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Uh-oh, Toronto bounces back into boom zone

February 17, 2020

January home sales in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) were so strong the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board (TRREB) is now forecasting a return to the booming levels of four years ago.
A total of 4,582 homes sold across the GTA in January, up 15.4 per cent from the same time period last year. Meanwhile, 7,836 new listings were brought to market, a year-over-year decline of 17.1 per cent. This increase pushed the GTA from relatively balanced conditions in 2019 to the brink of a sellers’ market with a sales-to-new-listings ratio of 58.4 per cent.
Prices also rose sharply with the average home price in the GTA up 12.3 per cent to $839,363 in January from a year earlier, with detached houses and condos driving the bulk of the increase. As a result of more higher-priced Toronto houses in the mix, the benchmark price index, which measures the overall value of homes sold, rose by 8.7 per cent from January 2018, the highest annual rate of growth since October 2017.
TRREB now forecasts home sales will hit between 90,000 to 97,000 this year, up 10.5 per cent from 2019. The average home price is expected to increase about 10 per cent to $900,000, driven by growth in the condo, townhouse, and semi-detached segments. TRREB warns that, should detached homes catch up to this pace of price growth the average house price could soar well beyond the $1-million mark, meaning the market could see a return to the boom levels last seen in 2016 and 2017.  Michael Collins, president of TRREB, said that as the gap between sales and supply deepens, buyers will be more likely to face hot market aspects this year such as bidding wars and homes selling for considerably more than their listing price.


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