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Home sales, prices rise in Montreal amid optimism around interest rates



Montreal's real estate market has experienced a significant boost, with home sales surging by an impressive 18 percent in January compared to the same month last year, according to data from the Quebec Professional Association of Real Estate Brokers.


In January 2024, the Montreal region witnessed a total of 2,077 home sales, marking a noticeable increase from the 1,766 transactions recorded in January 2023. The rise in sales is indicative of a growing optimism among buyers, fueled by improved expectations surrounding interest rates.


The median price for single-family homes in January reached $535,000, reflecting a seven percent uptick from the previous year's $500,000. Similarly, condominium prices saw a five percent increase, reaching a median price of $390,000. Plexes, or multi-unit properties, experienced a seven percent rise in median price, reaching $722,500.


Active listings for January surged by 16 percent compared to the same month a year earlier, totaling 16,838. At the same time, new listings saw a substantial 22 percent increase, reaching a total of 5,410. This surge in listings indicates a growing interest in the market, with more properties becoming available for potential buyers.


Charles Brant, the market analysis director at QPAREB, attributes the spike in sales to the positive outlook on interest rates. Prospective buyers seem to be responding to the expectation of a decrease in interest rates throughout the year, as inflation is anticipated to cool.


Despite the optimistic atmosphere, Brant cautions that the market still faces several challenges. A notable concern is the sharp slowdown in economic activity, which has introduced uncertainties for those considering entering the housing market. This cautionary note emphasizes the need for potential homebuyers to carefully weigh their decisions amidst the ongoing economic shifts.


The real estate landscape in Montreal is dynamic, with the recent surge in home sales and prices reflecting a complex interplay of factors. While the positive outlook on interest rates has undoubtedly contributed to the market's buoyancy, the caution expressed by market analysts underscores the importance of a nuanced approach for both buyers and sellers. As the year progresses, observers will keenly watch how these dynamics evolve and impact Montreal's real estate market.


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