As oil prices continue to decline and the Canadian dollar weakens, the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) has adjusted its 2015 resale housing forecast and extended it to 2016. The national forecast has been revised to reflect fewer sales. Currently, CREA is forecasting a total of 475,700 unit sales in 2015, an annual decline of 1.1 per cent.
Conversely, in 2016 national sales are expected to reach 482,700 units, a projected year-over-year increase of 1.7 per cent.
According to CREA, consumer confidence is shaky in the Prairie provinces, where the economy is largely dependent on oil production values. As such, the Alberta housing market is expected to see the largest decline in resale activity this year. CREA predicts an annual decline of 19.3 per cent for the region. Saskatchewan and Manitoba are also expected to post fewer sales (-11.2 per cent and -1.3 per cent, respectively).
Elsewhere in the country, the resale forecast remains positive. CREA predicts that gains will be seen in:
- British Columbia (4.9 per cent);
- Nova Scotia (3.7 per cent);
- Quebec (2.5 per cent);
- New Brunswick (2.5 per cent);
- Ontario (1.9 per cent); and
- Prince Edward Island (1.4 per cent).
All of these figures are slightly higher than those published in the original forecast.
CREA also provided revised national average prices for 2015 and 2016. The average price of a Canadian home is expected to rise by two per cent in 2015, to $416,200. In 2016, the average national price is forecast at $424,100, an increase of 1.9 per cent over this year.