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Canada's banking regulator said on Tuesday it will require the country's banks to test how they would withstand a 50 percent drop in property prices in Vancouver and a 40 percent decline in Toronto.

The move, which builds on an existing requirement that banks test their resilience to a 30 percent decline in home prices across all regions, is the latest in a series of measures by Canadian authorities to counter a risk posed by soaring house prices in the two Canadian cities.

The Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI) said earlier this month it was tightening oversight of mortgage lending, citing concerns about record household debt and a sharp jump in prices.

Property markets have surged in Vancouver and Toronto since the 2007-2009 financial crisis, fueled in part by foreign investors, mostly from mainland China.

Canada's banking regulator does not publicly announce the results of bank stress tests in the same way as its counterparts in the United States and Europe, but it considers the tests important in ensuring the country's banks have strong enough capital buffers to withstand market shocks.

OSFI said that, previously, only the impact on banks' core capital ratios was assessed in the test but, this year, the impact on banks' leverage ratios, which do not take into account risk weightings used by banks, will also be tested.

Canadian Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced in June that the Liberal government would set up a working group of federal, provincial and municipal officials to recommend policy changes aimed at preventing a housing bubble.

British Columbia introduced a new 15 percent property transfer tax on foreign real estate buyers in Vancouver on Monday.

By Matt Scuffham

Simon Fraser
Market Update

Simon Fraser Condos

Altaire by Polygon

Altaire built in 2008/2009 reaches higher then any other condo building in Metro Vancouver offering panoramic views.

Novo I by Intergulf

Novo I built in 2007 known for the amazing sight lines and views from most units and balconies up to 1000 sq ft.

Novo II by Intergulf

Novo II built in 2007 known for the amazing sight lines and views from most units and balconies up to 1000 sq ft.

Aurora by Polygon

Aurora built in 2006 with 103 condos featuring 36 unique floor plans ranging from 715 sq ft to 1500 sq ft.

One University by Millennium

One University built in 2005 is UniverCity's flagship building with luxury homes featuring semi private elevators.

Harmony by Polygon

Harmony built in 2005 was the first condo development at Univercity & as a result offers a unique setting & views.

Serenity Townhomes by Polygon

Serenity is a collection of 2 bedroom townhomes of 1100 sq ft ranging to 4 bedroom 2000+ sq ft townhomes.

The Hub by Liberty Homes

The Hub built in 2009 is set atop Nester's Grocery and steps from High Street giving these homes an urban feel.

Verdant by VanCity Enterprises

Verdant is a two storey town home building built with environmental design and stylish living spaces which complement the modern exterior of these SFU homes.

Origin by Porte Development

Origin is designed by GBL Architect & BYU Interior Designs, developed by Porte Development Corp. and marketed by Red Dot Real Estate.

Nest by Mosaic

Located on UniverCity High Street across from the new University Highlands elementary schools this refreshing building will add further depth to a growing community.

Highland House by Liberty Homes

A 12-storey concrete high-rise development and targeted towards Rental Investors and First-Time Condo Buyers.

Lift by Porte Development

Lift will be a wood frame building comprising of 56 homes. Building technologies, environmental features, and price points should be similar to Origin.

Altitude by Hungerford Group

Altitude will be a 2 tower development comprising of a 12 and 14 story building with a total of 210 strata units.

CentreBlock by Liberty Homes

CentreBlock at UniverCity atop Burnaby Mountain is the latest condo project with sales commencing early 2014. .

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