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Canadian home sales down in November, average price up from year ago

The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) has reported a modest decline in home sales for the month of November, accompanied by a noteworthy uptick in the average selling price compared to the same period last year.

According to CREA, November saw a 0.9 per cent drop in home sales compared to the corresponding month in 2022. On a seasonally adjusted basis, the decline extended to 0.9 per cent when compared with October of the same year. These figures, while indicative of a slight cooling in the housing market, come amidst various factors influencing the real estate landscape across the country.

November also witnessed a 1.8 per cent decrease in newly listed homes on a month-over-month basis. This reduction in new listings, coupled with a marginal decrease in sales, caused the national sales-to-new listings ratio to inch up to 49.8 per cent, a slight increase from October's 49.4 per cent. This marks the first rise in this crucial ratio since April, suggesting a potential shift in the supply-demand dynamics in the Canadian housing market.

The actual national average price of a home sold in November demonstrated resilience, recording a notable 2 per cent increase from the same month in 2022. The average price reached $646,134, painting a picture of continued strength in the real estate sector despite the dip in sales.

Economists and industry experts point to a combination of factors contributing to this nuanced scenario. The ongoing effects of the global pandemic, supply chain disruptions, and changes in buyer preferences are among the key elements shaping the Canadian housing market.

While the dip in sales might be indicative of a slowdown in activity, the simultaneous increase in the average home price suggests that demand remains robust. Limited housing inventory, particularly in certain high-demand urban markets, continues to be a driving force behind the persistent upward pressure on prices. The decline in newly listed homes further exacerbates this supply-demand imbalance, amplifying the competition among potential homebuyers.

However, industry analysts caution against drawing hasty conclusions from a single month's data. The real estate market is subject to various external factors and can exhibit short-term fluctuations. The rise in the sales-to-new listings ratio could signal a potential stabilization, but its sustainability remains to be seen in the coming months.

As the country grapples with evolving economic conditions, including fluctuations in interest rates and potential policy changes, the real estate sector is likely to remain in a state of flux. Homebuyers and sellers are advised to stay informed, remain flexible, and work closely with real estate professionals to navigate the ever-changing landscape of the Canadian housing market.

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