Home Prices

The Aggregate Composite MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) edged down 0.3% m/m in September 2023— the first decline since March.

That said, the slight dip in prices at the national level in September was entirely the result of trends in Ontario. Prices are still rising across other provinces, albeit more slowly than they were.

Incoming data over the next few months will determine whether Ontario is an outlier or just the first province to show the softening price trends expected to play out in at least some other parts of the country, given where interest rates are. The Aggregate Composite MLS® HPI was up 1.1% y/y. While prices have generally been levelling off in recent months and even dipped nationally and in Ontario in September, year-over-year comparisons will likely continue to rise slightly in the months ahead because of the base effect of declining prices in the second half of last year.

Bottom Line

The Bank of Canada policymakers are set to meet on October 25, weighing the strong wage growth and employment gains against next Tuesday’s September inflation report. The US inflation data, released this week, was only a touch higher than expected. The Canadian information will unlikely disrupt the central bank’s pause in rate hikes.

The unexpected Israeli war will disrupt the global economy again, which could cause supply chain concerns if it lasts long enough. Oil prices and technology (semiconductor chips and other tech-related products) could be impacted. With so much uncertainty and a marked third-quarter economic data slowdown, the BoC will likely remain on the sidelines.


Please Note: The source of this article is from SherryCooper.com/category/articles/

What is Alternative Lending?

General Greg Weaver 25 Aug

When traditional lenders (such as banks or credit unions) deny mortgage financing, it can be easy to feel discouraged. However, it is important to remember that there is always an alternative!

If you’re seeking a mortgage, but your application doesn’t fit into the box of the big traditional institutions, you’ll find yourself in what’s commonly referred to in the industry as the “Alternative-A” or “B” lending space. These lenders come in three classifications:

  • Alt A lenders consist of banks, trust companies and monoline lenders. These are large institutional lenders that are regulated both provincially and federally but have products that may speak to consumers who require broader qualifying criteria to obtain a mortgage.
  • MICs (Mortgage Investment Companies) are much like Alt A lenders but are organized in accordance with the Income Tax Act with an incorporated lending company consisting of a group of individual shareholder investors that pool money together to lend out on mortgages. These lenders follow individual qualifying lending criteria but tend to operate with an even broader qualifying regime.
  • Private Lenders are typically individual investors who lend their own personal funds but can sometimes also be a company formed specifically to lend money for mortgages that carry a higher risk of default relative to a borrower’s situation.  These types of lenders are generally unregulated and tend to cater to those with a higher risk profile.

All classifications noted above price to risk when it comes to a mortgage. The more broad the guidelines are for a particular mortgage contract, the more risk the lender assumes. This in turn will yield a higher cost to the borrower typically in the form of a higher interest rate.

Before considering an alternative mortgage, here are some questions you should ask yourself:

  1. What issue is keeping me from qualifying for a traditional “A” mortgage today?
  2. How long will it take me to correct this issue and qualify for a traditional lender mortgage?
  3. How much do I have to improve my credit situation or score?
  4. How much do I currently have available as a down payment?
  5. Am I willing to wait until I can qualify for a regular mortgage, or do I want/need to get into a certain home today?
  6. Is this mortgage sustainable? Can I afford the larger interest rate?
  7. Can I exit this lender down the road in the event the lender does not renew or I cannot afford this alternative option much longer?

If you are someone who is ready to go ahead with an alternative mortgage due to a weakercredit score, or you don’t want to wait until you’re able to qualify with a traditional lender, these are some additional questions to ask when reviewing an alternative mortgage product:

  1. How high is the interest rate? What are the fees involved and are these fees paid from the proceeds, added to the balance or paid out of pocket
  2. What is the penalty for missed mortgage payments? How are they calculated? What is the cost to get out of the mortgage altogether?
  3. Is there a prepayment privilege? For example, are you able to avoid penalties if you give the lender a higher mortgage payment once a month?
  4. What is the cost of each monthly mortgage payment?
  5. What happens at the end of the term. Is a renewal an option and what are the costs to renew if applicable
  6. What is the fine print?

When it comes to the alternative lending space, things can get complex. Contact a DLC mortgage expert today if you’re considering an alternative lender and we can help you source out various mortgage products, as well as review the rates and terms to ensure it is the best fit.


