Home sales fall in Canada's two largest real estate markets

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Posted by Ozzie Jurock & Reuters

on Thursday, 05 April 2018 07:07


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Other markets that have already been thrashed, like Edmonton and Calgary, appear to be ready to take off now according to Ozzie Jurock in the interview below. Home sales in the red hot markets of Vancouver and Toronto (Toronto home sales tumbled 39.5 percent in March from the previous year) have succumbed in part to persistent attempts by Governments through tax and regulation to solve the housng shortage. (Note, the audio is rough in a few spots). There are some statistics below - R. Zurrer for Money Talks   

Toronto home sales tumbled 39.5 percent in March from the previous year, while Vancouver sales fell 29.7 percent, according to data from the Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB) and the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV).

Together, the Vancouver and Toronto regions account for about half of house sales by volume in Canada.

Sales of detached homes in Vancouver fell 37 percent, while condo sales were down 26.7 percent, as demand cooled and fewer homes were listed, REBGV said.

In Toronto, sales of detached homes plunged 46.3 percent and condo sales dropped 32.7 percent, as many would-be buyers put their plans on hold, TREB said.

The average selling price in the Toronto area was C$784,558($613,799), down 14.3 percent from C$915,126 in March 2017, though up 2.1 percent from February 2018.

The average selling price for a detached home, the most expensive segment of the market, plunged 17.1 percent, while the average condo price rose 6.1 percent.

In Vancouver, the average selling price for a detached home slid 6.2 percent, while the average selling price in the red hot condo segment was up 22.8 percent.

Demand for expensive detached homes has been cool in both cities as tax measures, along with stricter lending requirements and higher mortgage rates, have weighed.

At the same time, demand in the cheaper condo segment has remained strong, as buyers scramble to gain a foothold amid rapidly escalating prices and limited supply.

New listings fell 12.4 percent in Toronto and 6.6 percent in Vancouver.

"Even with lower demand, upward pressure on prices will continue as long as the supply of homes for sale remains low," said REBGV president Phil Moore in a statement.

The Bank of Canada has raised interest rates three times since last July and another hike is expected later this year, and stricter lending rules took effect on Jan. 1. 

The benchmark price, preferred by analysts because it smoothes out the composition of sales, was up 1.5 percent year-over-year in Toronto, and up 16.1 percent in Vancouver.

($1 = 1.2782 Canadian dollars)

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