CMHC says overall housing market no longer highly vulnerable after prices ease

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OTTAWA — The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. says it no longer rates the country’s housing market as highly vulnerable after an overall easing of price acceleration.

The federal agency says it rates the overall market at moderate after ten consecutive quarters at the highly vulnerable rating, though some cities remain at elevated risk.

CMHC says that while house prices in Vancouver, Victoria, Toronto and Hamilton moved closer to sustainable levels, it continues to see a high degree of vulnerability in those markets.

The biggest cities in the Prairies remain at a moderate degree of vulnerability, while Ottawa, Montreal, Quebec City, Moncton, Halifax and St. John’s are rated as low vulnerability.

Price acceleration has eased after the federal government’s higher mortgage stress tests came into effect in 2018 and raised the bar for qualifying for a mortgage.

CMHC chief economist Bob Dugan says there was improved alignment overall between house prices and housing market fundamentals in 2018 compared to a year earlier.

The Canadian Press