Published by DLC Marketing Team

Market Beware: Subject Free Offers

General Greg Weaver 8 Aug

When it comes to purchasing a home, most offers include conditions or subjects, which are requirements or criteria to be met before the sale can be finalized and the property is transferred. Some of the most common subjects include:

  • Financing approval
  • Home inspection
  • Fire/home insurance protection
  • Strata document review if appliable

The purpose of these subjects is to protect the buyer from making a poor investment and ensure that there are no hidden surprises when it comes to financing, insurance, or the state of the property.

These conditions are written up in the purchase offer with a date of removal. This is agreed to by the seller before the sale is finalized. Assuming the subjects are lifted by the date of removal, the sale can go through. If the subjects are not lifted (perhaps financing falls through or something is revealed during the home inspection), the buyer can waive the offer and the purchase becomes void.

However recently, especially in heightened housing markets, there has been an emergence of subject-free (or condition-free) offers. These are purchase offers that are submitted without any criteria required! Essentially, what you see is what you get.

Below we have outlined the impact of subject-free offers on both buyers and sellers to help you better understand the risks and outcomes:

Pros of Subject-Free Offers

  • Buyers: The main benefit of a subject-free offer for a buyer is the ability to “beat the competition” in a heated market. However, it is not without risks.
  • Sellers: Typically, a subject-free offer will include a competitive price, willingness to work with the dates the seller prefers, and evidence that the buyer has already done as much research as possible. If time is sensitive for the seller because they are trying to purchase another home or want to move as soon as possible, they may also choose your offer over subject offers to expedite the process.

Cons of Subject-Free Offers

  • Buyers: As a buyer submitting a subject-free offer, you are assuming a great deal of risk in several areas including financing, inspection, and insurance:
    • Financing: While buyers may feel that they have a pre-approval and so they don’t require a subject to financing, it is important to recognize that a pre-approval is not a guarantee of financing. If you are submitting a subject-free purchase based on a pre-approval, buyer beware. The financing is subject to the lender approving the property and the sale; from the price and location to type of property or other variables the lender deems important. By submitting a subject-free offer without a financing guarantee (or an inspection, title check, etc.), there is a risk that the deal can fall through. Even when you do not include subjects on the offer, you still are required to finance your purchase. In addition, as deals are submitted typically with a deposit, there is a risk that if the subject-free offer falls through the buyer will lose their deposit. This amount can range vary in the thousands and is typically a percentage of the purchase price or down payment.
    • Inspection & Insurance: If a buyer is also opting to skip the home inspection and home insurance protection subjects to have the offer accepted, then they assume huge risk as they do not know what they are getting and whether or not the property is up to code for insurance.
    • Due Diligence: With subject-free offers, there is no opportunity for due diligence after the offer has been made. This requires the buyer to do all their research before their initial bid. Because it is firm and binding, a buyer who decides to back out will likely be met with serious legal ramifications. Submitting an offer without subjects is not due diligence and it is at the buyer’s behest.
  • For Sellers: When it comes to the individual selling the property, there is less risk with subject-free offers but not zero. While the benefit is essentially there is no wait to accept the offer on the seller’s side, they do not know for sure if financing will come through.

Financing Around Subject-Free Offers

When submitting a subject-free offer, it is essentially up to the buyer to do as much due diligence as possible before submitting. They will need to identify what the lender is looking for to make sure they walk away with a mortgage. Though approval is never certain, prospective buyers placing a subject-free offer should do their very best to secure financing beforehand.

Contractual Obligations

Be mindful when it comes to purchasing offers versus purchase agreements. While your purchase offer is a written proposal to purchase, the purchase agreement is a full contract between the buyer and seller. The purchase offer acts as a letter of intent, setting the terms you propose to buy the home. If financing falls through, for example, then the contract is breached and this is where the buyer may lose the deposit.

It is also important to be aware of a breach of contract in the event that a seller chooses to take action. For example, if you submit a subject-free offer of $500,000 and cannot secure financing for that offer and the seller turns around and is only able to get a $400,000 deal with another buyer, they could potentially sue the initial buyer for the difference due to breach of contract.

