49B Waterfront Place, Whitehorse, Yukon, Y1A 6V1 (867) 334-6801
Yukon News

House affordability in Yukon is a significant concern says the author of the 2019 Yukon Living Wage Report

The Yukon Anit-poverty coalition has calculated the 2019 living wage in Whitehorse at $19.07 per hour, and says that substantial action is necessary to improve affordability for low and modest income households. Whitehorse has one of the highest living wage rates in the country, which is calculated as the hourly rate of pay required to meet a household’s basic needs, after accounting for government transfers and deductions from income. Yukon’s hourly minimum wage is just $12.71, which is $6.36/hour less than the living wage.

The report recommends ten measures to improve affordability and reduce poverty for families in the Yukon:

  • focus infrastructure investments on building new social or community housing
  • develop a low fee transit pass for low and modest income earners Measures to improve affordability by increasing incomes for low and modest income households
  • introduce a Basic Annual Income pilot that reflects the cost of living in the territory
  • implement the schedule for increasing the minimum wage as recommended by the Employment Standards Board in 2018
  • index the Yukon Child Care Benefit to inflation or child care costs
  • target the Carbon Tax Rebate to low income earners
  • enhance the Yukon Child Benefit up to $1,200 annually per child Measures to enhance data quality to improve our understanding of poverty in the Yukon
  • update the Northern Market Basket Measure for Whitehorse
  • follow the NWT example of including communities outside of Whitehorse for the Northern Market Basket Measure
  • renew and implement a Poverty Reduction Strategy with legislated targets and timelines

But there is another issue at hand: currently there are not enough lots being released by the City of Whitehorse to keep up with demand, and on top of that, these lots are being sold at high prices as a result of inflated development costs. This creates a situation where the final product is simply not affordable for the everyday home buyer. Until the supply meets demand, prices will continue to rise.

Source: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/north/2019-living-wage-report-yukon-1.5341937

Here is the report if you’d like to take a look yourself: https://yapc.ca/assets/files/Living_Wage_Calculation__Considerations_-_2019.pdf

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Arts & Entertainments

Friday November 1st is once again Yukoner Appreciation Day presented by the Whitehorse Chamber of Commerce, and from 9am to 9pm Yukoners can take advantage of entertainment, food and beverage, and great sales put on by the 56 businesses participating.

 

3rd Ave at Main street will be closed for events and activities, and the City of Whitehorse has allowed free parking all day! The Passport contest is back, where you can pick up a blank passport at the main tent and then win prizes by getting stamps at participating businesses. Prizes include:

  • Air North, Yukon’s Airlines: Two return tickets – $1,000 value 
  • Coast Mountain Sports, Sports Experts and Hougen’s Sportslodge:$750 Gift Card
  • Murdoch’s: $500 Gift Card  
  • Save on Foods:$400 Gift Card  
  • Triniti Technology:Fitbit Versa Special Edition – $299 value
  • Plus many more hourly prizes throughout the day!

 

A shuttlebus is available every 30 minutes from noon to 9pm, stopping at Canadian Tire, North of Ordinary Experience Centre, 6th Ave and Main St, Riverside Grocery, and Front and Main St.

Participating businesses:

  1. Air North Yukon’s Airline 2. Alpine Health Supplies  3. Angellina’s Toy Boutique  4. Aroma Borealis   5. Arts Underground  6. Ashley HomeStore  7. Baked Café  8. Beautiful You Laser and Aesthetics  9. Beauty Bar Hair & Esthetics Lounge  10. Bella Luna (formerly Bella Home Décor)  11. Big Bear Donair  12. BMO Bank of Montreal  13. Cadence Cycle  14. Canadian Tire  15. Chieftain Energy LP  16. Coast Mountain Sports  17. Dreamz  18. Due North Maternity and Baby  19. Elements Esthetics Studio  20. Focus on Travel  21. Front Street Clothing  22. Gold Originals by Charlotte  23. Gold Pan Saloon  24. Head to Toe  25. Hougen’s Sportslodge  26. Icycle Sports  27. Lumel Studios  28. Mac’s Fireweed Books  29. Midnight Sun Emporium  30. Murdoch’s  31. North of Ordinary Experience Centre  32. Northwestel  33. Office Supply Centre  34. Plantation Flowers and Gifts  35. Rambles  36. RBC Royal Bank  37. Reflex Nutrition/Supplements  38. Riverside Grocery 39. Sagebrush Shoes  40. Scotiabank  42. Seasons  42. Shoppers Drug Mart  44. Signature Home – Erik’s AVU  45. Sportees  46. Sports Expert  47. The Bra Boutique  48. The Brick  49. The Feed Store/Pet Junction  50. Titan Gaming & Collectibles  51. Triniti Technology  52. Triple J’s Music, Tattoos and Piercing  53. TrueNorth Respiratory  54. Whitehorse Motors  55. Yukon Quest  56. Yukon Sourdough Rendezvous.

