Royal LePage Canada released its quarterly House Price Survey this week, reporting that “an influx of housing inventory and pent-up demand” have fueled a strong start to the spring real estate market across the country. The Royal LePage House Price Survey is the largest, most comprehensive study of its kind in Canada, with information on seven types of housing in over 250 neighbourhoods from coast to coast.
According to the news release from Royal LePage, inventory increased most noticeably in the last month of the first quarter of 2014, following a “remarkably drab winter” for activity that left some wondering if the spring market would underperform this year. However, the survey reports that most regions experienced a healthy year-over-year price growth, with the average sale price of a home in Canada rising between 2.5% and 5.4%. The national average price of a two-storey home increased 5.4% to $428,943 while detached bungalows saw an average sale price of $380,765, a year-over-year increase of 4.4%.
Phil Soper, President and chief executive of Royal LePage, noted that the first signs of spring across the country have encouraged home-sellers “out of hibernation.” He added that, “when combined with pent-up demand following a particularly long and harsh winter, the stage is set for a robust 2014 spring market. This is particularly good news for buyers, as the home price spikes we have seen in a number of cities should be alleviated by this additional supply.”
Regionally speaking, the Ottawa real estate market was impacted by severe winter weather limited activity and moderated price growth in the first quarter of 2014. In Ottawa, the average price for detached bungalows increased 2.2 per cent year-over-year to $395,667 and standard two-storey homes increased 2.0 per cent to $398,500. However, 2,776 properties were listed in Ottawa in March, with 256 more properties switching hands in March than in February.
According to Royal LePage, Canada’s economy has also continued to strengthen, with “the Bank of Canada currently projecting GDP growth of 2.5 per cent in 2014” and major financial institutions posting economic forecasts in line with this projection. The unemployment rate of 6.9% is matching its lowest level in six years.
Soper continues: “with a series of supportive economic factors at play, we expect the country’s real estate market to continue the strong showing it posted in the second half of 2013.” He added further that “interest rates should remain supportive of the industry for the balance of the year and improving fortunes south of the border has strengthened the U.S. dollar, fueling demand for our relatively more affordable exports.”
Visit the Royal LePage website to read the full news release and National House Price Survey. If you’d like more information on the local real estate market in Ottawa or in your neighbourhood, please contact us directly or browse our website for a sales representative who can help you.