Toronto Real Estate Board

Toronto Real Estate Board

December 04, 2014 07:00 ET

Toronto Realtors® Release November Housing Market Figures

Marie Commisso, Vaughan Real Estate

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Dec. 4, 2014) - Toronto Real Estate Board President Paul Etherington announced that Greater Toronto REALTORS® reported 6,519 residential transactions through the TorontoMLS system in November 2014. This result was up by 2.6 per cent compared to 6,354 sales reported in November 2013. Through the first 11 months of 2014, total sales amounted to 88,462 - up 6.6 per cent compared to the same period in 2013.

While the trend of year-over-year sales growth continued, the supply of listings remained constrained, with active listings at the end of November down in comparison to last year.

"Even with a constrained supply of homes for sale in many parts of the Greater Toronto Area, buyers continued to get deals done last month. Households remain upbeat about home ownership because monthly mortgage payments remain affordable relative to accepted lending standards. This is coupled with the fact that housing has proven to be a quality long-term investment," stated Mr. Etherington.

The average selling price for November transactions was up by 7.4 per cent year-over-year to $577,936. The year- to-date average price was up by 8.4 per cent to $567,198. The MLS® Home Price Index Composite Benchmark price for November was up by 7.7 per cent compared to a year earlier.

"The robust average price growth experienced throughout 2014 has been fundamentally sound, with demand high relative to supply. Strong competition between buyers has exerted upward pressure on selling prices. Barring a substantial shift in the relationship between sales and listings in the GTA, price growth is expected to continue through 2015," said Jason Mercer, TREB's Director of Market Analysis.

Summary of TorontoMLS Sales and Average Price November 1 - 30
  2014 2013
  Sales Average
Sales Average
City of Toronto ("416") 2,661 $616,130 3,823 2,518 $590,267 3,826
Rest of GTA ("905") 3,858 $551,592 4,966 3,836 $504,266 5,455
GTA 6,519 $577,936 8,789 6,354 $538,347 9,281
TorontoMLS Sales & Average Price By Home Type November 1 - 30, 2014
  Sales Average Price
  416 905 Total 416 905 Total
Detached 904 2,164 3,068 935,122 672,825 750,112
  Yr./Yr. % Change -0.3% -0.8% -0.6% 9.4% 10.6% 10.2%
Semi-Detached 261 389 650 667,178 449,429 536,864
  Yr./Yr. % Change -2.2% -6.3% -4.7% 4.2% 7.1% 6.1%
Townhouse 271 740 1,011 503,349 410,897 435,679
  Yr./Yr. % Change 9.3% 4.5% 5.8% 6.3% 8.6% 8.1%
Condo Apartment 1,199 468 1,667 394,225 310,220 370,641
  Yr./Yr. % Change 11.2% 8.1% 10.3% 2.0% 11.8% 4.3%

Greater Toronto REALTORS® are passionate about their work. They are governed by a strict Code of Ethics and share a state-of-the-art Multiple Listing Service. Over 40,000 TREB Members serve consumers in the Greater Toronto Area.

TREB is Canada's largest real estate board.

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Is helping children buy their first home becoming ‘the next parental responsibility’?

Marie Commisso
Vaughan Real Estate News

Garry Marr | November 17, 2014 5:46 PM ET
More from Garry Marr | @DustyWallet

First-time buyers are putting down 21% of the purchase price and on average about 13% of that money comes from family, according to a study by the Canadian Association of Accredited Mortgage Professionals set to be released Tuesday.
FotoliaFirst-time buyers are putting down 21% of the purchase price and on average about 13% of that money comes from family, according to a study by the Canadian Association of Accredited Mortgage Professionals set to be released Tuesday.

It’s the type of family support that some people will be proud to give and others will be jealous they never got, but a new survey shows first-time home buyers are getting on average more than $10,000 from family members.

