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Nearly half of renters expect to stay indefinitely: Poll

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Nearly half of Canadians who rent say they will continue to do so indefinitely and don’t know when they will be able to enter the housing market, according to a new survey.

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Renters surveyed by insurance company Canada Life cited lack of money, fear and uncertainty as reasons for staying away, with nearly 73% saying now is a bad time to buy a house and 17% saying they will never buy one.

Ninety-one percent of renters surveyed believe buying a home is getting harder every year, and 89% expect the next generation to find it even harder to enter the market housing.

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While 79% of respondents think home ownership is a good investment, 64% think they won’t be able to buy a home unless they have financial support from other people, like family members .

The survey, conducted between May 5 and May 11, also found that Canadians aged 25 to 29 are twice as likely to continue renting indefinitely as those aged 30 to 49.

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The housing market, however, is showing signs of slowing, with home sales falling nearly 22% in May from a year ago, and nearly 9% between April and May, according to recent data from the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA). The unadjusted average national home price was $711,000 in May, down nearly 5% from April.

But that doesn’t mean renters feel more confident about their ability to buy a home, as runaway inflation and rising interest rates affect the availability of funds, said Paul Orlander, vice president. – Executive President of Individual Customers at Canada Life. .

“These factors will likely ensure that Canadians will continue to view homeownership as an increasingly difficult challenge,” he said in an interview.

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Current owners are also feeling the pressure, with 24% of respondents saying they feel poorly housed.

As the Bank of Canada continues to raise interest rates, homeowners could face even more difficulty as mortgage payments rise.

The central bank, which is due to make its next interest rate decision on July 13, has signaled that it is open to bigger hikes if needed. Meanwhile, Canada’s inflation rate soared to 7.7% in May, according to Statistics Canada.

Whatever decision Canadians make about home ownership, wealth building and pension plans will be affected.

While buying creates equity that could be valuable in the long run, home ownership and the cost of maintaining a home can actually displace Canadians’ ability to save for retirement, Orlander said. .

Renting, on the other hand, can provide more flexibility and can preserve free cash flow each month for savings and investments that could go into retirement, he added.

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