Canada average house price falls in September

Wed Oct 15, 2008 11:47am EDT
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TORONTO (Reuters) - Home resales in Canada rose modestly in September from August, but a drop in sales in some expensive markets pulled down the average price, the Canadian Real Estate Association said on Wednesday.

Existing home sales in major markets rose 3 percent to 25,680 units on a month-over-month basis, according to CREA, which represents more than 98,000 real estate dealers.

But resales were down 1.5 percent in the third quarter from the second quarter, and on a year-over-year basis, unit sales dropped 0.2 percent.

The average house price fell 6.2 percent from the year before to C$315,461 ($269,625), dragged down by sales declines in Vancouver and Victoria, British Columbia, which offset rebounds in Calgary and Edmonton, Alberta.

"Price declines in some of Canada's more expensive housing markets will outweigh further price gains in other markets and continue pulling the national average price lower over the rest of the year and into 2009," said CREA Chief Economist Gregory Klump.

Seventeen of the 25 major markets in the CREA report recorded year-over-year gains in average prices.

The number of new listings in the country's major markets rose 3 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis to 48,870 units, in September from August. Listings were up 12.3 percent compared with a year earlier, unadjusted data showed.

($1=$1.17 Canadian)

(Reporting by John McCrank; Editing by Peter Galloway)