Home sales in Canada saw continued weakness in October, with volume coming in 0.8 per cent lower than the same month a year earlier, and posting a 0.1 per cent decline from September, the Canadian Real Estate Association reports.

The national average home price remained flat year-over-year, CREA said, rising a miniscule 0.02 per cent.

canada home sales october 2012

However the report had some good news for Toronto and Vancouver, whose housing market have been under downward pressure. CREA says sales there improved from September. But sales in those cities, along with Montreal, were still lower than a year ago.

“These results suggest that the Canadian housing market overall has returned to a more sustainable pace,” said CREA economist Gregory Klump.

The Canadian Press reports:

OTTAWA - The Canadian Real Estate Association says the number of homes sold by its members last month was down slightly from September — continuing a trend begun in the summer when the latest mortgage reforms took effect.

CREA says 13,004 residential properties were sold in October through the industry-run MLS system, down about one-tenth of a percentage point from September on a seasonally adjusted basis.

The national average home price through MLS was also virtually unchanged from October last year at $361,516, an increase of just $80.

However, the number of new listings across Canada fell by 3.8 per cent in October from September, keeping the market balanced in terms of supply and demand.

There were 71,757 new listings in October, down from 74,618 in September.

A housing price index compiled by the association showed its smallest year-to-year gain since May 2011, rising 3.6 per cent from a year earlier to 156.4 in October.

The HPI is a benchmark that measures fluctuations over time, with January 2005 equal to 100.

CREA noted that the national statistics don't tell the whole story because of the localized nature of the real estate industry and the distorting impact of the large markets in Vancouver and Toronto.

Sales transactions were up compared with levels one year ago in almost two-thirds of all local markets, with Calgary leading the advances. Sales were below October 2011 levels in Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal.

Regina had the biggest year-to-year gain in HPI, with Calgary, Toronto, Montreal and the Fraser Valley region of the British Columbia also showing increases. Vancouver's HPI eased by 0.8 per cent to 158.3.

The national index was down 0.13 percentage point in October compared with September. Six of the seven localized indexes compiled by CREA were also down from September while Calgary was unchanged.

CREA says there are signs of diverging trends among local housing markets, with Alberta and Saskatchewan gaining strength and other traditionally hot areas cooling.

“Little has changed since national activity geared down in the wake of mortgage rules that came into force in July,” said Gregory Klump, CREA’s chief economist.

“Opinions differ about how sharply sales have slowed depending on the local housing market.”

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  • Calgary: 3-bedroom house

    <strong>$1.08 million:</strong> Located in the trendy Altadore neighbourhood of Calgary, this as-yet-unbuilt modernist house features views of the downtown core as well as a personal elevator. Source: Keller Williams Realty

  • Calgary: 3-bedroom house

    <strong>$1.08 million:</strong> Located in the trendy Altadore neighbourhood of Calgary, this as-yet-unbuilt modernist house features views of the downtown core as well as a personal elevator. Source: Keller Williams Realty

  • Calgary: 3-bedroom house

    <strong>$1.08 million:</strong> Located in the trendy Altadore neighbourhood of Calgary, this as-yet-unbuilt modernist house features views of the downtown core as well as a personal elevator. Source: Keller Williams Realty

  • Toronto: 1-bedroom condo

    <strong>$988,000:</strong> Located in the posh Residences of the Ritz Carlton, in the heart of Toronto, this condo features one of only a handful of private terraces in the entire building. Source: Sotheby's International

  • Toronto: 1-bedroom condo

    <strong>$988,000:</strong> Located in the posh Residences of the Ritz Carlton, in the heart of Toronto, this condo features one of only a handful of private terraces in the entire building. Source: Sotheby's International

  • Toronto: 1-bedroom condo

    <strong>$988,000:</strong> Located in the posh Residences of the Ritz Carlton, in the heart of Toronto, this condo features one of only a handful of private terraces in the entire building. Source: Sotheby's International

  • Montreal: 4-bedroom rowhouse

    <strong>$998,000:</strong> This historic townhouse in the wealthy enclave of Westmount is "of historic interest," according to the realtor, and features its original glass doors and marble panels at the entrance. Source: Sotheby's International

  • Montreal: 4-bedroom rowhouse

    <strong>$998,000:</strong> This historic townhouse in the wealthy enclave of Westmount is "of historic interest," according to the realtor, and features its original glass doors and marble panels at the entrance. Source: Sotheby's International

