Key takeaways for Canada’s housing market in 2014

Key takeaways for Canada's housing market in 2014
Royal LePage is forecasting healthy momentum in the real estate market this year. Getty Images

Another report from the real estate industry published Thursday points to a robust housing market across the country this year, countering the growing view held by international experts that home prices are overvalued – and by some estimates, severely so.

Royal LePage says national prices are expected to maintain a ‘‘healthy momentum‘‘ in 2014 and rise a projected 3.7 per cent over last year.

The optimistic take clashes somewhat with a growing view among foreign observers who see signs of a sharp run up in housing prices compared to average Canadian incomes amid ultra-low borrowing rates.

Phil Soper, chief executive of Royal LePage said in an interview those views aren’t justified.

“The organizations that have chimed in with their observations that prices are radically out of whack have tended to be European, or international observers,” Soper said.

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Canada’s market is different than the ones its being compared to by the likes of Deutsche Bank, and others, he said.

“I’ve talked to some” of the foreign experts, Soper said. “It’s not analysis of what’s happening in our market, it’s comparing Canada to other places. We moved through the global economic recession quicker, our financial institutions suffered less and have grown faster.

“In general, the health in the housing market has mirrored the performance of the economy overall,” he said.

Soper said the country’s markets, with the possible exception of some pockets of the condo sector, are in for as good a year as any since the recession ended in 2009.


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