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Reflecting on Market Summer Chills 08/2012

As we end the dog days of summer a chill has settled over real estate in Canada’s two hottest markets. The anecdotal reports over the last couple of months – that pointed to the federal government’s new mortgage rules – have been confirmed by the latest figures from the Vancouver and Toronto real estate boards.

In Vancouver, July sales were down more than 11% from June and more than 18% from a year earlier. The benchmark price in the Vancouver is $616,000, up 0.6% from last year, but down 0.7% from June. With a sales-to-active-listings ratio of 11.6%, the real estate board says Vancouver has turned the corner to a buyers’ market.

In Toronto, the closely watched condo market led the decline as July home sales fell 1.5% year-over-year and about the same month-over-month. The new federal rules and Toronto’s land transfer tax get the blame from the city’s real estate board. The average home price in Canada’s biggest city is just shy of $477,000, up 4% year-over-year. But there is a growing inventory of unsold condos building up in the city.
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