Back in December 2015, Desjardins Economic Studies had reported that there were still a surplus of condos on the Quebec market, an obvious observation for most of us who spend any amount of time outdoors, whether we are familiar with the real estate market or not.
During the course of the past year, the number of condos on the market exceeded demand all over the province, but especially in the territories of Quebec City, Montreal and Gatineau. The situation was particularly problematic in the downtown Montreal area, where an enormous concentration of new constructions (7,145 new projects on the Island of Montreal, of which over 4,000 were in the downtown core) contributed to the market imbalance.
But today? Have conditions actually begun to change? According to the Federation of Quebec Real Estate Boards, in an article published on their website last May 5, the month of March 2016 marked the first decrease in the number of active condo listings since 2010, and on the sale side, we can now observe several months where sales are on the increase since the summer of 2014.
We see a decrease in the number of inventory months (the number of months a property remains on the market) in several regions, notably in Mirabel and Brome-Missisquoi. In Montreal, the NMI (number of months of inventory) went down by 3.7 months in Côte-Saint-Luc, by 2.2 months in Outremont, by 1.9 months for the sector of Mercier-Hochelaga-Maisonneuve and by 0.7 months in Anjou, just to name a few. However, the NMI continues to increase in other regions, including the borough of Rivière-des-Prairies/Pointe-aux-Trembles, where an increase of 0.8 months of inventory has been observed.
In summary, the surplus of condos seems to be slowly reabsorbed in some sectors, but the actual situation varies depending on the region. We will still have to wait a couple of years before we see a real market adjustment, and most sectors will continue to benefit buyers for a good while to come.