Despite a slowing in real estate sales in Canada’s major markets during April, prices reached their highest level on record, according to the Canadian Real Estate Association.

The tight resale housing market saw the major market MLS residential average price in April rise 13.7 percent (year-over-year) to $246,614. The year-over-year rise in MLS residential average price was its biggest in two years. The MLS average price also topped all previous monthly records in a number of major markets, including Vancouver, Edmonton, Toronto, London, Ottawa and Montreal

Canada’s major-market home sales in April via the Multiple Listing Service totaled 27,867 units on a seasonally adjusted basis, down 0.9 percent from March, according to the latest association figures.

Despite the decrease, activity remained near record-level highs. Sales for the first four months of the year surpassed all previous year-to-date records in a number of major markets, including Vancouver, Edmonton, Toronto, and Saint John.

“Strong price increases every month this year reflect the fact that the housing market remains in full bloom,” said CREA’s Chief Executive Officer, Pierre Beauchamp. “Even though mortgage interest rates are expected to continue to inch higher in the coming months, they will nonetheless remain historically low and attractive. Recent full-time job growth and resilient consumer confidence will also fuel housing demand,” he added.

“Even if existing home sales do taper off slightly as predicted – and there’s little sign of that – activity this year stands an even chance of matching last year’s record-setting pace. Should listings remain in short supply, the continuation of a tight housing market could result in year-over-year average price increases in the range between 7 to 10 percent over the rest of the year,” he added.

The Canadian Real Estate Association is one of Canada’s largest single-industry trade associations, representing more than 70,000 Realtors working through 103 real estate boards, 10 provincial associations and one territorial association.

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