Canadian Real Estate Report

(November 15, 2011 )

Canadian home sales edge higher in OctoberOTTAWA – November 15, 2011 – According to statistics1 released today by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA),national resale housing activity picked up a little further in October 2011 following the uptick in September.Highlights:• Sales activity rose in October, marking the highest level since January.• Actual (not seasonally adjusted) national sales activity in October stayed in line with the 10-year average for the month,as it has most months this year.• Year-to-date sales are also even with the 10-year average.• The number of newly listed homes remained little changed from levels in the previous three months.• While the combination of stronger sales and stable new listings resulted in a slightly tighter balance of supply anddemand, the national housing market remains firmly rooted in balanced territory.• The national average price posted a 5.5 per cent year-over-year gain in October, the smallest increase since January.Homes sold through MLS® Systems of real estate Boards and Associations in Canada rose 1.2 per cent in October 2011 from theprevious month. While national sales activity levels are still best described as average, the monthly rise in October sales built on the2.5 per cent gain in September, and lifted activity to the highest level since January.Just over half of all local markets posted monthly sales increases, led by gains in Montreal, Toronto, and Vancouver.“There was no shortage of headline news in October about global financial market volatility and economic uncertainty, but it doesn’tappear to have dampened homebuyers’ spirits,” said Gary Morse, CREA’s President. “Interest rates are at low levels and are likely tostay that way for some time to come. Homebuyers clearly see the opportunities that the current interest rate environment presents.That said, all real estate is local, so buyers and sellers should consult their local REALTOR® for an understanding of opportunitiesin their housing market.”As has been the case in most months this year, actual (not seasonally adjusted) national home sales in October stayed in line withthe 10-year average for the month. Although up 8.5 per cent from levels one year ago, the gain in large part reflects last year’snascent pick-up in activity following a mid-year lull.A total of 397,561 homes have traded hands via CanadianMLS® Systems so far this year. This represents an increaseof 1.8 per cent from levels in the first 10 months of 2010, butis directly in line with the 10-year average for the year-to-datefigure. (Chart A)The number of newly listed homes remained little changedin October compared with levels recorded in each of theprevious three months.“The prevailing economic outlook for Canada is one of slowerbut still positive economic growth, with heightened cautionabout investment and hiring decisions,” said Gregory Klump,CREA’s Chief Economist. “Consumer confidence and thehousing sector are being supported by low interest rates andhigh employment levels, but their prospects depend on howCanada’s economic outlook evolves in response to globaleconomic risks and outcomes in the months ahead.1 All figures in this release, unless otherwise noted, are seasonally adjusted to remove normal seasonal variation. Removing regular seasonal variations enablesanalysis of monthly changes and fundamental trends in the data.٭