By Garry Marr, Financial Post, April 8, 2014 - Forget what you’re hearing about a declining housing market, prices are still going up, says one of Canada’s leading real estate companies. Royal LePage says in the first-quarter what it calls a standard two-storey house sold for $428,943 across the country, a 5.4% increase from a year ago. Bungalows rose 4.4% in value to $380,765 and condominiums were up 2.5% to $252,174.
“Suggestions of an overheated real estate market and bubble continue within the mainstream dialogue, but are becoming less frequent,” said Phil Soper, chief executive of LePage, in a release. “Of the core housing types, the condominium segment remains the most vulnerable to short-term price softness in light of increased inventory, but the situation is limited to only a few cities. The medium to longer term prognosis for this housing sector remains very positive.”
LePage says the spring market picked up in the final weeks of the first quarter after showing some slowness.
“It appears that it took only the slightest hint of spring to bring home-sellers out of hibernation,” said Mr. Soper, in the release. “We are finally seeing the arrival of housing inventory in seasonally appropriate quantities across the nation. When combined with pent-up demand following a particularly long and harsh winter, the stage is set for a robust 2014 spring market. This is particularly good news for buyers, as the home price spikes we have seen in a number of cities should be alleviated by this additional supply.” Meanwhile, home building data released Tuesday suggests the construction end of the market is stablizing.
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