The Opus Team


December 2017


Happy Holidays!

From all of us here at the OPUS Team we would like to wish you all the best for the holiday season.

We hope 2018 is a wonderful and prosperous year for us all.



What the new mortgage rules mean for homebuyers


OSFI is setting a new minimum qualifying rate, or “stress test,” for uninsured mortgages (mortgage consumers with down payments 20% or greater than their home price).

The rules now require the minimum qualifying rate for uninsured mortgages to be the greater of the five-year benchmark rate published by the Bank of Canada (presently 4.89%) or 200 basis points above the mortgage holder’s contractual mortgage rate. “The main effect will be felt by first-time buyers,” says James Laird, co-founder of Ratehub.ca. “No matter how much money they put down as a down payment, they will have to pass the stress test.” The effect of the changes will be huge, resulting in a 20% decrease in affordability, meaning a first-time homebuyer will be able to buy 20% less house, explains Laird.

See the full article



More Listings for Home Buyers in November 2017

Dec 5, 2017 | Press Releases

The REALTORS® Association of Hamilton-Burlington (RAHB) reported 1,096 sales were processed through the RAHB Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) System in November, 16.7 per cent fewer than the same month last year but 3.3 per cent higher than the 10-year average.

All property listings were 8.7 per cent higher than the same month last year, 18.9 per cent higher than the 10-year average, and fell just short of the high for the month of November.

“We continue to see a healthy number of listings coming onto the real estate market, which is a welcome relief from the low inventory earlier this year,” said RAHB CEO George O’Neill. “Although sales are down compared to last year, they are still higher than average, which means there are also still lots of buyers.”

Seasonally adjusted* sales of residential properties were 10.8 per cent lower than the same month last year, with the average sale price up 5.1 per cent for the month. Seasonally adjusted numbers of new listings were 15.6 per cent higher than November of 2016.

Overall residential sales of 1,052 units were 16.6 per cent lower than the same month last year. Residential freehold sales were 15.6 per cent lower than November of 2016 while sales in the condominium market were 20.7 per cent lower than the same month last year. The median price of freehold properties increased by 4.8 per cent over the same month last year while the median price for condominium properties increased by 7.5 per cent compared to the same period.

The average price of freehold properties showed an increase of 3.6 per cent compared to November of last year; the average sale price in the condominium market increased by 7.6 per cent compared to the same period. Average sale price is based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold through the RAHB MLS® System. Average sale price can be useful in establishing long-term trends, but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. Contact a REALTOR® for information about your area or property.

“Two months ago, in September, we saw a dip in what had been a weakening seller’s market, and then a bit of a rebound in October as is often expected. This past month, in November, the sales-to-new-listing ratio was around 67 per cent over the entire month, but is now trending downward toward a balanced market.”

The average number of days on market increased to 37 days from 25 days in the freehold market and increased to 36 days from 26 days in the condominium market, compared to November of last year.

“Now that we are going into the year-end holiday season, we expect to see a bit of a lull – that is the traditional rhythm of the real estate market,” noted O’Neill. “We continue to urge buyers and sellers to contact a REALTOR® to learn more about new mortgage guidelines coming into effect on January 1, 2018 – the new guidelines may affect their purchase or sale.”

Every community in RAHB’s market area has its own localized market. Refer to the accompanying chart, and please ensure you contact a local REALTOR® for professional advice.

*Seasonal adjustment removes normal seasonal variations, enabling analysis of monthly changes and fundamental trends in the data.

November 2017 Stats Breakdown:


The House & Home

Bryan Baeumler Debunks 10 Commonly Believed Reno Myths

Home renovations can be daunting – especially when you’re left with conflicting advice from various experts and online sources… it’s hard to know who or what to trust! There are a whole range of tips and theories out there that I’ve found to be unhelpful, and ultimately stressful. In hopes of providing more clarity as you take on your next big project, here 10 common reno myths, busted.

See the full article


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The Opus Team
leading real estate companies of the world
Derek Keyes
Andrew Bridgman
Real Estate Sales Representatives

Streetcity Realty Inc., Brokerage
247 Centennial Parkway N., Unit #15
Hamilton, Ontario, L8N 1E8, Canada

Hamilton Office: (905) 664-5000
Burlington Office: (905) 634-9476
Fax: (905) 662-7171

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