Friday, August 14, 2009

House sales in Canada jump in July

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House sales in Canada jump in July

Last Updated: Friday, August 14, 2009 | 11:12 AM ET Comments36Recommend33

Canada's resale housing market for July posted the largest year-over-year gain in two years, with Western homebuyers leading the way, according to statistics released Friday by The Canadian Real Estate Association.

For the first time on record, sales of existing homes climbed to more than 50,000 units for July.

A total of 50,270 homes were sold last month via the Multiple Listing Service of Canadian real estate boards. This is up 18.2 per cent from the same month last year, and 3.9 per cent above the previous record for July that was set in 2007.

"The difference in the resale housing market now, compared to the beginning of the year, is night and day, and nowhere is this more evident than in the West," association president Dale Ripplinger said in a release.

"Homebuyers recognize that interest rates and prices have bottomed out, and are taking advantage of excellent affordability before prices and interest rates move higher."

Resale numbers for July were up from the same month last year in about 60 per cent of local markets.

The association said year-over-year gains in these cities contributed most to the national increase in activity:

  • Toronto (28 per cent).
  • Vancouver (90 per cent).
  • Montreal (19 per cent).
  • Calgary (22 per cent).
  • Edmonton (28 per cent).

Demand is rebounding sharply in some of Canada's priciest housing markets, skewing the national average price upward, with the average price rising 7.6 per cent from one year ago to $326,832.

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