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Wednesday , 29 March 2017

Monthly Archives: October 2016

OMB reforms are coming, public invited to participate until Dec 19

Probably the most commonly expressed opinion, among those who have an opinion about the Ontario Municipal Board (OMB), is that the tribunal that hears appeals on land-use planning favours developers over municipal councils and ordinary citizens. Councils make decisions that developers don’t like, so the developers go to the OMB and “far too often” they get their way. The OMB overrules cities on a wide range of decisions, from building heights to electoral boundaries. It had become so unpopular in Toronto that city council formally asked Queen’s Park in 2012 to exempt the city from OMB oversight, a request that was not granted. Now, in announcing a comprehensive review of ... Read More »

September housing market hotter than ever in Toronto; is it the last time?

Home sales in the Toronto market continued at fever pitch in September. The Toronto Real Estate Board reports that 9,902 sales were processed through TREB’s MLS system last month, 21.5 per cent more than one year ago. Strong growth was seen in most areas in all major home types, with the usual exception in the City of Toronto, where condominium sales outpaced all others, and limited supply kept detached and semi-detached sales growth in check. Roughly half of all sales in the 416 were condominiums. The resale condo market had impressive gains of 24.3 per cent in Toronto and an even more impressive 32.4 per cent in the 905. Altogether, ... Read More »

Toronto’s Vital Signs strong, with many areas for improvement: report

The Toronto Foundation has released its fifteenth annual report on the quality of life in Toronto. Vital Signs, it says, is the most comprehensive “check up” on ten key “issue areas” that comprise overall quality of life in any city—health and wellness, the gap between rich and poor, housing, demographics, economy and many more. The report is a statistics lover’s dream. It has those argument-ending numbers that people wish they could think of when making a point in lunchroom or barroom discussions, numbers like how many sex trafficking cases Toronto police investigated last year, how many Torontonians have diabetes, how many hate/bias crimes have been committed against the Muslim community, ... Read More »

Too few Canadians in the know about credit scores says FinTech lender

You have to wonder how important a good credit score really is when a serial scammer like that man in Toronto who’s in the news these days can go out and buy an apartment full of high-end furniture, a car, make no payments on either, and live rent-free in two up-market condos for months on end without being called out. But, the experts tell us having a good credit score is essential if we want to borrow money or take out a mortgage or apply for a credit card. As the Vancouver FinTech company Mogo puts it, “From landing that dream job, to renting an apartment or getting a mortgage, ... Read More »

How to make mortgages more expensive without raising rates

The new measures announced by the minister of finance today aimed at preventing further overheating in the housing market will make it harder for some Canadians to get a mortgage. That is what Bill Morneau was referring to when he said that some are taking on high levels of debt “in a rush to buy before it is too late.” Many Canadians who qualify for a mortgage of a certain size today will find that they qualify for considerably less when the measures take effect. He is achieving this without the big blunt weapon of a general rate increase. Instead, from now on all home buyers with insured mortgages must ... Read More »

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