Autumn Leaves are Falling; Home Prices are Not

The market saw a slight increase in sales and prices last month in most area of the country. As we go into the cold sessions, it is quite obvious the real issue will be in supply rather than demand. While higher borrowing costs and tougher mortgage qualification rules have kept sales levels off the record pace set in 2016, many households remain positive about home ownership as a quality long-term investment. 

 

Ontario - Tighter Market Conditions  

Toronto, Ocotber 3, 2018 -- Toronto Real Estate Board President Garry Bhaura announced that Greater Toronto Area REALTORS® reported 6,455 sales through TREB's MLS® System in September 2018 – up 1.9% compared to September 2017. The average selling price for September 2018 sales was up by 2.9% over the same period to $796,786. The MLS® HPI composite benchmark price was up by 2% year-over-year.

New listings entered into TREB's MLS® System in September 2018 amounted to 15,920 – down by 3.1% compared to September 2017. With sales up year-over-year and new listings down, market conditions became tighter. Many buyers may have found it more difficult to find a home meeting their needs.

"It is healthy to see sales and prices in many areas across the Greater Toronto Area up a bit, compared to last year's lows. At the same, however, it is important to remember that TREB's market area is made up of over 500 communities. Market conditions have obviously unfolded differently across these communities. This is why it's important to work with a REALTOR® who is familiar with local market conditions in your areas of interest," said Mr. Bhaura.

"While higher borrowing costs and tougher mortgage qualification rules have kept sales levels off the record pace set in 2016, many households remain positive about home ownership as a quality long-term investment. As the GTA population continues to grow, the real challenge in the housing market will be supply rather than demand. The Toronto Real Estate Board is especially concerned with issues affecting housing supply as we move towards municipal elections across the region," added Mr. Bhaura.

On a monthly basis, after preliminary seasonal adjustment, sales edged up by 0.2 per cent in September 2018 compared to August 2018. The average selling price, after preliminary seasonal adjustment, edged lower by 0.5% month-over-month.

"Generally speaking, annual rates of price growth have been stronger for higher density home types in 2018, including condominium apartments, townhouses and semi-detached houses. In many neighbourhoods, these home types provide more affordable home ownership options. This is why a policy focus on increasing mid-density housing options throughout the GTA is important," said Jason Mercer, TREB's Director of Market Analysis.

 

Ottawa, October 3, 2018 -- Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 1,393 residential properties in September through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® System, compared with 1,383 in September 2017, an increase of only 0.7%. The five-year average for September sales is 1,303. September’s sales included 1,046 in the residential property class, a decrease of 2.5% from a year ago, and 347 in the condominium property class, an increase of 11.9 percent from September 2017.

“We continue to experience supply-side issues going into our fall market. The fact is, the number of residential sales would be much higher had we more robust inventory to draw from,” states Ottawa Real Estate Board President Ralph Shaw. “Condos continue to represent a greater proportion of year-to-date unit sales with a 15% increase from this time in 2017.”

The average sale price of a residential-class property sold in September in the Ottawa area was $449,613, an increase of 7.9% over September 2017. The average sale price for a condominium-class property was $282,781, an increase of 7.6% from this month last year.*

“Economic fundamentals are at play in our market with a lack of supply putting an upward pressure on prices in some areas,” Shaw asserts. “Condo price increases on a percentage basis are finally recovering and are catching up to the increases in residential prices which is very encouraging news for condo owners.”

“With the inventory of available apartment condo units also declining month over month; this trend of price improvements may help kick-start some of the mothballed condo projects to date,” he speculates.

The $300,000 to $449,999 range remains the most active price point in the residential market, accounting for 46% of home sales while the $500,000 to $750,000 price range represents 22.5% of residential home sales this past month. Between $175,000 to $274,999 was September’s most active price point in the condominium market, accounting for almost 57% of the units sold.

“The low rental vacancy rate is spurring the purchase of condominium units, and first time home buyers wanting to enter the market are having to choose between “driving until they qualify” or purchasing a condominium at a price point they can afford.”

President Ralph Shaw offers one final thought. “Although the millennial generation is comfortable sharing their rides, they are not in the sharing mindset for housing – they want to own,” he contends. “In a recent study commissioned by the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA), research conducted by Abacus Data shows that Housing Affordability is a key issue  and the homeownership dream is alive and well with this demographic.”

In addition to residential and condominium sales, OREB Members assisted clients with renting 2,135 properties since the beginning of the year.

