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According to Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) statistics released this week, national resale housing activity edged lower on a month-over-month basis in June 2012, exacerbated by continued slowing in Greater Vancouver.

Sales over Multiple Listing Service (MLS) Systems in Canada eased 1.3 per cent on a month-over-month basis in June 2012. This follows a 3.4 per cent decline posted in May. CREA said national activity was down from the previous month in slightly more than half of all local markets, with Greater Toronto and Vancouver contributing most to the small decline.

"Canada's housing market lost a little altitude in June, but it's still flying pretty high," said CREA president Wayne Moen.

Actual (not seasonally adjusted) activity was down 4.4 per cent in June 2012 compared with the same month last year. This marks the first year-over-year decline in national activity since April 2011.

Gregory Klump, CREA's chief economist, said, "Home buyers didn't rush their purchases before the most recently announced changes to mortgage regulations came into effect.

"That's a big change compared to what we saw as a response to previously announced changes. It will take some time before the compound effect of previous and recent changes to regulations on Canada's housing market becomes apparent."

The national average price for homes sold in June 2012 was $369,339, down 0.8 per cent from the same month last year. While average sale prices in June were up year-on-year in about seven out of every 10 local markets, the national average price continued to be skewed downward by compositional factors-most notably by fewer sales in Vancouver in recent months compared with stronger levels last year.

CREA noted removing Vancouver from the national average price calculation yielded a 3.2 per cent year-over-year increase.

jharrison@biv.com


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