Is it time for millennials to join the competitive housing market?

With only a few almost-affordable homes remaining in the high-demand markets of Vancouver and Toronto, a millennial would-be buyer might be tempted to finally participate in the competitive housing market—but is it the right time to do so?
In an analysis piece for Yahoo! Canada Finance, industry observer Melissa Dunne noted that ever-rising prices might prove to be irresistible for younger generations who are looking at purchasing (and eventually making bank in) long-term real estate investments in Canada’s most active cities.
However, Dunne argued that this is a situation riddled with significant risk, as there is no certainty that interest rates would remain relatively stable over the duration of a mortgage—especially in a fiscal climate characterized by static wages and non-stop price growth.
“On top of that, lenders are offering very low interest rates right now, so it’s hard to resist the lure of getting in while the market is up and rates are low,” Dunne said. “So, homebuyers need to ask themselves: If my mortgage went up a few hundred dollars per month, can I pay that increased amount and for how long?”
Moreover, young buyers’ decisions need to factor in other non-housing costs associated with their unique situations.
“[The] risk appetite for many younger homebuyers depends on their specific goals and situation. If the homebuyer is a young couple who might have a baby soon, that could lead to one person taking time off work, so that needs to be taken into account when deciding whether to take on a mortgage,” the analyst stated.
Dunne advised diligence and cautiousness above everything else, even if it means missing out on what might appear to be a bargain.
“Before taking the plunge on purchasing a first home young people should speak to a mortgage specialist to get a realistic view of what they can afford to pay now and in the many years to come,” Dunne concluded.

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