According to Realtor.ca, 2023 could return a busy real estate market. And if the multiple offers returning this past month are any indication, they may be right!
"Before we could even roll out the red carpet for spring, the latest housing data is suggesting Canada’s real estate markets could be in for a busy season.
The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) is reporting national home sales rose 2.3% month-over-month in February, led by gains in the Greater Toronto Area and Greater Vancouver.
That, coupled with the fact the year-over-year average price is down 18.9% compared to the same time last year, may suggest Canadians will be feeling more confident in re-entering the market this year—especially if it’s the end to rapidly rising interest rates.
The actual (not seasonally adjusted) average Canadian sale price in February 2023 was $662,437—a far cry from the home price record of $816,578 in February 2022. Excluding the Toronto and Vancouver markets (which actually bumped the national average price up $50,000 month-over-month), you can cut almost $135,000 from the national average price in February 2023.
“February’s data contained the potential of a more robust market to come, but to repeat the bottom line from last month, we won’t know what the 2023 market has in store until the spring,” said Jill Oudil, Chair of CREA.
What other signs are pointing to busier real estate markets?
The increase in home sales month-over-month comes at the same time there was a significant drop in new listings. The number of newly listed properties dropped 7.9% in February compared to January, further tightening the sales-to-new-listings ratio. Months of inventory also dropped slightly—the first time we’ve seen such a move since the fall of 2021.
“[We’re seeing] tighter market conditions all around and that should help firm up prices, which I suspect some buyers are waiting to see before they enter the market this year, so that’s good news,” said CREA’s Senior Economist Shaun Cathcart in CREA’s monthly Housing Market Report (watch in full below).
The Aggregate Composite MLS® Home Price Index (HPI)—the most advanced and accurate tool to gauge a neighbourhood’s home price levels and trends—was down 1.1% on a month-over-month basis in February 2023, the smallest month-over-month drop since last March.
Looking across the country, prices are down from peak levels by more than they are nationally in most parts of Ontario and a few parts of British Columbia, and down by less elsewhere. While prices have softened to some degree almost everywhere, Calgary, Regina, Saskatoon, and St. John’s stand out as markets where home prices are barely off their peaks. Prices began to stabilize last fall in the Maritimes. Some markets in Ontario seem to be doing the same now."