Get to Know BCREA Economics: The Go-To Resource for Housing Trends in BC

Jun 24, 2021

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Harveen Johal
Communications Assistant

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As a new REALTOR®, getting familiar with housing trends and learning about the market sets you up for a successful career in real estate. When it comes to economics, the British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) Economics team is one of the most respected economics departments across Canada. The team analyzes housing markets and the economic trends that shape them for the province's ten real estate boards and 23,000+ Realtors, and consumers across BC. BCREA releases regular reports on provincial home sales and economic activity, from quarterly mortgage rate and housing forecasts, market intelligence reports and more.

A list of all the economic products at BCREA:

Let's get more familiar with our Economics department with a few questions with BCREA Chief Economist Brendon Ogmundson.

  1. Tell us a little about yourself, your background, and your career at BCREA.
    • I hold a Masters in Economics from Simon Fraser University and I am also a CFA Charterholder. I started working at BCREA in 2010, my current position being Chief Economist. I specialize in macroeconomic forecasting, housing market analysis, and econometric modelling. I am a Member of the Province of British Columbia's Economic Forecast Council as well as a contributor to the Philadelphia Federal Reserve's Survey of Professional Forecasters. I also have the honour of being a three-time winner of the Crystal Ball Award by the Association of Professional Economists of British Columbia. Our current economics team is Ryan McLaughlin, who recently joined BCREA as an Economist, and myself.
  2. Why do you think it's especially important for new professionals entering the real estate industry to understand economics?
    • It is easy to get overloaded with information and conflicting narratives when it comes to the economy and especially the Canadian housing market. Realtors certainly do not have to be experts in economics but having a solid understanding of what factors matter to their clients and their business is important. The BCREA Economics department strives to provide this understanding through a clear and concise analysis of housing markets and the economic trends that shape them.
  3. BCREA distributes many great economic products, which products do you specifically recommend new Realtors should stay up to date with?
    • For new Realtors just trying to get a sense of the market, our monthly statistics release, which details sales and price trends for all of our member board areas, and the accompanying housing market update video are a good starting point. From there, our quarterly housing forecasts are a great way to get a feel for what factors are shaping future market activity. For those that are really into data, we also offer a monthly estimate of provincial economic growth in our BCREA Nowcast and monthly updates on the most recent important data releases related to employment, interest rates, and new home construction through our Economics Now email subscription.
  4. You're launching a new course later this year, Economics 101. Could you tell us a little about the course and how it will be especially helpful for new Realtors?
    • The Economics 101 course focuses on developing an understanding of the economic fundamentals that influence real estate markets. It will also provide an overview of the economic materials published by BCREA, and how Realtors can use those materials to interpret and apply economic analysis to better inform their clients on past and current housing market trends.
  5. Since your time at BCREA, what's one project you worked on that you're most proud of?

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