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House prices better than expected, Re/Max says

Canada's housing market will end this year with a better performance than it had expected, the Re/Max real estate sales organization said Tuesday.
Re/Max expects Calgary, Saskatoon and Halifax-Dartmouth will lead the country in sales this year, with an increase of five per cent. (CBC)

Canada’s housing market will end this year with a better performance than it had expected, the Re/Max real estate sales organization said Tuesday.

Re/Max predicted that trend will continued in 2012, although at a more moderate pace.

Prices are expected to rise in 23 of the 26 local markets that it tracks, it said, with sales of 460,000 by the end of 2012.

Re/Max expects Calgary, Saskatoon and Halifax-Dartmouth will lead the country in sales this year, with an increase of five per cent.

It predicted a three per cent annual increase in sales in 2011 in the Greater Toronto Area, St. John's, N.L., Saint John, N.B., Moncton.

Re/Max said the housing market picked up steam as the year went on, helped by low interest rates and rising prices.

Many economists had earlier expected the Bank of Canada to begin raising its key interest rate by the middle of 2012 but with uncertainty about the global recovery caused by Europe’s debt crisis, that didn't happen.

The central bank kept interest rates low for the 10th consecutive time Tuesday to stimulate the economy by making it less costly for businesses and consumers to borrow.

The Canadian Press

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