07/07/2011 08:29 EDT | Updated 09/06/2011 05:12 EDT

Canada Housing Market At A Peak: Forecast

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THE CANADIAN PRESS -- TORONTO - Royal LePage says Canada's housing market is at its near-term peak, with current high prices concealing early signs of a moderating market.

In its House Price Survey and Market Survey Forecast, Royal LePage says Canada's residential real estate market saw sizable year-over-year price increases in the second quarter.

And, it says the price increases were evident across all housing types surveyed, with the national average price of a detached bungalow has rising the most -- 7.5 per cent year-over-year to $356,625.

The price of a standard two-storey home rose 6.1 per cent to $390,163 and the price of a standard condominium 3.5 per cent to $238,064.

But while prices continue their recent climb, signs of moderation are appearing, although they vary from region to region.

Royal LePage says the national average house price is expected to finish the year 7.7 per cent higher than it was at the end of 2010.

Meanwhile, Statistics Canada reports that its New Housing Price Index rose 0.4 per cent, as Regina recorded the largest percentage increase in the country.

The larger metropolitan areas of Toronto-Oshawa and Montreal were the top contributors to the overall rise in new house prices.

Between April and May, prices increased 1.7 per cent in Regina, 1.0 per cent in Kitchener-Cambridge-Waterloo, Ont., and 0.9 in Toronto and Oshawa.

StatsCan reports the rise in Regina's prices was mostly a result of increased material, labour and land-development costs, while builders in Kitchener-Cambridge-Waterloo and in Toronto and Oshawa attributed their increases to competitive market conditions.

Prices remained unchanged in seven of the 21 metropolitan regions surveyed.

The most significant monthly price decline was recorded in Ottawa-Gatineau, down 0.7 per cent as some builders offered promotional pricing or free upgrade packages to generate sales.

Year over year, the index was up 1.9 per cent in May following an identical increase in April.