Vancouver and Toronto drive up Canadian prices

Photo:   BrianFagan

Vancouver and Toronto continue to drive up the average price of Canadian property.

The national average sale price rose 8.7 per cent on a year-over-year basis in August, according to the Canadian Real Estate Association. Greater Vancouver and Greater Toronto continue to lead the way with rises of 11.96 per cent and 9.99 per cent respectively.

By comparison, year-over-year price growth in the Fraser Valley accelerated to about 7 per cent, while Victoria and Vancouver Island prices logged year-over-year gains of about 5 per cent in August. Excluding Greater Vancouver and Greater Toronto, prices increased by 4.2 per cent.

Prices in Calgary were flat on a year-over-year basis in August, marking the first month since September 2011 of no year-over-year price growth. Prices in Saskatoon also ran roughly even with year-ago levels.

Elsewhere, home prices were up from August 2014 levels by about one-and-a-half per cent in Greater Montreal, by about one per cent in Greater Moncton, and by about half of one per cent in Ottawa. Prices fell by about three-and-a-half per cent in Regina, extending year-over-year price declines there that began in 2013.

Two-storey single family homes continue to post the biggest year-over-year price gains (8.85 per cent), followed by one-storey single family homes (6.09 per cent), townhouse/row units (4.29 per cent) and apartment units (3.08 per cent).

Sales were little changed on a month-over-month basis among all local markets in August, with an even split between markets posting increases and those with declines.

“August marked the fourth month in a row for strong and stable national sales activity,” says CREA President Pauline Aunger. “While home prices increased in British Columbia and in the Greater Toronto Area, they have been holding fairly steady in many other parts of the country for some time now.”

“Prices continue to rise in Ontario and British Columbia, where listings are either in short supply or heading in that direction,” adds Gregory Klump, CREA’s Chief Economist. “August also provided early evidence that modest price growth is re-emerging in some markets in Quebec and New Brunswick. The continuation of low interest rates is supporting home sales and price trends, and is likely to keep doing so for some time.”