The housing market has been one of the mainstays of the economic recovery, with prices and sales already back, and in some markets, beyond pre-recession levels.
"The number of people who are really, really vulnerable is a relatively small number," he said,"Clearly, when you have a situation of interest rates rising there will be defaults rising, but it will not be over the cliff like the U.S., it will not be a crisis."
Tal says Canadians traditionally adopt a variety of strategies to rising rates, including locking in to longer-term fixed mortgages, something he says is already occurring.
The other difference between the Canadian situation and that of the U.S., where the sub-prime crisis triggered a financial market meltdown, is that lower-income Canadians tend to be more conservative than higher-income buyers, said Tal. In reverse of the U.S. situation, lower-income Canadians tend to take out fixed-rate mortgages, he said.