 

If you’re looking for sweet deals, can can dancers, and great times with your fellow Yukoners, come take a look on Friday!

 

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Arts & Entertainments

It was announced last week that the City of Whitehorse will spend up to $400,000 on public art in 2020, with artist’s submissions being accepted from now until February 28th of the upcoming year.

 

Under the City’s public art policy, 1% of the capital construction cost for any city-owned public building or facility must be allocated to public artwork. Most of the art will be displayed at the City’s new operations building – where funding for this project came from, but after a vote in 2016 relating to the display of public art, other locations around the city will also be chosen based on cost and value to the public. The City is hoping to receive submissions from artists in a variety of disciplines. Right now, you can pick up a visual arts guide at the Visitor Information Centre info desk and check out all the public art displays around the city. What would you like to see next year, and where would you like to see it?


Artists can register here: www.whitehorse.ca/procurement


Find public art right now at the following locations:

Law Centre art collection: “The Conversation”, a five-piece sculpture by Whitehorse artist Alyx Jones, stands outside the main entrance. You can view a large collection of additional art in public areas on all three levels of the building

Beringia Centre: Appreciate large murals by Halin de Repentigny, “Crow Makes the World” by Keith Wolfe Smarch, 

Yukon College: displays a large public art collection with works by many well-known Yukon artists. The Hilltop Bistro, a fine dining training facility, showcases a new artist each semester.

Visitor Information Centre: Works by Yukon artists are on display both inside and outside of the building.

Useful links:

https://www.yukon-news.com/news/calling-all-artists-whitehorse-prepares-to-spend-400000-on-public-art/

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/north/whitehorse-public-art-policy-review-vote-1.3713527?fbclid=IwAR02MFcwMwQZ01Li8xJuNScr5Bb1K0DgGrsQlc8WfYd6gp0GzZBRQthr9Ao

 

https://www.whitehorsestar.com/News/city-poised-to-make-major-request-for-art-1?fbclid=IwAR2dyF34V5EPLnj-muqKop9nSN-oK-cIO6t8OI9a4iZBHGLpdRhWSGUA7so

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Riverdale, Terence Tait Tips

When I first meet with someone looking to purchase a home, I always ask the same 3 questions:
1. What areas of town do you NOT want to live in,
2. What features are important in your home,
3. What is your budget. 

Whenever they tell me that they are not interested in the community of Riverdale, the reason is always the same – the morning rush hour. The TRAFFIC, oh goodness the TRAFFIC. Well, the City of Whitehorse seems to have heard the cries of the people, because starting on September 3rd, the City is running a 6 week pilot program for a dedicated bike lane on the North side of Lewes Blvd – the main artery into and out of Riverdale. Riverdale is the closest community to downtown, and is arguably the easiest community to commute from; even outside of the confines of a car. Besides personal vehicle and transit options, bikes and fat tire bikes can be ridden all year ‘round, and walking is a breeze with no hills to climb on your journey downtown. And with this new pilot project, there are several good options available to avoid the short morning rush coming out of Riverdale – at any time of year.

Results from this pilot project will determine if the city will install a permanent bus lane in the future to reduce congestion. So there you have it – perhaps the most common reason to avoid Riverdale soon won’t be a reason at all. 

 

https://www.yukon-news.com/news/bypassing-the-riverdale-rush/?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter&fbclid=IwAR0mMmhz-38Q_sb9Ubsf0ZYMvTpeVdcTDGNh7X1unoikbs1ED0RHz1US9jg

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CREA News

Ottawa, ON, June 14, 2019 – Statistics released today by the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) show national home sales climbed further in May 2019.

