Hart Real Estate Academy Fills Void Left by OREA College

The Hart Real Estate Academy has officially launched with the mandate of helping new and existing real estate professionals satisfy their educational and professional requirements, thereby raising the bar in Ontario.

The academy will provide interactive in-class sessions both face-to-face and online as REALTORS® learn the business and partake in pre-registration and articling courses, ensuring a higher calibre of graduate.

Effective, July 1st, 2018, The Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA) is no longer offering in-class learning sessions for many of its registrant and articling courses through OREA Real Estate College. Students will only be able to take these courses via correspondence or online self-study, with no interactive instructor and peer component.

Surina Hart, Gino Schincariol and Lorne Andrews, certified real estate instructors and industry professionals, spearheaded Hart Real Estate Academy in response to OREA’s decision to ensure class sessions are available for students who prefer to learn in an interactive live or online setting.

“Hart Real Estate Academy classes are designed to provide students with useful content to ensure that the material is not only covered to enable a passing grade on the exam, but also to provide practical information to enhance participants’ real estate skills,” Andrews explains.

“We’re educators who are making a difference in the lives of real estate sales professionals, brokerages, buyers and sellers,” says Hart. “We believe in helping students acquire the knowledge, skills and resources they need for the future, now – so they save money and time – and, most important, are well equipped to overcome the challenges often presented within the earlier months of their careers.”

Classes offered by Hart Real Estate Academy are facilitated by certified real estate instructors and industry professionals, with the face-to-face sessions being held at York University’s Aviva Tennis Centre.

“There has been a lot of discussion in the real estate industry about the need for increased educational requirements and more practical training to effectively raise the professional bar in our industry, and I believe that the Hart Academy has timed its entry into the market perfectly,” states Don Kottick, Past President of the Real Estate Institute of Canada (REIC) and a Director with the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA). “I’m confident that graduates of the Hart Academy will enter the market better equipped for success and work to a higher standard of professionalism – just what the industry needs.”

For more information, please contact:

Hart Real Estate Academy
1-877-404-8307 | info@hartrealestateacademy.com

www.hartrealestateacademy.com
www.facebook.com/hartrealestateacademy

OREA Calls For Affordable Home Ownership Task Force

ontario real estate association logo

ontario real estate association logoPre-budget consultation offers ways to improve affordability for first-time buyers & young families

The best way to ensure millennials have a good shot at achieving the Canadian dream of home ownership is by putting more homes on the market, the Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA) told the Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs today. In its 2017 pre-budget consultation, OREA recommended the creation of an Affordable Home Ownership Task Force to determine how government can best improve housing supply and expand consumer choice.

“We are facing a critical housing supply shortage that is putting home ownership out of reach for Ontario’s first-time buyers and young families,” said Valerie Miles, OREA Government Relations Committee Chair. “In some markets, housing inventory is at all-time lows and prices are at record highs. Increasing the housing stock is necessary to give buyers more options at affordable levels. We need industry leaders to come together on this issue before the supply problem gets any worse.”

The Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD) recently reported that housing supply has plummeted over the past decade. The lack of housing supply is a main driving factor for increasing prices of new single-family detached houses and high-rise condos in the GTA.

In its pre-budget consultation, OREA recommended several ways to increase housing stock, including: reducing the red-tape around getting building permits approved; dedicated funding to help service land designated for development to incent builders to start projects sooner; and, moving away from the proposed ‘one-size-fits-all’ intensification targets under the provincial growth plan to allow developers to build “missing middle” housing types, namely townhomes, duplexes and stacked townhomes.

“The government is asking Ontarians for ways to create jobs, grow the economy and help people in their everyday lives — a strong real estate market checks off all three boxes,” said Tim Hudak, OREA CEO. “Every home transaction generates $55,000 in economic spin-offs which creates jobs and supports local business, while home ownership offers endless social benefits for families and communities. If the goal of the pre-budget consultation is to build up Ontario’s future, then finding ways to make home ownership affordable is a great place to start.”

This month the Government of Ontario increased the land transfer tax rebate to $4,000, which was previously $2,000, to help make home ownership more affordable for first-time buyers.

