While sales activity in the fall tends to be slower than in the spring months, the continued strong sales are likely being driven by consumers who were unable to transact earlier in the year when supply levels had not yet adjusted to demand. The market continues to favour the seller, but conditions are not as tight as they were earlier this year.
With the election behind us, we hope the government will now concentrate on addressing supply issues and developing first-time homebuyer assistance touted in their reelection platform.
Ontario - Sales remained strong in September
Toronto, October 5, 2021, September marked the transition from the slower summer market to the busier fall market in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). Every year, we generally see an uptick in sales, average selling price and listings after Labour Day, and September 2021 was no different. Sales increased relative to August and were also at the third-highest mark on record for the month of September. The average selling price was up both month-over-month and year-over-year.
GTA REALTORS® reported 9,046 sales through TRREB’s MLS® System in September 2021 – up in line with the regular seasonal trend from August. Compared to last year, market conditions tightened noticeably, with sales representing a substantially higher share of listings, and a significantly lower number of new listings across the board. Resurgence in the condo market was a factor in the higher share of listings sold. The total number of sales was down 18% from 2020’s record September result, in large part due to the lower number of new listings, which were down 34% from the same time last year.
“Demand has remained incredibly robust throughout September with many qualified buyers who would buy a home tomorrow provided they could find a suitable property. With new listings in September down by one third compared to last year, purchasing a home for many is easier said than done. The lack of housing supply and choice has reached a critical juncture. Bandaid policies to artificially suppress demand have not been effective. This is not an issue that can be solved by one level of government alone. There needs to be collaboration federally, provincially, and locally on a solution,” said Kevin Crigger, TRREB President.
The MLS® Home Price Index Composite Benchmark was up by 19.1% year-over-year in September 2021. The average selling price for all home types combined was up by 18.3% year-over-year to $1,136,280. “Price growth in September continued to be driven by the low-rise market segments, including detached and semidetached houses and townhouses. However, competition between buyers for condo apartments has picked up markedly over the past year, which has led to an acceleration in price growth over the past few months as first-time buyers reentered the ownership market. Look for this trend to continue,” said Jason Mercer, TRREB Chief Market Analyst.
Ottawa - Normal September Resale Market
Ottawa, October 5, 2021 - Members of the Ottawa Real Estate Board sold 1,607 residential properties in September through the Board’s Multiple Listing Service® System, compared with 2,314 in September 2020, a decrease of 31%. September’s sales included 1,244 in the residential-property class, down 29% from a year ago, and 363 in the condominium-property category, a decrease of 36% from September 2020. The five-year average for total unit sales in September is 1,648.
“As per usual, the resale market in the early part of the month moved slowly due to the Labour Day holiday weekend and parents settling their children back into their school routines. Activity began to accelerate towards the end of the month, which is behaviour typical of the market in September,” states Ottawa Real Estate Board President Debra Wright.
“Although the statistics are showing a considerable year-over-year decrease in transactions, this anomaly is due to the shift of the 2020 market’s peak activity to the summer and fall months as a result of the initial Covid-19 lockdown last spring. If we look beyond the comparison to last year, the number of transactions in September was 4% higher than in 2019 (1,547) and 16% higher than 2018 (1,387),” she adds.
September’s average sale price for a condominium-class property was $425,362, an increase of 14% from last year, while the average sale price for a residential-class property was $702,155, an increase of 13% from a year ago. With year-to-date average sale prices at $720,492 for residential and $421,062 for condominiums, these values represent a 25% and 17% increase over 2020, respectively.*
“House values are holding steady with a slight month-to-month increase (4-5%) in September and year-to-date average prices remaining strong for both residential and condo properties. Of course, these price escalations that we saw in the first quarter of 2021 and now recurring in September are inevitable given the supply challenges we have been experiencing for several years now combined with the unrelenting high demand,” Wright explains.
“While inventory has improved slightly from the pre-pandemic years (2017-2019), it is still the principal cause for concern with just over one month’s supply in the housing stock at this time. There were 2,252 new listings in September, an increase of 216 units over August; however, the number still falls beneath the five-year average and is much lower than this month in September 2020 (2,906).”
“With the election behind us, we hope the government will now concentrate on addressing supply issues and developing first-time homebuyer assistance touted in their reelection platform. Together with our REALTOR® Members and our provincial and federal counterparts, we will continue to advocate for availability and affordability in the Ottawa housing market and implore all three levels of government to implement effective measures to help all Canadians turn their homeownership dreams into reality,” Wright concludes.
Alberta - Sales remain strong in September
City of Calgary, Oct. 1, 2021 – Residential sales totalled 2,162 in September, nearing the record high for the month recorded in 2005. Further gains in new listings likely supported some of the sales growth that occurred this month.
“While sales activity in the fall tends to be slower than in the spring months, the continued strong sales are likely being driven by consumers who were unable to transact earlier in the year when supply levels had not yet adjusted to demand,” said CREB® chief economist Ann-Marie Lurie. “The market continues to favour the seller, but conditions are not as tight as they were earlier this year.”
