Blogs & Comment

Housing price indexes and timeliness

The latest figures for the Teranet-National Bank National Composite House Price Index (TNHPI) are just out. I have applauded this measure of house prices as a less biased one compared tothose published by realtors, but the most recent readings for the TNHPI highlight a drawback: timeliness.

The current readings show a very strong housing market, with 12-month and one-month increases retaining or increasing momentum. And thats because the figures are for the month of June, when house buyers in B.C. and Ontario were rushing to beat the HST (among other things).

Twelve-month percentage increases for June in those provinces were nearly double those for cities in other provinces. Vancouver, Toronto and Ottawa ranged from 12% to 16% versus a range of 7% to 8% for Calgary, Montreal and Halifax. Nationally, the increase was 13.6%.

But that was almost two months ago and housing conditions are quite different now, especially with the HST in place.