The Quebec market will enter a quieter period – QPAREB

by Ephraim Vecina on 29 Apr 2020

Quebec’s Q1 home sales numbers have reached a new record high, but the market will encounter substantial coronavirus-impelled challenges in the months ahead, according to the Quebec Professional Association of Real Estate Brokers (QPAREB).

The province saw its 23rd straight quarterly increase in sales activity during the first three months of 2020, having grown by 18% year-over-year to reach a total of 27,817 transactions. Meanwhile, the average sales price stood at $275,000 (up 8% annually).

The economic ravages of COVID-19 will derail this trend, however.

Quebec’s first-quarter performance “will be a sharp contrast to the decline that we are expected to in the second quarter of the year, due to the application of social distancing measures and the suspension of so-called non-essential economic activities imposed by the government,” said Julie Saucier, QPAREB president and chief executive officer.

Still, fundamental market strength will impart some much-needed momentum over several quarters, said Charles Brant, QPAREB market analysis director.

“This market vitality, which has been artificially halted since mid-March, suggests resilience for the coming months,” Brant said. “It thus bodes well for a significant latent demand from buyers while the supply of residential properties on the market should continue to be relatively limited in many areas.”

Supply fell for the 17th consecutive quarter between January and March. Inventory during the period stood at 48,787 residential properties for sale, having dropped by 21% year-over-year.

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