“The government deserves credit for taking positive steps to address affordability,” said Hudak. “We need more efforts like this to keep the dream of home ownership alive in Ontario. We look forward to continuing to work with policy makers on improving affordability even further.”

About the Ontario Real Estate Association

The Ontario Real Estate Association represents 70,000 brokers and salespeople who are members of the 39 real estate boards throughout the province. OREA serves its REALTOR members through a wide variety of professional publications, educational programs, advocacy, and other services. www.OREA.com

CONTACT INFORMATION

  • For more information, or to schedule an interview, contact:
    Katarina Markovinovic
    Ontario Real Estate Association
    (416) 445-9910 ext. 615
    katarinam@orea.com

OREA to Mayor John Tory: “Make Toronto More Affordable for Young Families”

Toronto city counsil

Toronto city councilReal Estate Experts Urge City Council to Reject Proposal to Increase Land Transfer Tax

Finding an affordable home in Toronto is becoming a CN Tower-sized challenge for many young families and it could get worse if Toronto City Council increases the Toronto Land Transfer Tax (LTT). Representatives from the Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA) presented at today’s Toronto Budget Committee meeting, where they urged City Council to reject a proposal by city staff to increase the Toronto LTT.

“Toronto City Council has an opportunity to take action to support more affordable home ownership in our city,” said Tim Hudak, OREA CEO. “Today, home prices are at record highs and new listings are at record lows. It’s become so much harder for first-time home buyers and young families to break into the market. A proposed tax increase could not come at a worse time.”

On the average priced Toronto home, a first-time home buyer pays over $15,000 in taxes to the city and the province. As part of the 2017 budget, city staff are proposing to hike the local LTT. The staff proposal would impose over $85 million in new taxes on home buyers with first-time home buyers paying almost $500 more in LTT on an average priced home.

“Ultimately, Toronto needs to roll back the LTT or, at the very least, not make this punishing tax even worse,” said Hudak. “Voting down the proposal to increase the LTT is a good first step but I encourage Council to go even further. To start, Toronto should follow Ontario’s lead and double the city land transfer tax rebate for first-time home buyers.”

As of January 1, 2017, Premier Wynne doubled the provincial land transfer tax rebate program meaning that first-time home buyers receive up to $4,000 in land transfer tax relief. If the City matched the provincial relief, first-time buyers in Toronto would see up to $12,000 in tax savings. Unfortunately, Toronto is proposing to swipe up to 25 per cent of the provincial savings out of the pockets of young couples and put it into city coffers instead.

“Toronto is a great place to live, work and raise a family; for generations, it’s where thousands of young people got their start in life,” said OREA president Ray Ferris. “Research has demonstrated the LTT has discouraged economic activity and reduced listings since all home sellers know they have to pay the tax on their next purchase. Reducing the LTT will help alleviate the housing supply shortage by bringing much needed housing stock on the market.”

Ontario Realtors suggest that Toronto work with the province to encourage the building of a greater range of housing types, namely townhomes, duplexes and stacked townhomes. Building more of these units would give a growing family more affordable options for staying in Toronto and baby-boomers more options for ‘right sizing’ out of their large detached homes.

About the Ontario Real Estate Association

The Ontario Real Estate Association represents 67,800 brokers and salespeople who are members of the 40 real estate boards throughout the province. OREA serves its REALTOR members through a wide variety of professional publications, educational programs, advocacy, and other services. www.OREA.com

CONTACT INFORMATION

  • For more information, or to schedule an interview, contact:
    Katarina Markovinovic
    Ontario Real Estate Association
    (416) 445-9910 ext. 615
    katarinam@orea.com

Ontario Real Estate Outlook Remains Strong Heading into Winter Season

ontario real estate association logo

ontario real estate association logoPerceptions of real estate markets in Ontario remain strong heading into the winter season as the Ontario Home Ownership Index edges to an all-time high of 131 points, according to new research from the Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA).

Driving the positive shift in sentiment are perceived improvements in current real estate markets and within the last year. More than half of Ontarians (55%) say the current residential real estate market in their neighbourhood is favourable, up 5 points from a year ago. Half of Ontarians (51%) say that the residential real estate market in their city or town is stronger than it was a year ago, up 11 points from a year ago.

