Looking at the sales number for February, it is clear that the Canadian resale market has slowed down in comparison to this time last year. The government was successful in its quest to “cool down” the market. However, if we look at this month’s sales, in comparison to last month’s sales, the market seems to be picking back up as we approach the busy spring season.
Ontario - Price Growth Continues in February
Toronto, March 5, 2013 - Greater Toronto Area (GTA) REALTORS® reported 5,759 sales through the Toronto Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) system in February 2013 – a decline of 15% in comparison to February 2012. It should be noted that 2012 was a leap year with one extra day in February. A 28-day year-over-year sales comparison resulted in a lesser decline of 10.5%. The average selling price for February 2013 was $510,580 – up 2% in comparison to February 2012.
“The share of sales and dollar volume accounted for by luxury detached homes in the City of Toronto was lower this February compared to last. This contributed to a more modest pace of overall average price growth for the GTA as a whole,” said Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB) President Ann Hannah.
“Stricter mortgage lending guidelines that precluded government backed mortgages on homes sold for over one million dollars and the City of Toronto’s additional upfront land transfer tax arguably played a role in the slower pace of luxury detached home sales,” added Ms. Hannah.
The MLS® HPI Composite Benchmark price covering all major home types eliminates fluctuations in price growth due to changes in sales mix. The Composite Benchmark price was up by more than 3% on a year-over-year basis in February.
“We will undoubtedly experience some volatility in price growth for some market segments in 2013. However, months of inventory in the low-rise market segment will remain low, resulting in average price growth above 3% for the TREB market area this year. Our current average price forecast is $515,000 for all home types combined in 2013,” said Jason Mercer, TREB’s Senior Manager of Market Analysis.