Updates On The Canadian Housing Market
Although house prices are still high locally and nationally, data still suggests a moderating real estate market with lower sales and declining month-to-month prices. The CREA (Canadian Real Estate Association) announced that home prices have declined nationally at a rate of 2.1% month over month since July of this year. Activity in July this year around stood at a rate of 11.9% lower than the rate of the same month last year. Furthermore, the number of newlt listed homes declined 1.8% from June to July.
In terms of price statistics, the MLS Home Index was up 12.9% year-over-year in July 2017, while the national average sale price was down 0.3% year-over-year in the same month.
In terms of the dip in sales, the July dip makes the 4th consecutive monthly decline. Even though that decline was one third the magnitude of the declines in may and june, it leaves sales activity 15.3% below the record set in March.
While low inventory was a MAJOR concern during the winter months, more homes made their way to the market in the spring and summer. However, now it seems sellers are holding back due to the Ontario governments fair housing plan and it's proposed taxes on foreign buyers and sellers. With sale down by the same amount as new listings in July, the national sales-to-new listings ratio was little changed at a well balanced 53.5% compared to the high 60% in the first quarter of 2017. According to CREA, a national sales-to-new listings ratio between 40-60% is consistent with a balanced national market, with readings below and above this range indicating buyers and sellers market respectively.
Although prices are still high, benchmark price gains slowed on a year-over-year basis in greater Toronto, Oakville-Milton and Guelph. However, it remains well above levels a year ago with Greater Toronto being +18.1%, Oakville-Milton +12.7% and Guelph +23%
The actual national average price for houses sold in July 2017 was $478,696, down 0.3% from where it stood exactly a year ago. CREA says that this was the first year-over-year decline in the measure since February 2013, reflecting fewer sales in the GTA and Vancouver.
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