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Local home sales drop sharply

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Home sales in Brantford and area were down almost 20 per cent last month compared to August 2020.

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There were 228 units sold through the MLS System of the Brantford Regional Real Estate Association in August, a sharp decline of 19 per cent from the same month last year.

Local home sales were 0.2 per cent below the five-year average and 9.7 per cent above the 10-year average for the month of August.

On a year-to-date basis, home sales totaled a record 2,022 units over the first eight months of the year. This was an increase of 21.5 per cent from the same period in 2020.

The average price of local homes sold in August was a record $750,813, a sizable gain of 24 per cent from August 2020.

“Sales activity was down substantially from last year’s record-breaking pace, but that was expected as demand has moderated from the rebound,” said Ray Petro, president of the Brantford Regional Real Estate Association.

“What’s amazing is that despite this moderation, home sales were virtually tied with the second best August on record, missing the mark by just one sale.

“New listings were also down from the same time last year, but not to as severe an extent as has been the case in other Southern Ontario markets. This means that overall supply levels aren’t on the decline at the moment but are still resting at record lows.”

The benchmark price for a single-family home in Brantford was $666,700, up sharply by 35 per cent on a year-over-year basis in August.

The benchmark price for local townhouse/row units was $469,700, a substantial increase of almost 40 per cent compared to a year earlier. The benchmark apartment price was $384,000, a jump of 37 per cent from year-ago levels.

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However, the number of new listings (259) was down sharply by 22 per cent last month compared to August 2020. There were just 167 units on the market at the end of August.

Active listings haven’t been this low in the month of August in more than three decades, said Petro.

Listings were 52 per cent below the five-year average and 64 per cent below the 10-year average for the month of August.

Ideas on how to fix the housing market have taken centre stage in the federal election, Cliff Stevenson, chair of the Canadian Real Estate Association, said in a media release.

“Many long-simmering issues having had a big spotlight shone on them over the last year-and-a-half by COVID. The numbers for August provided more evidence of what many of us already knew or suspected to be the case – this housing crisis will not go away on its own. As such, it’s encouraging to see all of the major parties looking at longer-term solutions to an issue that’s been around for a while. It also highlights how there are no quick fixes here, so this market will remain challenging for those who choose or have to engage in it.”

The Brantford Regional Real Estate Association serves Brantford, along with Paris, Mount Pleasant, Oakland, Scotland, Burford and St. George.

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