Something quite peculiar happened last month in the Canadian housing market.
Home sales and new listings dropped at the same level amid evolving conditions being shaped by rising interest rates.
“One new piece of the puzzle was the decline in new listings in July,” Shaun Cathcart, senior economist with the Canadian Real Estate Association, said in a media release Monday (August 15).
In the release, CREA reported that sales and listings were down 5.3 percent month-over-month from June 2022.
“It was of the same magnitude as the decline in sales, and in many of the same parts of the country,” Cathcart noted.
So what can be made out of this?
“It’s only one month of data at this point but it suggests that some sellers are also playing the waiting game, and that is with an overall inventory of homes for sale that is still historically low,” Cathcart said.
CREA reported that with sales and new listings both down by 5.3 percent in July, the sales-to-new listings ratio remained unchanged at 51.7 percent.
This ratio is slightly below the long-term national average of 55.1 percent.
“There were 3.4 months of inventory on a national basis at the end of July 2022, still historically low but up quite a bit from the all-time low of 1.7 months set at the beginning of 2022,” the CREA reported.
On an annual basis, home sales last month declined 29.3 percent compared to July 2021.
Meanwhile, the benchmark price in July edged down 1.7 percent compared to June.
The national average sale price marked a five percent year-over-year decline in July.
In the same release, CREA chair Jill Oudil said that the “demand that was so strong just a few months ago has not gone away”.
However, Oudil also noted that “some buyers will likely stay on the sidelines until they see what happens with borrowing costs and prices”.