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Weak April Jobs Report Reflects Canadian Lockdown

Original Source:  Dr. Sherry Cooper, DLC   Canada’s Jobs Recovery Impaired by Third-Wave Virus Restrictions   This morning, Statistics Canada released the April 2021 Labour Force Survey showing a major deterioration in the jobs market following the third-wave Covid containment measures. Employment fell by 207,100 (-1.1%) in April, and the unemployment rate rose 0.6 percentage points to 8.1%.Employment declined in both full-time (-129,000; -0.8%) and part-time (-78,000; -2.3%) work. The number of employed people working less than half their usual hours increased by 288,000 (+27.2%). The number of Canadians working from home grew by 100,000 to 5.1 million. Total hours worked fell 2.7% in April, driven by declines in educational services, accommodation and food services, and retail trade. The labour underutilization rate, which captures the full range of available people who want to work, rose 2.3 percentage points to 17.0% in April. The number of Canadians unemployed for 27 weeks or more–the long-term unemployed–increased to 486,000. This group might well be the most scarred by the pandemic in terms of their job prospects and …
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Number of Home Sales in April Second Highest on Record

The Kitchener-Waterloo housing market continued to break records in April 2021. The month saw a total of 843 residential properties sold through MLS, up 263.4% from April 2020. “Even if we do not take into account April 2020, when Ontario was in the early days of its state of emergency, it was still an exceptional number of homes sold last month,” says Nicole Pohl, President of KWAR. “The previous 10-year average number of residential sales for April was 618.” Residential properties sold in April 2021 included 484 detached homes (up 233.8% from April 2020), 111 apartment-style condominium units (up 382.6%), 67 semi-detached (up 294.1%) and 181 townhomes (up 285.1%). The average price of a home in Kitchener-Waterloo was $757,906 in April 2021, up 34.3% from April 2020. The average price of a detached home was $899,315, up 36.9% from April 2020. Additionally, condominium units sold for an average of $441,887 …
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Valko Financial Ltd. Goes National with Heart-Centred Leadership

We are incredibly honoured by all the love and support we’ve been receiving from our amazing industry (and beyond!).  See the latest issue of Mortgage Broker News for a taste of what we’ve got cooking! *special thanks to Rachel Major for the artwork – we love it!   Original Source:  Mortgage Broker News After more than a decade of accomplishments and growth as a top-producing mortgage broker in Kitchener (Ontario), Tracy Valko founded Valko Financial Ltd. in 2018 to share her passion and principles for excellence in service with a team of like-minded, community focused professionals. Valko Financial Ltd. started small, but always had mighty potential and results because of the individuals who believed in serving the clients and community with honesty, integrity, commitment, and professionalism. Great minds think alike, and heart-centred people gravitate to each other, so it’s no big surprise that even with three provinces between them (about …
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OSFI Proposes Rule Changes to The Stress Test

The Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI) recently proposed a mortgage rule change to help slow down the overheated housing market. The current rule for mortgage approvals is that you must qualify as if the interest rate is 4.79% OR the contract rate plus 2%, whichever is higher. This is referred to as the Stress Test. The OSFI is proposing that on uninsured mortgages (mortgages with 20% down or more), the stress test rate is increased to 5.25% OR the contract rate plus 2%, whichever is higher. Below is an example of how much income it would take to qualify for a $300,000 mortgage at no stress test, the current stress test, and the proposed changes. The OSFI is inviting industry stakeholders to submit feedback on the rule changes by May 7th, 2021. OSFI will reveal its final plan for the rule changes on May 24th, 2021, with an enactment date of June 1st, 2021. As a heart-centred team that advocates for fair …
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March Existing Home Sales in Canada Hit New Record High As New Listings Surge To Unprecedented Levels

Original Source:  SherryCooper.com   What is All the Policy Hysteria About?   Today the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) released statistics showing national existing home sales hit another all-time high in March. What was arguably more noteworthy was that new listings hit their highest level on record in seasonally adjusted terms in March. Prices continued to rise as sales dwarfed the new supply.  The number of homes sold across the country rose 5.2% on a seasonally adjusted basis. The actual (not seasonally adjusted) activity was up 76.2% year-over-year (y-o-y). The 76,259 houses that sold were 14,000 more than the previous monthly sales record set last July. The number of newly listed properties jumped another 7.5% from February to March. Benchmark home prices rose 3.1% from the previous month and were up 20.1% y-o-y. The month-over-month increase in national sales activity from February to March was broad-based and generally in line with locations where more new listings became available. Sales …
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Record Smashing Number of Home Sales in March 2021

