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CREA revises forecast upwards PDF Print E-mail
Written by HGO Staff   

OTTAWA (21 JUNE 2012) -- The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) has revised its home resale forecast upwards for the balance of 2012 and 2013, crediting the bump to stronger than anticipated sales in Alberta and Saskatchewan, coupled with higher demand in the Greater Toronto Area.

Earlier in the year, CREA's forecast predicted generally stable resale housing market in 2012. The revised forecast reflects a stronger than expected acceleration of sales activity in Alberta and Saskatchewan, a slightly faster than anticipated slowdown in British Columbia, and continued buoyancy in Ontario sales activity-specifically the Greater Toronto market.

The recent increase in new listings on the group's Multiple Listing Service (MLS) hasn't kept pace with stronger than expected demand in Toronto, which has driven up average prices while prompting an upward forecast as a result.

National resale housing activity is now forecast to reach 475,800 units in 2012, up 3.8% from 2011. Sales for 2013 are now forecast to decline by 1.1% to 470,200 units. Ontario is expected to see the largest decline in activity next year, reflecting a return from currently elevated levels.

"National activity over spring months was stronger than anticipated," CREA president Wayne Moen said in a statement. "This shows clearly how the continuation of low interest rates is keeping homeownership affordable and within reach."

CREA had previously forecast sales in 2012 and 2013 that were roughly on par with the 10-year average for annual activity. The updated forecast now predicts activity slightly above the long term average.

The national average home price is now forecast to rise by 2.2% to $370,700 in 2012. This is an upward revision from the previously forecast 1.1% decline.

The national average price is also forecast to rise modestly in 2013, edging up 2% to $378,200.

"CREA's forecast for annual activity this year has been boosted by what's already in the rearview mirror," CREA chief economist Gregory Klump noted. "Activity is still expected to recede, but from a higher level than previously anticipated. The pace for interest rate increases next year is expected to be very slow and gradual, so combined with further job growth, Canada's housing market should remain resilient."

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