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Average Canadian house price climbs 9% to $439,144 in March from year earlier

The average price of a Canadian home sold in March increased by nine per cent compared with the same month a year earlier, rising to almost $440,000.

Toronto and Vancouver continue to skew numbers higher, real estate association says

House prices continue to move higher, especially in red hot markets in Toronto and Vancouver, CREA says. (Craig Ruttle/Bloomberg News)

The average price of a Canadian home sold in March increased by nine per cent compared with the same month a year earlier, rising to almost $440,000.

The average house price was $439,144, and actual home sales activity rose 9.5 per cent above March 2014 levels.

While the spring home buying season is off to a hot start, the two big markets of Toronto and Vancouver continue to skew the numbers higher, the Canadian Real Estate Association said Wednesday.

If sales in those two markets are stripped out, the average price for Canadian resale homes drops to $332,711, with an annual increase of just 2.4 per cent.

"Price gains in these two markets are being fuelled by a shortage of single family homes for sale in the face of strong demand," the realtor group's chief economist Gregory Klump said.

House prices were up 7.1 per cent in Greater Vancouver and 7.8 per cent in Greater Toronto, as low mortgage rates lured buyers into the market.

There was a shortage of new listings, especially for detached homes. Meanwhile, the number of sales of all residential properties rose 50 per cent in Vancouver and 10 per cent in Toronto, indicating further pressure on prices.

The number of sales in Calgary was down 30 per cent since last March, but prices continued to climb — although at a lower rate than in the past. CREA estimated Calgary home prices are up 4.3 per cent from last year.

Only two cities marked a decline compared to March 2014, with prices falling 4.6 per cent in Regina and 0.4 per cent in Moncton.

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