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CREA Updates Resale Housing Forecast

The Cana­dian Real Estate Asso­ci­a­tion (CREA) has revised its fore­cast for home sales activ­ity via the Mul­ti­ple List­ing Ser­vice® (MLS®) Sys­tems of Cana­dian real estate Boards and Asso­ci­a­tions for 2011 and 2012.

Over­all, sales activ­ity and prices remained stronger than expected in the sec­ond quar­ter. Sales momen­tum was also bet­ter than expected head­ing into the third quar­ter. As a result, the 2011 national fore­casts for sales activ­ity and aver­age price have been raised slightly.

National sales activ­ity is fore­cast to reach 450,800 units in 2011, up less than 1% from lev­els in 2010. CREA had pre­vi­ously fore­cast a decline of about 1% for activ­ity in 2011. Ero­sion in afford­abil­ity due to higher prices has prompted a small down­ward revi­sion to the out­look for sales in 2012.

British Columbia’s 2011 sales fore­cast has been revised slightly higher, in recog­ni­tion that home sales there appear to have bot­tomed out sooner than pre­vi­ously antic­i­pated. Stronger than expected activ­ity in Ontario off­set slightly softer than antic­i­pated demand in Que­bec, Man­i­toba, and New­found­land in the sec­ond quar­ter of 2011. Accord­ingly, the Ontario sales fore­cast for 2011 has been raised, while the out­look for activ­ity in Que­bec, Man­i­toba, and New­found­land has been revised lower.

National sales activ­ity in 2012 is fore­cast to ease 0.7% to 447,700 units, which is roughly on par with its ten-year average.

While there had been some talk of poten­tial inter­est rate increases, that hasn’t hap­pened,” said Gary Morse, CREA Pres­i­dent. “In fact, rates have actu­ally come down, and are now expected to remain low for the remain­der of this year and into 2012. It’s a great oppor­tu­nity to pur­chase a prop­erty with financ­ing at very favourable rates.”

The national aver­age home price is fore­cast to rise 7.2% in 2011 to $363,500. This is an increase from the pre­vi­ous fore­cast, reflect­ing con­tin­ued strong price growth in Van­cou­ver in the sec­ond quar­ter of 2011 and accel­er­a­tion in prices else­where, par­tic­u­larly Toronto. These two mar­kets exert an out­sized influ­ence on the national aver­age due to their rel­a­tively high level of activ­ity and aver­age price.

The national aver­age home price is expected to mod­er­ate in the sec­ond half of 2011, return­ing to nor­mal fol­low­ing a heav­ily skewed start to the year. In the first half of 2011, the national aver­age home price was pushed upward by a surge in multi-million dol­lar sales in selected areas of Greater Van­cou­ver and a higher than nor­mal share of over­all sales in more expen­sive markets.

Some of the expected mod­er­a­tion in the national aver­age price is sea­sonal, with aver­age price peak­ing in many local mar­kets dur­ing the sec­ond quar­ter of any year,” said Gre­gory Klump, CREA’s Chief Econ­o­mist. “Ele­vated shares of provin­cial and national sales activ­ity in Van­cou­ver and Toronto are also expected to return to more nor­mal lev­els, con­tribut­ing to an antic­i­pated mod­er­a­tion in aver­age price in British Colum­bia, Ontario, and nationally.”

Addi­tional new list­ings are antic­i­pated to result in a more bal­anced resale hous­ing mar­ket in most provinces,” said Klump. “The national aver­age price is fore­cast to sta­bi­lize in 2012, although at a slightly higher level than pre­vi­ously expected.”

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Con­tact Lau­rin Jef­frey for more infor­ma­tion – 416−388−1960

Lau­rin Jef­frey is a Toronto Real­tor with Cen­tury 21 Regal Realty. He did not
write these arti­cles, he just repro­duces them here for peo­ple who are
inter­ested in Toronto real estate. He does not work for any builders.

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