Quebec City home sales up 2% over same period last year

Sales rose by three percent in 2009 in the provincial real estate market in 2009. Overall, there were a total of 79,185 MLS(R) sales transactions, according to the Quebec Federation of Real Estate Boards.

"Quebec's real estate market, with three consecutive quarterly increases in sales, finished the year on a positive note even though sales decreased by 19 per cent in the first three months of the year," said Michel Beausejour, FCA, Chief Executive Officer of the QFREB. "Despite the economic downturn, sales increased by three percent in 2009 compared to 2008, showing that Quebec's real estate market is quite stable."

Sales increased for all property categories in Quebec in 2009. Single-family homes led the way with a four per cent increase in sales compared to 2008. Condominium and plex sales followed closely with increases of three and two per cent, respectively.

In terms of prices, the median price of both single-family homes and plexes increased by five per cent in 2009 compared to last year, while condominiums posted a four per cent increase.

The fourth quarter of 2009 exceeded the record set in the fourth quarter of 2007 by eight per cent, with a total of 18,130 transactions registered in the MLS(R) system province-wide. When compared to the last three months of 2008, the increase was 36 per cent.

"This 36 per cent increase in the last quarter seems quite dramatic, but this was magnified by the market's poor performance for the same quarter in 2008. We have to remember that in the fourth quarter of 2008, following the recession, sales in Quebec were down 21 per cent," said Mr. Beausejour. "The strength of the province's real estate market shows that both buyers and sellers were active at the end of the year, which bodes well for 2010."

In terms of prices, the median price of single-family homes in the province of Quebec reached $200,000 in the fourth quarter of 2009, an eight per cent increase compared to the same period in 2008. The median price of condominiums increased by six per cent, while that of plexes grew by nine per cent.

The strong performance of the province's real estate market resulted in an increase in sales in most of Quebec's metropolitan areas in 2009. The Montreal area posted a three per cent increase in sales compared to 2008, with 41,802 transactions. Property prices also continued to increase in the Montreal area in 2009 compared to 2008. The median price of condominiums increased by five per cent, while that of single-family homes and plexes increased by 4 per cent.

The Gatineau area was just as active as Montreal in 2009, with a 3 per cent increase in sales compared to 2008. In terms of prices, single-family homes registered a 4 per cent increase in median price in 2009 compared to 2008. Plexes posted the largest increase in median price, at 16 per cent, while that of condominiums increased by 7 per cent.

The Quebec City area posted a 2 per cent increase in sales compared to 2008. Median prices for single-family homes and condominiums rose seven per cent increase compared to 2008, while plexes registered the largest increase, rising 12 per cent.

In the Trois-Rivieres area, sales rose two per cent increase in sales in 2009, while prices of single-family homes and condominiums increased by four per cent. The median price of plexes grew by eight per cent.

In the Sherbrooke area, sales increased by two per cent, with the median price also rising by two per cent.

Prices of plexes rose by seven per cent. The median price of condominiums decreased slightly by 2 per cent.

The Saguenay area is the only area to register a slight decrease in sales in 2009, as the number of transactions fell by one per cent, even though prices continued to climb. The median price of single-family homes increased by four per cent in 2009. Prices for condominiums and plexes increased by 15 and 10 per cent, respectively.