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Canada Home Sales Hit All-Time High Following October Surge

Home sales across Canada surged 8.6% in October from September, the biggest monthly increase since the pandemic began and pushing the real-estate market to a new all-time high through 10 months of the year.

According to data from the Canadian Real Estate Association, last month was the second-best October on record for sales. Benchmark prices surged 2.7% month-over-month, the data showed.

"After a summer where it looked like housing markets might be calming down a bit, October’s numbers suggest we might be moving back towards what we saw this spring, with regards to current market demand and supply conditions," the real estate board said in a news release.

In Canada, the surge in demand for bigger living spaces driven by the pandemic has met a historic lack of supply, helping make its housing market one of the hottest in the world and deteriorating affordability a top political issue.

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Although Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government has made addressing the supply shortage a priority after being re-elected in September, much of the power over housing policy lies with local governments, limiting the speed with which the issue can be addressed.

And though the number of new listings climbed 3.2% in October, continued strong demand meant Canada still had only 1.9 months of inventory available. That’s near the all-time lows the market hit when it was at its hottest point earlier this year.