Canadian Home Sellers Joining Buyers on the Sidelines

  12/15/2023 |   SHARE
Posted in Canadian Housing Market by Heather Ann Lemieux| Back to Main Blog Page

Canadian Home Sellers Joining Buyers on the Sidelines

The latest statistics released by the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) show national home sales were little changed on a month-over-month basis in November 2023.


  • National home sales edged back 0.9% month-over-month in November.
  • Actual (not seasonally adjusted) monthly activity came in 0.9% below November 2022.
  • The number of newly listed properties declined 1.8% month-over-month.
  • The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) decreased 1.1% month-over-month but was still up 0.6% year-over-year.
  • The actual (not seasonally adjusted) national average sale price posted a 2% year-over-year increase in November.

Home sales recorded over Canadian MLS® Systems edged down by 0.9% from October to November 2023. It was the smallest decline since July.

The actual (not seasonally adjusted) number of transactions came in just 0.9% below November 2022.


"I wouldn't expect anything too headline-grabbing from the resale housing market for the next few months," said Larry Cerqua, Chair of CREA. "That's a good thing, because a market that looks to be stabilizing in balanced territory increasingly suggests the soft-landing scenario. For information and guidance about buying or selling a property in this current market, or to get started on plans for the spring, contact a REALTOR® in your area," continued Cerqua.

"While it was clear from about August that a lot of buyers were probably going to head back to the sidelines until at least next spring, a surprising number of sellers nonetheless chose to try their luck this fall," said Shaun Cathcart, CREA's Senior Economist. "Not getting offers they were willing to accept, it's looking like many of them are also now resigned to hunker down until next year. It's probably a good move given that recent expectations around interest rate cuts suggest it might be a somewhat more active spring market than we thought."

The number of newly listed homes fell 1.8% on a month-over-month basis in November. This followed a 2.2% decline in October.

With new listings down by more than sales in November, the national sales-to-new listings ratio tightened slightly to 49.8% compared to 49.4% in October. It was the first time this measure has increased since April. The long-term average for the national sales-to-new listings ratio is 55.1%.

There were 4.2 months of inventory on a national basis at the end of November 2023, up only slightly from 4.1 months at the end of October. As such, this measure also looks to be stabilizing, and is still almost a full month below its long-term average of near five months of inventory.

The Aggregate Composite MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) declined by 1.1% on a month-over-month basis in November 2023, reflecting softer market conditions since the end of the summer. Prices often react with a slight lag, so it will be interesting to see if month-over-month declines get smaller or at least stop getting larger in December in response to a stabilizing demand supply balance.

While price declines remain mainly an Ontario phenomenon, home prices are also now starting to soften in the Fraser Valley, Winnipeg, and Halifax. Elsewhere in Canada prices are mostly holding firm or in some cases (Alberta, Saskatchewan, New Brunswick, Price Edward Island and Newfoundland and Labrador) continuing to climb. The Aggregate Composite MLS® HPI was up 0.6% on a year-over-year basis.

The actual (not seasonally adjusted) national average home price was $646,134 in November 2023, up 2% from November 2022.

Source: CREA

Canada Real Estate, Canadian Home Sales, Canadian Housing Market, Canadian Housing Market Slowdown, Canadian Real Estate Market Outlook, CREA

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