MLS home sales in Canada’s major markets continued to show remarkable strength in November and reached their sixth highest monthly level on record, according to statistics released by The Canadian Real Estate Association.

Seasonally adjusted home sales via the Multiple Listing Service in Canada’s major markets totaled 28,980 units in November, an increase of 1.2 percent compared to the previous month.

Canada’s resale housing market remains on track to set a new annual record in 2005, the association reported. Transactions in the first 11 months of the year were up 4.8 percent compared to the same period last year, and were less than 1 percent shy of the total MLS home sales recorded in 2004.

Seasonally adjusted sales broke all previous monthly records in Calgary and Edmonton. Actual (unadjusted) sales during the first 11 months of 2005 also surpassed all previous records for the year to date in Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Toronto, Montreal, Quebec City, Saint John, NB and St. John’s, NF.

Seasonally adjusted MLS residential new listings reached 45,544 units in November compared to 45,781 units in October. For the year to date in November, new listings were ahead of levels for the same period last year in Toronto, Ottawa, Windsor, Montreal and St. John’s, NF.

The MLS average home price advanced 10.4 percent to $272,447 in November 2005 compared to November 2004 but was down from $275,061 in October. New monthly records were set in Calgary, Saskatoon and Halifax, and average price reached its highest levels on record for the month of November in almost all other markets.

“Continuing growth in full-time employment and rebounding consumer confidence in November mean that economic fundamentals will continue to support strong housing activity in the coming months,” said CREA Chief Economist Gregory Klump.  

“The small increase in mortgage rates in November may have prompted many prospective home buyers to jump into market in order to take advantage of pre-approved mortgage rates. With the Bank rate hike in December and more increases expected next year, resale housing activity is expected to gradually drift lower in 2006 as homes prices continue to rise,” Klump added.

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