Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

April 27, 2016 12:00 ET

Overvaluation and Overbuilding Remain Prevalent in Canada's Housing Markets

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - April 27, 2016) - Overvaluation is detected in nine Census Metropolitan Areas (CMAs) and overbuilding in seven, according to the latest Housing Market Assessment (HMA) released today by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation. Nationally, CMHC detects moderate evidence of overvaluation.

The HMA serves as an early warning system, alerting Canadians to areas of concern developing in our housing markets so that they may take action in a way that promotes market stability.

Report Highlights

  • Overvaluation and overbuilding remain the most prevalent problematic conditions observed across the 15 centres covered by the HMA.
  • Overvaluation is detected in nine centres while overbuilding is detected in seven.
  • The evidence of overvaluation has increased since the previous assessment in Vancouver, Hamilton, and Saskatoon.
  • Strong evidence of problematic conditions overall is seen in Toronto, Calgary, Saskatoon and Regina. In Toronto, this is due to the combination of price acceleration and overvaluation. In Calgary, Saskatoon and Regina, this is due to the combination of overvaluation and overbuilding.
  • Moderate evidence of problematic conditions overall is seen in Vancouver, Montreal, Edmonton, Ottawa, Winnipeg and Quebec.

CMHC defines evidence of problematic conditions as imbalances in the housing market. Imbalances occur when overbuilding, overvaluation, overheating and price acceleration, or combinations thereof depart significantly from historical averages. For examples, please consult the Overview section of the national report.

The complete HMA, including national, regional and CMA insight and analysis, is available here.

This release includes video.

In order to access future Market Analysis Centre publications from CMHC, please subscribe to Housing Observer Online by visiting the following link: https://www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca/observer/

As Canada's authority on housing, CMHC contributes to the stability of the housing market and financial system, provides support for Canadians in housing need, and offers objective housing research and information to Canadian governments, consumers and the housing industry.

For more information, visit our website at www.cmhc.ca or follow us on Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn and Facebook.

QUOTES

"While we see weak evidence of problematic conditions overall nationally, we do detect moderate evidence of overvaluation, meaning house prices remain higher than the level personal disposable income, population growth and other fundamentals would support."

Bob Dugan, Chief Economist, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

"We see strong evidence of overvaluation in Vancouver's housing market. Single detached home prices are higher than levels supported by economic fundamentals and inventories of new and resale homes are declining while demand remains high. We're also keeping an eye on overheating and price acceleration which are slowly advancing but evidence of these conditions remains weak. Overall, we see moderate evidence of problematic conditions in Vancouver."

Robyn Adamache, Principal Market Analyst (Vancouver), Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Backgrounder

CMHC's HMA analytical framework is designed to evaluate the extent to which there is evidence of problematic housing market conditions in Canadian housing markets. The framework assesses housing market conditions and considers the incidence, intensity and persistence of four main factors:

  1. Overheating of demand in the housing market, wherein demand significantly outpaces supply.

  2. Acceleration in house prices, which could be partially reflective of speculative activity.

  3. Overvaluation in the level of house prices, which indicates that house price levels are not fully supported by fundamental drivers such as income, mortgage rates and population.

  4. Overbuilding of the housing market, which suggests that supply significantly outpaces demand.

Each of these factors is measured using one or more indicators of housing demand, supply and/or price conditions. Table 1 outlines the results from the previous release in January 2016 and the current April 2016 release.

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