Real estate sales hit a record high in August

9 October 2017

The Montreal real estate market remained very active last month, as the number of transactions and the prices of residences sold continued to grow at record highs for the month of August.

A surge in condominium sales fueled the growth of eight per cent of residential sales in the Montreal area, the Greater Montreal Real Estate Board said on Thursday.

Some 2899 homes changed hands, and condominium transactions climbed 19 percent. Sales of single-family homes, which accounted for more than half of all transactions, increased by four per cent.

Sales of homes on the Island of Montréal rose 12 per cent, the largest growth in the region.

According to Paul Cardinal of the Quebec Federation of Real Estate Boards, sustained real estate gains are attributable to strong job creation, consumer confidence and immigration.

In addition, some buyers made their decision more quickly in the hope of avoiding an interest rate hike like the one announced Wednesday by the Bank of Canada.

Sales increased for each of the last 30 months, with the exception of July 2016, during which they remained unchanged. The last monthly decline in sales was in February 2015.

This is quite different from the situation in Toronto where sales of single, semi-detached, condominium and townhouses decreased from 25.7 per cent to 41.6 per cent in August.

The average selling price in the Greater Toronto Area declined for a fourth consecutive month, dropping 1.8 per cent to $ 732,292.

In Greater Vancouver, home sales advanced 22.3 per cent, while the composite price index gained 9.4 per cent to $ 1,029,700.

The Toronto and Vancouver regions have introduced 15 per cent taxes for foreign buyers, hoping to limit rising house prices.

In comparison, housing in the Montréal region represents a certain boon, as the average selling price in the Québec metropolitan area rose by 4.1 per cent in August to $ 374,333.

One of the potential areas of weakness in Greater Montréal is that of homes over $ 500,000. Their sales advanced 14 percent in August, down from 57 percent in July.

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