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Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has taken aim at blind bidding, proposing to end the practice as a way to help rein in rising home prices. However, the Canadian Real Estate Association opposes the ban, arguing that blind bidding benefits both buyers and sellers.

Read about the ongoing blind bidding debate, how stronger-than-expected employment data could increase the likelihood of interest rate hikes, record-setting immigration’s impact, and predictions for 2022 in Livabl’s weekly roundup of Canadian housing news and trends.

What an end to blind bidding could look like: Blind bidding is standard practice when a home attracts multiple offers, letting buyers compete to offer the highest purchase price without knowing the other bids. A recent poll revealed the majority of respondents (52 per cent) supported ending the practice, and the federal government has outlined plans to ban it. However, many in the real estate industry oppose a ban. CBC News reports on what home transactions could look like without blind bidding, and the impact it would have on prices and transparency.

Unemployment rate numbers could push pace of interest rate hikes: The latest employment figures released by Statistics Canada show that employers created another 55,000 positions in December and the jobless rate dropped to 5.9 per cent. A Financial Post editorial notes that many traditional labour market indicators, including the unemployment rate, have returned to pre-pandemic territory, signifying economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and bolstering the case for interest rate increases sooner rather than later.

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How will record-setting immigration impact Canada’s housing market?: The Canadian government reached its record-breaking immigration target in 2021, welcoming 401,000 new permanent residents to surpass the previous record set in 1913, and has set a target of 411,000 for 2022. The Globe and Mail examines how the influx of new immigrants will impact the nation’s already overheated housing market, increasing demand across the country, particularly in large urban centres like Toronto and Vancouver.

How long until the global housing boom goes bust?: Canada isn’t the only country to witness red-hot housing markets, with increased demand stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic causing home prices to rise around the globe. The Economist looks at the economic fundamentals behind the global housing boom and focuses in on Halifax to illustrate the fact that despite some people forecasting doom and gloom on the horizon, real estate has some significant staying power.

Five housing market predictions for 2022: How did 2021 change the real estate landscape and shift expectations moving forward? What does the Canadian housing market’s future have in store after a record-setting year? The Financial Post offers five predictions for 2022, tackling issues including historically low housing inventory, the impact mortgage rate hikes will have, the anticipated rate of rising home prices, how technology has changed purchasing in the digital age, and how real estate-related issues factor into upcoming Ontario elections.

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