Canada resale home prices fall in April: survey

Wed Jun 24, 2009 12:51pm EDT
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TORONTO (Reuters) - Repeat sale prices for Canadian homes fell for a fifth straight month in April, dropping 6.7 percent from the same month a year earlier, a report on Wednesday showed.

The Teranet-National Bank National Composite House Price Index, which measures the rate of change of prices for single-family homes in six metropolitan areas, also showed prices were down 8.9 percent nationally from the peak hit in August last year.

April prices were off 0.4 percent from the month before.

The Teranet-National index tracks home prices over time for repeat sales, meaning properties with at least two sales are required in the calculations for this index.

"On the whole, the report offers a sobering assessment on the state of the Canadian housing market as it suggests that the correction in home prices has continued unabated, and is in fact accelerating," said Millan Mulraine, economics strategist at TD Securities, in a note.

Mulraine pointed out, however, that the Teranet-National data is at odds with some other statistics such as the Canadian Real Estate Association's latest figures.

The latest CREA figures showed resale home prices rose 0.4 percent to their highest average on record in May, and that sales activity climbed for a fourth straight month.

According to the Teranet-National index, the trend of falling Western Canadian home prices extended into April. Prices in Vancouver, British Columbia, led the fall with a 10.9 percent slide in April from a year earlier, while Calgary, Alberta, had a 9.4 percent fall.

Vancouver prices have been on the decline for 10 straight months, while Calgary has shown monthly declines in 17 of 20 months since August 2007.   Continued...