Canada’s housing markets had a hot September, as most major metro areas reported robust sales activity and price gains, according to monthly reports released by regional trade groups this week.
One exception is Toronto, where sales slumped 35%, but the average sales price in the region, led by a stellar condo segment, continued to rise.
Vancouver benchmark prices stood above C$1 million
In the Greater Vancouver area, one of the country’s largest and hottest markets, there were 2,253 sales in September, a 25.2% increase year-over-year. The Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties is currently C$1.04 million (about US$826,000), representing a 10.9% increase over September 2016, according to a report by the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver out earlier this week.
The benchmark represents the price of a typical property within each market, which takes into consideration factors that average and median prices do not, such as lot size, age and number of rooms.
Detached single-family homes still dominate in Vancouver. In September, 852 detached homes, or 30% of all residential transactions, were sold for an average price of C$1.62 million (about US$1.29 million). It took an average 42 days for a single-family home to find a buyer.
There were 5,839 single-family homes available for sale as of September, accounting for 60% of all the housing stock in the region.
“This dynamic has slowed the pace of upward pressure that we’ve seen on detached home prices in our market over the last few years,” Jill Oudil, the board’s president, said in the report.
Montreal had the most active September in eight years
Housing markets in the Greater Montreal area continued to pick up steam in September. In total, there were 2,893 residential sales last month, a 6% increase year-to-year. It was the most active month of September in eight years, according to the monthly report by the Greater Montreal Real Estate Board published Thursday.
Condos outperformed single-family homes in terms of sales volume. Sales of condos rose by 11% year-over-year across the region, while sales of single-family homes fell slightly by 1%, ending a five-month streak of growth for this property type.
Price-wise, single-family homes fared better, with a 5% year-over-year increase to reach C$318,000 (US$253,000). Condo prices edged up 1% to C$253,000 (US$201,000).
“The condominium market continues to hold strong in the Montreal area. Sales have been growing steadily for several months, supply is decreasing and selling times are clearly down,” Mathieu Cousineau, the board’s president, said in the report.
Condo markets in Toronto heating up
The Greater Toronto area reported 6,379 sales in September, falling 35% compared to the same period last year, according to a report by Toronto Real Estate Board released Wednesday.
The average sales price was C$775,546 (US$617,335), up 2.6% from a year ago. The Home Price Index composite benchmark was up by 12.2% on an annual basis.
A key reason for the difference in annual growth rates between the average price and the Home Price Index is the fact that detached homes, the most expensive market segment on average, accounted for a smaller share of overall transactions this year compared to last year, according to the report.
Condos had an unproportionately strong run in September. Both the average and benchmark sales prices in this segment gained more than 20% compared to September 2016.
Ottawa housing markets stabilized
In the Greater Ottawa area, 1,387 homes sold in September, up 1.6% compared to the same month in 2016, according to a report by Ottawa Real Estate Board out Wednesday.
The average sales price of single-family homes was C$416,464 (US$331,505), a 8.2% increase over September 2016. The average sale price for a condominium apartment was C$261,548 (US$208,192), increasing 3.9% compared to September 2016.
“The Ottawa market is showing signs of stabilizing after the record-setting spring and summer. All indications suggest that it will be a typical selling season heading into the fall,” Rick Eisert, president of the Ottawa Real Estate Board, said in the report.
|Canada September Market Snapshot|
|Region||Sales||Y-O-Y change||Home Price Index|
|Source: Real Estate Boards|
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