Canadian Households Remain Upbeat About Purchasing a Home
September was an active period for our housing market in Canada. We have experienced strong growth in sales though the first nine months of 2014. Canadian households remain upbeat about purchasing a home with the majority of home buyers purchasing a home using a mortgage. The share of the average household’s income dedicated to their mortgage payment remains affordable, which is why buyer interest has remained solid.
Ontario – GTA market remains strong
Toronto, October 3, 2014 – Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB) President Paul Etherington announced that there were 8,051 transactions reported through the Toronto Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) system in September 2014. This result represented a 10.9% increase compared to September 2013. On a year-to-date basis through the first three quarters of the year, sales were up by 6.9% annually to 73,465.
“Despite a persistent shortage of listings in some market segments, we have experienced strong growth in sales though the first nine months of 2014. This is evidence that GTA households remain upbeat about purchasing a home. The majority of home buyers purchase a home using a mortgage. The share of the average household’s income dedicated to their mortgage payment remains affordable, which is why buyer interest has remained solid,” said Mr. Etherington.
The average selling price for September 2014 transactions was $573,676 – up by 7.7% compared to the same period in 2013. Average year-over-year price growth was strongest in the City of Toronto, both for low-rise home types like detached and semi-detached houses and for condominium apartments. The average selling price year-to-date was $563,813 – up 8.5% compared to the first nine months of 2013.
“If the current pace of sales growth remains in place, we could be flirting with a new record for residential sales reported by TREB members this year. On the pricing front, the multitude of willing buyers in the marketplace coupled with the short supply of listings will continue to translate into very strong annual rates of price growth in the fourth quarter,” said Jason Mercer, TREB’s Director of Market Analysis.
Ottawa, October 3, 2014 – Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 1,133 residential properties in September through the Board’s MLS® system, compared with 1,118 in September 2013, an increase of 1.3%. The five-year average for September sales is 1,103.
“Our community is fortunate to enjoy one of the most stable real estate markets in Canada,” says Randy Oickle, President of the Ottawa Real Estate Board (OREB). “This is evidenced by the fact that the units sold and the average sale price in August and September has stayed within a few percentage points from the year before. We are also right on par with sales and average sales price year-to-date compared with 2013.”
September’s sales included 232 in the condominium property class, and 901 in the residential property class. The condominium property class includes any property, regardless of style (i.e., detached, semi-detached, apartment, townhouse, etc.), which is registered as a condominium, as well as properties which are co-operatives, life leases and timeshares. The residential property class includes all other residential properties.
The average sale price of residential properties, including condominiums, sold in September in the Ottawa area was $356,915, an increase of 3.0% over September 2013. The average sale price for a condominium-class property was $254,036, a decrease of 1.2% over September 2013. The average sale price of a residential-class property was $383,406, an increase of 3.2% over September 2013. The Board cautions that average sale price information can be useful in establishing trends over time but should not be used as an indicator that specific properties have increased or decreased in value. The average sale price is calculated based on the total dollar volume of all properties sold.
“The $300,000 to $399,999 price range continues to have the highest concentration of properties sold, followed by the $500,000 to $749,999 range, which is closely followed by the $275,000 to $299,999 price range,” explains Oickle. “Condos performed better in September than in August, which could be a contributing factor in the latter price range having a higher concentration of properties sold than in the past.”
In addition to residential and condominium sales, OREB members have assisted clients with renting almost 2,000 units so far this year. OREB members also assisted clients with the sale of building lots, businesses, farms and recreational properties, and the leasing of commercial space.
British Columbia – Home sales activity picks up the pace in September
Greater Vancouver, October 2, 2014 – Home buyers were active in Metro Vancouver last month, with home sales well exceeding the 10-year average for September.
The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in Greater Vancouver reached 2,922 on the MLS® in September 2014. This represents a 17.7% increase compared to the 2,483 sales in September 2013, and a 5.4% increase over the 2,771 sales in August 2014.
Last month’s sales were 16.1% above the 10-year sales average for the month and rank as the third highest selling September over that period.
“September was an active period for our housing market when we compare it against typical activity for the month,” Ray Harris, REBGV president said.
New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 5,259 in September. This represents a 4.6% increase compared to the 5,030 new listings in September 2013 and a 33.5% increase from the 3,940 new listings in August. Last month’s new listing total was 0.4% above the region’s 10-year new listing average for the month.
The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the MLS® system in Metro Vancouver is 14,832, an 8% decline compared to September 2013 and a 0.4% increase compared to August 2014.
The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $633,500. This represents a 5.3% increase compared to September 2013.
“Gains in home values are being led by the detached home market. Condominium and townhome properties are not experiencing the same pressure on prices at the moment,” Harris said. “Individual trends can vary depending on different factors in different areas, so it’s important to do your homework and work with your REALTOR® when you’re looking to determine the market value of a home.”
