Lower mortgage rates had a favourable effect on affordability, according to the latest Desjardins Affordability Index (DAI), an analysis of the Economic Studies of Desjardins Group.

The financial capacity of Canadian households to purchase a property improved somewhat at the beginning of 2014, even though average home prices matched the pace of after-tax income growth. However, the Canadian housing market is still less affordable, on average, than it has been for the past 25 years.

In Quebec, the DAI is also below the historic average, despite the improvement posted for the first quarter of 2014. Unlike the rest of the country, Quebec property prices and household income stagnated.

In Ontario, a number of markets remained affordable in the first quarter, with the exeption being Toronto, where the average home price is $547,340 and sharply above the other agglomerations in the province.

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