Highlights:

  • National home sales rose 1.9% month-over-month (m-o-m) in May.
  • Actual (not seasonally adjusted) activity was up 6.7% year-over-year (y-o-y).
  • The number of newly listed homes edged back by 1.2% m-o-m.
  • The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) fell 0.2% m-o-m in May, the fifth straight decline.
  • The actual (not seasonally adjusted) MLS® HPI stood 0.6% below May 2018.
  • The actual (not seasonally adjusted) national average sale price was up 1.8% y-o-y.

Home sales recorded via Canadian MLS® Systems rose by 1.9% in May 2019. Together with monthly gains in March and April, activity in May reached the highest level since January 2018. While sales stood 8.9% above the six-year low reached in February 2019, this latest increase has only just returned levels to their historical average. (Chart A)

While May sales were only up in half of all local markets, that list included almost all large markets, led by gains in both the Greater Vancouver (GVA) and Greater Toronto (GTA) areas.

Actual (not seasonally adjusted) sales activity was up 6.7% compared to May 2018, marking the largest y-o-y gain recorded since the summer of 2016. The increase returned sales in line with the 10-year average for the month of May. While about two-thirds of local markets posted y-o-y gains for the month, the national increase was dominated by improving sales trends in the GTA, which accounted for close to half of the overall increase.

“Home price trends and market balance continues to differ significantly among Canadian housing markets,” said Jason Stephen, CREA’s President. “All real estate is local. No matter where you are, a professional REALTOR® is your best source for information and guidance in negotiations to purchase or sell a home during these changing times,” said Stephen.

“The mortgage stress-test continues to present challenges for home buyers in housing markets where they have plenty of homes to choose from but are forced by the test to save up a bigger down payment,” said Gregory Klump, CREA’s Chief Economist. “Hopefully the stress-test can be fine tuned to enable home buyers to qualify for mortgage financing sooner without causing prices to shoot up.”

The number of newly listed homes edged back by 1.2% in May. With sales up and new listings down, the national sales-to-new listings ratio tightened to 57.4% in May compared to 55.7% in April. That said, the measure is still within close reach of its long-term average of 53.5%.

Considering the degree and duration to which market balance readings are above or below their long-term averages is the best way of gauging whether local housing market conditions favour buyers or sellers. Market balance measures that are within one standard deviation of their long-term average are generally consistent with balanced market conditions.

Based on a comparison of the sales-to-new listings ratio with the long-term average, almost three-quarters of all local markets were in balanced market territory in May 2019.

The number of months of inventory is another important measure of the balance between sales and the supply of listings. It represents how long it would take to liquidate current inventories at the current rate of sales activity.

There were 5.1 months of inventory on a national basis at the end of May 2019, down from 5.3 in April and 5.6 months back in February. Like the sales-to-new listings ratio, the number of months of inventory is within close reach its long-term average of 5.3 months.

Housing market balance varies significantly by region. The number of months of inventory has swollen far beyond long-term averages in Prairie provinces and Newfoundland & Labrador, giving homebuyers in those parts of the country ample choice. By contrast, the measure remains well below long-term averages for Ontario and Maritime provinces, resulting in increased competition among buyers for listings and fertile ground for price gains.

MLS® HPI data are now available on a seasonally adjusted basis in addition to the actual (not seasonally adjusted) figures. On a seasonally adjusted basis, the Aggregate Composite MLS® HPI edged down 0.2% in May 2019 compared to April and stood 1.4% below the peak reached in December 2018.

Seasonally adjusted MLS® HPI readings in May were up from the previous month in 12 of the 18 markets tracked by the index; however, home price declines in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia contributed to the monthly decline in the overall index. Markets where prices rose in May from the month before include Victoria (0.5%), Edmonton (0.2%), Saskatoon (0.4%), Ottawa (0.7%), Niagara (0.2%), Oakville (0.8%), Guelph (0.5%), Barrie (3.6%), Montreal (0.5%) and Greater Moncton (0.5%), with gains of 0.1% in the GTA and Regina. By contrast, readings were down from the month before in the GVA (-1.0%), Fraser Valley (-1.1%), the Okanagan Valley (-1.3%), Calgary (-0.1%) and Hamilton (-0.7%), while holding steady on Vancouver Island outside Victoria.

The actual (not seasonally adjusted) Aggregate Composite MLS® Home Price Index (MLS® HPI) edged down by -0.6% y-o-y in May 2019. While small, it was nonetheless the largest decline in almost a decade. (Chart B)

All benchmark property categories tracked by the index posted y-o-y declines in May 2019. Townhouse/row and apartment unit prices were little changed from last May, edging back by just 0.2%. By comparison, two-storey single-family home prices were down 0.5% y-o-y and one-storey single-family home prices fell 1.7% y-o-y.

