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Housing prices still rising, but it's not scaring off first-time buyers: report

VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – House prices continue to rise in Vancouver, but that isn’t stopping first-time home buyers jumping in with two feet, according to a new report from the Canadian Association of Accredited Mortgage Professionals.

CAAMP president Jim Murphy says housing prices in Vancouver, Calgary and Toronto have jumped 8.2 per cent over the last year, yet 55 per cent of homes bought across Canada were by people buying for the first time.

Murphy says that’s largely due to record-low mortgage rates, which should continue for the short term. “We saw one of the major banks… for example, this week announcing a five-year fixed for less than three per cent. These are unheard of numbers.”

“I don’t think any economist is predicting that rates are going to rise any time soon,” he tells us. “I think we’re going to be well into 2015 before the Bank of Canada raises rates.”

But Murphy notes nationally, there are storm clouds on the horizon, with the report stating housing starts will have dropped 20 per cent by the end of next year compared with 2011 and 2012.