April, 2016

Toronto Real Estate Market Update – March 2016

We are running out of superlatives in describing the Toronto and area residential resale market place. Literally it is going to places where no market has gone before. Average sale prices, days on market, inventory and demand have reached levels that are unique and perhaps a little unnerving.

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In March the average sale price for all properties sold in the greater Toronto area came in at $688,181, marching ahead of the previous monthly record of $685,809, achieved only in February. Last March the average sale price was $613,815. This means that year over year house prices in Toronto have increased by more than 12 percent.


In the city of Toronto (416 districts) prices of detached and semi-detached properties have risen even more dramatically. The average price for a detached home in Toronto now sits at $1,174,358. In central Toronto the average sale price for a detached home came in at an eye-popping $1,863,704. What is even more startling is that all sales of detached homes in central Toronto took place in only 14 days (on average) and at 104 percent of their asking price. The numbers were lower in Toronto’s west ($938,678) and east ($808,988) trading areas, but these properties also sold at lighting speed, and for substantially more than their asking price.



7 Salisbury Ave, Toronto | $1,100,000


The story was the same for semi-detached homes. The average price for a semi-detached home in Toronto is now $817,611. In Toronto’s central districts for the first time you now have to pay over $1 Million for a semi-detached house – if you can find one to buy. All semi-detached properties in Toronto’s central district sold in an unbelievable 11 days and at 107 percent of their asking price. Some trading areas in Toronto’s central market reported no sales in March. The reason was simply no semi-detached properties were available for sale at the end of March. A stunningly low level of inventory. It is not surprising therefore that the Toronto and area high end market has also reached astronomical levels. In March 228 properties were reported sold having a sale price of $2 Million or more. This compares to only 132 properties sold in the same category last year, an increase of more than 72 percent. The 228 sales in this category were primarily detached homes, with 3 condominium apartments also sold in this price point.



124 Park Rd, Toronto | $17,700,000


Overall the market produced 10,326 sales, an increase of 16.2 percent compared to the 8,887 sales achieved in March 2015. Clearly sales were not a problem. What was, and is a problem, is the small number of listed properties available for buyers to purchase.


In March only 14,864 new properties came to market. This was almost 4 percent less than the 15,435 that came to market in 2015. By the end of March the level of available inventory was woefully low. In the entire greater Toronto area there were only 12,132 properties available for sale, more than 20 percent less than last year at this time. This represents only 1.7 months of inventory. In various trading areas and depending on housing type, inventory levels are even lower. For example, inventory levels for the combined eastern trading districts are only 1.3 months, with one district having less than 1 month of inventory, also a market first. With these historically low inventory levels it is not surprising that properties are “flying off the shelves”. In March the average days on market for all properties sold was only 16 days. In 2015, which was a record year for the Toronto market place for volume of properties sold, days on market was 20 days.
The only area of the market operating differently is the condominium apartment sector, but even activity in this market sector has also sharply increased. The average price for condominium apartments came in at $416,251. In Toronto’s central districts, which have the highest concentration of condominium apartments, the price came in at $484,000. In March the average price for condominium apartments rose by 4.3 percent. Volume, on the other hand, rose by more than 20 percent. Average days on market dropped to 25, well below where it was only a few months ago, however average sale prices rarely exceed the asking price, but like detached and semi-detached sales we are beginning to see it happen.



170 Avenue Rd, 703, Toronto | $418,800


One wonders if this market can continue at this pace. The same concern was expressed about the Vancouver resale market, but it has surpassed the wildest expectations of real estate pundits. These same pundits are now clamouring for constraint, even suggesting legislatives intervention to slow that market. In Toronto we have not reached those levels, but what was only recently thought to be implausible is happening. Stay tuned for April’s market report.

Collingwood Real Estate Market Update – March 2016

This report summarizes the monthly statistics for the Western Region of the Southern Georgian Bay Association of REALTORS® (SGBAR). While the SGBAR trading area also includes the Eastern Region of Southern Georgian Bay due to an amalgamation of the Midland Real Estate Board and the Georgian Triangle Real Estate Board in 2014, this report is restricted to the Western Region, formerly known as the Georgian Triangle Association of REALTORS®.


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The lack of listing inventory continues to be the main topic in most real estate conversations. Despite a 1% increase, listing inventory remained low in March 2016 with 429 new listings reported vs 423 for March 2015. Year To Date (YTD), listings were down 8% with 951 listings in March 2016 vs 1039 listings in March 2015. This is the third consecutive March where the YTD listings have declined. YTD, March 2014 showed 1176 listings.


Notwithstanding the low inventory, sales remain strong. 188 sales were reported for March 2016 with a 0% change from March 2015. YTD, March 2016 saw 475 sales over 417 in March 2015, marking a 14% increase. Worth noting that YTD sales are up over the past three years with 320 sales reported in March 2014 even though YTD listings have declined.