  • Montreal: 4-bedroom rowhouse

    <strong>$998,000:</strong> This historic townhouse in the wealthy enclave of Westmount is "of historic interest," according to the realtor, and features its original glass doors and marble panels at the entrance. Source: Sotheby's International

  • West Vancouver: 1-bedroom condo

    <strong>$985,000:</strong> The real estate agent boasts that this property offers a "spectacular 180 degree view of the city, Lions Gate Bridge, Stanley Park, Kitsilano, Point Grey and beyond to Vancouver Island." Source: Angell Hasman Realty

  • West Vancouver: 1-bedroom condo

    <strong>$985,000:</strong> The real estate agent boasts that this property offers a "spectacular 180 degree view of the city, Lions Gate Bridge, Stanley Park, Kitsilano, Point Grey and beyond to Vancouver Island." Source: Angell Hasman Realty

  • West Vancouver: 1-bedroom condo

    <strong>$985,000:</strong> The real estate agent boasts that this property offers a "spectacular 180 degree view of the city, Lions Gate Bridge, Stanley Park, Kitsilano, Point Grey and beyond to Vancouver Island." Source: Angell Hasman Realty

  • Charlottetown, P.E.I.: 8-bedroom house

    <strong>$998,700:</strong> This historic property was once the Edenhurst Inn and is now on sale as a private residence. "No expense was spared in the construction of this home using sycamore and oak for interior finishing," the realtor says. Source: Re/Max Charlottetown

  • Charlottetown, P.E.I.: 8-bedroom house

    <strong>$998,700:</strong> This historic property was once the Edenhurst Inn and is now on sale as a private residence. "No expense was spared in the construction of this home using sycamore and oak for interior finishing," the realtor says. Source: Re/Max Charlottetown

  • Charlottetown, P.E.I.: 8-bedroom house

    <strong>$998,700:</strong> This historic property was once the Edenhurst Inn and is now on sale as a private residence. "No expense was spared in the construction of this home using sycamore and oak for interior finishing," the realtor says. Source: Re/Max Charlottetown

  • Winnipeg: 4-bedroom house

    <strong>$989,900:</strong> This modernist mansion from custom home designers Artista Homes features three fireplaces, including a three-sided one, and ensuite bathrooms with heated floors. Source: Royal LePage Alliance

  • Winnipeg: 4-bedroom house

    <strong>$989,900:</strong> This modernist mansion from custom home designers Artista Homes features three fireplaces, including a three-sided one, and ensuite bathrooms with heated floors. Source: Royal LePage Alliance

  • Kamloops, B.C.: 2-bedroom ranch house

    <strong>$960,000:</strong> This ranch house inspired by the "pueblo" style of the U.S. southwest is located in one of the few places in Canada that look like the southwest U.S. — the B.C. interior. The house features foot-thick concrete walls, and is set into the hillside to look half-buried. Source: Royal LePage Kamloops

  • Kamloops, B.C.: 2-bedroom ranch house

    <strong>$960,000:</strong> This ranch house inspired by the "pueblo" style of the U.S. southwest is located in one of the few places in Canada that look like the southwest U.S. — the B.C. interior. The house features foot-thick concrete walls, and is set into the hillside to look half-buried. Source: Royal LePage Kamloops

  • Kamloops, B.C.: 2-bedroom ranch house

    <strong>$960,000:</strong> This ranch house inspired by the "pueblo" style of the U.S. southwest is located in one of the few places in Canada that look like the southwest U.S. — the B.C. interior. The house features foot-thick concrete walls, and is set into the hillside to look half-buried. Source: Royal LePage Kamloops

  • Montreal: 5-bedroom townhouse

    <strong>$985,000:</strong> The realtor humbly describes this property as a "cottage in Westmount," but with five bedrooms, four baths and parking for two, this "cottage" is pretty out-sized. Source: Profusion Realty

  • Montreal: 5-bedroom townhouse

    <strong>$985,000:</strong> The realtor humbly describes this property as a "cottage in Westmount," but with five bedrooms, four baths and parking for two, this "cottage" is pretty out-sized. Source: Profusion Realty

  • Montreal: 5-bedroom townhouse

    <strong>$985,000:</strong> The realtor humbly describes this property as a "cottage in Westmount," but with five bedrooms, four baths and parking for two, this "cottage" is pretty out-sized. Source: Profusion Realty

  • Toronto: 4-bedroom bungalow

    <strong>$989,000:</strong> Located in an area with lots of surrounding commercial properties, the seller notes that the zoning could easily be changed to allow for a business. But you can always just live in this property, if paying $1 million for a bungalow strikes you as reasonable. Source: Realty Way Corporation

