National Real Estate Survey Reveals Decreases In Real Estate Prices Per Square Foot

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A nationwide study conducted by CENTURY 21 Canada reveals that real estate prices per square foot have fallen in some areas across the country since last year.

The rate of price decreases varies broadly while in some markets, such as Montréal and downtown Toronto, prices rose over the past year.

Prices are consistently down in B.C., with Vancouver, Metro Vancouver suburbs, markets on Vancouver Island, and the Okanagan seeing declines of 10 or 20 per cent of properties sold between January 1 and June 30.

“Your real estate story is very different, depending on where in Canada you live. It is not surprising to see Vancouver prices drop so much, but the drop is actually more significant in some Metro Vancouver suburbs like West Vancouver and secondary B.C. markets such as Vernon and Kelowna,” says Brian Rushton, Executive Vice-President of CENTURY 21 Canada.

In Alberta and the Prairies, prices were generally more moderate, while prices for condos in Montréal increased by 25 per cent per square foot.

Condos in downtown Toronto rose by 10 per cent, and most Atlantic Canadian cities saw modest increases.

For the first time since the inception of this survey three years ago the price of a detached house on Vancouver’s West Side fell below $1,000 per square foot, dropping 13.74 per cent to $990 per square foot from $1,147 last year.

Downtown Vancouver condos remain the most expensive properties in the survey at $1,241 per square foot, despite an 8.4 per cent decline from the same period last year.

A condo in downtown Toronto increased by 10 per cent to $994 per square foot, while prices in many GTA suburbs declined and others rose.

Prices for a detached house in Montréal saw an 11.77 per cent increase to $674 per square foot, while condo prices shot up 25 per cent to $709.

Metro Vancouver communities continue to dominate the list of most expensive properties with seven of the top 10 most expensive communities, along with downtown Toronto condos and now Montréal houses and condos.

B.C. also had the lowest detached house prices in the survey. Houses in Tumbler Ridge, B.C., went for just $84 per square foot, the least expensive community for detached houses in this year’s survey.

The lowest overall price this year is also in B.C., with a townhouse in Quesnel going for $55 a square foot.

Fredericton, NB, offers the lowest price in Atlantic Canada at $99 per square foot for a detached house.

Prairie house prices remain generally affordable compared to other provinces, with prices dropping in most communities.

Calgary prices fell 3.59 per cent – going from $293 per square foot to $282. Regina prices for a detached house fell 2.88 per cent to $246 per square foot.

Winnipeg saw the sharpest decreases in the Prairie Provinces, with lows of almost 14 per cent to $243 per square foot.

Most prices in Atlantic Canada actually rose, from a substantially lower starting point.

“With so much variation in the market and prices adjusting very differently depending on neighbourhood and property type, now more than ever it is important to have good information when making real estate buying and selling decisions,” said Rushton. “The list of complex local factors we see reflected in this survey is a long one, ranging from new taxes on property speculation and foreign buyers in B.C. through to a changing economy impacting neighbouring Toronto suburbs very differently.”

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