While the media and commentators were denouncing the Canadian market, investors were snapping up properties to mark a prosperous year for all.
Historically low interest rates and rising consumer confidence proved the catalyst for the buying spree, according to a new RE/MAX report, with almost half a million homes changing hands this year alone.
It’s a trend that is expected to continue in 2014, says Sylvain Dansereau, Executive Vice President, RE/MAX Quebec. “Equity gains should continue to result in tangible leaps to larger homes or better neighbourhoods, as well as a growing wave of renovation and revitalization. Gains in equity markets may also serve to bolster activity, as paper wealth is converted to material wealth. We anticipate improved momentum going forward."
The report says that the average price of a Canadian home is forecast to appreciate four per cent to $380,000 in 2013, up from $363,740 in 2012. Values are expected to continue to escalate in 2014, rising three per cent to $390,000 by year end.
Naturally, there were huge disparities nationally in terms of sales activity. Alberta started the year with a bang, with B.C., Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Ontario only kicking into gear in July. The key markets included Greater Vancouver, Kelowna, Victoria (six per cent), Windor-Essex (six per cent), Edmonton (five per cent) and Hamilton-Burlington (five per cent).
A more consistent performance is expected in 2013, especially given economic projections for the East Coast and Quebec.
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