Edge Walk by Umair Khan
The Toronto real estate market statistics for the first quarter of 2016 have been announced. Double-digit year-over-year rates of sales growth were experienced in the GTA for all major home types during the first three months of 2016. There were 10,326 sales in March, recording a 16.2 per cent year-over-year growth rate, and 22,575 sales in the first quarter which is a 15.8 per cent growth compared to 2015.
The most desired home types were detached homes accounting for 48 per cent of transactions in March (47.3 per cent for Q1). The second best selling home type was condominium apartments with 25.6 and 26.5 per cent during March and Q1 respectively. However, the sales growth was not reflected on the listings front. The number of new listings during March and the first quarter were down compared to the same periods in 2015. TREB President Mark McLean said:
"At the beginning of 2016, TREB's outlook for the year pointed to a strong possibility of a second consecutive record year for home sales. This outlook was based, in part, on upbeat consumer survey results pointing to robust home buying intentions. It is clear that these upbeat intentions have translated into record first quarter results."
The average price for all home types combined was up by 12.1 per cent in March, and by 13.6 per cent in the first quarter of 2016, reaching $688,181. In central Toronto, the prices were more stable with only 2.55 per cent growth and average price as high as $790,036. The MLS® Home Price Index Composite Benchmark for March was up by 11.6 per cent compared to March 2015. Jason Mercer, TREB’s Director of Market Analysis, said that demand was not an issue in the first quarter of 2016:
"The supply of listings, however, continued to aggravate many would-be home buyers. We could have experienced even stronger sales growth were it not for the constrained supply of listings, especially in the low-rise market segments. The resulting strong competition between buyers has underpinned the double-digit rates of price growth experienced so far this year."