Home sales in July posted the biggest year-on-year increase in more than two years but were little changed from June, the Canadian Real Estate Association said Tuesday.
On a non-seasonally adjusted basis, the number of homes sold during the month increased 8.7 percent from the previous July to 41,186.
Seasonally adjusted sales totaled 40,028, a 0.7 percent drop from June. Sales rose in July in more than half of all local markets, but a drop in the Greater Toronto area, a typically active housing market, tipped the national figure “slightly negative,” CREA said.
The association has seen signs of stabilization across the national housing market since May as prospective buyers acclimate to a higher-than-anticipated interest rate environment.
“July continued the same trend we’ve seen emerge in recent months, with sales leveling off and new listings returning in more normal numbers,” Larry Cerqua, CREA’s president, said in a press release.
“This has been giving buyers more choice and balancing the market, which as of July was also slowing the rate of price growth.”
Median home price was $668,754, up 6.3 percent from the prior year.
On a seasonally adjusted basis, the average was $690,867, a two percent drop from June.
Meanwhile, new listings were down 0.2 percent from last year to 73,215 and increased 5.6 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis to 67,636.
Shaun Cathcart, a senior economist at CREA, said the figures indicate housing markets have calmed in recent months and prices are moderating.
Sales and price growth, he said, is already showing signs of abating in August due to the Bank of Canada’s mid-July interest rate hike and messages suggesting inflation will be well above its target for the year. 2% longer than expected.
“We are probably looking at another round of ‘margining back’ for some buyers until there is a higher level of certainty about interest rates going forward,” Cathcart said in a press release.
Possible more rate hikes
But with inflation above 3 percent in July and the possibility of another interest rate hike looming, Toronto brokerage Cailey Heaps said buyers with mortgage approvals already in hand will be eager to take advantage before they rise. rates in the fall.
“I expect September and October to be busy as a result,” he wrote in an email.
Heaps finds that the summer months tend to be slow, but July was “surprisingly strong.”