This year seems to be one of constant anticipation over sales activity reports. The anxiously awaited August numbers from the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA), certainly are a great representation of that, and Wednesday they were finally reported. The good news is that for the first month since March 2010, national resale housing activity improved, showing a seasonally adjusted 4.1 percent increase from the previous month.
Most of the national sales activity improvement for August was as a result of increased activity in Ontario and British Columbia – both provinces which felt great pains in July with the onset of HST. Fortunately, over half of all local markets across the country remained stable or saw increases to this month’s seasonally adjusted sales activity.
With a quick annual look in review, we find the year-to-date transactions are up 2.2 percent versus 2009’s first eight months – partially due to sharp increases in activity during the second half of 2009, and continued momentum into the early months of 2010. The expectation as a result is the year-to-date transaction statistics, as we work through the final 4 months of 2010, will continue to dwindle in comparison to the year prior – even with a steady market.CREA’s Chief Economist, Gregory Klump, summarized it this way “The hangover from accelerated home purchases is likely to persist over the rest of the year. Although economic and job growth are expected to be tepid, they will continue to support housing markets.”