Why the price of your home may not be climbing as much as you think

The average home price in Canada now tops $400,000 but unless you live in Toronto or Vancouver, you’re probably not cashing in on the housing boom

The housing market is full of anecdotal tales of people receiving help from their parents to push them over the top in a bidding war or children getting just enough cash for a 20% down payment which helps them avoid costly mortgage default insurance.

But the study from the Canadian Association of Accredited Mortgage Professionals due to be released on Tuesday, a portion of which was released in advance to the Financial Post, shows that on average first-time buyers are putting down 21% of the purchase price and that on average about 13% of that money comes from family.

The latest data from the Canada Real Estate Association puts the national average sale price at $419,699. That would make the average down payment for a first-time buyer $88,137 and mean family was chipping in $11,458.

“I’m surprised it’s not even higher,” said Jim Murphy, chief executive of CAAMP. “I think there are a generation out there of retired people or people getting close to retirement who have a lot of wealth and there will be a transfer of wealth and that is including assistance on their home.”

Will Dunning, chief economist with CAAMP, said the online survey was done with 2,000 people in mid-October, asking them about their first home purchase. Responses went back to 1990 but, for people who bought their homes from 2010 to 2014, the average family support was 17% of the down payment.

“You hear about the unusual situations [about parents buying their children homes]. It’s like houses selling over list. The only ones you hear about are the ones that do sell for over list,” said Mr. Dunning.

The reality is that while there is plenty of family support, most first-time buyers are scraping together their own savings to buy a home. Personal savings accounted for on average 45% of the down payment, 28% came from another loan from a financial institution, 9% came from a Registered Retirement Savings Plan and 4% came from other sources.


Jason Heath, a Toronto-based certified financial planner with Objective Financial Planners Inc., says in his practice he sees an increasing reliance on parental support to buy a home.

“For most middle class people I think helping out stops with education,” said Mr. Heath. “My general take on people with money and kids is: help them out to the point where they can help themselves out. I’ve got nothing against people who want to spend their last dollar on their last day. It makes you wonder if this isn’t the next parental responsibility. Forget saving up for education, parents will have to start savings for kids’ down payment.”

Bank of Montreal senior economist Robert Kavcic said there still isn’t enough data on parental support to prove what impact it is having on the housing market, namely whether it has been inflationary.

“I’d guess the impact is probably not that big, that it is still at the margins,” said Mr. Kavcic. “You presume support is increasing because valuations are up but it would be a guess with no data.”

Tighter mortgage rules, which restrict government-backed loans on properties worth more than $1-million, may be playing some part in people helping out of their children, said the economist. “You basically need 20% down if you are looking at a detached home [in Toronto or Vancouver],” he said. “The support might be more important and necessary.”

Kevin Lee, chief executive of the Canadian Home Builders’ Association, says family support is a function of the affordability issues now in the marketplace.

“It’s a barrier that is in front of young families and they need that financial gift from the bank of mom and dad just to get into the housing market. That is part of the affordability crisis we are seeing and it is a way around it, but how long can it last?” says Mr. Lee.

Scott Hannah, the Vancouver-based chief executive of the Credit Counselling Society, cautions parents really need to encourage children to save at the same time as they are giving them money.

“You really want them to have some skin in the game,” he said. “The worst case I’ve seen was a woman who came to me and said she helped her son with a $150,000 down payment and that got [her son and his wife] into a $600,000 home. They ran up a line of credit, because once you have a home you can get a line of credit. They couldn’t manage it and the parents bailed them out of that. I told her ‘if you don’t help your son get financially independent, he’ll be coming to you in his 40s.’  The line went silent and she said ‘he’s 43′.”

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Marie Commisso
Vaughan Real Estate News
July 31, 2014

Why are some Toronto homes being relisted - at a higher price?

By Carolyn Ireland

In a fickle summer, buyers are noticing a trend

It seems some Toronto homeowners aren't getting the bidding wars they hope for when they list their houses for sale. But in a move that irks many market watchers, the owner pulls the listing, then relist a week or two later at a higher price.

Just this week, real estate agent Chander Chaddah glimpsed an opportunity as a similar scenario unfolded. He was heading off to the Danforth with two of his buyers to make an offer on a house that hadn't sold on the designated offer night.

