“Greater Vancouver and Greater Toronto fuelled the anticipated spring pick up in national home sales in April which masked softer activity in a number of smaller markets,” CREA President Beth Crosbie said in the organization’s official release. “Housing trends can be very different between local markets and even within them depending on the neighborhood and type of home.”
Ontario (-3.9 year-over-year percentage change), Quebec (-8.6), New Brunswick (-10), Nova Scotia
(-15.5), Prince Edward Island (-23.8), Newfoundland and Labrador (-17.3), Northwest Territories (-21.4) and Yukon (-18.2) all saw drops in sales activity.
Meanwhile, British Columbia (+12 per cent), Alberta (12.4) Saskatchewan (7.8) and Manitoba (0.4) saw varying gains in April.
Overall, April 2014 saw 47,944 house sales compared to 47,822 a year before.
“Sales activity for the month of April and for the year to date came in below the 10-year average in more than 60 per cent of all housing markets,” Gregory Klump, CREA’s Chief Economist said. “This shows that tightened mortgage rules and guidelines are working as intended to keep activity in check despite mortgage interest rates remaining extraordinarily low.”
As for price changes, Canada’s three hottest provinces for real estate saw year-over-year gains; British Columbia’s average price spiked 6.3 per cent, Alberta’s jumped 5.1 per cent and Ontario’s shot up 9.1 per cent.
Ontario’s price hikes were bolstered by impressive gains made in York Region where prices increased 9.5 per cent year-over-year, Sault Ste. Marie (12.7), Parry Sound (20.9), Niagara Fall (9.5), Oakville Milton (16.3), Hamilton (9.3), Durham Region (9.4), Guelph (9.1) and Cornwall (10.5).
CREA updates forecast
Sales bounce back in March: CREA
Overall, eight provinces saw year-over-year sales drops in April 2014 but big gains in two major softened the blow for the rest of the country.