The Quebec Professional Association of Real Estate Brokers says Montreal sales in July fell by 18 per cent last year, with the plexes category alone seeing a 38 per cent drop.

The association says sales for the month amounted to 3,080 compared with 3,772 last year, while homes with between two and five units plunged from 454 last July to 281 last month.

Charles Brant from the association's market analysis department interpreted the drop as confirmation that the market dynamic has shifted, largely because of a significant hike in the country's key interest rate.

Brant says the magnitude of the interest rate hike accelerated the market’s slowdown, but it is much more gradual than in other major Canadian cities.

At the same time, new listings are up 22 per cent from 4,023 last July to 4,901 last month.

The median price of single-family homes in Montreal was $550,000 in July, up 10 per cent from the same time last year, but down $30,000 from April’s peak of $580,000.