Re/Max expects ‘heated’ sales this spring

MISSISSAUGA, Ont. — Major Canadian housing markets have continued to show “exceptional resiliency” so far this year, setting the stage for a busy spring, according to a major Canadian real estate organization.

In its market trends reports, Re/Max said its survey has found that 12 of 15 Canadian centres, or 80 per cent, reported sales activity in January and February that was ahead of last year’s levels.

More than half of the cities reported double-digit increases, “with the strong demand and diminished supply setting the stage for a heated spring 2012.”

Re/Max said low interest rates, coupled with strong consumer confidence levels and a mild winter played a significant role in the upswing, ushering in an early start to the spring market.

The Re/Max finding of strong early-year sales was in line with those released a week ago by the Canadian Real Estate Association, which also reported an unexpectedly strong market in February.

CREA said actual home sales over its Multiple Listing Service increased 8.6 per cent overall to 36,937 in February compared with February 2010, defying even its own earlier predictions of a cooling market.

Industry watchers who are closely monitoring home prices have suggested Canada’s real estate market, which has been fueled by low mortgage rates since the recession, will soon cool off, but many predict a so-called “soft landing.”

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