In January the Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB) launched its inaugural Market Year in Review & Outlook Report at a broker breakfast with more than 300 guests in attendance, including GTA Realtors, public office holders and individuals from many different sectors including financial services, business, building, not-for-profit, information and research.
On hand to present were TREB CEO John DiMichele and TREB president Mark McLean; Benjamin Tal, CIBC World Markets deputy chief economist; Jason Mercer, TREB’s director of market analysis; Sean Simpson, vice president, Canada, Ipsos Public Affairs; Bryan Tuckey, BILD president & CEO; and George Carras, founder of RealNet Canada and president of RealStrategies Inc.
Tal kicked off the proceedings with an overview of global economic conditions and how they relate to Canada, including a discussion of how economic trends in the year ahead will impact the real estate market.
Next, Mercer and Simpson took the stage to present a 2015 year in review and 2016 housing market outlook, punctuated by results from two TREB-commissioned Ipsos Reid surveys of recent and intending home buyers. In looking forward to the year ahead, Mercer suggested that whether we have another record year or the best year on record will depend on two things: the direction of borrowing costs and the availability of listings. Meanwhile, Simpson shared Ipsos Reid results that demonstrated first-time home buyers will represent a large share of transactions in 2016, suggesting that GTA households remain confident in home ownership as a long-term investment.
Tuckey and Carras provided the audience with a glimpse of trends in the new home market and insight on what it is like to build within today’s policy framework. Tuckey highlighted the challenges faced by the new home industry in today’s land use and regulatory policy framework, while Carras demonstrated how new housing stock is getting smaller and more expensive, saying the future of the new home market will be “taller, smaller and more expensive.”
Finally, DiMichele and McLean discussed what makes the Greater Golden Horseshoe region great, and what it will take to continue to improve the region’s competitive position on the world stage in the future. They urged all stakeholders to stop thinking in silos and to work collaboratively to improve transit, public infrastructure, housing options and affordability.