Taylor Scott International News
Nationally home sales in Canada fell in December compared with the previous month, recording a fall of 5.8%, the latest index shows. However, actual (not seasonally adjusted) activity stood 7.9% above December 2013 levels, according to the data from the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA). The number of newly listed homes rose 1.1% from November to December and the Home Price Index (HPI) rose 5.4% year on year in December while the national average sale price rose 3.8% on a year on year. The number of home sales processed through Canadian real estate Boards and Associations fell 5.8% in December 2014 compared to November and remained above year ago levels. December sales were down from the previous month in almost two thirds of all local housing markets, led by declines of about 25% in both Calgary and Edmonton. Activity also slipped by about 5% in the Greater Toronto Area. ‘Home sales activity remained above year ago levels in most local housing markets. Sales were also stronger in December than they were the previous month in about one third of all local markets in Canada,’ said CREA president Beth Crosbie. December sales were down from the previous month in a number of Canada’s largest and most active housing markets, indicating a broadly based cooling off for Canadian home sales as 2014 came to an end, according to CREA chief economist Gregory Klump. ‘Even so, sales remain above year-ago levels in many of the same markets. Given the uncertain outlook for oil prices, it’s no surprise consumer confidence in Alberta softened and moved some home buyers to the side lines,’ he explained. ‘With regards to slower activity in Calgary and Edmonton, sales in these two markets had been running strong all year before they returned to levels that are entirely average for the month of December,’ he added. The number of newly listed homes rose 1.1% in December compared to November. Led by Calgary, Regina and Ottawa, new supply was up in just over half of all local markets. The national sales to new listings ratio was 51.8% in December, down from the mid 55% range in the previous four months. A sales to new listings ratio between 40% and 60% is generally consistent with balanced housing market conditions, with readings above and below this range indicating sellers’ and buyers’ markets respectively. The ratio was within this range in just over two thirds of all local markets in November. More than half of the British Columbia, Alberta and Southern Ontario markets that had been in seller’s market territory in November returned to balanced market territory in December. This list included Greater Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, and the Greater Toronto Area. The number of months of inventory is another important measure of the balance between housing supply and demand. It represents the number of months it would take to completely liquidate current inventories at the current rate of sales activity. There were 6.2 months of inventory nationally at the end of… Continue reading →
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