Time for a resolution

It happens so slowly you don’t notice until it’s too late. It can take over your investment.

Existing home prices nationally should fall by 2.7 per cent in 2011 because of weaker than expected economic conditions, says the TD bank.

The Toronto Real Estate Board pegged the median price of a home at $366,000 last month. That figure is a 3.4 per cent increase over the November 2009 median of $353,800. The median is the point at which half the homes cost less, and half cost more. It is considered less distortion-prone than the average price. Skip back one year. As 2009 wound down, homeowners could crow about their properties having increased by 13.4 per cent, as the median price in November 2008 was $312,500. Toronto elected a new mayor on Oct. 25, and Mayor Rob Ford has vowed to eliminate the Municipal Land Transfer Tax (MLTT), which is charged on real estate transactions.

Preliminary data released today by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) show total housing starts registered in 2010 for the Toronto Census Metropolitan Area increased by 13 per cent to 29,195 units. In December, the seasonally-adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of total housing starts declined to 17,800 units. thanks to a rise in demand for new homes, yet remained below annual levels achieved throughout the past decade. “Growth was held back by a reduced supply of available lots for single- detached development and construction delays for many condo projects that opened sales offices in the pre-recession period” said Shaun Hildebrand, CMHC’s Senior Market Analyst for the GTA.

In December, TREB Commercial Members reported 460,741 square feet of leased space – up 38 per cent from the 334,290 leased square feet recorded in December of 2009. For 2010 as a whole, TREB Commercial Members reported 8,717,456 square feet of space – up 46 per cent from the 5,977,552 square feet recorded in 2009. “Alongside overall economic recovery, including improved business investment and strengthening labour market conditions, the demand for commercial space rebounded in 2010,” Commercial Council Chair Larry Purchase noted. “Expect the commercial real estate market to benefit from further improvement in the Canadian economy through 2011.”

Jayesh Bhavsar

Jayesh Bhavsar

CENTURY 21 People's Choice Realty Inc., Brokerage*
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