CMHC sees moderate slowdown for 2013

CMHC sees moderate slowdown for 2013

On the heels of a bank report predicting a significant slump, the CMHC said it foresees only a “moderate slowdown” in the housing market for the rest of this year and next.

“Canada’s housing markets are expected to moderate over the rest of 2013 and into 2013 and showing sustained activity levels specifically in the multiples segments, over the first half of 2013,” said Mathieu Laberge, deputy chief economist for CMHC. “Balance market conditions in most local housing markets will result in a slowing in house price growth as well.”

The CMHC’s prediction comes roughly a week after a senior economist from Scotiabank warned that market corrections in Toronto and Vancouver, combined with regulatory tightening, will likely precipitate a downturn.

“Pent-up demand has been effectively exhausted after a decade-long housing boom, with Canadian home ownership at record levels," said Adrienne Warren, senior economist at Scotiabank. "The global outlook has become much more challenging.”

Other economists are predicting a falloff in sales and prices of as much as 10 per cent over the next couple years. CMHC is striking a more restrained note -- one brokers hope is a better reflection on the coming market.

On an annual basis, housing starts for the rest the year will be in the range of 196,800 to 217,000 units with a point forecast of 207,200 units, the CMHC said in a press release.

In 2013, housing starts will range from 173,000 to 207,400 units, with a point forecast of 193,100 units.

The average home price for 2012 should come in between $351,300 and $378,400, said CMHC. It futher predicts next year will see the average price of homes rise to between $358,000 and $395,800.