Canadian new home prices edge up 0.1 percent in July

Monday, 22 August 2022 21:28:19 (GMT+3)   |   San Diego

According to Statistics Canada, new home prices for Canada increased 0.1 percent in July compared with June—the smallest increase since June 2020 and below the average increases witnessed in the first two quarters of 2022 (+1.1 percent in the first quarter and +0.3 percent in the second quarter). Prices were up in 5 of the 27 census metropolitan areas (CMAs) surveyed, unchanged in 17 and down in 5.

New home prices rose the most in Ottawa (+0.6 percent) in July, with builders reporting good market conditions as the reason for price increases for new homes. During the same period, data from the Ottawa Real Estate Board suggested that the resale market was showing signs of cooling down in Ottawa, with average home prices decreasing 7 percent on a monthly basis (though still increasing 5 percent year over year). Rising interest rates may be impacting the new home market more slowly than the resale market.

Vancouver recorded the second largest increase to new home prices in July (+0.5 percent), with some builders stating that increases to construction costs such as labor and materials, were playing a role. According to the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver, the sales-to-active-listings ratio was 11.8 percent for single detached homes and 20.0 percent for townhomes in July. A ratio below 12 percent indicates potential for downward price pressure, while a ratio above 20 percent indicates potential for upward pressure when sustained over a period of several months. The tighter market conditions for townhomes may be attributed to their relative affordability when compared with a single detached home and the larger pool of buyers who can qualify for a mortgage with this type of dwelling. The Canadian Real Estate Association's MLS Home Price Index benchmark price for a townhome was almost half that of a single detached home in Vancouver in July.

Of the five CMAs that reported price decreases in July, Kitchener–Cambridge–Waterloo (-0.7 percent) recorded the largest—its first since July 2019. In July 2022, 1,174 new listings were added to the Kitchener–Waterloo market and 550 homes were sold, allowing active listings to replenish slightly. The MLS Home Price Index benchmark price for a single-family home in Kitchener–Waterloo decreased 5.7 percent from June as the demand for homes declined, due in part to rising mortgage rates and inflation.

Nationally, new home prices rose 7.5 percent year over year in July—decelerating for the fourth month in a row.

Prices for new homes increased the most in Calgary for the third month in a row and were up 14.8 percent in July. Although lower than this time in 2021, total residential sales in July were among the highest levels recorded in the Calgary market according to the Calgary Real Estate Board. In July, the change in active listings by price range varied significantly, with listings for homes under $500,000 falling 18 percent and listings for homes over $500,000 increasing by 20 percent on a year-over-year basis. Detached (-19 percent) and semi-detached (-17 percent) homes experienced a drop in sales activity, while sales activity for apartments (+49 percent) and row homes (+23 percent) increased during the same period. A lack of lower-priced detached and semi-detached homes drove buyers towards more affordable property types such as apartments and row homes in July.

New home prices also increased in Winnipeg, up 14.5 percent year over year, decelerating since peaking in March 2022. Winnipeg's sales-to-listings ratio for single-family homes was 72 percent in the first half of 2022, down from 83 percent during the same period in 2021, indicating a seller's market but also the potential of buyers having more selection with less competition on pricing.

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