GTA jump led growth for home sales in November

There was a rise of 3.9% in nationwide home sales in November compared to the previous month.

The Canadian Real Estate Association says that this was led by a 17% jump for sales on the Greater Toronto Area which accounted for more than two thirds of the national gain.

“Some home buyers with more than a twenty percent down payment may be fast-tracking their purchase decision in order to beat the tougher mortgage qualifications test coming into effect next year,” said CREA President Andrew Peck. “Evidence of this is mixed and depends on the housing market. It will be interesting to see whether December sales show further signs of home purchases being fast-tracked.

Actual activity (not seasonally adjusted) gained 2.6% year-over-year last month but with lower activity in the GTA it was other markets that drove this increase. Greater Vancouver and the Fraser Valley, Calgary, Edmonton, Ottawa and Montreal all saw gains in activity year-over-year.

The GTA posted a rise in new listings and inventory was at 4.8 months of supply nationwide. The Greater Golden Horseshoe area’s supply increased to 2.4 months which, although half of the national figure, is up from less than a month’s supply in February and March.

Nationally there was a 3.5% rise and the national sales-to-new-listings ratio was little changed from October at 56.4% (up from 56.2%).

CREA’s Aggregate Composite MLS HPI shows a 9.3% rise year-over-year, highlighting a slowing of price appreciation since the spring. It was the smallest gain since February 2016.

The national (not seasonally adjusted) average price for homes sold in November was $504,000 nationally, up 2.9% year-over-year. Excluding Greater Vancouver and Greater Toronto the national average was $381,000.

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