A new report by Re/Max shows Canada’s housing market is stronger this year compared to 2011, mitigating warnings about an impending market cool-down or crash—at least for now. The report speaks of “strong demand and diminished supply setting the stage for a heated spring 2012,” adding that “12 of 15 Canadian centres (80 per cent) were reporting year-to-date (January-February) sales activity ahead of last year’s levels, with more than half reporting double-digit increases.”
The following cities have seen the biggest growth: Halifax-Dartmouth (35 per cent), Saskatoon (21 per cent), Saint John (20 per cent), Regina (16 per cent), St. John’s (12.5 per cent) and Greater Toronto Area (12 per cent). Vancouver, Kitchener-Waterloo, and Winnipeg “have experienced softening in housing activity so far this year.”
Re/Max analysts credit the bump to a combination of low interest rates, strong consumer confidence, and mild winter weather across the country.
Weather this early winter activity is taking away steam from the spring—usually the prime-time home-buying season—is anyone’s guess, as explored in this Financial Post article.