The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) announced today that it’s MLS Home Price Index reported a 5.2 per cent increase in real estate value from April to May 2012. Leading this increase was the Greater Toronto area which saw a home price increase of 7.9 per cent. Calgary and Vancouver came in next with increases of 4.8 per cent and 3.3 per cent respectively. Additionally seeing gains, although low ones, were Fraser Valley, with an increase of 2.4 per cent, and Montreal, which came in at 2.2 per cent.
In comparison for year-over-year prices, Calgary saw increases in real estate value pick up speed and totals in May marking the greatest year-over-year gain in the region in the past two years. This led to Calgary’s MLS Home Price Index to rise to its highest level since August 2008.
The MLS HPI showed that Greater Toronto is still the hottest market for real estate in Canada. This was led by single family homes in its urban core.
“While price gains overall are running steady, diverging trends among local markets show clearly that all real estate is truly local,” said Wayne Moen, CREA President. “Because price trends are different between markets and within them, anyone buying or selling a home should consult with their REALTOR® to best understand how the housing market is shaping up locally.”
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When it comes to real estate sales by type of home, two storey single family homes led the market with the strongest year-over-year growth in May, coming in 6.7 per cent. One storey homes saw growth as well, an increase of 5.8 per cent, while townhouses and apartments saw smaller gains with totals of 3.3 per cent and 2.95 per cent respectively.
“Home price gains in Greater Toronto continue to eclipse those in other markets. Gains are also starting to pick up speed in Calgary after months of stability,” said Gregory Klump, CREA’s Chief Economist. “As always, prospects for home price trends depend on buyers’ willingness to pay and sellers’ expectations and motivations, both of which are tied to economic, labour market, and interest rate prospects. With European sovereign debt and banking issues likely to cloud the global economic outlook, Canadian interest rates will remain at or very near current levels. The continuation of low interest rates will continue to support Canadian housing activity and prices for some time to come.”
The MLS HPI is a leading index that gauges home price and real estate trends in five major Canadian housing markets: Greater Vancouver, Frazer Valley, Calgary, Greater Toronto, and Greater Montreal.