Fall market is here in full swing. GTA Realtors reported 6,455 sales through TREB’s MLS® System in September 2018. It makes 1.9 per cent more than last year in September. The average price was also slightly up (2.9 per cent) across all segments.
The biggest rise was recorded in the condominium segment, where the average price rose by 10 per cent in year-over-year comparison. This might be the reason that sales in this segment were down by 3.2 per cent this month.
Turning by Vivian Lynch
Semi-detached and townhouses were up by 5.3 and 4.1 per cent in price and 2.7 and 8.5 per cent in sales. Detached homes were the only ones going down with average lower by 0.6 per cent. But sales were still up by 2.7 per cent. Toronto Real Estate Board President Garry Bhaura commented on these changes as follows:
It is healthy to see sales and prices in many areas across the Greater Toronto Area up a bit, compared to last year’s lows. At the same, however, it is important to remember that TREB’s market area is made up of over 500 communities. Market conditions have obviously unfolded differently across these communities. This is why it’s important to work with a REALTOR® who is familiar with local market conditions in your areas of interest.
Jason Mercer, TREB’s Director of Market Analysis adds, that focusing on increasing numbers of mid-density homes will be crucial in the upcoming years:
Generally speaking, annual rates of price growth have been stronger for higher density home types in 2018, including condominium apartments, townhouses and semi-detached houses. In many neighbourhoods, these home types provide more affordable homeownership options. This is why a policy focus on increasing mid-density housing options throughout the GTA is important.
After changes made to borrowing rules and the new stress test added, many potential buyers decided to wait until the market adjusted itself to this situation. This summer, the sales started finally rising after the new-year slump. With many new buyers entering the market, the problem of lacking inventory returned to Toronto. It's even more alarming when we consider the fact that sales were going up this month, but new listings were down by 3.1 per cent in year-over-year comparison. Active listings remained in positive numbers with a 5.6 per cent increase. However, the remaining inventory will soon be thinning as well, if there will be less new listings on the market. Mr Bhara commented:
While higher borrowing costs and tougher mortgage qualification rules have kept sales levels off the record pace set in 2016, many households remain positive about home ownership as a quality long-term investment. As the GTA population continues to grow, the real challenge in the housing market will be supply rather than demand. The Toronto Real Estate Board is especially concerned with issues affecting housing supply as we move towards municipal elections across the region.