Preparing a Subject-Free Offer

If you have decided to go ahead with a subject-free offer, regardless of the risks, there are some things you can do to mitigate potential issues, including:

  • Get Pre-Approved: Again, this is not a guarantee of financing when you do make an offer, but it can help you determine whether you would be approved or not.
  • Financing Review: Identify what the lender is looking for to make sure they walk away with a mortgage. Though approval is never certain, prospective buyers placing a subject-free offer should do their very best to secure financing beforehand.
  • Do Your Due Diligence: Look into the property and determine if there have been major renovations or a history of damage. This could come in the form of a Property Disclosure Statement. While this statement cannot substitute a proper inspection, it can help identify potential issues or areas of concern. If possible, conduct an inspection before submitting your bid/offer.
  • Get Legal Advice: This can help you determine your potential risk and ramifications of the offer should it be accepted, or otherwise.
  • Title Review: Be sure to review the title of the property.
  • Insurance: Confirm that you are able to purchase insurance for the home. Keep in mind, an inspection may be required for this but in some cases, you can substitute for a depreciation report if it is recent.
  • Strata Documents (if applicable): Thoroughly review strata meeting minutes and any related documents to determine areas of concern.

While there are things that can be done to help with subject-free offers, it is still risky. Ultimately submitting an offer with subjects gives you the time and ability to gather information on the above, as well as access to the property or home for inspections.

If you are intent on submitting a subject-free offer, be sure to discuss it with your real estate agent as they can determine if a subject-free offer is necessary, or if perhaps a short closing window would suffice to seal the deal. A good realtor will keep you informed of potential interest and other bids during the process as well. Their goal should be to maximize your opportunity and minimize your risk. In addition, before making any offers, be sure to check with your mortgage expert to discuss your mortgage and financing so you can make the best decision.



Published by DLC Marketing Team

Weaker Than Expected Jobs Report In July

General Greg Weaver 4 Aug

The long-awaited labour market slowdown

The Canadian economy shed 6,400 jobs in July, far weaker than the 25,000 gain that was expected. The jobless rate was 5.5%, the third consecutive monthly rise. This likely improves the chances the Bank of Canada will remain on the sidelines in September.

Wage inflation, however, re-accelerated, moving back to 5.0%. This, combined with the continued stickiness in core inflation, will keep interest rates high for longer.

July’s data follows a surprise gain of 59,900 in June and a 17,300 loss in May, showing that employment is a notoriously volatile series. Nevertheless, it provides the fodder for Macklem to pause again after two consecutive rate hikes.

Employment Decline

A downturn in June’s manufacturing, wholesale, and retail data has buoyed the Bank’s hopes that the 475 basis point rate hikes have slowed the economy, especially as preliminary figures for June showed the economy contracting for the first time this year. Inflation rates for the same month moderated to 2.8%, fitting within the central bank’s target range for the first time since March 2021.

July Jobless Rate

Policymakers scrutinize indicators to determine if the current interest rates are sufficiently high to temper economic growth. They perceive substantial wage increases as inconsistent with their goal of reducing inflation to the 2% target. Even amidst recent significant strikes from workers demanding improved remuneration, the outlook hints at a potential slowdown in wage growth. This could be driven by increased immigration, which expands the workforce while the demand for labour diminishes.

Average Hourly Wages

Bottom Line

The chances of a rate hike on September 6 have diminished significantly. However, more data is yet to come with July inflation on August 15 and the Q2 GDP figure on September 1.



Please Note: The source of this article is from SherryCooper.com/category/articles/

Bank of Canada Hikes Policy Rate By 25 BPs to 5.0% – Highest in 22 Years

General Greg Weaver 14 Jul

Interest rates will stay higher for longer

The Bank of Canada increased the overnight policy rate by 25 basis points this morning to 5.0%, its highest level since March 2001. Never before has a policy action been so widely expected. Still, the Bank’s detailed outlook in the July Monetary Policy Report (MPR) suggests stronger growth and a longer trajectory to reach the 2% inflation target. The Bank of Canada believes the economy is still in excess demand and that growth will continue stronger than expected, supported by tight labour markets, the high level of accumulated household savings, and rapid population growth. “Newcomers to Canada are entering the labour force, easing the labour shortage. But at the same time, they add to consumer spending and demand for housing.”

