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Canadian home prices rise more than expected on gains in Toronto, Calgary

Posted on Sep 13, 2013 in Mortgage Market Updates and News

Andrew Mayeda, National Post Wire Services
 
 
Canada’s new home price index rose 0.2% in July, led by gains in Toronto and Calgary, the government statistics agency said.
 
Will rising prices force Canadian families into condos?
 
A new survey says one in eight households in Canada now live in a condominium, as affordability drives people out of single-family homes.
 
Prices in Toronto, the country’s largest city, increased 0.3% from the previous month, while Calgary gained 0.6% and Vancouver rose 0.2%, Statistics Canada said Thursday in Ottawa.
 
Economists forecast the index would rise 0.1%, according to the median estimate in a Bloomberg survey with nine responses. From a year earlier, new home prices increased 1.9% in July.
 
Canada’s housing market has been showing conflicting signs of strength. While municipalities issued a record amount of building permits in July, housing starts slowed in August by more than forecast. Policy makers have tightened mortgage rules amid signs of overbuilding in places such as Toronto and Vancouver.
 
In a separate report, Teranet-National Bank Composite House Price Index showed Canadian home prices rose in August from July’s all-time high, but the annual price increase remained subdued.
 
The index, which measures price changes for repeat sales of single-family homes, showed overall prices rose 0.6% in August from a month earlier, below the seasonal norm.
 
The index was up just 2.3% from a year earlier, a slight acceleration from July. The annualized readings from the last five months are far below readings on an equivalent housing index in the United States, Teranet said.


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