In 2010, in many areas of the country, house prices either went up, or remained fairly stable, and there is hope that 2011 will continue on the same streak.
“Trends in the housing market continue to be driven by the lingering after-effects of the recession," said Phil Soper, president and chief executive of Royal LePage Real Estate Services. "Canadians realize that interest rates are unsustainably low and that homes will become effectively more expensive when mortgage rates return to normal levels. We will likely see more price appreciation early in 2011 as some buyers complete transactions in advance of anticipated higher borrowing costs."
Recently released figures from the Royal LePage House Price Survey and Market Survey Forecast, state that various Canadian cities, including Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, Winnipeg, Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, Saint John, Halifax and St. Johns, paint a picture, nationally, of home prices beginning to recover, after having been battered in the previous years.
Gains from West to East were seen, starting in Vancouver, where Q4 prices gave the city the boost it needed to claim year-over-year gains.
Price increases were seen in all types of housing, including condos and single family homes. Standard two-story homes saw average price gains of 9.8 % over the same period last year, selling for a Q4 average of $1,007,500. Detached bungalows continued with year-over-year gains of 7.6 %, selling for a fourth quarter average of $891,500. Standard condominiums were in hot pursuit, registering in at an average price of $484,500, a gain of 7 %.
Not to be outdone, Toronto reported some modest gains as well. Standard two-storey homes reported the largest year-over-year price rise, up 5.6 % to $594,321. Standard condominiums increased 3.8 % to $331,525, while prices for detached bungalows went up by 3.1 % to $481,733.
There is hope that this optimism will continue through 2011 in Toronto. "We are predicting a 1 per cent increase in the average house price in Toronto during 2011," added Romanese. The market remains strong as consumer confidence is returning and interest rates are expected to stay relatively flat for at least the first half of the year. Rising inventories coupled with reduced affordability brought about by higher average prices will temper activity somewhat in 2011, keeping a lid on price increases this year.”
Montreal also boasted healthy gains, sparred on by low interest rates and bolstered consumer confidence. In Q4 alone, the average price of detached bungalows increased 8.7 % to $265,383. The price of standard two-storey homes increased by 8.7 % to $375,222, while the average price of standard condominiums surged 11.3 % to $240,000.
Some Albertan cities saw property prices head in the other direction, albeit, modestly. There is hope that currently favourable conditions will help in 2011 to bring prices back up.
Standard two-storey homes were responsible for the most significant year-over-year price drops, falling 5.3 % to $404,622. Prices for detached bungalows fell 4.9 % year-over-year to $392,167, while standard condominiums fell 2.2 % to $250,311.
"Real estate activity in the Calgary market is down slightly year-over-year with average listings in all housing types selling slightly lower than asking price," said Ted Zaharko, broker and owner of Royal LePage Foothills. "However, we witnessed multiple offers occurring in the market in the final quarter of 2010 as buyers began to realize that house prices aren't going to continue to fall in 2011."
Information Received from Proprertywire.ca January 6th, 2011