Hamilton’s housing market will remain healthy next year with average prices increasing slightly above inflation, according to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.

CMHC market analysts say the “echo boomer” demographic is starting to influence home buying trends in Hamilton. Echo boomers are people born from 1982 to 1995.

"The strong rebound in first-time buyer demand will continue to help keep Hamilton's resale market active through the first half of 2014,” said Abdul Kargbo, the CMHC’s senior market analyst for Hamilton and Brantford. “This will allow existing owners to sell their homes and make second round purchases.

“In recent years, Hamilton has seen an increase in the number of Echo Boomers bypassing the rental market and moving directly to homeownership.”

According to the CMHC, the average house price will grow slightly above inflation in 2014, and housing starts will rebound too. The average apartment vacancy rate is also set to trend lower in the next two years, the CMHC says.

"Housing activity in Ontario will slow in 2013 then stabilize by 2014, thanks in large part to an improving Ontario economy, lower inventories of unsold homes and less out-migration to other provinces,” said Ted Tsiakopoulos, CMHC`s Ontario regional economist.

“Tight resale market conditions for single detached homes, active repeat buyers and improving income growth will allow demand for lower density homes to hold up better for most of 2014,” he said.

In Hamilton, the average home sale price for October was $391,945, an increase of 5.6 per cent over the same month last year.