Good start to the spring market in real estate in the GTA. Toronto Real Estate Board reported a 1.8% year-over-year (1) increase in sales through the MLS system in April. Demand is still very high; buyers and investors find interest rates very attractive. New listings were down 4.5% from last year (1); however, average prices were up 10.1% from last year(1) because of the shortage of listings. April 2014 average selling price was at $577,898 (1). It looks like homeowners in Toronto prefer to renovate their old homes instead of buying new ones because of the high Land Transfer Taxes in Toronto. In addition to the Ontario Land Transfer Tax, people buying houses in Toronto need to pay an additional Municipal Land Transfer Tax. For example if you buy a house in Toronto for $577,000 you will need to pay $15,280 in Land Transfer Tax compared to only $8,015 for the same price house outside of Toronto. In April houses sold 13% faster than one year ago, in an average of 20 days.
In the Richmond Hill area, for all types of houses, average selling price is up 14.69% from last year. Average selling price is now $775,044 (2). Sales are down 0.28%, new listings are down 8%, and houses are selling 19% faster than in April 2013 with an average day of 17 days on market (2). There is a shortage of house supply in Richmond Hill as well.
Looking forward, if the supply of houses won't increase, we are expecting to see house prices going even higher and houses selling even faster. It gets really challenging for buyers in this sellers market to buy a house. They need to act very fast and be very well educated about the real market values of homes. The best way to buy a house is to use the professional services of a real estate agent to help them throughout the process . These services are free of charge for the buyers and take lots of time and stress off their shoulders.
(1) TREB Market Watch May 6, 2014 http://www.torontorealestateboard.com/market_news/market_watch/2014/mw1404.pdf
(2) TREB Market Watch May 3, 2013 http://www.susanpybus.com/pdfMarketWatch/2013_04.pdf