According to figures released today from the Toronto Real Estate Board, monthly resale housing market figures are down.The Greater Toronto REALTORS report that there were 4,395 existing home sales in December- which settles the total for 2010 to 86,170. This is down by 1 % in comparison to 2009.
"Market conditions were anything but uniform in 2010. We went from super-charged sales activity during the first four months of the year, to a marked drop-off in transactions in the summer and then in the fall saw sales climb back to levels that are sustainable over the longer term," said TREB President Bill Johnston.
In terms of average prices for homes being sold in 2010, it settled in at $431,463 – which is a rise of up 9 % compared to the 2009 average selling price of $395,460. The average annual rate of price growth was 5 %.
There were other factors at play for this dip, according to Johnston:"New Federal Government-mandated mortgage lending guidelines, higher borrowing costs and misconceptions about the HST caused a pause in home buying in the summer. As it became clear that the HST was not applicable to the sale price of an existing home and buyers realized that home ownership remained affordable, market conditions improved," continued Johnston.
Demand and weaker prices from the previous year had 2010 starting off strong- at least from a relative standpoint.
"At the outset of 2010, we were experiencing annual rates of price growth at or near 20 per cent. This was the result of extremely tight market conditions coupled with the fact that we were comparing prices to the trough of the recession at the beginning of 2009," reports Jason Mercer, TREB's Senior Manager of Market Analysis.
After a shotgun start, markets and values began to dip moderately as the economic climate took hold.
“Balanced market conditions in the second half of 2010 resulted in more moderate home price appreciation," says Mercer. "Expect the average selling price to grow at or below five per cent in 2011. With this type of growth, mortgage carrying costs for the average priced home in the GTA will remain affordable for a household earning an average income."
Examining sales in terms of different housing types, detached homes accounted for 49 % of all sales. Condominium apartments made up 25 % of the total sales. Other types of housing, like townhomes and semi-detached houses made up the last 26 %. District to district, the breakdown of numbers was different- where condominium apartments comprised 61 % of total sales.
Information Received from Propertywire.ca January7th, 2011