Each week, The Glenn Team provide highlights from the weekly CP office meeting to provide a balanced overview of the Toronto and GTA markets and relevant issues affecting real estate markets. Meetings are overseen by Chestnut Park's CEO and Broker of Record, Chris Kapches, LLB, who provides weekly analysis and commentary. Additional input is provided by the CP Toronto office Realtors who give a day to day, real life perspective of the local markets.
The uptick in the average sale price continued through the month of September, giving further credence to what most feel is the end of the plateau and start of a rebounding market. Further support from Chris' stats (the TREB weekly stat filibuster continues) in the first week of October support this as well, as the average sale price in the 416 was around $831,000. The average sale price for the GTA for September was $775, 456, up 2.6% year over year, which would also support a rebound in the market. Average price breakdowns for the 416 based on housing type were as follows...
Detached Houses - $1,355,000 - 5.4% increase yr/yr -
Semi-detached Houses - $935,000 - 5.2% increase yr/yr
Condo Apartments - $554,000 - 24% increase yr/yr
Prices in the 905 were much less dramatic however, with detached houses only going up by less than 1%. Sales volumes were down by 35% across the GTA, which seems like a high number but put into perspective, those numbers are coming from very high volumes seen in 2016. 61% of the sales that took place in September came from the 416 however, which also had less inventory than the 905, so it should be expected for prices to continue to climb going into 2018.
As we've mentioned, the psychology of the market may be just as important as the stats themselves, and media reports could go a long way to see this switch in the market's thinking. Chris cited this article from the Globe and Mail which, among some points already mentioned, discusses buyers coming back to the market now after having perceived the downturn to be over. Articles like this will likely cause buyers to promptly return to the market and could cause a dramatic uptick in prices yet again. Of further concern given all of these numbers and trends is that it's likely that OFSI will move forward with the new stress test rules. If you're considering buying in the 416, especially if a condo is the product you're after, we would urge you to get started today!
IT'S ALL ABOUT BALANCE
Getting perspective on whether the market is balanced or not can be challenging. TREB using a 12 month moving average for month's of inventory -where balance is closer to 1.5 months- to determine whether the market is overheated or not. Chris prefers to use a standard average; where 3.9 months would be considered balanced or heathy. Despite how it's calculated, at the beginning of October, there were about 19,000 properties on the market, giving the 416 about 1.4 months of inventory and the 905 1.5 months. That's 17% more than last October's 11,000 but is still about 1000 listings off a healthier market in Chris' opinion. As we approach the end of year, we’ll be looking at overall sales be around 80-88,000. This is consistent with period b/w 2009-2013 before we saw numbers in the hundreds of thousands.
EAST VS. WEST
Traditionally, Realtors and the public always felt there were better deals to be had in Toronto East end, but that seems to be less and less true, at least in the case of semi-detached properties. In the Eastern districts, all sales for the month of September came in at 104% of asking with an average of 10 days on the market. The average sale price for semi-detached properties in the East end was $872,326, vs. the Western districts which averaged $775,663. However, the average sale price for detached properties, which have great prevalence in the West, was $1,015,711 vs. $961,805 in the East. So clearly it's currently better to go West to buy a semi-detached property currently. Contrast that with condo apartments with sales prices on average being about $50,000 less on the East end than the West. For further contrast, the Central districts saw an average sale price of $615,654 for condo apartments.
MULTIPLE REPRESENTATION STAYS UNIFIED
News regarding how the Ontario government will treat instances of multiple representation (where one Realtor represents both parties in a transaction) came back from OREA. The decision will keep in place the existing rules for how Realtors working with both sides to a real estate transaction are defined. Chris, OREA and most Realtors and brokerages see this as a win for both Realtors and the public. The alternative would have required that a second Realtor represent one side in the transaction so as to avoid potential conflicts of interest. However, that scenario could give way to Realtor alliances and potentially fewer buyers for those buying or selling in smaller, localized markets. The new legislation will allow one Realtor to represent both parties so long as informed consent is given on the part of the buyer and seller. It is expected that OREA will draft new forms to give consent in transactions requiring multiple representation.
Do you feel like this was the right decision? We'd love to hear your comments!