Housing Market Opportunities Abound
In October, the picture of the housing market began to look decidedly balanced, according to comments made by BMO Economics.
Nationally, the resale market is balancing out, with a healthy uptick in Regina, and the skyrocketing market in the Vancouver region beginning to come back down towards earth.
“Low mortgage rates are offsetting weaker consumer confidence and cooling job growth,” said Robert Kavcic, Economist, BMO Capital Markets. “Relatively stable sales and price trends are likely in the year ahead.”
Sales gains were dispersed too, throughout the country, suggesting that robust activity is not centered on one region, but more of a national phenomenon, with gains seen throughout Western Canada, Toronto and Montreal. “Regina is now the sales growth leader, up 24.8 per cent year-over-year, while Calgary’s market continues to firm up, with sales running 15.2 per cent above year-ago levels.”
The hot Vancouver market, buoyed by a flood of foreign investment dollars and skyrocketing prices, saw more reasonable gains in October, with prices appreciating by a more reasonable 8.5% , year-over-year.
“After peaking above $800,000 in June, seasonally-adjusted prices in Canada’s most expensive city have drifted down to $758,000 – partly due to fewer high-end sales – and B.C. is looking like more of a buyers’ market,” stated Mr. Kavcic.
Of particular note was the condo market in Toronto, which is the main driver behind much of the upwards pressure in prices and on sales trends in the city: “Condo sales and prices have outperformed detached properties somewhat in the past year, up 19 per cent year-over-year and 9 per cent year-over-year, respectively,” said Mr. Kavcic. “Overall, Ontario remains a relatively tight market, with the sales-to-new listings ratio sitting above historical norms at 57.4 per cent.”
All in all, this underscores the opportunities that exist in the market, nationally. “These numbers show that Canada’s real estate market remains resilient with opportunities for prospective buyers,” said Katie Archdekin, Head of Mortgage Products, BMO Bank of Montreal.