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Economic Viewpoint

Desjardins Affordability Index: Should You Jump into the Housing Market? And If So, When?

June 27, 2024
Marc Desormeaux
Principal Economist

With interest rates falling and home prices expected to rise, some prospective buyers sense an opening after an exceptionally challenging period for affordability. Could the next few months be the right time for them to come off the sidelines?

Based on our forecast, some prospective buyers may find opportunities in late 2024 and early 2025—with several caveats and additional considerations.

Regardless, we remain of the view that Canadian housing affordability will improve but not return to pre‑pandemic levels over the next 2+ years.

That result holds under all four of the alternative forecast scenarios we explore in this note. These scenarios are: an extension of mortgage repayment timelines, changes to temporary migration policy, a pronounced spike in new listings and a recession.

We expect regional differences to persist. Ontario and BC’s particularly costly starting points mean that they’ll likely remain the most prohibitively expensive markets, while Alberta should continue to stand out as relatively more affordable.

NOTE TO READERS: The letters k, M and B are used in texts, graphs and tables to refer to thousands, millions and billions respectively. IMPORTANT: This document is based on public information and may under no circumstances be used or construed as a commitment by Desjardins Group. While the information provided has been determined on the basis of data obtained from sources that are deemed to be reliable, Desjardins Group in no way warrants that the information is accurate or complete. The document is provided solely for information purposes and does not constitute an offer or solicitation for purchase or sale. Desjardins Group takes no responsibility for the consequences of any decision whatsoever made on the basis of the data contained herein and does not hereby undertake to provide any advice, notably in the area of investment services. Data on prices and margins is provided for information purposes and may be modified at any time based on such factors as market conditions. The past performances and projections expressed herein are no guarantee of future performance. Unless otherwise indicated, the opinions and forecasts contained herein are those of the document’s authors and do not represent the opinions of any other person or the official position of Desjardins Group.