Housing prices break $450K barrier

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Last December marked the last month of a steady rise in the nationwide average for real estate prices that has culminated in a 12 per cent increase in 2015 alone, according to the Canadian Real Estate Association.
The organization pointed to increased activity and price growth in key regions—namely, British Columbia and Ontario—as the driving force for the development, with no signs of stopping anytime soon.
“The recent decline and uncertain outlook for oil prices means that housing market prospects are unlikely to improve in the near term in regions where job market prospects are tied to oil production,” CREA chief economist Gregory Klump told CBC News.
In particular, Vancouver and Toronto were singled out for “leading the charge”, with the national benchmark now hovering at $454,342. Vancouver has seen an 18.9 per cent rise in average prices along with a 33.7 per cent increase in sales in December.
“Where we have run out of superlatives to describe just how wild [Vancouver’s] market is," BMO economist Sal Guatieri said.
CREA noted, however, that not taking the two cities into account would paint a picture of a national housing market that is showing increased affordability, with an annual gain of 5.4 per cent and a national average of $336,994.
Furthermore, removing all of Ontario and British Columbia from the computation would yield a $294,363 average, representing an actual decrease of 2.2 per cent in 2015.

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