Canadian home sales continue to fall

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Rather gloomily, the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) released a report showing home sales across the country fell for a third consecutive month in November. The GTA and the Greater Vancouver Area, reported lower activity.

CREA said national home sales through its multiple listing service system dropped by 2.3 per cent last month compared with October, as the number of transactions fell in more than half of all local markets.

Sales were down year over year in three-quarters of all local markets including the GTA, the Hamilton-Burlington, Ont., region, B.C.’s Lower Mainland and Calgary.

The group said the number of new listings also saw a decline, falling 3.3 per cent in November.

The drop came as the average price for a home sold last month fell to $488,000, down 2.9 per cent compared with the same month a year ago. Excluding the Greater Toronto Area and the Greater Vancouver area, the average price of a sold home was just under $378,000.

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In a forecast, CREA is projecting that home sales in Canada will register a double-digit decline in 2018 and fall to their lowest level seen in five years.

This could be bad news because the Canadian economy is reliant more heavily on housing investment that at any time in its history.

Residential investment accounts for 7.5 per cent of Canada’s economy, just off a record high. The share of people employed in home construction and real estate is also near a record high, the CIBC economists noted.

Too many people are relying on their investments in real estate to fund their retirement nest egg. Worse still are those who use their homes as ATMs. -CINEWS

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