The Bank forecasts GDP growth to average 1.0% through the middle of next year–a soft landing in the economy. “This means the economy moves into modest excess supply in early 2024, and this should relieve price pressures. CPI inflation is forecast to remain about 3% for the next year, before declining gradually to the 2% target in the middle of 2025.” This is about six months later than the Bank expected in April. This means that high-interest rates remain higher for longer.

While Canadian inflation has fallen quickly, much of the downward momentum has come from lower energy prices and base-year effects as large price increases last year fall out of the year-over-year inflation calculation. We are still seeing large price increases in a wide range of goods and services. Our measures of core inflation—which we use to gauge underlying inflationary pressures—have come down, but not as much as we expected.

BOC Over Night Rate

There continue to be large price increases in a wide range of goods and services. Measures of core inflation have come down, but by less than expected (see chart below). One measure of core inflation–which removes food, energy and shelter prices, remains elevated and will likely continue to be sticky.

To remove base effects, the Bank looks at three-month rates of core inflation, which have remained at 3.5% to 4.0% since September 2022, almost a percentage point above the Bank’s expectations at the beginning of this year.

In addition, labour markets remain tight. Although the jobless rate has risen to 5.4%, that is still low by historical standards. The unemployment rate was at 5.7% when the pandemic began, which was considered close to full employment at the time. Job gains have been robust, with about 290,000 net new jobs created in the first six months of 2023. Many new entrants to the labour market have been hired quickly, and wage growth has been about 4% to 5%.

core inflation

Bottom Line

As always, the next steps by the Bank of Canada will be data-dependent. Interest rates will remain higher for longer if the Bank is correct that inflation will not reach its 2% target until 2025. We also cannot rule out more rate hikes in the future. This morning, the US inflation data for June were released, showing a marked decline from 4% in May to 3% in June. Markets rallied worldwide, taking Canadian bond yields down despite the BoC tightening. The hardship caused by the continued rise in mortgage rates is already evident. OSFI recently announced the possibility of higher capital requirements for federally insured financial institutions on mortgages with loan-to-value ratios above 65% that have unusually high amortizations. This proposal is now out for consultation. It seems OSFI and the federal consumer watchdog are working at cross purposes.



First Quarter Canadian GDP Was Stronger Than Expected Pushing the BoC Closer To Rate Hikes

General Greg Weaver 1 Jun

The Canadian economy continues to show marked resilience to high-interest rates. Statistics Canada released data this morning showing real GDP rose at an above-consensus 3.1% annual rate in the first quarter of this year. The estimate for April growth was also firm, a harbinger of continued strength in Q2. The combined drags of the public sector strike and the Alberta wildfires didn’t cause a significant downdraft.

First-quarter growth was driven by strong international trade and robust household spending. These factors were partly mitigated by slower inventory accumulation and declines in new housing construction and business investment in machinery and equipment.

After two quarters of minimal growth, household spending rose for goods (+1.5%) and services (+1.3%) in the first quarter of 2023. Expenditures on durable goods (+3.3%) were driven by motor vehicles, including new trucks, vans, and sport utility vehicles (+7.8%). Spending on semi-durables (+4.3%) was led by garments (+4.5%), while spending on non-durable goods (-0.2%) declined slightly.

Service spending picked up in the first quarter of 2023, led by food and non-alcoholic beverage services (+4.4%), and alcoholic beverage services (+6.5%). Meanwhile, travel was on the rise, with expenditures by Canadians abroad up 6.8% in the first quarter, compared with a 3.3% decrease in the previous quarter.

These data do not portend a household sector overly burdened by rising mortgage and credit card payments.

Coinciding with higher borrowing costs and slowing mortgage borrowing, housing investment fell 3.9% in the first quarter of 2023, the fourth consecutive quarterly decrease. The decline in investment was widespread—as new construction (-6.0%), renovations (-2.1%), and ownership transfer costs (-1.5%), which represents resale activity, were all down.

We know housing activity has picked up considerably since the first quarter, undoubtedly adding to Q2 growth. Also expansionary is the persistent rise in employee compensation, led by salary gains in professional and personal services, manufacturing and construction.