Trends continue to vary widely among the 18 housing markets tracked by the MLS® HPI. Results remain

mixed in British Columbia, with prices down on a y-o-y basis in the GVA (-8.9%), the Fraser Valley (-5.9%) and the Okanagan Valley (-0.7%). Meanwhile, prices edged up 1% in Victoria and climbed 4.7% elsewhere on Vancouver Island.

Among Greater Golden Horseshoe housing markets tracked by the index, MLS® HPI benchmark home prices were up from year-ago levels in Guelph (+5.7%), the Niagara Region (+5.4%), Hamilton-Burlington (+3.4%), Oakville-Milton (+3.4%) and the GTA (+3.1%). By contrast, home prices in Barrie and District held below year-ago levels (-6.1%).

Across the Prairies, supply remains historically elevated relative to sales and home prices remain below year-ago levels. Benchmark prices were down by 4.3% in Calgary, 3.6% in Edmonton, 3.9% in Regina and 1.3% in Saskatoon. The home pricing environment will likely remain weak in these cities until demand and supply return to better balance.

Home prices rose 8% y-o-y in Ottawa (led by a 12.2% increase in townhouse/row unit prices), 6.3% in Greater Montreal (led by a 7.6% increase in apartment unit prices), and 2% in Greater Moncton (led by a 15.9% increase in apartment unit prices). (Table 1)

The MLS® HPI provides the best way to gauge price trends, as averages are strongly distorted by changes in the mix of sales activity from one month to the next.

The actual (not seasonally adjusted) national average price for homes sold in May 2019 was close to $508,000, up 1.8% from the same month in 2018.

The national average price is heavily skewed by sales in the GVA and GTA, two of Canada’s most active and expensive housing markets. Excluding these two markets from calculations cuts almost $111,000 from the national average price, trimming it to just under $397,000.

– 30 –

 

PLEASE NOTE: The information contained in this news release combines both major market and national sales information from MLS® Systems from the previous month. 

CREA cautions that average price information can be useful in establishing trends over time, but does not indicate actual prices in centres comprised of widely divergent neighbourhoods or account for price differential between geographic areas. Statistical information contained in this report includes all housing types. 

MLS® Systems are co-operative marketing systems used only by Canada’s real estate Boards to ensure maximum exposure of properties listed for sale. 

The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) is one of Canada’s largest single-industry trade associations, representing more than 130,000 REALTORS® working through some 90 real estate Boards and Associations.

Further information can be found at http://crea.ca/statistics.

For more information, please contact:

Pierre Leduc, Media Relations
The Canadian Real Estate Association
Tel.: 613-237-7111 or 613-884-1460
E-mail: pleduc@crea.ca

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CREA News

CREA Updates Resale Housing Market Forecast

Ottawa, ON, June 14, 2019 – The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) has updated its forecast for home sales activity via the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) Systems of Canadian real estate boards and associations in 2019 and 2020.

Many of the economic fundamentals that support housing activity remain strong outside of the Prairies as well as Newfoundland and Labrador. Following the release of CREA’s previous forecast in March, population and employment growth has remained strong and the unemployment rate has fallen further. Additionally, the Bank of Canada is widely expected to not raise interest rates over the rest of the year.

Budget 2019 also raised the maximum individual withdrawal limit under the Home Buyers’ Plan (HBP) from $25,000 to $35,000 and introduced the First Time Homebuyer Incentive, a shared equity program whereby the federal government finances a portion of a home purchase in exchange for an equity share in the home’s value. The increased HBP withdrawal limit took effect in late March, while the First Time Homebuyer Incentive is slated to launch in September.

These factors are expected to support to the beginnings of a recovery in home sales over the second half of 2019 after starting this year on a weak footing. Nonetheless, the overall level of sales is expected to remain well below where it was in recent years, as successive policy changes  – most notably the implementation of the B-20 stress test – continue to limit access to mortgage financing and dampen housing market sentiment. This is particularly the case in pricier areas where younger buyers have had little choice but to borrow more to get into the market.

