Canadian Outlook Economic Forecast: Housing—July 2020

The Conference Board of Canada, 11 pages, July 27, 2020
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This quarterly economic forecast presents the medium-term outlook for the Canadian economy. This release focuses on housing. For an overview of all major components of the economy, download the Canadian Outlook Summary.

Document Highlights

  • The COVID-19 pandemic and the plunge in oil prices are threatening the solid economic underpinnings that had bolstered Canada’s residential markets. Future residential performance depends on the pandemic’s course and the effectiveness of the various support measures provided by public and private entities.
  • We expect housing starts to fall 8.3 per cent to 191,400 units in 2020 but rebound to 209,000 in 2021. Our medium-term outlook is for starts to cool gradually in line with moderating household formation.
  • Most resale markets are slowly recovering from April’s dramatic plunge in activity. Canada’s average resale price will fall 1.6 per cent this year and 2.1 per cent in 2021. We expect the average price to rise at an annual pace of roughly 5 per cent from 2022 to 2024.
  • Pre-pandemic patterns of regional residential strength were well-established. Montréal and Toronto were hot, Vancouver was bouncing back, but Calgary continued to struggle. We expect these trends to resume.

Table of Contents

Key findings

Housing snapshot

COVID-19 pandemic pummels housing markets

Forecast underpinnings

Emergency policies came quickly

New construction

Existing housing markets hit hard

Residential investment eases this year, rebounds in 2021

COVID-19: Get all the insights

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