Winter Primary_1



With positive influences such as a healthy economy, low interest rates and continued positive consumer confidence it’s not surprising that the monthly number of sales in the $300,000 to $399,999 and $500,000 to $699,999 price ranges have increased from March 2015 to March 2016 as well as YTD March 2015 to 2016. The number of sales in the $400,000 to $499,999 are down March 2016 over 2015, which could be as a result of low inventory currently available in that price range.


137292 12 GREY RD, MEAFORD | $1,999,000


There has been a significant jump in sales over $1,500,000 when comparing March 2015 to March 2016 and YTD sales. Sellers may be realistically pricing their properties in a market where inventory is tight to attract the available Buyers.


Sales of residential single family homes in some municipalities are more robust than others. Clearview has experienced a substantial 90.9% increase YTD from March 2015 to March 2016 with sales increasing from 22 to 42. Wasaga Beach is up 59% year over year. Collingwood is down 1.6%, The Blue Mountains down 9.8%, Municipality of Meaford down 32% and Grey Highlands down 44%.


7781 POPLAR SIDE RD, CLEARVIEW | $2,598,000


With the anticipation of the spring market, high demand combined with limited supply will continue to support the strong seller market conditions the Southern Georgian Bay Western Region is currently experiencing. Buyers should be prepared for multiple offers in some circumstances and tougher lending conditions due in part to lender losses from commodity dependant provinces. For Buyers looking to get a mortgage, allow more time, more paperwork and more due diligence from your lender.

Prince Edward County Real Estate Market Update – March 2016

Though you would never know it, spring has arrived to Prince Edward County (“the County”), and in stark contrast to the temperature, the real estate market is heating up. For the third month in a row and building on a trend that was already being experienced last year in the County as discussed in earlier reports, one of the predominant characteristics defining the market in the County is a shortage of listings.


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This results in limited choice and frustrated buyers chasing dwindling inventory and being forced to compete, or at the very least be ready to pounce when desirable properties reflecting good value do come onto the market. This dynamic has been further exaggerated by the increased attention which the County has received in the press and media, and all of the influx of new investment and activity to the area. One other factor which should not be overlooked is the comparative affordability of the County compared to other rural and vacation markets served by the brokerage, as well as the frenetic and increasingly unaffordable cost of housing in the Greater Toronto Area for those forced or choosing to contemplate alternative or different living arrangements and live/work solutions.





According to the Enhanced Statistics Statistical Query Report for the County for the month of March derived from the Quinte & District Association of REALTORS® (“the Quinte Board”), property sales in the wards making up the County were up 20% year over year with 42 sales being recorded compared to 35 in March of last year. Year to date figures are flat with 83 properties being recorded as sold mirroring exactly the tally reached by this time last year. With the strong demand, it is reasonable to conclude that the main thing holding back sales year to date is simply the ongoing lack of inventory alluded to above with 22% fewer active listings being available in the County at the end of March this year compared to last, specifically 429 v. 554 at the time the reports were issued. As indicated, this is the third month in a row where this has been the case, and the two more listings coming out this March compared to March 2015 (139 compared to 137) will do little to alleviate the shortage of supply. The year to date figures for new listings tell the story. So far only 328 properties have come onto the market compared to 387 last year at this time, a 15% drop.





Not surprisingly, in a tight market properties do not hang around on the market as long, and with fewer expired listings and many of the staler listings already snapped up, the average days on market for the current batch of properties sold in the County this last March is down 12% from last year at this time, with this particular cross-section of properties taking on average 104 days to sell, compared to the 118 days recorded for the properties sold in March 2015.


Despite the strong market, average sale price in March remained relatively stable, coming in at $299,750 compared to $307,259 recorded last year in March, an unremarkable decline of 2%. Needless to say, March remains a quieter month for real estate in the County, with the higher season kicking in more in April and May with the advent of warmer temperatures and the launch of many of the activities and offerings for which the area is known prompting the influx of visitors, weekenders, vacationers, tourists and the like.





Activity across the broader Quinte Board is consistent with what is being experienced in the County with the watchwords being an ongoing tight market bookended by strong demand (sales up 27% year over year in March and 17% on a year to date basis) and a scarcity of supply (new listings down by 4% year over year in March and 8% on a year to date basis, with expired listings down by a whopping 37% in March).


When spring actually does arrive in earnest, look for a robust market fueled by strong demand, and hope for an uptick in new listings to replenish supply and give all those buyers something to look at and consider for purchase. Economic reports for the first quarter of 2016 are looking favourable with significant growth forecast for the gross domestic product and recent positive job numbers. That mixed with continuing low interest rates and little prospect of significant change in that regard for the foreseeable future, as well as the ongoing comparative affordability of properties in the County suggests that the real estate market in 2016 should be a very healthy and active one moving in to the rest of the year.