The sellers listed their semi-detached house with an asking price of $629,000, then set a date for offers. Their neighbour's house had sold for $715,000 in May.

But July isn't May. It's especially not February. Summer is fickle. Bidding wars still erupt spontaneously, but for some sellers the strategy of underpricing fizzles. Buyers who've been through a few rounds of bidding and lost out are fried.

"Even the weather makes people a little less intense," says Mr. Chaddah of Sutton Group Associates Realty Inc.

So for the unfortunate east-end sellers, offer night came and went with only one bid. It was higher than the asking price but not as high as they were hoping for. They cancelled the listing and came out again with a new asking price $60,000 higher at $689,000. Offers welcome any time, they said.

That tactic of increasing the price when a house doesn't sell alienates a lot of potential buyers, agents say. It particularly annoys those who submitted an offer on the scheduled evening.

In the case of Mr. Chaddah's clients, they had seen the property at the first open house but they didn't think it was for them so they didn't submit a bid. They went back with him for a second look and reconsidered. To Mr. Chaddah, the situation seemed like a chance to cut a deal. He was heading off this week in the hope of negotiating the sellers down from $689,000.

Mr. Chaddah says the Toronto market is still robust and continues to suffer the perennial problem of too few listings to meet demand. As a result, desirable houses on good streets are still causing a commotion.

In Roncesvalles Village, a renovated semi with a basement apartment set the neighbours abuzz when it sold for $1.01-million. Mr. Chaddah believes it's a high-water mark for a two-storey semi in the neighbourhood.

The Toronto Real Estate Board is seeing some signs that the supply of listings is beginning to rise.

In the first half of July, sales through the multiple listing service rose 11.6 per cent in the Greater Toronto Area compared with the same two weeks last year. Listings jumped 9.7 per cent in the same period compared with the first half of July in 2013. The average selling price in the GTA increased 8 per cent in the first two weeks of July from a year earlier.

TREB's senior manager of market analysis, Jason Mercer, says it's possible the number of new listings will continue to swell in the second half of the year. If so, he adds, the increased choice for buyers could tame some of the price growth in certain segments.

Mr. Chaddah says that the strange thing about competition is that it seems to give buyers needed affirmation that others see the same qualities as they do in a house. "It's the multiple offers that make people confident. It's perverse."

The condo market in Toronto, meanwhile, is still largely disconnected from the single-family segment.

Christopher Bibby of Sutton Group Associates Realty Inc. says detached houses are in such high demand and sell so effortlessly that he has seen some agents who previously specialized in condos switch camps.

Mr. Bibby is sticking with a focus on condo sales because that is where he has built his business. But he turns down listings when the owner wants to set a lofty asking price for a basic condo surrounded by competing units.

He's working longer hours these days because when he does list a condo unit in a busy building he looks for an edge. "We need a different approach to the whole selling strategy."

If the owner wants to set an asking price based on what they "need" to turn a profit on their investment, Mr. Bibby doesn't take the listing. "It's a very touchy subject when they're going to break even or have a loss."

But in an area with a cluster of towers, the market is diluted.

"When I have a vendor that wants to overprice their place by $50,000 and doesn't understand there are 50 others in the area ... if we don't see eye-to-eye, it can just be a frustrating process for everyone."

In a building with 500 units, surrounded by 10 other buildings with 500 units each, it's very difficult for an agent to make one listing stand out, he explains; price is typically the only real factor.

Ideally, Mr. Bibby prefers to sell one-of-a-kind lofts. They go quickly because buyers are just waiting to pounce.

He listed a unit in the Vinegar Lofts near Queen and River street for $689 a square foot. It was aggressive for a neighbourhood that's out of the core and still a bit sketchy, he acknowledges.

"Colleagues said: 'You're priced on the high side.' I said: 'Yeah, but I'm going to get it.' "

He succeeded, he says, because there was nothing comparable anywhere nearby. A potential buyer couldn't claim to be considering a competing unit because competition didn't exist.