“According to the results, it is likely that perceptions of strengthening markets will continue in Ontario into the foreseeable future,” said Tim Hudak, Chief Executive Officer, OREA. “Despite rising house prices in the GTA, buyers remain optimistic. In fact, even more Ontarians than last year say they intend to buy in the future. This speaks to the value of home ownership and the timelessness of this all-important commodity.”

More than four-in-ten (43%) Ontarians say their city’s real estate market will be stronger in the next year, up 5 points from a year ago. Furthermore, 14% of Ontarians say that they are very likely to purchase a home in the next two years, up 3 points from a year ago. Fifteen per cent of Ontarians say they are very likely to sell a home within the next 2 years, up 4 points from a year ago.

Home Hunting in Ontario
Among those who are at least somewhat likely to be buying a home in the next two years, detached homes remain the most popular housing choice (49%), up 13 points from a year ago. Interestingly, interest in condos (19%) has declined by 7 points year over year, while interest in semi-detached homes (19%) has ticked upwards (4 points). The least popular type of home among prospective buyers is row homes or townhomes (14%, down 2 points).

Majority of First-Time Home Buyers Think they will be Impacted by New Stress Test Rules
Eight-in-ten (79%) first-time home buyers in Ontario believe that at some point the new federal government rules about mortgage stress1 testing will impact them. Thinking about how the new rules could impact them, 45% of first-time home buyers say they will need to keep saving for a 20% down payment before buying a home; 27% believe they will need to find additional money to increase their down payment, and many say they will need to look for a less expensive home either in the same city (34%) or a different city (22%).

As of October 17th, 2016, the Federal Government of Canada requires prospective home buyers with less than 20% down-payment to pass a mortgage-rate “Stress Test” to ensure they will still be able to make their mortgage payments in the event mortgage rates go up in the future (about 2% above the current rates).

About The Ontario Home Ownership Index
The Ontario Home Ownership Index is designed to reflect Ontarians’ overall views of the residential real estate market in Ontario, and incorporates measures such as Ontarians’ perceptions of whether the market in their neighbourhood, city, and Ontario, respectively, have improved or worsened in the last year and looking ahead into the future, whether home ownership is important to them and whether it is a good investment in the long-term. The first wave of the index, conducted in the fall 2013, was set to a baseline of 100 points.

About the Ontario Real Estate Association
The Ontario Real Estate Association represents 67,800 brokers and salespeople who are members of the 40 real estate boards throughout the province. OREA serves its REALTOR® members through a wide variety of professional publications, educational programs, advocacy, and other services. www.OREA.com

CONTACT INFORMATION

  • For more information, or to schedule an interview, contact:
    Katarina Markovinovic
    Ontario Real Estate Association
    (416) 445-9910 ext. 615
    katarinam@orea.com

Desire for detached homes growing in Ontario, new research from OREA

ontario real estate association logo

ontario real estate association logoAll-time low inventory driving up house prices, reducing affordability for buyers

Half of Ontarians in the market to buy a home in the next two years say they are looking for a detached house, up 13 points from a year ago, shows new research from the Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA). In Toronto, where supply of detached homes is at an all-time low, the demand is up 21 points from a year ago, with 50% of buyers saying they are likely to buy this housing type, according to the Ontario Home Ownership Index, OREA’s semi-annual consumer study conducted by Ipsos Reid.

“With limited supply of this housing type, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to meet the demand,” said Tim Hudak, OREA CEO. “Young families looking for more space, a backyard to play with their kids in, simply don’t have enough options to choose from. Increasing the supply of single-family detached houses, as well as semis and townhouses, will give buyers more choice at affordable levels.”

The Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD) recently reported that housing supply has plummeted over the past decade. The lack of housing supply is a key driving factor for increasing prices of new single-family detached houses and high-rise condos in the GTA.

“Demand for detached houses is up while supply is critically low — no wonder prices are rising so quickly,” said Hudak. “We need more homes on the market; government should give careful consideration to policies that will increase supply. Home ownership is not a fad — it is the Canadian dream.”