National home sales are now projected to edge up 1.2% to 463,000 units in 2019. CREA’s previous forecast estimated a decline of 1.6% this year. This would still leave annual sales below the 10-year average and a far cry from the annual record set in 2016, when almost 540,000 homes traded hands. On a per capita basis, the forecast for 2019 would remain effectively tied with 2018 for the weakest year since 2001.

British Columbia is the only province expected to weigh materially on national figures in 2019, with a decline of 13.3% compared to 2018, marking a small upward revision from the previously forecast decline of 14.9%. Other revisions from the previous forecast for sales in 2019 were also upward, with Alberta moving from a 5.6% decline to a 0.9% decline, and Ontario’s gain upgraded from 0.9% previously to 3.9%.

Quebec and New Brunswick are still forecast to see the biggest sales gains in percentage terms in 2019 (+7.7% and +10.6%, respectively), with both provinces on track to set new annual records. Sales in Saskatchewan and Newfoundland and Labrador are forecast to improve by almost 5%, albeit from the lowest levels in more than a decade recorded last year. Meanwhile, activity in Manitoba and Nova Scotia is forecast to rise between 3.5% and 4.5% to near-record annual levels.

The national average price is still projected to stabilize (-0.6%) at around $485,000 in 2019 following the 4.1% drop recorded in 2018, which was the largest in almost 25 years. This reflects a stark and growing split between Eastern and Western regions. In line with the balance between supply and demand across the country, average prices are forecast to fall in 2019 in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and rise in Ontario, Quebec and the Maritimes. The average price is also expected to fall for the fifth consecutive year in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Sales are forecast to continue to improve in 2020. Absent the weak start experienced in 2019, national home sales are forecast to rise 4.4% to 483,200 units as interest rates remain near current levels and potential home buyers continue to adjust and adapt to the assortment of recent policy changes. Almost all provinces are forecast to see more sales in 2020 compared to 2019, with gains ranging from 1% to 6%.

That said, the big picture is that sales are expected to remain historically weak in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Newfoundland and Labrador, historically strong in Quebec, New Brunswick, Manitoba and Nova Scotia, and come in close to the 10-year average in Ontario.

The national average price is forecast to edge up by 0.9% to around $490,000 in 2020. Average price trends across Canada in 2020 are generally expected to be more moderate versions of those in 2019, with small declines in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Newfoundland and Labrador, and modest gains in all provinces from Manitoba through the Maritimes.

– 30 –

About The Canadian Real Estate Association
The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) is one of Canada’s largest single-industry trade associations. CREA works on behalf of more than 130,000 REALTORS® who contribute to the economic and social well-being of communities across Canada. Together they advocate for property owners, buyers and sellers.

For more information, please contact:
Pierre Leduc, Media Relations
The Canadian Real Estate Association
Tel.: 613-237-7111 or 613-884-1460
E-mail: pleduc@crea.ca­

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Articles
Selling real estate can be stressful, but it doesn’t always need to be. Of course your real estate agents Whitehorse will take care of most things, but there are actually some things you can do as well. Here are 5 tips on how to sell real estate in Whitehorse faster.

Snacks during the open house

As open house is the best way for potential buyers to view your home, and you’ll want to make sure you keep them there as long as possible. Keep them comfortable and satisfied by serving some snacks and bottles of water.

Word of Mouth

Of course your real estate agents Whitehorse will have the best network to get your listing out there, but that doesn’t mean you have to keep it quiet. Spread the word to family, friends, and even on your social media to get your home maximum exposure.

Curb Appeal

The exterior of your home is the first thing people see when they pull up to your home, so you’ll want it looking its best. You can achieve this by cleaning all of the windows inside and out, removing any debris from the yard, and mowing the lawn. This will help give your home a fresh look.

Update the little things

When selling real estate in Whitehorse some people often overlook the small things that could actually help. A few of these are the address numbers on your house, and the mailbox. Typically located near each other, these 2 little things can really complement each other if done properly. Choose new numbers with a nice appealing font, and then upgrade the mailbox to match the color and metal of the numbers.

Pressure Washing

The winter months in Whitehorse can have an effect on your home and how much dirt is grime it accumulates. Before listing your home on the whitehorse real estate mls market, buy or rent a pressure washer and give the exterior of your home a thorough cleaning. This will really help to make it stand out.


This is a just a small list of things you can do as the owner to try and sell your home For more tips and tricks contact the expert real estate agents Whitehorse, Terence Tait today!
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CREA News

Ottawa, ON, May 15, 2019 – Statistics released today by the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) show national home sales climbed in April 2019.

