Looks like the heated Toronto real estate market has cooled down.
The Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB) released its July report, stating that the year-over-year sales reported was down by 40.4% compared to July of 2016.
The sales were predominantly led by detached homes the City of Toronto and surrounding regions, with 5,921 residential transactions reported through TREB.
But while sales declined, new listings were reportedly up about 5.1% compared to last year.
TREB president Tim Syrianos said that the Ontario government’s recent release of research showing a low proportion of home owners being foreign buyers confirmed TREB’s own research, and attributed the slow down to psychology.
“Clearly, the year-over-year decline we experienced in July had more to do with psychology, with would-be home buyers on the sidelines waiting to see how market conditions evolve,” said Syrianos.
But TREB CEO John DiMichele said that summer statistics are often not the best indicators of the housing market conditions.
“We generally see an uptick in sales following Labour Day, as a greater cross-section of would-be buyers and sellers start to consider listing and/or purchasing a home,” said DiMichele. “As we move through the fall, we should start to get a better sense of the impacts of the Fair Housing Plan and higher borrowing costs.”
While the sales declined, the prices did go up by 18% compared to last year. But that benchmark was actually down by 4.6% compared to June’s numbers. The average selling price for all home types combined was up by 5% to $746,218. In Toronto, the average selling price was $759,441.
“Home buyers benefitted from more choice in the market this July compared to the same time last year. This was reflected in home prices and home price growth,” said Jason Mercer, TREB’s Director of Market Analysis. “Looking forward, if we do see some would-be home buyers move off the sidelines and back into the market without a similar increase in new listings, we could see some of this newfound choice erode. The recent changes in the sales and price trends have masked the fact that housing supply remains an issue in the GTA.”
Home sales were also down in May in Toronto, and RBC senior economist Robert Hogue said that the recent numbers show signs that things have cooled down significantly with home resales falling 20% and average price dipping 6.2% between April and May.
And so, the real estate roller coaster continues.