 

Alberta - All residential average prices stable, unit sales decrease

Edmonton, October 3, 2018 -- In the Edmonton Census Metropolitan Area (CMA), the all residential average prices increased 2.48% to $373,958 compared to August 2018 and increased 0.94% compared to September 2017. Single family home average prices increased 1.71% month over month and increased 0.25% year over year. Duplex/rowhouse average prices also increased in both categories, up 4.38% compared to August 2018 and up 0.68% compared to September 2017. Condominium average prices decreased 1.53% month over month and decreased 4.28% year over year.

Unit sales are down across all categories. Single family home sales decreased by 19.41% relative to August 2018 and 2.22% relative to September 2017. Condominium sales decreased 28.82% month over month and decreased 19.09% year over year. Duplex/rowhouse sales also declined, decreasing 21.02% compared to August 2018 and 21.52% compared to September 2017. Overall, all residential unit sales showed a decrease of 21.83% month over month and 8.53% decrease year over year.

Average days on market increased for all categories. The average for single family homes increased to 61 days for September 2018, two days longer than August 2018 and eight days longer than September 2017. Condominiums average days on market increased to 75 in September 2018, two days longer than August 2018 and seven days longer compared to September 2017. For duplex/rowhouses, the average days on market was 66, increasing from 63 in August 2018 and 61 days in September 2017.

“Stable prices coupled with decreasing sales and increasing days on market indicates sellers are most likely staying firm on their prices and choosing to wait longer to get the price they feel is best for their properties,” says REALTORS® Association of Edmonton Chair Darcy Torhjelm. “As we move further into our final quarter, we will likely continue to see sales decreasing as is typical for this time of year.”

Both inventory and listings decreased in September, with inventory down 1.53% and listings down 17.41% compared to August 2018. Listings also decreased 8.53% compared to September 2017, while inventory increased year over year by 7.35%.

In total, there were 1,225 MLS® System listed properties sold in September 2018, a decrease of 21.83% month over month and an decrease of 8.24% year over year.

 

Britsh Colombia - More supply and less demand seen across Metro Vancouver housing market

Monday, October 01, 2018 -- The supply of homes for sale continued to increase across the Metro Vancouver* housing market in September while home buyer demand remained below typical levels for this time of year.

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in the region totalled 1,595 in September 2018, a 43.5% decrease from the 2,821 sales recorded in September 2017, and a 17.3% decrease compared to August 2018 when 1,929 homes sold.

Last month’s sales were 36.1% below the 10-year September sales average.

“Fewer home sales are allowing listings to accumulate and prices to ease across the Metro Vancouver housing market,” Ashley Smith, REBGV president-elect said. “There’s more selection for home buyers to choose from today. Since spring, home listing totals have risen to levels we haven’t seen in our market in four years.”

There were 5,279 detached, attached and apartment properties newly listed for sale on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in Metro Vancouver in September 2018. This represents a 1.8% decrease compared to the 5,375 homes listed in September 2017 and a 36% increase compared to August 2018 when 3,881 homes were listed.

The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the MLS® system in Metro Vancouver is 13,084, a 38.2% increase compared to September 2017 (9,466) and a 10.7% increase compared to August 2018 (11,824).

For all property types, the sales-to-active listings ratio for September 2018 is 12.2%. By property type, the ratio is 7.8% for detached homes, 14% for townhomes, and 17.6% for condominiums.

Generally, analysts say that downward pressure on home prices occurs when the ratio dips below the 12% mark for a sustained period, while home prices often experience upward pressure when it surpasses 20% over several months.

“Metro Vancouver’s housing market has changed pace compared to the last few years. Our townhome and apartment markets are sitting in balanced market territory and our detached home market remains in a clear buyers’ market,” Smith said. “It’s important for both home buyers and sellers to work with their Realtor to understand what these trends means to them.”

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $1,070,600. This represents a 2.2% increase over September 2017 and a 3.1% decrease over the last three months.

Sales of detached properties in September 2018 reached 508, a 40.4% decrease from the 852 detached sales recorded in September 2017. The benchmark price for detached properties is $1,540,900. This represents a 4.5% decrease from September 2017 and a 3.4% decrease over the last three months.

Sales of apartment properties reached 812 in September 2018, a 44% decrease compared to the 1,451 sales in September 2017. The benchmark price of an apartment property is $687,300. This represents a 7.4% increase from September 2017 and a 3.1% decrease over the last three months.

Attached property sales in September 2018 totalled 275, a 46.9% decrease compared to the 518 sales in September 2017. The benchmark price of an attached unit is $837,600. This represents a 6.4% increase from September 2017 and a 2% decrease over the last three months. 

 




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