Market Watch June 2016 – Strong Sales Growth Continues in May

As the weather warmed, the Canadian resale market continued its steady pace upwards, continuing an above average trend for the month of May. Consumer confidence amongst home buyers remains strong and is reflected by increased unit sales in all housing categories. The tighter market conditions have resulted in price growth well above the rate of inflation in most market segments.

Ontario – Strong Sales Growth Continues in May

Toronto, June 3, 2016 — Toronto Real Estate Board President Mark McLean announced that there were 12,870 home sales reported through TREB’s MLS® System in May 2016. This result represented a new record for the month of May and a 10.6% increase over the same period last year. In contrast, the number of new listings was down over the same time frame by 6.4%. The decline in listings was experienced in both the low-rise and condominium apartment market segments.

“Whether we’re talking about existing homeowners or people looking to purchase for the first time, there is no shortage of buyers in the marketplace today. So, while the record number of home sales through the first five months of 2016 is not necessarily surprising, it does sometimes mask the larger story in the GTA: the shortage of listings, which has resulted in strong upward pressure on home prices,” said Mr. McLean.

The MLS® Home Price Index Composite Benchmark was up by 15% year-overyear in May 2016. Similarly, the average selling price for all home types combined was up by 15.7% over the same period. Low-rise home types, which remained in short supply in many GTA neighbourhoods, experienced the strongest price growth.
“Widespread competition between buyers of singles, semis and townhouses across the GTA has underpinned the robust annual rates of price growth experienced so far this year. With this said, however, it is also important to understand that tighter market conditions for condominium apartments have resulted in price growth well above the rate of inflation in this market segment as well,” said Jason Mercer, TREB’s Director of Market Analysis.

Ottawa, June 6, 2016 – Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 1,921 residential properties in May through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® system, compared with similar sales of 1,926 in May 2015. The five-year average for May sales is 1,864.

“As the weather warmed, the Ottawa resale market continued its steady pace upwards, continuing an above average trend for the month of May,” says Shane Silva, President of the Ottawa Real Estate Board. “Units sold are up 207 since April, increasing in both the residential and condominium property class”.

May sales included 307 in the condominium property class, and 1,614 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.

“In May, 3,635 homes were listed, keeping pace with listing numbers in April, but down slightly by 4.4% compared to May 2015,” says Silva. “With the number of sales since the beginning of the year on a steady incline, coupled with increased inventory, Ottawa is riding a strong and steady spring market.”

The average sale price of a residential-class property sold in May in the Ottawa area was $406,063, an increase of 0.6% over May 2015. The average sale price for a condominium-class property was $264,801, an increase of 1.5% over May 2015. 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 hottest segments in our market for May were sales in the $300,000 to $400,000 price range, followed by the $400,000 to $500,000 price range,” says Silva. “Residential two-storey and bungalows have the highest concentration of buyers in May. In addition to residential and condominium sales, OREB Members have assisted clients with renting 1,213 properties since the beginning of the year.”

 

British Columbia – Demand remains elevated across the Metro Vancouver housing market

Metro Vancouver, June 2, 2016 – Metro Vancouver* homes continue to sell at an unprecedented rate in communities across the region.

Residential property sales on the region’s Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) totalled 4,769 in May 2016, an increase of 17.6% from the 4,056 sales recorded in May 2015 and a decrease of 0.3% compared to April 2016 when 4,781 homes sold.

Last month’s sales were 35.3% above the 10-year sales average for the month and rank as the highest sales total on record for May.

“Home sellers are becoming more active in recent months, although that activity is being outpaced by home buyer demand today,” Dan Morrison, REBGV president said.

New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 6,289 in May 2016. This represents an increase of 11.5% compared to the 5,641 units listed in May 2015 and a 2.6% increase compared to April 2016 when 6,127 properties were listed.

The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the MLS® system in Metro Vancouver is 7,726, a 37.3% decline compared to May 2015 (12,336) and a 2.3% increase compared to April 2016 (7,550).

“Economic and job growth in Metro Vancouver is out performing most regions in the country. This is helping to underpin today’s activity,” Morrison said.

The sales-to-active listings ratio for May 2016 is 61.7%. This is indicative of a seller’s market.

Generally, analysts say that downward pressure on home prices occurs when the ratio dips below the 12% mark, while home prices often experience upward pressure when it reaches the 20 to 22% range in a particular community for a sustained period of time.

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $889,100. This represents a 29.7% increase compared to May 2015.

Sales of detached properties in May 2016 reached 1,865, an increase of 8.2% from the 1,723 detached sales recorded in May 2015. The benchmark price for detached properties increased 36.9% from May 2015 to $1,513,800.

Sales of apartment properties reached 2,150 in May 2016, an increase of 34.4% compared to the 1,600 sales in May 2015. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 22.3% from May 2015 to $485,000.

Attached property sales in May 2016 totalled 754, an increase of 2.9% compared to the 733 sales in May 2015. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 24.9% from May 2015 to $632,400.

Alberta – Single family home sales are on the rise

Edmonton, June 2, 2016 – Unit sales for single family detached homes were up 19.3% from April and up 3.8% year-over-year, with 1,119 selling in May across the Edmonton Census Metropolitan Area (CMA). Unit sales of duplexes and rowhouses increased 37.2% over April, and 23.03% over May 2015 with 203 units sold in the month. Condo sales were up 5.3% month-over-month, but down 18.2% year-over-year. All-residential sales at 1,771 were up more than 18% from April and down less than 1% compared to May of last year.

“Consumer confidence amongst home buyers in Edmonton and surrounding areas remains strong and is reflected by increased unit sales in the single family detached and duplex/rowhouse categories,” REALTORS® Association of Edmonton Chair Steve Sedgwick said. “Relative to other markets in Alberta, Edmonton’s resale housing market is solid.”

Total new listings were down less than 1% relative to last month and 2.5% compared to May 2015, with 3,233 new properties coming onto the market in May. The sales-to-listing ratio for single family detached homes was 61% for May 2016, up 10% from April and on par with May 2015. The sales-to-listing ratio for duplex/rowhouses was 73%, down 13% from May 2015 but up 22% from last month. Condo properties are entering a buyer’s market, with a 40% sales-to-listing ratio, up 2% from last month, but down 13% from last year.

The average single family detached home in the Edmonton CMA sold for $440,573 in May, virtually on par with April’s average price of $439,982, but down almost 3% compared to the average price of $453,748 in May 2015. Average condo prices at $254,555 are up over 1% month-over-month, and almost flat to last year. Duplex/rowhouse average prices increased compared to both the previous month and May 2015, up 3% and 1.5% respectively.

“While new listings coming onto the market were down this May compared to 2015, inventory continues to remain strong with more than 8,000 residential properties on the market at month’s end,” Sedgwick said. “The fact that we haven’t seen a significant decline in prices is giving buyers more assurance. They are making purchases based on market stability and good selection.”

In May, the all residential average days-on-market was 54 days, up 14 days from April and up 8 days relative to May 2015. On average, single family detached homes sold in 51 days in May, while condominiums and duplex/rowhouses sold in an average of 59 days.