Canada: Housing prices hit new highs as Toronto market surges
March 14, 2017
The Teranet-National Bank National Composite House Price Index recorded a monthly increase of 1.0% in February, the steepest rise in six months and well above January’s 0.5% increase. The index continued its streak of record-breaking highs—February’s reading of 202.3 was the highest on record.
With regard to regional developments, the Toronto housing market, which accounts for more than a third of the 11-city composite index, recorded a 1.9% month-on-month increase and led the index’s gains. Meanwhile, the Vancouver market, which accounts for a fifth of the index, posted a 1.4% increase over the previous month, though prices still remained below their September 2016 high. Across the nine other major housing markets, only Hamilton and Ottawa-Gatineau recorded monthly increases, whereas the remaining markets experienced moderate declines.
On an annual basis, national housing prices rose at an over ten-year high of 13.4% in February, which was up from January’s 13.0%. Given the clear disparities across housing markets nationwide, the report did little to quell fears of a worsening Toronto housing market bubble.
Author: Christopher Thomas, Economist