One warning sign is the declining household savings rates and slower disposable income. Persistently high interest rates had a predominantly negative effect on net property income, as increases in interest income (+6.4%), mainly from deposits, did not keep pace with higher interest payments on mortgages (+14.7%) and consumer credit (+10.9%).

In contrast with lower disposable income, consumption expenditures (in nominal terms) rose 2.1% in the first quarter of 2023. This was faster than the 1.4% pace recorded in the fourth quarter of 2022, partly due to inflationary pressures. As a result, the household saving rate was 2.9% in the first quarter of 2023, down from 5.8% at the end of 2022. The household saving rate approached the pre-pandemic level, which averaged 2.1% in 2019.

Business incomes fell significantly in Q1, and judging from the stock market, corporate earnings news has also been disappointing across a wide array of sectors in the second quarter.

Bottom Line

The strength in today’s data and the higher-than-expected inflation number for April will cause the Bank of Canada to seriously consider raising the overnight rate by 25 bps to 4.75% when they meet again next week. I think they will hold off to see the May employment and inflation data before they pull the trigger.

Markets have already responded to the numbers. Short-term interest rates remain well above levels posted earlier this year, although that is mainly about the debt-ceiling issue in the U.S. The Bank’s statement will undoubtedly be rather hawkish.


The source of this article is from SherryCooper.com/category/articles/


Canadian CPI Inflation Ticked Up For The First Time In Nearly A Year

General Greg Weaver 17 May

Canadian Inflation Rose More Than Expected in April, But Core Inflation Slowed
There’s been an unexpected hiccup in the Bank of Canada’s ongoing battle against inflation. Year-over-year, price pressures escalated to 4.4% in April, an uptick from the previous month’s 4.3% and significantly exceeding the average economist’s prediction of 4.1%. This marks the first rise in overall inflation from the last June. Ironically, higher interest rates are intended to tackle inflation, but rising rent prices and mortgage interest costs contributed the most to the all-items CPI increase last month.

This sketches an unusual scenario for the Bank of Canada as it approaches its June 7th rate decision. The economy remains resilient, with Canadians grappling with escalated interest rates and continued price pressures. Spring 2023 increasingly looks like the turnaround point for Canada’s housing market after a year-long slump, and labour markets remained firm in April.

To be sure, inflation is down significantly from the 8.1% year-on-year peak experienced last June. The initial reduction in inflation was swift and relatively straightforward, but predictably, the following phase is proving to be considerably more challenging.

The CPI was up 0.7% in April, following a 0.5% gain in March. Gasoline prices (+6.3%) contributed the most to the headline month-over-month movement. Excluding gasoline, the monthly CPI rose 0.5%. On a seasonally adjusted monthly basis, the CPI rose 0.6%.

Gasoline prices rose 6.3% in April compared with March, the most significant monthly increase since October 2022 and contributing the most to the acceleration in the headline CPI. This increase followed an announcement from OPEC+ (countries from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries Plus) to reduce oil output, pushing prices higher. The switch to summer blend and increased carbon levies also boosted prices. Nevertheless, gas prices were 7.7% lower in April 2023 compared with April 2022, when prices were higher due in part to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Compared with 18 months earlier, gasoline prices were 10.0% higher in April 2023.

Shelter costs rose 4.9% year-over-year in April after a 5.4% increase in March. Canadians continued to pay more in mortgage interest cost in April (+28.5%) compared with April 2022, as more mortgages were initiated or renewed at higher interest rates. The higher interest rate environment may also contribute to rising rents in April 2023 (+6.1%) by stimulating higher rental demand. The year-over-year increase in the homeowners’ replacement cost index slowed for the 12th consecutive month in April (+0.2%) compared with March (+1.7%), reflecting a general cooling of the housing market.

Year over year, prices for groceries rose at a slower rate in April (+9.1%) than in March (+9.7%), with the slowdown stemming from smaller price increases for fresh vegetables and coffee and tea.

Bottom Line

The uptick in April inflation, especially monthly, shows that the road to 2% inflation will be bumpy. Still, the Bank of Canada will be content that their measures of core inflation continue to trend downward (see chart below). The Bank will likely continue the pause in June, but if the May employment numbers continue strong, the Governing Council will indeed warn that they will remain ever vigilant. I do not expect rate cuts this year.


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