Not a boom, but not a bust either
According to an article in the Leader-Post StatsCan has reported that the economy had stronger growth than predicted in January. The growth was primarily driven by a stronger manufacturing sector but the arts, technology and other sectors also contributed to the results. This is a refreshing change from the consistent negative press that we have been reading about the state of our economy.
The real estate industry has still experienced some challenges however, particularly in major centers like Toronto or Vancouver. Some in the industry are laying the blame squarely at the feet of media who have be barraging the residents of these two cities with the threat of a housing collapse. Although there has been some softening as compared to last year in some areas, much of Canada is still enjoying a robust market. There may be less instances of bidding wars on properties, but people are still selling and buying. There are still great interest rates to be had, and this low cost of borrowing is still a motivator for people to buy or refinance their homes.
Is personal debt out of control?
According to this article in the Financial Post some economists have stated
that the issues with the Canadian economy can be directly linked to the
unprecedented level of consumer debt which has recently hit the all time high
of 165%. It does not appear that these levels of debt seem to be a concern for
most people, but maybe it is time that we took a serious look at bringing debt
down and increasing our savings.
A mortgage refinance can be a useful tool to reduce the amount of our monthly payments, but without a strong plan in place to implement a budget, it could end up being worse than before. When you are considering a consolidation it is important that you have a game plan to help you stay as debt free as possible. Don’t be afraid to ask your mortgage broker questions and for help on how to structure your personal obligations to best support your lifestyle and still have a good plan for the future.