Toronto home sales in November up over October but down year-to-year

TORONTO — The Toronto Real Estate Board says the number of sales in the Greater Toronto Area in November was slightly higher than the previous month — a positive sign for the industry despite a series of year-over-year declines from last year.

The 7,374 homes sold last month represented a drop of 13.3 per cent from November 2016, but 256 sales over October.

The board says the average sales price in the GTA for all home types last month was $761,757, down by two per cent compared to November 2016, due in large part to a smaller share of detached home sales versus last year.

Prices for semi-detached, townhouse and condo properties were up but the average price of a detached home was down 5.8 per cent at $996,527.

BMO economist Benjamin Reitzes said in a note to clients that Toronto-area sales appeared to be “solid” in November.

“They’re still down 13.3% y/y, but that’s a big improvement from the near 30% y/y drop in the prior month,” Reitzes wrote.

Board president Tim Syrianos said in a statement that demand for housing in the GTA this fall has been above the regular seasonal trend.

“Similar to the Greater Vancouver experience, the impact of the Ontario Fair Housing Plan and particularly the foreign buyer tax may be starting to wane,” Syrianos said in a statement.

“On top of this, it is also possible that the upcoming changes to mortgage lending guidelines, which come into effect in January, have prompted some households to speed up their home buying decision.”

The Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions will implement new lending guidelines in January that will require borrowers who do not require mortgage insurance to show they would still be able to make their payments if interest rates were to rise.

According to a report by Will Dunning, chief economist for the Mortgage Professionals Canada industry group, the OSFI stress test would affect about 18 per cent of buyers with a reasonable chance of qualifying for a mortgage under the current rules.

Of those who fail the test, Dunning estimates, 40 per cent to 50 per cent would be unable to make sufficient adjustments to qualify for a property that they would consider acceptable to their needs.

In November, high-density home types continued to lead the way in terms of price growth in the Greater Toronto Area, with the average condo price rising 16.4 per cent to $516,965 compared to November 2016.

The average prices for semi-detached homes and townhouses were up 1.2 per cent and 4.8 per cent respectively.

In addition, the Bank of Canada has raised interest rates twice in recent months to the current overnight rate of one per cent, signalling a clampdown on cheap borrowing and driving the big bank prime rates and the cost of variable-rate mortgages higher. The cost of new fixed-rate mortgages have also risen as yields on the bond market have moved higher.

The board says new listings entered into its MLS system in November amounted to 14,349 — an increase of 37.2 per cent compared to the same period last year when the supply of listings was very low.

“We are still seeing seller’s market conditions for townhouses and condominium apartments in many neighbourhoods versus more balanced market conditions for detached and semi-detached houses,” said Jason Mercer, the board’s director of market analysis.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Alberta children whose only symptom of COVID-19 is a runny nose or a sore throat will no longer require mandatory isolation, starting Monday.
477 new COVID-19 cases confirmed in Alberta on Thursday

Changes being made to the COVID-19 symptom list for school-age children

Chasetin Morin
Photo from RCMP
Three men accused of assaulting Blackfalds RCMP officer going to trial

RCMP officer shot and wounded one of alleged attackers in December 2019

The Cenovus Energy Inc. logo seen at the company's headquarters in Calgary, Alta., Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2017.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
One-time costs of Husky takeover expected to be about $500 million, says Cenovus CEO

One-time costs of Husky takeover expected to be about $500 million, says Cenovus CEO

This drum circle was one of a multitude of activities held at The Hub on Ross in downtown Red Deer. The facility was permanently closed by the provincial government his week. (Advocate file photo.)
Many Red Deerians react with anger, dismay at closure of The Hub on Ross

Many disabled people can’t afford other recerational options, says guardian

Award-winning Calgary developer Brad Remington stands with Red Deer Mayor Tara Veer at the site of three multi-family condo complexes that are planned for Capstone, west of Carnival Cinemas. (Photo by LANA MICHELIn/Advocate staff).
$36M condo project on its way to Capstone development

Calgary developer plans to create 180 housing units to open in 2022

Alice Kolisnyk, deputy director of the Red Deer Food Bank, says the agency expects an increase in demand as the COVID-19 pandemic continues. Every new subscription to the Red Deer Advocate includes a $50 donation to the food bank. (Photo by BYRON HACKETT/Advocate Staff)
Support the food bank with a subscription to the Red Deer Advocate

The community’s most vulnerable members are always in need of a hand,… Continue reading

Workers at Olymel's Red Deer pork processing plant are among those eligible for a $2-an-hour bonus because of the pandemic.
Red Deer Advocate file photo
Two Olymel workers test positive for COVID-19 in Red Deer

Two workers at Olymel’s pork processing facility in Red Deer have tested… Continue reading

Ryan, Falcons avenge earlier loss to Panthers, 25-17

Ryan, Falcons avenge earlier loss to Panthers, 25-17

FILE - In this Oct. 28, 2015, file photo, former world boxing champion Roy Jones Jr. shows off his Russian passport during a news conference in Moscow, Russia. Mike Tyson and Jones got permission from California's athletic commission to return to the boxing ring next month because their fight would be strictly an exhibition of their once-unparalleled skills. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev, File)
Mike Tyson, Roy Jones promise a fight in “exhibition” return

Mike Tyson, Roy Jones promise a fight in “exhibition” return

David Hearn watches his putt on the seventh hole during the first round of the Wyndham Championship golf tournament at Sedgefield Country Club on Thursday, Aug. 13, 2020, in Greensboro, N.C. David Hearn, like everyone, has been deeply effected by the COVID-19 pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Chris Carlson
Canada’s Hearn looks to shake off poor 2020 results with more consistent play

Canada’s Hearn looks to shake off poor 2020 results with more consistent play

Malnati birdies half of holes to take 1-shot lead in Bermuda

Malnati birdies half of holes to take 1-shot lead in Bermuda

Penny Oleksiak swims the 200 metre race during the 2018 Team Canada finals in Edmonton on Wednesday July 18, 2018. The number of young swimmers in Canada is dwindling because of barriers posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Swimming Canada urges pools to accommodate youth, says can be done safely

Swimming Canada urges pools to accommodate youth, says can be done safely

Canada's Meaghan Mikkelson (12) and Marie-Philip Poulin (29) defends against United States' Hilary Knight (21) during the third period of a rivalry series women's hockey game in Hartford, Conn., Saturday, Dec. 14, 2019. Gina Kingsbury, Hockey Canada's director of women's national teams, hopes a Rivalry Series against the United States can happen this winter.THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Michael Dwyer
Canadian women’s hockey team yearns for international competition

Canadian women’s hockey team yearns for international competition

Most Read