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Canadian home sales edge up from September to October

Ottawa, ON, November 15, 2022 – Statistics released today by the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) show national home sales edged a little higher in October 2022.

•    National home sales were up 1.3% on a month-over-month basis in October.
•    Actual (not seasonally adjusted) monthly activity came in 36% below October 2021.
•    The number of newly listed properties edged up 2.2% month-over-month.
•    The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) declined by 1.2% month-over-month and was down 0.8% year-over-year.
•  The actual (not seasonally adjusted) national average sale price posted a 9.9% year-over-year decline in October.

Home sales recorded over Canadian MLS® Systems fell by 3.9% between August and September 2022. From May through August, month-over-month declines have been progressively smaller. The September result marked a slight increase in the current sales slowdown that began with the Bank of Canada’s first rate hike back in March. (Chart A)

While about 60% of all local markets saw sales fall from August to September, the national number was pulled lower by the fact markets with declines included Greater Vancouver, Calgary, the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) and Montreal.

The actual (not seasonally adjusted) number of transactions in September 2022 came in 32.2% below that same month last year and stood about 12% below the pre-pandemic 10-year average for that month.

“In October, sales across the country increased for the first time since before interest rates started to rise last winter,” said Jill Oudil, Chair of CREA. “Of course, we’ve known the demand was there, so it’s just been a matter of some playing the waiting game as borrowing costs and prices have adjusted. Moving into 2023, sellers and buyers will likely continue coming off the sidelines, but it’s a very different market compared to just one year ago. As always, for information and guidance about how to navigate the current marketplace, your best bet is to contact your local REALTOR®,” continued Oudil.

“October provided another month’s worth of data suggesting the slow down in Canadian housing markets is winding up,” said Shaun Cathcart, CREA’s Senior Economist. “Sales actually popped up from September to October, and the decline in prices on a month-to-month basis got smaller for the fourth month in a row."

The number of newly listed homes was up 2.2% on a month-over-month basis in October, with gains in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) and the B.C. Lower Mainland offsetting declines in Montreal and Halifax-Dartmouth.

With sales up by a little less than new listings in October, the sales-to-new listings ratio eased back to 51.6% compared to 52% in September. The long-term average for this measure is 55.1%.

There were 3.8 months of inventory on a national basis at the end of October 2022, up slightly from 3.7 months at the end of September. While the number of months of inventory is still well below the long-term average of about five months, it is also up quite a bit from the all-time low of 1.7 months set at the beginning of 2022.

The Aggregate Composite MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) edged down 1.2% on a month-over-month basis in October 2022, the smallest decline since June.

The non-seasonally adjusted Aggregate Composite MLS® HPI edged down 0.8% on a year-over-year basis in October. (Chart B)

The actual (not seasonally adjusted) national average home price was $644,643 in October 2022, down 9.9% from the same month last year. The national average price is heavily influenced by sales in Greater Vancouver and the GTA, two of Canada’s most active and expensive housing markets.

Excluding these two markets from the calculation cuts almost $125,000 from the national average price.


Central Okanagan Real Estate
October 2022

Single Family
Sales 126
New Listings 368
Current Inventory 1009
Sell/Inv. Ratio 12.49%
Days to Sell 46
Average Price $1,091,603
Median Price $922,500

Sales 45
New Listings 126
Current Inventory 319
Sell/Inv. Ratio 14.11%
Days to Sell 53
Average Price $671,290
Median Price $666,150

Sales 7
New Listings 27
Current Inventory 173
Sell/Inv. Ratio 4.05%
Days to Sell 62
Average Price $877,000
Median Price $379,000

Sales 94
New Listings 167
Current Inventory 460
Sell/Inv. Ratio 20.43%
Days to Sell 54
Average Price $525,020
Median Price $470,000

Ratio of Sales vs Inventory 14.25%

New B.C. housing laws will lift rental restrictions in strata

The legislation on housing targets, Housing Supply Act, is likely to face backlash from some B.C. mayors who have previously warned that running roughshod over municipal land use laws could spark a legal challenge.

On his first day in the Legislature, is B.C. Premier David Eby announcing two pieces of legislation that would remove rental and age restrictions in strata buildings and set affordable housing targets for municipalities, with the promise to overrule municipalities if they're failing to hit the benchmarks. PHOTO BY DARREN STONE /Times Colonist files

On his first day in the Legislature as premier, David Eby announced two pieces of legislation that would remove rental and age restrictions in strata buildings and set affordable housing targets for municipalities, with the promise to overrule those that fail to hit the benchmarks.

The legislation on housing targets is likely to face backlash from some B.C. mayors who have previously warned that running roughshod over municipal land-use laws could spark a legal challenge.

The housing announcement just three days after Eby was sworn in as B.C.’s 37th premier is an attempt by the former attorney general and housing minister to make good on his promise to move quickly on the housing reforms that were a key plank of his leadership campaign.

Amendments to the Strata Property Act, if passed, would remove all rental restrictions from all B.C. strata buildings, which Eby estimated would turn thousands of empty units into homes for renters.

It would also make it illegal for strata to have 19-plus age restrictions that force out young families when they have a child. “Seniors only” strata will still be allowed.

