The Canadian Real Estate Board releases latest round of housing market stats.
National home sales dropped 6.2% month-over-month from April to May, according to CREA. That represents the largest sales decline since August 2012.
The most drastic sales decline occurred in the Greater Toronto Area, where the market experienced a 25.3% month-over-month drop.
Activity was also down “significantly” in surrounding areas, including; Oakville, Hamilton, and Barrie.
“Recent changes to housing policy in Ontario have quickly caused sales and listings to become more balanced in the GTA,” said CREA President Andrew Peck. “Meanwhile, the balance between supply and demand in Vancouver is tightening up, while many places elsewhere in Canada remain amply supplied.”
CREA argues the sales declines in the Greater Golden Horseshoe Area are a sign of dwindling speculative home purchases.
“This is the first full month of results since changes to Ontario housing policy made in late April. They provide clear evidence that the changes have resulted in more balanced housing markets throughout the Greater Golden Horseshoe region,” said Gregory Klump, CREA’s Chief Economist. “For housing markets in the region, May sales activity was down most in the GTA and Oakville. This suggests the changes have squelched speculative home purchases.”
The national average home price increased 4.3% year-over-year last month and newly listed homes increased 0.3% month-over-month.
“With sales down considerably in May, the national sales-to-new listings ratio moved out of sellers’ territory and back into balanced market territory for the first time since late 2015,” CREA said in its release. “The ratio stood at 56.3% in May 2017, down from 60.2% in April and the high-60% range over the first three months of this year.”