VANCOUVER - While they may have similar economies and geographies as their ''twin'' U.S. counterparts, Toronto, Winnipeg and Halifax have much stronger housing markets than their American peers, a new real estate survey shows.
The Century 21 Canada report released Tuesday said while prices are higher in Toronto than its Chicago twin, and in Winnipeg compared to its Minneapolis/St. Paul counterparts, the Canadian housing markets have more stability.
The same goes for Halifax, even though its prices are lower by comparison, than its Boston twin.
The picture is more mixed for Ottawa, Calgary and Vancouver and their twin U.S. cities of Washington, Houston and Seattle.
''National capitals Ottawa and Washington, D.C., oil centres Calgary and Houston and West Coast ports Vancouver and Seattle have price trends reflective of their economic and geographic similarities,'' Century 21 Canada president Don Lawby stated.
''However, when you compare business centres Toronto and Chicago, Midwest hubs Winnipeg and Minneapolis and East Coast centres Halifax and Boston, the Canadian cities are doing much better than their American twins.''
For instance, the survey show prices are significantly higher and the market much stronger in Toronto than in Chicago as of the end of March.
In Toronto, the average price fell four per cent to $394,099, while in Chicago the average price fell 34 per cent to US$249,901.
It also took an average of 37 days to sell a house in Toronto, compared to 168 days in Chicago.
In Winnipeg, the average price increased three per cent to $209,628, whereas in Minneapolis and St. Paul the average price fell 24 per cent to US$148,317 and 36 per cent to US$105,858 respectively.
The average price of a home in Halifax rose seven per cent to $282,499, compared to a 28 per cent drop in Boston to US$394,550.
Length of time to sell a house was similar in the two cities.
Housing prices moved one per cent higher Ottawa and three per cent lower in Washington. It also took more than twice as long to sell a home in Washington.
Calgary home prices are significantly higher than Houston, but selling times are shorter.
That said, Calgary also has greater price declines than Houston, or an 11 per cent drop compared to four cent, the survey showed.
Average prices were $380,737 in Calgary in March compared with US$200,233 in Houston.