Higher interest rates and consumer uncertainty led to a sharp drop in home sales last December.
According to data from the Chatham-Kent Association of Realtors, only 57 units were sold last month, down 25 per cent from sales in December of 2022.
On an annual basis, home sales totaled 1,146 units in 2023 – a 14.9 per cent decrease from 2022.
CKAR incoming president Carrie Patrick said that while there was a surge in home sales earlier in the year, 2023 statistics indicate home sales were 31 per cent below the five-year average, and 24.4 per cent below the 10-year average for December.
“While the spring and summer saw somewhat of a resurgence of activity, demand was generally lower throughout 2023 than it had been historically, owing mainly to higher interest rates and consumer uncertainty surrounding further rate movements,” Patrick said in a media release.
However, looking forward in 2024, she said the local market is “well positioned for buyers to return once they gain some confidence back from rates being held for longer, or even a suggestion from the Bank of Canada that rates may be moving lower at some point.
“We are well supplied and new listings remain consistent in our region for any increases in demand,” Patrick said.
The average price of a home sold in December was $419,717, up 9.1 per cent over December of 2022. The comprehensive average annual sale price last year was $428,588, dropping 6.8 per cent from 2022.
All told, the dollar value of all home sales in Dec. 2023 was $23.9-million, down 18.2 per cent from the previous year.
The number of listings was also down last month, decreasing by 15 per cent compared to 2022. There were 91 new residential listings in Dec. 2023. New listings were 5.1. per cent above the five-year average and 12.5 per cent above the 10-year average for the month.