Bloomberg-Nanos: Confidence in Canadian housing market strongest since mid-March

This optimism is helping offset less positive views about the national economy

Bloomberg-Nanos: Confidence in Canadian housing market strongest since mid-March

Canadian consumer confidence about housing has reached its highest point since the COVID-19 pandemic-driven lockdowns took hold in mid-March, according to the latest weekly survey by Nanos Research.

Around 27% of Canadians who are expecting home prices to decline within the next six months dropped to 27%, the lowest since March 13. Approximately 44% of respondents are anticipating home price increases in the next half-year, likewise the strongest showing since mid-March.

These dovetailed with the recent findings by Will Dunning, chief economist at Mortgage Professionals Canada. In a survey spanning Aug. 7 to Aug. 24, Dunning found that Canadians are on the whole “mostly positive” about home ownership.

“For a decade, our consumer surveys have investigated opinions on some housing-related and mortgage-related issues,” Dunning said. “The new data indicates that, in general, opinions have not become more negative during this emergency period.”

The optimism is helping counteract the declining outlook around the economy’s prospects, Bloomberg reported. The proportion of Canadians who are expect a stronger economy over the next six months fell to 19%, the lowest reading since June.

Some economists are also projecting that housing sentiment will gradually peter out, mainly because of the ongoing steady increase in coronavirus cases.

“Can it continue this way? Absolutely not,” said Benjamin Tal, deputy chief economist at Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce. “As we enter winter, things will slow down economically and we will see it in the housing market. It doesn’t mean it will go down but it will stabilize and maybe soften a bit.”