In April the Teranet–National Bank National Composite House Price IndexTM was flat from the previous month. Apart from the 2009 recession period, it was the first April in 21 years of index history in which home prices showed no rise. And the run of months with no rise in the composite index has now extended to eight straight, for a cumulative decline of 1.7%. Component indexes were down on the month for six of the 11 metropolitan markets surveyed – Winnipeg (−2.0%), Halifax (−1.1%), Vancouver (−0.4%), Quebec City (−0.4%), Calgary (−0.3%) and Montreal (−0.2%). Indexes were up on the month for Ottawa-Gatineau (0.9%), Hamilton (0.8%), Toronto (0.3%), Victoria (0.2%) and Edmonton (0.1%).
The downtrend of prices has been especially marked in Calgary – 10 consecutive months with no rise, for a cumulative fall of 4.0% – and in Vancouver – nine consecutive months for a cumulative fall of 4.7%. The index for Winnipeg declined in six of the last seven months for a cumulative slide of 4.2%. The April advances in Victoria and Hamilton followed six-month runs of no rise, for cumulative declines of 3.4% and 1.7% respectively since September. The index for Edmonton is down 3.1% from last August despite advances in the last two months. The Ottawa-Gatineau index has declined 1.6% since December. On the other hand, Toronto, the largest housing market, has moderated the countrywide downtrend by retreating only 0.3% since August, thanks to a 2.4% rise in condo prices offsetting a 1.6% decline in other types of housing.
- Composite 11
- All Metropolitan Indices
- British Columbia
- New Brunswick
- Nova Scotia
In only four of the 11 markets has the weakness of recent months resulted in 12-month declines: Calgary (−3.1%), Vancouver (−2.8%), Winnipeg (−0.8%) and Edmonton (−0.1%). The 12-month change was positive for Victoria (0.7%), Halifax (1.2%), Quebec City (2.0%), Hamilton (3.3%), Toronto (3.3%), Montreal (5.1%) and Ottawa-Gatineau (6.2%). The 11-market composite index was up 1.2% from a year earlier.
Indexes exist for seven urban areas of the Golden Horseshoe other than the Toronto and Hamilton indexes included in the composite index. In April most of them were down from last August: Oshawa (−2.1%), Guelph (−2.0%), Brantford (−1.0%), St. Catharines (−0.9%) and Kitchener (−0.2%). Peterborough was flat over this period and the Barrie index edged up 0.2%.
Indexes not included in the composite index also exist for seven markets outside the Golden Horseshoe, five of them in Ontario and two in B.C. Since August four of them have trended down: Abbotsford-Mission (−5.3%), Kelowna (−3.8%), Sudbury (−3.4%) and Thunder Bay (−0.9%). Three have risen: Kingston (0.5%), London (3.8%) and Windsor (4.0%).
 Note on methodology: The current-month data used to calculate the index are those of closed sales registered in the provincial land registry. To illustrate the home price trend, the published indexes of the 11 metropolitan markets entering into the Teranet–National Bank Composite House Price Index™ are moving averages of the last three months of raw indexes, a procedure that evens out month-to-month fluctuations. More granular monthly data are available upon request, subject to subscription fees. For our full methodology, please visit www.housepriceindex.ca
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Economics and Strategy Group
National Bank of Canada