014: Richard Goatcher Shares His Insights On The Alberta Economy And The Canadian Mortgage Industry

Jason Scott talks with Richard Goatcher, an Economic Analyst at CHBA Alberta. 


Richard Goatcher is an Economic Analyst at CHBA Alberta, Director of Research at the Edmonton Housing Research Corp, and the principal owner of Goatcher Consulting. 

Jason and Richard talk about the status of the Alberta economy, how the recent mortgage changes will affect the real estate market, and what construction trends Edmonton will be looking.

Key Points & Questions

  • [0:42] The Alberta economy is in a slow recovery that is still feeling the effect of the 2014 drop in oil prices.
  • [1:53] Where do you see the economy going in the next 2 years?
  • [3:00] A reversal in out-migration would have to happen for Alberta to see growth in the real estate market.
  • [4:00] Do you think we will see development go back to the oil sands like it was pre-2014?
  • [7:00] If you’re a buyer today, you have much more options than you would have back in 2006-2007.
  • [7:30] Where do you see housing prices going over the next year in Edmonton?
  • [9:18] Lower density building is starting to show improvement, but high density should be seeing a slowdown.
  • [11:20]  Why do you think the government implemented a stress test for anyone making a down-payment of less than 25%?
  • [12:50] We are seeing a lot more sales of single family dwellings under $400,000.
  • [14:35] The rental market in Edmonton is very well supplied. This is keeping renters from looking at home ownership as a way to decrease their costs.
  • [19:20] Is there a crisis coming to the Canadian real estate market? Or is it the media and stock investors making it seem that way?
  • [20:43]The bond markets in North America are what control mortgage rates, and they are sliding towards increasing.
  • [22:33] What effects do you see coming from the mortgage changes to bulk and portfolio insurance?
  • [29:00] Vancouver and Toronto have the biggest impact on national average housing price numbers.
  • [30:40] Is there a bubble in Toronto?
  • [31:34] Geography is a contributing factor to the housing supply problems in Vancouver (ocean and mountains), and Toronto (Lake Ontario).
  • [32:10] Was there no way for the Federal government to take a regional approach to the mortgage changes?
  • [36:55] Do you think there will be any new rules coming out?
  • [38:08] 2017 is going to be a transition year for Edmonton.
  • [40:25]If Alberta’s growth rates are going to return to the national average, it will mean the construction industry is going to go back to a more steady cycle.
  • [42:35] New demand is coming from millennials that are now having families of their own.