The Kitchener-Waterloo housing market broke records in March 2021. The month saw a total of 993 residential properties sold through MLS, up 72.7% from March 2020. “This is the first time we’ve sold more than 900 homes in a single month,” says Nicole Pohl, President of KWAR. “The second-highest number of sales occurred in May 2017 when there were 816 sales through our MLS® System.” Residential properties sold in March 2021 included 593 detached homes (up 69.4% from March 2020), 124 apartment-style condominium units (up 82.4%), 79 semi-detached (up 216%) and 197 townhomes (up 49.2%). The average price of a home in Kitchener-Waterloo was $765,393 in March 2021, up 30.8% from March 2020. The average price of a detached home was $899,460, up 32.3% from March 2020. Additionally, condominium units sold for an average of $423,470 (up 12%), semi-detached for $652,669 (up 32.5%) and townhomes for $622,258 (up 35.9%). There …
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Support Local This Easter Weekend

While people may be celebrating Easter a bit differently this year, there are still ways that you can support local businesses in a safe manner. Here are some great local bakeries in Kitchener-Waterloo to order some Easter-themed treats! Winnie’s Gluten-Free (519) 590-2769 winniesglutenfree.com Located in Belmont village, Winnie’s GLuten-Free is the perfect choice for delicious, gluten-free desserts. Head over to their website or give them a call to place your order! Debrodniks Donuts debrodniks.ca This local favourite is offering a special Easter menu until April 4th. Check it out on their website while supplies last! Norris Bakery (519) 742-0564 norrisbakery.com Norris Bakery was established in 1943 by Albert Norris.  The Bakery was owned and operated by the Norris family till 2000 at which time the Bakery was sold to the lead baker who has operated the Bakery since 2000. Norris Bakery strives to provide our customers with homemade quality baked goods, made …
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5 Tips for Selling Your Home This Spring

The Spring housing market is here! The start of the new season brings sunshine, flowers, and an overly competitive market for home buyers and sellers. If you’re looking to put your home up for sale, you’ll want to have all of your bases covered to capture the attention of buyers and secure the best possible offer. Here are 5 simple tips to sell your home this spring! Do a thorough cleaning of your home A clean house will always give off a better impression to people touring your home. Dust off all surfaces, lamps, and furniture to give your home that extra sparkle. Next, remove any clutter throughout your home. This could include cleaning off the kitchen counters or tidying up the kids’ toys. If you don’t have the space to put something away, it never hurts to donate it to a non-profit organization. Check for winter damage The snow …
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Tracy Valko Nominated as RBC Woman of Influence

We are thrilled to announce Tracy Valko has been nominated as an RBC Canadian Woman of Influence! RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards is the premier national awards program for celebrating the acheivements of the most successful in this inspiring group.  For 29 years, the awards have shone a spotlight on Canada’s most accomplished and impactful women who have demonstrated excellence – from economic growth to social change, from global reach, across multiple sectors. For more information about the awards or to nominate someone please visit RBC Women of Influence. Learn More    

Support Local on St Patrick’s Day

While people may be celebrating St. Patrick’s Day a bit differently this year, there are still ways that you can support local businesses in a safe manner. Here are some great local restaurants to order from for today’s festivities! McCabe’s Irish Pub and Grill Kitchener (519) 743-3400 mccabeskitchener.com Waterloo (226) 647-5321 mccabeswaterloo.com “Irish pubs in downtown Kitchener and Uptown Waterloo where you can enjoy some traditional Irish grub and yummy pub fair. McCabe’s is the perfect mix between Irish tradition and local flair with a friendly atmosphere and always a warm bar stool. During the day it’s more laid-back, ideal for grabbing lunch and caffeine fixes.” Malt and Barley Public House (519) 745-6460 maltandbarley.ca “There’s no better way to celebrate Paddy’s Day than with a 3-course meal from your local pub! Order a 3-course Irish feature that includes mulligatawny soup, lamb stew, Irish car bomb puddin’ & more! Plus, there …
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