According to OREA’s Ontario Home Ownership Index, eight out of ten Ontarians consistently say that home ownership is important to them (79%), real estate is a good investment (82%) and it makes more sense to own rather than rent (81%). ‘Long-term investment value’ is Ontarians’ top reason for buying a home (34%).

Housing Types – Ontario compared to Toronto
Types of homes Ontario and Toronto buyers say they are likely to purchase in the next two years
Ontarians say:Torontonians say:
50% – likely to buy a detached house in the next two years, up 13 points from a year ago50% – likely to buy a detached house, up 21% from a year ago
19% – likely to buy a condo in the next two years, down 7 points from a year ago22% – likely to buy a condo, down 17% from a year ago
19% – likely to buy a semi-detached home, up 4 points from a year ago23% – likely to buy a semi-detached home, up 3 points
14% – likely to buy a townhome, down 2 points from a year ago22% – likely to buy a townhome, up 2 points

Methodology

These are some of the findings of an Ipsos poll conducted between October 27 and 31, 2016, on behalf of the Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA). For this survey, a sample of 1,003 Ontarians from Ipsos’ online panel was interviewed online. Weighting was then employed to balance demographics to ensure that the sample’s composition reflects that of the adult population according to Census data and to provide results intended to approximate the sample universe. The precision of Ipsos online polls is measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the poll is accurate to within +/ – 3.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, had all Ontario adults been polled. The credibility interval will be wider among subsets of the population. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error.

About The Ontario Home Ownership Index

The Ontario Home Ownership Index is designed to reflect Ontarians’ overall views of the residential real estate market in Ontario, and incorporates measures such as Ontarians’ perceptions of whether the market in their neighbourhood, city, and Ontario, respectively, have improved or worsened in the last year and looking ahead into the future, whether home ownership is important to them and whether it is a good investment in the long-term. The first wave of the index, conducted in the fall 2013, was set to a baseline of 100 points.

About the Ontario Real Estate Association

The Ontario Real Estate Association represents 67,800 brokers and salespeople who are members of the 40 real estate boards throughout the province. OREA serves its REALTOR members through a wide variety of professional publications, educational programs, advocacy, and other services. www.OREA.com

Home inspector licensing is good for consumers, say Ontario Realtors

ontario real estate association logo

ontario real estate association logoOntario Real Estate Association supports new legislation that will better protect consumers against unscrupulous home inspectors

Ontario Realtors announced today their support for new legislation to regulate the provincial home inspection industry. If passed, the legislation would introduce mandatory licensing requirements for Ontario’s home inspectors and will give consumers peace of mind that they are hiring a qualified professional.

“Buying a home is the largest investment most of us will ever make,” says Ray Ferris, President of the Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA). “The information a home inspector provides to a consumer is critical to their decision to purchase a property.”

This new legislation is the culmination of extensive consultations with home inspection associations, consumer advocates, and the real estate industry on mandatory qualifications for home inspectors to enhance consumer protection. OREA was happy to be a member of the volunteer panel of experts who developed a report with 35 recommendations for the home inspection industry.

“When buying a home, people have a right to expect high professional standards and government oversight of all professionals involved in a real estate transaction,” said Tim Hudak, CEO Designate of OREA. “High standards and a clear legal framework in the home inspection industry will ensure home buyers and sellers receive reliable, informative and professional advice when making one of the largest decisions of their lives.”

The proposed legislation would also create an administrative authority which will oversee the industry and establish a code of ethics, additional licensing requirements and provide consumers with a complaint and enforcement process.

About the Ontario Real Estate Association

The Ontario Real Estate Association represents over 66,750 brokers and salespeople who are members of the 40 real estate boards throughout the province. Ontario REALTORS are regulated under the Real Estate and Business Brokers Act, 2002 (REBBA). REBBA is administered by the Real Estate Council of Ontario. OREA serves its REALTOR members through a wide variety of professional publications, educational programs, advocacy, and other services. www.OREA.com

CONTACT INFORMATION

  • For more information contact:
    Katarina Markovinovic
    Ontario Real Estate Association
    (416) 445-9910 ext. 615
    katarinam@orea.com