Inventory levels in September eased to 5,607 units, keeping the months of supply below three months. However, there is significant variation depending on property type and the tightest conditions continue to be in the detached market, with under two months of supply. At the same time, the apartment condominium sector is not facing the same level of supply challenges, with nearly five months of inventory available based on current demand levels.
Supply adjustments have helped ease the upward pressure on home prices. Prices have eased slightly relative to a few months ago, but they remain well above levels recorded earlier in the year. As of September, the total residential benchmark price in Calgary was $457,900, over eight% higher than levels recorded last year.
HOUSING MARKET FACTS
Detached - Calgary recorded 1,268 sales this month, a significant gain relative to last year and 30% higher than longer-term trends. Sales this month improved across all price ranges except homes priced under $400,000. However, the decline in sales in the lower price range is likely related to limited supply choice.
On a year-to-date basis, prices have improved across all districts, with gains that range from a low of five% in the City Centre to nearly twelve% in the South East. The City Centre is the only district where prices remain below previous highs. The September detached benchmark price of $537,500 has trended down slightly from the record high set in July, but this has not erased earlier gains, as it remains nearly 10% higher than last year.
Semi-Detached - With less supply choice in the lower price ranges of the detached market, many consumers have turned to the semi-detached sector. With 2,005 sales so far this year, year-to-date sales are over 45% higher than long-term trends and have reached new record highs. The improvement in sales was, in part, related to the improvements in new listings. The sales-to-new-listings ratio in this sector has averaged below 70% over the past several months. This is nowhere near as tight as the detached sector, which has averaged 80%.
While conditions have not been as tight in the semi-detached sector, there have still been substantial price gains this year. As of September, the benchmark price was $424,900, slightly lower than last month, but over eight% higher than last year’s levels. Like the detached sector, the semi-detached sector’s slowest price growth has occurred in the City Centre. On a year-to-date basis, prices remained below previous highs in the City Centre, North East and South districts.
Row - With 318 sales this month, year-to-date sales pushed up to 3,057 units, which is 62% above long-term trends and on pace to hit record levels this year. Sales have risen across every district, with the largest growth recorded in the South East district.
While new listings did improve this month, it was not enough to prevent further declines in Inventory levels. The months of supply remained relatively low at less than three months, which is well below traditional levels for this time of year. Tighter conditions have supported price growth across all districts so far in 2021. However, unlike the detached and semi-detached sectors, row prices remain below previous highs across all districts in the city.
Apartment Condominium - A boost in new listings this month translated into some gains in sales activity. However, with a sales-to-new-listings ratio of 58%, inventories still trended up relative to the previous month and last year’s levels.
The months of supply remained just below five months in September, far lower than levels recorded last year and over the past five years. Conditions have generally been more balanced for this property type compared with other sectors, preventing strong price gains. On a year-to-date basis, citywide benchmark prices improved by nearly three%, but they remain over 14% lower than previous highs.
British Columbia - A Positive Start to The Fall Market.
October 4, 2021, SURREY, BC – Demand for Fraser Valley real estate remained robust in September. While overall sales decreased compared to August, total sales reached the second‐highest levels for the month of September in the 100-year history of the Board.
The Board processed a total of 1,866 property sales on its Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in September, a decrease of 10.6% compared to August and a 16.4% decrease compared to the same month last year.
Larry Anderson, President of the Board, said, “While we’ve seen a solid increase in new listings compared to
August, market conditions continue to be challenging for buyers. Considering the demand across the region, the increase is simply not enough to bolster the inventory required to create a greater balance in the market.
“Demand for residential homes of all types is strong in the Fraser Valley with more sellers returning to the table in September, which is expected at this time of year.”
In September, the Board received 2,342 new listings, a decrease of 33.4% compared to last year, and an increase of 11.2% compared to August 2021. The month ended with a total active inventory of 3,812, which is a 6.5% decrease compared to August, and a 48.3% decrease compared to September 2020.
Baldev Gill, Chief Executive Officer of the Board, added, “The pandemic continues to have an impact on current conditions and while the market remains steady, we are sensitive to ongoing health and safety concerns. Our members follow stringent protocols as mandated by the Public Health Officer, and we will continue to lead by example for the benefit of our members and their clients.”
Across Fraser Valley, in September, the average number of days to sell a single‐family detached home was 26 and a townhome was 19 days. Apartments took, on average, 26 days to sell.
MLS® HPI Benchmark Price Activity
- Single Family Detached: At $1,362,220, the Benchmark price for an FVREB single‐family detached home
increased 1.9% compared to August 2021 and increased 31.9% compared to September 2020.
- Townhomes: At $707,300, the Benchmark price for an FVREB townhome increased 1.4% compared to
August 2021 and increased 24.7% compared to September 2020.
- Apartments: At $504,500, the Benchmark price for an FVREB apartment/condo increased 1.2%
compared to August 2021 and increased 15.5% compared to September 2020.