St. John's Housing Prices Show Moderate Decline in Third Quarter of 2016

Economic stability reassured as tax structure remains unchanged

ST. JOHN'S, Oct. 13, 2016 /CNW/ - The aggregate1 house price in St. John's fell moderately in the third quarter of 2016, declining 3.2 per cent year-over-year to $332,597, according to the Royal LePage House Price Survey2 released today.

When broken out by housing type, the median price of a two-storey home dropped 3.4 per cent year-over-year to $376,553, while the median price of a bungalow slipped 1.8 per cent to $309,895. During the same period, condominium prices in the region declined 13.2 per cent to $257,876.

"Discussions around the implementation of a provincial fall mini-budget in St. John's have been a cause for concern in our region," said Glenn Larkin, sales representative, Royal LePage Professionals 2000. "It's a sigh of relief to see that the premier changed his mind and that there will be no tax changes. The looming threat of layoffs and cutbacks we originally anticipated are no longer expected."

"We're levelling out from the Fort McMurray shift we saw last quarter, and oil remains unchanged," continued Larkin. "As long as oil remains low, we'll be continuing along, steady as she goes through rocky waters."

Nationally, Canada's residential real estate market continued to grow in the third quarter of 2016, posting a 12.0 per cent year-over-year aggregate house price increase to $545,414.  The price of a two-storey home rose 13.7 per cent year-over-year to $649,635, and the price of a bungalow increased 11.0 per cent to $459,481. During the same period, the price of a condominium increased 5.8 per cent to $360,679.

"Across Canada, our real estate markets remain healthy, with home values showing modest to strong (yet rational) price appreciation in almost every Canadian city," said Phil Soper, president and chief executive officer, Royal LePage. "Even in the hardest hit oil patch regions, prices have held up well, with small single-digit declines, year-over-year."  

On October 3, 2016, Federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced new measures specifically designed to cool the country's housing market and curtail foreign buying activity. These measures are meant to bring consistency to mortgage insurance rules by standardizing eligibility for high- and low-ratio insured mortgages, expanding stress tests, and improving tax fairness by removing the ability of non-residents to claim capital gain exemptions, which are only applicable to properties identified as principal residences.

"Consumer confidence suffered a direct hit when the federal government introduced new, more restrictive regulations in early October," said Soper. "While it is too early to say definitively, it appears Canadian homebuyers are adjusting quickly, and that fears of a hard correction were unwarranted. While the changes are significant, major lenders may already be using similar criteria when writing mortgages in sensitive regions like Alberta and B.C., so the additional drag on the market resulting from the new legislation won't be as great as it appears on the surface."

About the Royal LePage House Price Survey

The Royal LePage House Price Survey provides information on the three most common types of housing in Canada, in 53 of the nation's largest real estate markets. Housing values in the House Price Survey are based on the Royal LePage National House Price Composite, produced quarterly through the use of company data in addition to data and analytics from its sister company, Brookfield RPS, the trusted source for residential real estate intelligence and analytics in Canada.  Commentary on housing and forecast values are provided by Royal LePage residential real estate experts, based on their opinions and market knowledge.

About Royal LePage

Serving Canadians since 1913, Royal LePage is the country's leading provider of services to real estate brokerages, with a network of over 17,000 real estate professionals in more than 600 locations nationwide. Royal LePage is the only Canadian real estate company to have its own charitable foundation, the Royal LePage Shelter Foundation, dedicated to supporting women's and children's shelters and educational programs aimed at ending domestic violence. Royal LePage is a Brookfield Real Estate Services Inc. company, a TSX-listed corporation trading under the symbol TSX:BRE.

For more information visit: www.royallepage.ca.

____________________________
1 Aggregate prices are calculated via a weighted average of the median values of homes for reported property types in the region surveyed
2 Powered by Brookfield RPS

SOURCE Royal LePage Real Estate Services

Image with caption: "St. John's Housing Prices Show Moderate Decline in Third Quarter of 2016 (CNW Group/Royal LePage Real Estate Services)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20161013_C2368_PHOTO_EN_794947.jpg

For further information: Michael Jesus, Kaiser Lachance Communications, 647-725.2520 ext. 234, michael.jesus@kaiserlachance.com


Custom Packages

Browse our custom packages or build your own to meet your unique communications needs.

Start today.

CNW Membership

Fill out a CNW membership form or contact us at 1 (877) 269-7890

Learn about CNW services

Request more information about CNW products and services or call us at 1 (877) 269-7890