Rising housing values and lack of inventory challenge first-time buyers, says RE/MAX

Mississauga, ON (April 22, 2008) – While higher housing values and tight inventory levels have hampered home-buying activity so far this year, longer amortization periods and alternative housing types have offset the impact on most major markets across the country, according to a report released today by RE/MAX.

Despite a higher degree of frustration in the marketplace than in previous years, the RE/MAX Affordability Report found that first-time buyers, in particular, remain steadfast in their determination to purchase a home. In fact, entry-level purchasers are adjusting their expectations by sacrificing size, location, and even long-term financial freedom, to overcome challenges such as rising prices and serious supply issues. Innovative financing has become key to homeownership in today’s environment with longer amortization periods gaining favour in 62 per cent of the major centres surveyed. Low or no down payments were popular with first-time buyers in 38 per cent of markets.

“Doom and gloom reports coming from south of the border have yet to hinder overall momentum,” says Michael Polzler, Executive Vice President and Regional Director, RE/MAX Ontario-Atlantic Canada. “First-time buyers are still leading the charge, taking advantage of every resource available to achieve homeownership. They’re determined to get into the market sooner rather than later. If suburban locations, smaller condominiums and town homes, or a little sweat equity is what it takes to get into the market, these purchasers are game.”

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