Highlights:

  • National home sales improved by 3.6% month-over-month (m-o-m) in April.
  • Actual (not seasonally adjusted) activity was up 4.2% year-over-year (y-o-y).
  • The number of newly listed homes climbed 2.7% m-o-m.
  • The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) eased by 0.3% y-o-y in April.
  • The national average sale price edged up 0.3% y-o-y.

Home sales recorded via Canadian MLS® Systems rose by 3.6% m-o-m in April 2019. After having dropped in February to the lowest level since 2012, the rebound in sales over the past two months still leaves activity slightly below readings posted over most of the second half of 2018. (Chart A)

April sales were up in about 60% of all local markets, with the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) accounting for over half of the national gain.

Actual (not seasonally adjusted) sales activity was up 4.2% y-o-y in April (albeit from a seven-year low for the month in 2018), the first y-o-y gain since December 2017 and the largest in more than two years. The increase reflects gains in the GTA and Montreal that outweighed declines in the B.C. Lower Mainland.

“Housing market trends are improving in some places and not so much in others,” said Jason Stephen, CREA’s President. “All real estate is local. No matter where you are, a professional REALTOR® is your best source for information and guidance in negotiations to purchase or sell a home during these changing times,” said Stephen.

“Sales activity is stabilizing among Canada’s five most active urban housing markets,” said Gregory Klump, CREA’s Chief Economist. “That list no longer includes Greater Vancouver, which fell out of the top-five list for the first time since the recession and is well into buyers’ market territory. Sales there are still trending lower as buyers adjust to a cocktail of housing affordability challenges, reduced access to financing due to the mortgage stress-test and housing policy changes implemented by British Columbia’s provincial government,” said Klump.

The number of newly listed homes rose 2.7% in April, building on March’s 3.4% increase. New supply rose in about 60% of all local markets, led by the GTA and Ottawa.

With sales up by more than new listings in April, the national sales-to-new listings ratio tightened marginally to 54.8% from 54.3% in March. This measure of market balance has remained close to its long-term average of 53.5% since early 2018.

Considering the degree and duration to which market balance readings are above or below their long-term averages is the best way of gauging whether local housing market conditions favour buyers or sellers. Market balance measures that are within one standard deviation of their long-term average are generally consistent with balanced market conditions.

Based on a comparison of the sales-to-new listings ratio with the long-term average, about three-quarters of all local markets were in balanced market territory in April 2019.

The number of months of inventory is another important measure of the balance between sales and the supply of listings. It represents how long it would take to liquidate current inventories at the current rate of sales activity.

There were 5.3 months of inventory on a national basis at the end of April 2019, down from 5.6 and 5.5 months in February and March respectively and in line with the long-term average for this measure.

Housing market balance varies significantly by region. The number of months of inventory has swollen far beyond long-term averages in Prairie provinces and Newfoundland & Labrador, giving homebuyers there ample choice. By contrast, the measure remains well below long-term averages in Ontario and Maritime provinces, resulting in increased competition among buyers for listings and fertile ground for price gains.

The Aggregate Composite MLS® Home Price Index (MLS® HPI) appears to be stabilizing, having edged lower by 0.3% y-o-y in April 2019. (Chart B)

Among benchmark property categories tracked by the index, apartment units were again the only one to post a y-o-y price gain in April 2019 (0.5%), while two-storey single-family home and townhouse/row unit prices were little changed from April 2018 (-0.3% and -0.2%, respectively). By comparison, one-storey single-family home prices were down by -1.4% y-o-y.

Trends continue to vary widely among the 18 housing markets tracked by the MLS® HPI. Results remain mixed in British Columbia, with prices down on a y-o-y basis in Greater Vancouver (GVA; -8.5%) and the Fraser Valley (-4.6%), up slightly in the Okanagan Valley (1%) and Victoria (0.7%), while climbing 6.2% elsewhere on Vancouver Island.

Among Greater Golden Horseshoe housing markets tracked by the index, MLS® HPI benchmark home prices were up from year-ago levels in the Niagara Region (6.2%), Guelph (5.1%), Hamilton-Burlington (4.6%) the GTA (3.2%) and Oakville-Milton (2.5%). By contrast, home prices in Barrie and District held below year-ago levels (-5.3%).

