CREA lowers home sales forecast, but nudges average price higher

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Tight supply conditions and increasing home prices pushed the Canadian Real Estate Association to forecast the country will wrap the year with fewer home sales than it previously predicted.
    
The association revealed an updated forecast Wednesday that predicts 656,300 homes will change hands this year, an almost 19 per cent increase from 2020 levels, but a nearly four per cent decrease from the 682,900 it predicted earlier this year.
    
The record-setting number it is predicting is a downward revision because sales fell more rapidly than expected this spring, but comes as immigration levels are rebounding and Canadian businesses closed during the pandemic are being allowed to reopen.
   
"The good news is that the urgency and frenzy of earlier in 2021 have started to fade and the market has settled down a bit, at least in a relative sense," wrote CREA in its forecast announcement.
    
"At this point most housing market indicators appear to be levelling off at a cruising altitude somewhere in between pre- and peak-pandemic levels."
    
While buyers in many heated markets avoided putting their homes up for sale in the summer, real estate boards and brokers are predicting supply will return this fall, though they don't expect much relief from high prices.

(Tara Deschamps/The Canadian Press)