Categorized | Business

Toronto home prices are steadying, amid dramatic year-over-year declines

Posted on 09 May 2018 by admin

Despite a 12 per cent April decline, the Toronto Real Estate Board predicts moderate increases ahead.

Toronto area housing statistics continue to look dramatically lower than the steeply rising figures of early last year. But there are signs that the market is flattening.

The average home or condo sold for 12.4 per cent less year over year in April with all types of resale houses and condos averaging $804,584 across the region.

But preliminary seasonally adjusted prices from the Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB) show prices down only 0.2 per cent from March with 1.6 per cent fewer sales month over month, about the same as February to March, a much gentler drop than the start of the year.

The number of homes that actually sold in April — 7,792 — was down 32.1 per cent from last year.

The decline in both sales and prices was greatest among detached houses, which sold for about $1.03 million on average, down 14.4 per cent from a year ago. The number of house sales dropped 38.4 per cent.

Condo sales saw a moderate 3.2 per cent price increase compared to last year, to an average of $559,343, with the number of units sold dropping 26 per cent.

The average cost for all houses and condos this year to date, including semi-detached and townhomes, was $779,400 in April, compared to $886,923 a year ago.

York Region continues to see the biggest year-over-year price declines in the Toronto area, while city of Toronto home values held steady, according to the real estate board’s Home Price Index.

Jason Mercer, TREB director of market analysis, says the dramatic year-over-year differences “mask the fact that market conditions should support moderate increases in home prices as we move through the second half of the year, particularly for condominium apartments and higher density lowrise home types.”

Condos and townhouses have become the predominant starter homes in the Toronto region because of their relative affordability.

Meanwhile, high-end homes in the $2-million-plus range accounted for only 5.5 per cent of detached house sales this year compared to 10 per cent in April 2017.

“The year-over-year change in the overall average selling price has been impacted by both changes in market conditions as well as changes in the type and price point of homes being purchased,” said a TREB release.

It urged provincial parties to make housing a priority in the June election. The board is pushing for tax relief for buyers, particularly the provincial land transfer tax and the municipal land transfer fee unique to Toronto.

“We believe that any attempt to increase the Toronto land transfer tax should require approval from the provincial government given the significance of Toronto’s economy to the province, and the connections between the Toronto real estate market and that of the broader GTA,” said TREB president Tim Syrianos in the release.

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