Across the Prairies, supply remains historically elevated relative to sales and home prices remain below year-ago levels. Benchmark prices were down by 4.6% in Calgary, 4% in Edmonton, 4.3% in Regina and 1.7% in Saskatoon. The home pricing environment will likely remain weak in these cities until demand and supply return to better balance.

Home prices rose 7.8% y-o-y in Ottawa (led by an 11% increase in townhouse/row unit prices), 6.3% in Greater Montreal (led by a 7.8% increase in apartment unit prices), and 1.8% in Greater Moncton (led by an 11.5% increase in apartment unit prices). (Table 1)

The MLS® HPI provides the best way to gauge price trends, as averages are strongly distorted by changes in the mix of sales activity from one month to the next.

The actual (not seasonally adjusted) national average price for homes sold in April 2019 was close to $495,000, up 0.3% from the same month in 2018.

The national average price is heavily skewed by sales in the GVA and GTA, two of Canada’s most expensive housing markets. Excluding these two

markets from calculations cuts almost $104,000 from the national average price, trimming it to just over $391,000.

 

– 30 –

PLEASE NOTE: The information contained in this news release combines both major market and national sales information from MLS® Systems from the previous month.

CREA cautions that average price information can be useful in establishing trends over time, but does not indicate actual prices in centres comprised of widely divergent neighbourhoods or account for price differential between geographic areas. Statistical information contained in this report includes all housing types.

MLS® Systems are co-operative marketing systems used only by Canada’s real estate Boards to ensure maximum exposure of properties listed for sale.

The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) is one of Canada’s largest single-industry trade associations, representing more than 130,000 REALTORS® working through 90 real estate boards and associations.

Further information can be found at http://crea.ca/statistics. 

For more information, please contact:
Pierre Leduc, Media Relations
The Canadian Real Estate Association
Tel.: 613-237-7111 or 613-884-1460
E-mail: pleduc@crea.ca

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CREA News

Ottawa, ON, April 15, 2019 – Statistics released today by the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) show national home sales edged higher in March 2019 after having declined sharply the previous month.

Highlights:

  • National home sales edged up 0.9% month-over-month (m-o-m) in March.
  • Actual (not seasonally adjusted) activity was down 4.6% year-over-year (y-o-y).
  • The number of newly listed homes rose 2.1% m-o-m.
  • The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) eased by 0.5% y-o-y in March.
  • The national average sale price fell 1.8% y-o-y.

Home sales via Canadian MLS® Systems edged up 0.9% in March 2019 following a sharp drop in February, leaving activity near some of the lowest levels recorded in the last six years. (Chart A)

There was an even split between the number of markets where sales rose from the previous month and those where they waned. Among Canada’s larger cities, activity improved in Victoria, the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), Oakville-Milton and Ottawa, whereas it declined in Greater Vancouver, Edmonton, Regina, Saskatoon, London and St. Thomas, Sudbury and Quebec City.

Actual (not seasonally adjusted) sales activity fell 4.6% y-o-y to the weakest level for the month since 2013. It was also almost 12% below the 10-year average for March. That said, in British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan, sales were more than 20% below their 10-year average for the month. By contrast, activity is running well above-average in Quebec and New Brunswick.

“It will be some time before policy measures announced in the recent Federal Budget designed to help first-time homebuyers take effect,” said Jason Stephen, CREA’s President. “In the meantime, many prospective homebuyers remain sidelined by the mortgage stress-test to varying degrees depending on where they are looking to buy. All real estate is local, and REALTORS® remain your best source for information about sales and listings where you live or might like to in the future,” added Stephen.

“March results suggest local market trends are largely in a holding pattern,” said Gregory Klump, CREA’s Chief Economist. “While the mortgage stress test has made access to home financing more challenging, the good news is that continuing job growth remains supportive for housing demand and should eventually translate into stronger home sales activity pending a reduction in household indebtedness,” he added.

The number of newly listed homes rose 2.1% in March. New supply rose in about two-thirds of all local markets, led by Winnipeg, Regina, Victoria and elsewhere on Vancouver Island. By contrast, new listings declined in the GTA, Ottawa and Halifax-Dartmouth.

With new listings having improved more than sales, the national sales-to-new listings ratio eased to 54.2% from 54.9% in February. This measure of market balance has largely remained close to its long-term average of 53.5% since early 2018.