  • Saskatoon: 3-bedroom house

    <strong>$970,000:</strong> Don't let your eyes deceive you: This isn't a historic property. Rather, this duplex is a recreation of the Todd House, a 19th-century home located in Toronto. It's so modern it even features an indoor garage. Source: Hallmark Realty

  • Saskatoon: 3-bedroom house

    <strong>$970,000:</strong> Don't let your eyes deceive you: This isn't a historic property. Rather, this duplex is a recreation of the Todd House, a 19th-century home located in Toronto. It's so modern it even features an indoor garage. Source: Hallmark Realty

  • Saskatoon: 3-bedroom house

    <strong>$970,000:</strong> Don't let your eyes deceive you: This isn't a historic property. Rather, this duplex is a recreation of the Todd House, a 19th-century home located in Toronto. It's so modern it even features an indoor garage. Source: Hallmark Realty

  • Port Medway, N.S.: 3-bedroom seaside estate

    <strong>$990,000:</strong> Originally meant to be occupied by the architect who designed this property, this property on Nova Scotia's South Shore is "designed to be self-sustaining," the realtor says, and was built partly using reclaimed and re-purposed materials. Source: Tradewinds Realty

  • Port Medway, N.S.: 3-bedroom seaside estate

    <strong>$990,000:</strong> Originally meant to be occupied by the architect who designed this property, this property on Nova Scotia's South Shore is "designed to be self-sustaining," the realtor says, and was built partly using reclaimed and re-purposed materials. Source: Tradewinds Realty

  • Port Medway, N.S.: 3-bedroom seaside estate

    <strong>$990,000:</strong> Originally meant to be occupied by the architect who designed this property, this property on Nova Scotia's South Shore is "designed to be self-sustaining," the realtor says, and was built partly using reclaimed and re-purposed materials. Source: Tradewinds Realty

  • An actual house in Vancouver!

    It may be a shock to some, but yes, it is possible to buy an actual house — not a condo — for under a million in Vancouver. Here's proof: A two-bedroom property in the city's desirable Kitsilano neighbourhood, for a mere <strong>$998,800!</strong> Source: Sutton Group - West Coast

  • An actual house in Vancouver!

    It may be a shock to some, but yes, it is possible to buy an actual house — not a condo — for under a million in Vancouver. Here's proof: A two-bedroom property in the city's desirable Kitsilano neighbourhood, for a mere <strong>$998,800!</strong> Source: Sutton Group - West Coast

  • An actual house in Vancouver!

    It may be a shock to some, but yes, it is possible to buy an actual house — not a condo — for under a million in Vancouver. Here's proof: A two-bedroom property in the city's desirable Kitsilano neighbourhood, for a mere <strong>$998,800!</strong> Source: Sutton Group - West Coast



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  • 8 [tie]: Richmond, British Columbia - 12 highrises

    As of Oct. 2012. Source: <a href="http://www.emporis.com/">Emporis</a> Photo: The Canadian Press

  • 8 [tie]: Ottawa, Ontario - 12 highrises

    As of Oct. 2012. Source: <a href="http://www.emporis.com/">Emporis</a> Photo: Alamy

  • 8 [tie]: Boston, Massachusetts - 12 highrises

    As of Oct. 2012. Source: <a href="http://www.emporis.com/">Emporis</a> Photo: Alamy

  • 7: Miami, Florida - 13 highrises

    As of Oct. 2012. Source: <a href="http://www.emporis.com/">Emporis</a> Photo: Shutterstock

  • 6: Calgary, Alberta - 13 highrises

    As of Oct. 2012. Source: <a href="http://www.emporis.com/">Emporis</a> Photo: Alamy

  • 5: Chicago, Illinois - 17 highrises

    As of Oct. 2012. Source: <a href="http://www.emporis.com/">Emporis</a> Photo: Shutterstock

  • 4: Montreal, Quebec - 20 highrises

    As of Oct. 2012. Source: <a href="http://www.emporis.com/">Emporis</a> Photo: Alamy

  • 3: Vancouver, British Columbia - 21 highrises

    As of Oct. 2012. Source: <a href="http://www.emporis.com/">Emporis</a> Photo: Alamy

  • 2: New York City - 72 highrises

    As of Oct. 2012. Source: <a href="http://www.emporis.com/">Emporis</a> Photo: Shutterstock

  • 1: Toronto - 147 highrises

    As of Oct. 2012. Source: <a href="http://www.emporis.com/">Emporis</a> Photo: The Canadian Press