February Marks a Near 20% Yearly Increase in Canadian Home Sales

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The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) reported a 19.7% surge in home sales in February compared to the same month last year, potentially indicating the end of a relatively calm period.

The association noted on Monday that the rise partly mirrors the low performance of February 2023, which was one of the weakest in the last 20 years. Current activity has also rebounded to just about 5% below the decade’s average.

In terms of monthly comparison, seasonally adjusted home sales in February saw a slight decrease of 3.1% from January. CREA observed a trend of moderately increased activity in the past three months, contrasting with the subdued market in the fall of 2023.

Shaun Cathcart, CREA’s senior economist, stated in a press release, “Given the significant demand accumulated, the narrative will probably shift from the precise timing of interest rate reductions to the number of homes listed for sale this year.”

Newly listed properties saw a modest increase of 1.6% month-over-month. At the end of February 2024, the national inventory stood at 3.8 months, a slight increase from 3.7 months at the end of January but still below the long-term average of approximately five months.

The actual national average home price in the previous month was $685,809, a 3.5% increase from February 2023.

Vy Ngo, a sales representative at Big City Realty Inc. Brokerage, noted a significant increase in buyer optimism compared to the end of the previous year.

“My clients are actively seeking pre-approval. Some are already shopping, while others are still in the early stages,” she shared.

She predicted a heated market once the Bank of Canada reduces their rates, “I believe the market will reignite.”

Ngo recently sold a house in the Toronto area that had been on the market for only three days.

“I advised my client who wanted to sell at the end of last year to wait until the new year. It turned out to be a successful sale,” she added.

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