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How Have Canadian Home Sales Changed Since 2020?

Published 2024-07-03, 12:28 p/m
© Reuters.

The process of purchasing property in Canada varies greatly depending on the province you call home. From housing budgets to competitive markets, Canada’s real estate market has changed significantly since the COVID-19 pandemic. So how have Canadian sales changed around the nation since 2020? Using average, non-seasonally adjusted home sales data from the Canadian Real Estate Association from May 2020 to May 2024, Zoocasa analyzed home sale peaks in 22 Canadian real estate markets during the past four years.

This content was originally published by Zoocasa. View original content and infographics here.

Alberta Housing Sales Skyrocket as Population Booms

Calgary and Edmonton witnessed remarkable increases in sales from 2020 to 2024, marking 146% growth for both cities. Calgary's sales were 6,391 in 2020 and climbed to 15,732 in 2024, while Edmonton's sales were 5,498 in 2020 and 13,518 in 2024.

Between January 2023 and 2024, Alberta's population saw a significant increase, with 202,324 more people in the province. This 4.4% population growth rate represents the highest since 1981 and is a positive indicator of the region's future growth potential.

According to the Alberta government, it was the only province in Canada with significant net gains from people migrating from different regions and territories, reporting 12,482 people in the first quarter of 2024. It was the seventh consecutive quarter that Alberta had the highest net interprovincial moves, with the majority of new residents coming from Ontario (5,505 people), British Columbia (3,474 people), Saskatchewan (932 people), Nova Scotia (794 people), and Manitoba (747 people).

The successful “Alberta is Calling” campaign has been instrumental in attracting new residents to the region. The campaign's key messages highlighted Alberta's highest after-tax income in Canada and over 100,000 job openings. Another central point was the promise of significantly lower home prices in Alberta compared to British Columbia and Ontario’s housing markets.

As of May 2024, the non-seasonally adjusted residential home prices are $587,100 for a home in Calgary and $392,700 for a home in Edmonton.

Saskatchewan’s Own Housing Sales Surge

Regina also experienced a significant increase in home sales, with a remarkable 83% rise in MLS sales from 2020 to 2024.

Similar to Alberta, affordability is a main draw in Regina’s real estate market, as the city boasts an average residential home price of $320,000, making it one of the most inexpensive capital cities for real estate in Canada. According to Statistics Canada, Saskatchewan's population grew by 30,624 people last year, reaching an all-time high of 1,225,493. This marks the largest single-year increase since 1914. Within four years, Saskatoon also witnessed a jump in real estate sales, rising by 55% from 1,737 in 2020 to 2,684 in 2024.

The Prairies and the Rockies aren’t the only locations experiencing thriving real estate sales. Out on the East Coast, Newfoundland and Labrador sales increased by 60% within four years.

Big Spending: The Appeal of B.C.'s Pricey Market

Budget-friendly home prices don’t make or break a real estate market in Canada: British Columbia also witnessed noteworthy growth, despite having the highest real estate prices. Greater Vancouver experienced a 27% increase in sales, while Fraser Valley saw a 26% uptick, followed closely by Victoria with a 24% growth for the same price period.

Mixed Signals in Canada's Major Real Estate Market Sales

Compared to other major cities in Canada, Greater Toronto and Montreal experienced less of an increase, with Toronto sales up by 11% and Montreal sales down by 1%. Cities that also experienced a decrease in sales include Halifax-Dartmouth and Saint John, New Brunswick.

Despite its high property tax rate, the Niagara Region saw a remarkable 38% increase in sales, reflecting its appeal. Sudbury also experienced significant growth, with a 34% rise in sales. Additionally, the Kitchener-Waterloo area and Thunder Bay saw an 18% increase, indicating steady demand in these regions.

London and St. Thomas had the slowest sales growth among all analyzed cities in the province since 2020, with only a 3% increase.

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