Home sales in the country increased from June to July this year, according to The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) report released on Wednesday.

Data showed home sales across the nation grew 1.9% in July but remained below the levels recorded from mid-2013 to the end of 2017. In fact, more than half of all local home markets reported growth in sales activity during the same period. Headlining this market development was Greater Toronto Area (GTA).

On the other hand, actual activity, which is not seasonally adjusted, declined 1.3% year-on-year. The association noted that the result was a proof of the lesser sales observed in major urban centers at British Columbia.

CREA President Barb Sukkau also said that the backlash of the new stress-test on mortgage applicants continues to hit home sales although the negative effects are slowly diminishing in Toronto and neighboring markets.

 "The degree to which the stress-test continues to sideline home buyers varies depending on location, housing type and price range. All real estate is local, and REALTORS remain your best source for information about sales and listings where you live or might like to in the future," he said.

CREA's Chief Economist Gregory Klump, meanwhile, highlighted the impact of the surging home sales activity on the market.

"Improving national home sales activity in recent months obscures significant differences in regional trends for home sales and prices," he said.

"Regardless, rising interest rates and this year's stress test on mortgage applicants will likely prove to be difficult hurdles to overcome for many would-be first time and move-up homebuyers, heading into the second half of the year and beyond."

The number of newly listed homes rebounded 1.2% in July stayed still below monthly levels recorded over most of the past eight years.

Led by Calgary, Edmonton and Greater Vancouver (GVA), new listings declined in more than half of all local markets.

With sales up and new listings down, the national sales-to-new listings ratio tightened further to reach 55.9% in July.

 

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