In October 2017, the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) completed a survey to highlight the attitudes and expectations of prospect home buyers in 2018. This survey, conducted with 2,507 respondents who intended to purchase a home within the next two years, provides interesting insights into future home buying intentions. The on-line survey included approximately 1,500 First-Time Buyers, 500 current owners, and 500 previous owners.

The survey results highlight that:

  • For First-Time Buyers and Previous Owners, the top motivator to purchase a home was the desire to stop renting. Across all groups, improved accessibility and investment opportunity were also listed as top motivators. Interestingly enough, changes to mortgage regulations and concerns about possible future interest rate increases were not among the top motivators.
  • Over four-in-ten First-Time Buyers and Previous Owners say they would delay their home purchase if they were not able to find their ideal home, with a fairly similar proportion saying they would be willing to compromise on the size of the home and location.
  • 85% of First-Time Buyers, 73% of Previous Owners and 66% of Current Owners intend to obtain a mortgage to finance their home purchase.
  • Of those who plan to purchase a home within the next two years, 80% of First-Time Buyers plan to consult with a Mortgage Broker. This is followed by 72% of Previous Owners and 69% of Current Owners.
  • Across all groups of future home buyers, more than six-in-ten say they are likely to have a financial buffer in case their expenses change in the future. Furthermore, the majority of future home buyers, especially Current Owners, agree that they feel confident they have the necessary tools and information to manage their mortgage and debt load.
  • Among all groups, the two most common actions completed one to two years prior to the purchase of a home were saving for a down payment and determining what type of home to buy. On the other hand, in the last three months before purchasing, about two-in ten of prospective buyers pre-qualify for a mortgage.
  • About one-in-four prospective home buyers stated that they would be very likely to consider delaying their purchase in the event of an increase in interest rates.

Source: CMHC

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