What a difference a few months makes. July saw more homes trade hands in Canada than any other month in the history of CREA’s database going back more than 40 years. That coincides with REALTOR.ca visits being at an all-time high, with unique visitors increasing by more than 46% compared to the same time last year.
Home sales are up 30.5% across Canada, with 62,533 units sold in July 2020 compared to 47,924 in July 2019. The average price of homes sold across Canada in July 2020 was up 14.3% and new listings were up 10.3% across Canada.
“Remember, the April numbers were pretty much the worst ever,” explained Senior Economist Shaun Cathcart during the latest edition of CREA’s Housing Market Report. “A lot has changed in a very short time, but obviously a big part of what we’re seeing right now is the unleashing of activity that would have otherwise happened earlier this year had it not been for COVID-19 and the strict initial lockdowns.”
With COVID-19 delaying the start to the typical busy spring market, traffic to REALTOR.ca has peaked in the summer months and Canada’s No. 1 real estate platform had its strongest year-to-date growth in July. Our latest numbers show there were more than 10.7 million visits to REALTOR.ca.
“With more and more of regular everyday life opening back up, REALTORS® and their clients across Canada are making up for lost time, and it’s been a very busy summer as a result,” stated Costa Poulopoulos, Chair of CREA.
Poulopoulos said while some of the surge can be credited to Canadians simply delaying their home buying journeys this year, a lot of it also has to do with how quickly CREA adapted to promoting a virtual, contactless transaction process.
Within weeks of the global shutdown, we came up with a COVID-19 game plan and introduced a highly visible section on REALTOR.ca listing descriptions promoting an agent’s upcoming virtual open houses and or live stream walkthroughs.
Since the launch of that feature, more than 2,600 REALTORS® have conducted over 20,000 live stream open houses. REALTORS® are adding more video, 3D virtual tours and floor plans, allowing consumers access to homes, when business-as-usual is not possible.