“It is simply unacceptable that a British Columbian who is searching Craigslist for a place to rent can’t find a home and somebody who owns a condo is not permitted to rent that home to that individual,” Eby said at a press conference in the rotunda of the legislature.

“It is equally unacceptable that a young couple that lives in a condo and decides to start a family has to start searching for a new home because that strata has a rule that everybody who lives in the unit has to be 19 years of age or older.”

Eby said there are approximately 2,900 strata units that are sitting empty because of rental restrictions, data based on owners who applied for exemptions to the speculation and vacancy tax.

The new law will apply to condos built before 2010. Buildings constructed in 2010 onwards are subject to new rules that prevent newer buildings from capping the number of rental units.

The government is hoping to pass the Strata Property Act before the end of the fall session on Thursday and will take effect immediately.

The second piece of legislation is the Housing Supply Act which aims to increase the supply of housing in B.C. by establishing targets for municipalities where affordable housing is in short supply.

The targets will be set based on the housing needs reports that local governments are already required to create every five years.

The government said the targets will initially be applied to eight to 10 municipalities, determined by community plans and growth projections based on census data. The premier’s office said work is already underway to identify those municipalities.

If the province determines a municipality is not taking actions to meet the targets, it can step in to force compliance through three options:
1.    An adviser appointed by the housing minister can review municipal processes to determine what’s stalling housing starts.
2.    The housing minister can issue a directive for the municipality to take specific action.
3.    As a last resort, the province can issue an order-in-council allowing it to override the municipality to force through new housing projects.

“My hope is we never have to use it,” Eby said of the provincial override powers. “(The Act) does have teeth and it needs to have teeth to make sure we’re meeting those goals.”

The legislation aims to speed up municipal zoning approval processes, which Eby says are outdated and slow down the construction of new buildings and redevelopments. If passed in the house this week, the legislation will take effect in mid-2023.

Eby, the MLA for Vancouver-Point Grey, has been candid in his frustration with municipal governments that block the rezoning of affordable housing developments because of minor issues such as parking and he’s called out “NIMBYism” by neighbourhood groups that oppose density.

However, several B.C. mayors told Postmedia News in September, when Eby released his housing platform, that the plan to override municipalities will face significant backlash and they would rather see the province use the “carrot approach” of offering more financial support and incentives instead of wielding a stick.

Victoria Mayor Marianne Alto applauded the legislation and said other municipalities should, too.

She said municipalities must accelerate the building of affordable housing and they can’t do it alone.

“We need the province to support to push us and push all local governments to (build) … more affordable homes in every neighbourhood in every municipality across B.C,” she said.

B.C. Green party leader Sonia Furstenau said she was disappointed Eby didn’t make announcements about increasing the supply of below-market housing for low-income renters. She also said the legislation does not include protection against Real Estate Investment Trusts which allow investment groups to redevelop strata housing to increase shareholder profits.

“We need to ensure that speculators and investors are not profiting from increased supply,” Furstenau said in a statement. “This problem has been made worse by a lack of federal and provincial government investment in non-market housing.”

There are several aspects of Eby’s housing platform that have not yet been acted on.

Eby’s platform called for a flipping tax that will apply to the sale of a residential property. The tax rate, which was not specified, will be highest for those who hold properties for the shortest period of time and goes down to zero after two years.

He also wants to legalize secondary suites in every region in B.C. and allow developers to replace a single-family home with up to three units in major urban centres.

The housing overhauls are complex and take time, Eby said, but he promised work is underway.


BC Real Estate 2 legislation changes coming in January 2023

The Canadian Federal Government & BC Provincial Government plan to introduce 2 pieces of legislation in January 2023 which will affect some BC Real Estate Buyers and Sellers.

Here are some basic details, so that you can check whether they affect you!

Ban on Foreign Buyers of Residential Real Estate in Canada

From January 2023 the Federal Government plans to impose a temporary ban on Non-Canadians purchasing various types of residential real estate, for 2 years. This is featured in the Prohibition on the Purchase of Residential Property by Non-Canadians Act 2022

There is a fair amount that we don’t know yet, for example, have they finished creating exemptions.

So all Non- Canadian Buyers who are thinking of making a purchase, make your purchase before the end of December!

Buyers should also speak to their Canadian Real Estate Lawyer, about the implications of this Act, and how it may affect them, to avoid any nasty surprises or fines.

Full details of the proposed Act are shared in the link below.

BC Home Buyers Rescission Period

This legislation is expected to come into practice from January 2023. It will bring into force a ‘Cooling Off’ period for Buyers. This will allow a Buyer who has an Accepted Offer in place to be released from the deal within 3 business days. The 3-day period starts the day after the Contract is signed.

This will apply to Residential & Manufactured Homes, and there will be a fee for triggering the rescission of the Real Estate Contract. All other conditions will not be affected.

A Buyer who uses this right to rescind will be subjected to a 0.25% fee. This will apply to any transactions made using a Real Estate Agent and ‘For Sale by Owner’, and will be payable to the Seller.

There are some exceptions – E.G certain forms of Lease Land, Assignments of Contract, Court ordered sales and sales via Auction.

Each Buyer will also receive a Disclosure from their Real Estate Agent detailing the Rescission Fee.

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