Sales of detached properties in September 2014 reached 1,270, an increase of 24.1% from the 1,023 detached sales recorded in September 2013, and a 113.8% increase from the 594 units sold in September 2012. The benchmark price for detached properties increased 7.3% from September 2013 to $990,300.
Sales of apartment properties reached 1,188 in September 2014, an increase of 16.7% compared to the 1,018 sales in September 2013, and a 75.7% increase compared to the 676 sales in September 2012. The bench
Aark price of an apartment property increased 3.3% from September 2013 to $378,700.
Attached property sales in September 2014 totalled 464, a 5% increase compared to the 442 sales in September 2013, and an 88.6% increase over the 246 attached properties sold in September 2012. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 4.2% between September 2013 and 2014 to $477,700.
Alberta – Condominium sector boosts Calgary resale housing activity
Calgary, October 1, 2014 – Calgary’s condo sectors continue to set the pace for the city’s residential resale housing market, which recorded 2,148 sales in September, nearly 12% higher than the same period last year.
“September’s sales growth was stronger than expected, due largely to a surge in condominium apartment and townhouse sales,” said Calgary Real Estate Board® (CREB®) chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie, who credits Calgary’s strong economy and fewer options in the lower-priced single-family market behind the continued demand.
For the fifth consecutive month, year-over-year condominium apartment sales growth outpaced growth in the single-family sector. Year-to-date condominium apartment sales totaled 3,819, a 21% increase over last year. This compares with a 7.0% increase to 13,842 units in the single-family market over the same time frame.
Added supply in the condominium apartment sector, meanwhile, is providing more choices. New listings increased by 48% in September over last year and nearly 5.0% over last month, further improving inventory levels and pushing this market into balanced territory.
In the condominium townhouse market, sales and listings continued its year-to date trend, rising 20% and 21%, respectively, compared to the same period a year ago. Over the first three quarters, 3,002 units have exchanged hands, relative to the 4,011 new listings.
Despite an increase in new listings, the condominium townhouse market continues to be relatively tight, with absorption rates remaining below two months.
“While overall supply levels have improved, the condominium townhouse sector continues to reflect the tightest market conditions in Calgary,” said CREB® president Bill Kirk.
New listings in the single-family market similarly increased in September, helping to improve inventory levels above two months. A total of 2,148 units entered the market during the month, a jump of nearly 9.0% compared to the same period last year.
“While conditions are now more balanced, the composition of the single-family market has changed,” said Lurie. “One-quarter of year-to-date sales in the sector has been for product priced below $400,000. Last year, it represented 35% of the market share. Two years ago, it accounted for 44% of all single-family sales.”
The single-family benchmark price topped $512,800 in September, similar to August, but a 10.6% increase year-over-year.
Condominium apartment and townhouse benchmark prices grew to a respective $298,800 and $330,200, reflecting gains of more than 9.5% relative to last year.
“Calgary’s housing market throughout the spring favoured the seller, resulting in higher-than-expected price gains,” said Kirk. “Now, a more balanced market is relaxing some of that upward pressure on home prices, and prices are leveling off relative to the previous month. Year-over-year, however, gains are still in the double-digit range.”
Recent price gains have encouraged listings growth and, ultimately, supply in all sectors, said Lurie. “However, citywide inventory levels continue to remain below historical norms, and current demand levels continue to point toward healthy absorption rates,” she said.
Quebec – Third increase in sales in the past four months for the Montréal area real estate market
Île-des-Sœurs, October 7, 2014 – The Greater Montréal Real Estate Board (GMREB) today released its residential sales statistics for the Montréal Census Metropolitan Area (CMA). According to the real estate brokers’ Centris® provincial database, 2,552 residential sales transactions were concluded in September 2014, a 7.0% increase compared to September of last year. This was the third increase in sales in the past four months.
“We just witnessed the best month of September since 2011 in terms of residential sales,” said Diane Ménard, Vice-President of the GMREB Board of Directors.
Single-family homes posted very solid results in September, as sales of this property category increased by 11% across the CMA. Vaudreuil-Soulanges turned in an excellent performance with a 41% increase in single-family home sales and the North Shore also performed well with a 20% increase. Condominium sales across the CMA rose by 4.0% in September, while plex sales registered a small decrease of 1.0% compared to September 2013.
Geographically, with the exception of a 4.0% decrease in sales on the South Shore, all main areas of the Montréal CMA registered sales growth in September. For all property categories combined, Vaudreuil-Soulanges led the way with a 41% jump in sales, followed by the North Shore with a 15% increase, the Island of Montréal with an 8.0% increase, and Laval with a 2.0% increase.
The median price of single-family homes across the Montréal CMA rose by 2.0% compared to September 2013 to reach $283,750. After falling by 1.0% in August, the median price of condominiums grew by 3.0% to reach $234,000. Finally, the median price of plexes stood at $428,000, a 2.0% increase compared to September of last year.
The number of properties listed on the real estate brokers’ Centris® system continued its upward trend, but at a more moderate pace. The supply of properties for sale was 8.0% higher in September 2014 than it was in September of last year.