CREA Café in 2021: Low Supply, Secretly Recording Buyers and Vacation Properties

While 2020 saw unprecedented change to our daily lives, 2021 saw us adapt and adjust to life with COVID-19.

Over the last 12 months, as we continued to navigate the “new normal”, CREA Café published more than 300 blogs in both official languages to keep members informed as well as help their businesses thrive.

Today, we look back at the most popular blog posts from each of our seven categories:

CREA News:

Beautiful cottage

8 Questions REALTORS® Should be Prepared to Answer Before Their Clients Buy a Vacation Property

On Episode 18 of REAL TIME we spoke to Heather Bayer, a vacation rental expert, broadcaster and co-founder of Vacation Rental Formula, to hear her insights into the current landscape for vacation properties in Canada.

Bayer walked us through how she got started in the industry, and what continues to motivate her now more than 20 years later. We also heard about how the pandemic has impacted this niche industry, both domestically and internationally.

Based on her own experience buying vacation properties, Bayer suggests REALTORS® should be prepared to answer these eight questions (see link below) to help their clients find the right property.

By The Numbers:

pretty house

Desperately Seeking Supply: Listings at Lowest Level on Record

In February, CREA’s Director and Senior Economist, Housing Data and Market Analysis, Shaun Cathcart, took a closer look at national home sales activity for the month of January.

The analysis, focusing on historically low supply levels, set the tone for the rest of the year. As we entered 2021, the number of months of inventory nationally fell below two for the first time ever.

Cathcart, at the time, hypothesized what Canadians could expect from the spring market.

“I guess what I can say with some confidence about the next few months of housing activity in Canada is it will most certainly be headline grabbing.”

Desperately Seeking Supply was the most read blog on CREA Café in 2021. It was also the most shared blog on CREA’s Facebook page.

Legal Matters:

House cameras

Can REALTORS®—or Clients—Secretly Record Potential Buyers?

When a client is selling their home, they may, for whatever reason, wish to record potential buyers as they look through the property. But is this allowed?

This question can be approached from a legal point of view or from a philosophical point of view. In this blog post, CREA’s chief privacy officer and legal counsel, Simon Parham, provides guidance—at least from a legal perspective—for REALTORS® wondering what the rules are.

Changes to Canada’s Anti-Money Laundering Laws Got You Down? PEP up! Here are Some Tools to Help You Succeed was the most commented on blog for 2021.


The Societal Benefits of Homeownership - happy family at home

Health and Happiness: The Societal Benefits of Homeownership

The motivation to own a home is different for most people. The benefits are often the same.

While the financial benefits of homeownership are known, such as creating equity and wealth, what isn’t always as obvious are the social benefits: making people happier, healthier and more civically engaged.

In this blog post, we explore the societal benefits as laid out in our white paper, The Homeownership Dividend for Canadians.


Family enjoying home

How to Help Sellers Increase the Value of Their Home

This REALTORS® Corner blog post from Mike Stewart, REALTOR®, looks at how REALTORS® can help their clients get the best price possible for their property.

Do renovations increase a home’s value? What about staging? Read on to help your clients get the best bang for their buck!


Artificial intelligence

AI and Its Possible Impact on Real Estate

Artificial intelligence (AI) has been a buzzword in several industries for the last few years. The pandemic has only fueled the need for even more virtual solutions.

One of the most interesting aspects of artificial intelligence in the real estate industry is visual AI. This blog post explores how AI technologies have impacted construction, through design and safety technologies.

Continue reading to learn more about the future of AI lead generation, market predictions, property analysis and management.


Living Room

9 Things Sellers Should Never Leave Out During an Open House

Everyone knows not to leave cash on the kitchen counter or jewelry sitting out before an open house. There are, however, other things besides valuables your clients should think about stashing away. Thankfully, with a bit of due diligence, it’s unlikely they’ll run into any issues.

With lots of visitors coming and going, it’s important your clients’ valuables are safe and to secure. In this blog post, we review nine items your clients should hide or remove from their homes.

9 Things Sellers Should Never Leave Out During an Open House was our most liked blog promo on Instagram.

Do you have a topic you’d like to see cover this year? Tell us your ideas in the Comments below.

As a Communications Advisor, Sarah O'Neill is responsible for developing a variety of internal and external communication materials—from blog content to newsletters, and social posts to speaking notes. Prior to joining CREA, Sarah worked as a journalist in a small town and as a national online editor at one of Canada’s largest news media companies. In her spare time, Sarah can be found renovating her century home, working out at the gym or binge-watching bad reality TV.

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