Canadian home sales drop in May following April’s record
According to statistics released today by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA), national home sales dropped in May 2016 after having set an all-time monthly record in April.
- National home sales dropped 2.8% from April to May
- Actual (not seasonally adjusted) activity was up 9.6% compared to May 2015
- The number of newly listed homes fell 3.2% from April to May
- The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) rose 12.5% year-over-year in May
The national average sale price climbed 13.2% in May from one year ago; net of Greater Toronto and Greater Vancouver, it advanced 9.1% year-over-year
The number of homes trading hands via Canadian MLS® Systems fell by 2.8 percent month-over-month in May 2016 after having broken all previous monthly sales records in April.
Sales activity dropped in May from the previous month in about 70 percent of all markets, led by those in British Columbia and Ontario where the number of homes listed for sale has fallen to multi-year or all-time lows.
The national sales-to-new listings ratio edged up to 64.8 percent in May 2016 – the ratio's tightest reading since October 2009. A sales-to-new listings ratio between 40 and 60 percent is generally consistent with balanced housing market conditions, with readings below and above this range indicating buyers' and sellers' markets respectively.
There were 4.7 months of inventory on a national basis at the end of May 2016, which is unchanged from April's reading and the lowest level in more than six years.
Months of inventory have been trending lower since early 2015, reflecting increasingly tighter housing markets in B.C. and Ontario. It currently sits at or below two months in a growing number of local markets in British Columbia, the GTA and environs and in Southwestern Ontario.
Two-storey single family home prices continued to post the biggest year-over-year gain (+14.7 percent), followed by one storey single family homes (+12.7 percent), townhouse/row units (+11.6 percent), and apartment units (+8.6 percent).
While 9 of the 11 markets tracked by the MLS® HPI posted year-over-year price gains in May, price growth among housing markets continues to vary widely.
Greater Vancouver (+29.7 percent) and the Fraser Valley (+31.7 percent) posted the largest gains, followed by Greater Toronto(+15.0 percent), Victoria (+13.9 percent), and Vancouver Island (+9.5 percent). By contrast, prices fell by -3.9 percent and -2.3 percent in Calgary and Saskatoon respectively.
Year-over-year price growth advanced further into positive territory in Regina (+3.4 percent) and strengthened further in Ottawa (+1.3 percent) and Greater Montreal (+1.9 percent). Home prices in Greater Moncton recorded their tenth consecutive year-over-year gain, rising 8.2 percent from where they stood one year earlier.
The national average price continues to be pulled upward by sales activity in Greater Vancouver and Greater Toronto, which remain two of Canada's tightest, most active and expensive housing markets. The actual (not seasonally adjusted) national average price for homes sold in May 2016 was $509,460, up 13.2 percent on a year-over-year basis.
If these two housing markets are excluded from calculations, the average price is a more modest $375,532 and the year-over-year gain is trimmed to 9.1 percent.
SOURCE: Canadian Real Estate Association