Considering the degree and duration to which market balance readings are above or below their long-term averages is the best way of gauging whether local housing market conditions favour buyers or sellers. Market balance measures that are within one standard deviation of their long-term average are generally consistent with balanced market conditions.

Based on a comparison of the sales-to-new listings ratio with the long-term average, two-thirds of all local markets were in balanced market territory in March 2019.

The number of months of inventory is another important measure of the balance between sales and the supply of listings. It represents how long it would take to liquidate current inventories at the current rate of sales activity.

There were 5.6 months of inventory on a national basis at the end of March 2019, in line with the February reading and one of the highest levels for the measure in the last three-and-a-half-years. Still, it is only slightly above its long-term average of 5.3 months.

Housing market balance varies significantly by region. The number of months of inventory has swollen far above its long-term average in Prairie provinces and Newfoundland & Labrador; as a result, homebuyers there have an ample choice of listings available for purchase. By contrast, the measure remains well below its long-term average in Ontario and the Maritime provinces.

The Aggregate Composite MLS® Home Price Index (MLS® HPI) declined by 0.5% y-o-y in March 2019. It last posted a y-o-y decline of similar magnitude in September 2009. (Chart B)

Among benchmark property categories tracked by the index, apartment units were the only one to post a y-o-y price gain in March 2019 (+1.1%), while townhouse/row unit prices were little changed from March 2018 (-0.2%). By comparison, one and two-storey single-family home prices were down by 1.8% and 0.8% y-o-y respectively.

As of this release, the MLS® HPI now includes home sales via Okanagan-Mainline Real Estate Board’s MLS® System, which covers communities in the Okanagan Valley from Revelstoke to the Peachland region.

Trends continue to vary widely among the 18 housing markets tracked by the MLS® HPI. Results remain mixed in British Columbia, with prices down on a y-o-y basis in Greater Vancouver (-7.7%) and the Fraser Valley (-3.9%). Prices also dipped slightly below year-ago levels in the Okanagan Valley (-0.8%). By contrast, prices rose by 1% in Victoria and by 6.4% elsewhere on Vancouver Island.

Among Greater Golden Horseshoe housing markets tracked by the index, MLS® HPI benchmark home prices were up from year-ago levels in Guelph (+6.6%), the Niagara Region (+6.0%), Hamilton-Burlington (+3.7%) the GTA (+2.6%) and Oakville-Milton (+2.3%). By contrast, home prices in Barrie and District held below year-ago levels (-6.1%).

Across the Prairies, supply remains historically elevated relative to sales and home prices remain below year-ago levels. Benchmark prices were down by 4.9% in Calgary, 4.4% in Edmonton, 4.6% in Regina and 2.7% in Saskatoon. The home pricing environment will likely remain weak in these cities until demand and supply become more balanced.

Home prices rose 7.6% y-o-y in Ottawa (led by a 10.4% increase in townhouse/row unit prices), 6.3% in Greater Montreal (led by an 8.1% increase in apartment unit prices) and 2.1% in Greater Moncton (led by a 12.9% increase in apartment unit prices). (Table 1)

The MLS® HPI provides the best way to gauge price trends, as averages are strongly distorted by changes in the mix of sales activity from one month to the next.

The actual (not seasonally adjusted) national average price for homes sold in March 2019 was $481,745, down 1.8% from the same month in 2018.

The national average price is heavily skewed by sales in Greater Vancouver and the GTA, two of Canada’s most active and expensive markets. Excluding these two markets from calculations cuts close to $100,000 from the national average price, trimming it to just under $383,000.

– 30 –

 

PLEASE NOTE: The information contained in this news release combines both major market and national sales information from MLS® Systems from the previous month. 

CREA cautions that average price information can be useful in establishing trends over time, but does not indicate actual prices in centres comprised of widely divergent neighbourhoods or account for price differential between geographic areas. Statistical information contained in this report includes all housing types. 

MLS® Systems are co-operative marketing systems used only by Canada’s real estate Boards to ensure maximum exposure of properties listed for sale. 

The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) is one of Canada’s largest single-industry trade associations, representing more than 125,000 REALTORS® working through some 90 real estate Boards and Associations.

Further information can be found at http://crea.ca/statistics.

For more information, please contact:

Pierre Leduc, Media Relations
The Canadian Real Estate Association
Tel.: 613-237-7111 or 613-884-1460
E-mail: pleduc@crea.ca

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