The latest data from the Canadian Real Estate Association shows prices were up by 13.1%, which is the biggest gain since May 2010. Nationally, the number of home sales in Canada rose by 3.1% from March to April.
According to the article in Propertywire, sales increased in April compared to the previous month in about 70% of all local markets, but while activity was steady in the Greater Toronto area, it was slightly lower in Greater Vancouver. This doesn’t seem to be worrying real estate agents in the country as they are keen to point out that nearly three quarters of local markets saw sales increases in April and there are plenty of places where sales are continuing to climb as the market enters the all-important summer selling season.
Home sales in Greater Toronto and in the Greater Vancouver area are being constrained by supply and tighter market conditions. Although some home sellers in these areas may be tempted to list their property for sale due to significant price increases, for many they’d also be looking to buy in areas where listings are scarce. The result is that many homeowners are deciding to stay put for the time being which is affecting the number of listings.
The actual figures for sales activity rose by 10.3% year-on-year for the month of April. This month saw the second highest level for transactions in any single month and was 16.5% higher than the 10 year average for April. Sales activity increased in about 70% of local markets including those in the Greater Toronto area as well as markets in British Columbia. Vancouver Island and Edmonton saw the greatest number of new listings. The number of sales to new listings ratio rose to 64.5% in April this year which is the tightest reading since October 2009. Listings ratio of between 40% and 60% is generally considered to be in line with balanced market conditions while figures above and below this range indicate sellers and buyers markets respectively.
The ratio was above 60% in approximately half of all local housing markets, most of which are located in British Columbia, South-western Ontario or the Greater Toronto area. Nationally there was 4.7 months of inventory at the end of April which is the lowest level seen for six years, but the number of months of inventory is at just two months or lower in a growing number of markets in British Columbia, South-western Ontario and in the Greater Toronto area.
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