Mr. Bibby says many condo owners have sold their units in order to free up cash. Some are renting for now because they can't find a single-family house to buy. Competition is so intense, he says, that the leap in price can be too great.

Loft owners, on the other hand are hard-core.

"The loft people don't care," Mr. Bibby says. "It's a lifestyle for them."

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GTA REALTORS® report mid-month resale housing Market Figures

TORONTO, July 16, 2014 -- Toronto Real Estate Board President Paul Etherington announced that TorontoMLS home sales through the first 14 days of July 2014 were up by 11.6 per cent year-over-year to 3,891.  New listings were also up compared to the same period in 2013, but by a lesser annual rate of 9.7 per cent. 

“There are two key takeaways from the July mid-month results.  First, given the continuation of strong sales growth, it is clear that buyers are still attracted to affordable home ownership options in the GTA.  Second, if new listings growth begins to outpace sales growth, we could start to see an improvement in the overall supply of homes for sale.  This would be a relief for some buyers who have been hard pressed to find a home that meets their needs in this tight market,” said Mr. Etherington.  

The average selling price for sales reported during the first two weeks of July 2014 was $549,174.  This result was up by eight per cent compared to the same period in 2013.  The strongest rates of price growth were reported for semi-detached houses and townhouses in the City of Toronto. 

“Annual average price growth remains in the high single-digits or low double-digits for many home types across the GTA.  It is possible that we could see more choice for buyers in the second half of 2014 in the form of increased new listings.  A sustained increase in choice for buyers could serve to gradually ease the pace of price growth in some market segments,” said Jason Mercer, the Toronto Real Estate Board’s Senior Manager of Market Analysis.


Summary of TorontoMLS Sales and Average Price July 1-14, 2014








Average Price

New Listings


Average Price

New Listings


City of Toronto ("416")








Rest of GTA ("905")
















TorontoMLS Sales & Average Price  By Home Type - July 1-14, 2014



Average Price
















Yr./Yr. % Change














Yr./Yr. % Change














Yr./Yr. % Change







Condo Apartment







Yr./Yr. % Change









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Toronto housing market on track to be hottest in Canada for 2014: report 

Marie Commisso Vaughan Real Estate

Toronto is on track to end 2014 as the hottest housing market in the country, with prices likely to rise 8.1 per cent, year over year, outpacing even Vancouver’s anticipated 7.1 per cent climb, according to Royal LePage’s House Price Survey and market forecast.

Even the GTA’s much-watched condo sector is expected to end the year on a healthy note, given that prices have already increased 5.4 per cent, to an average of $380,453, in the first half of 2014, year over year, notes the report released Wednesday.

That compares to just 0.3 per cent growth in condo prices in Vancouver during the same period. There the average condo now sells for $491,984, says the national real estate firm. That is a turnaround from last year when Vancouver saw house price declines.

Bungalows in that west coast city were up 5.2 per cent by mid-year to $1.1 million, on average, while two-storey detached home prices climbed 4.6 per cent, year to year, to $1.2 million.

Unrelenting demand for housing in Canada’s two biggest cities — “chronic supply shortages” have played out, in Toronto in particular, in often irrational bidding wars that have propelled prices further into the stratosphere — is actually masking “temperate” demand in most other areas of the country, notes the report on national home sales to the end of June and looking ahead to 2015.

“While a widening affordability gap in Canada’s largest urban centres is characterizing the national market Canadians read about daily, year-over-year house price increases in most regions of the country are presently tracking below the historical average,” notes Phil Soper, president and chief executive of Royal LePage in a statement.

The national average home price is expected to increase 5.1 per cent by year’s end, over 2013, skewed upward largely by Toronto, Vancouver and, to a lesser extent, Calgary. That western boom town is expected to see house prices climb by an average of 5.5 per cent by year’s end in the face of strong work-force growth and fierce competition for properties.

“A closer look at Canada’s residential real estate market points to a tale of two city types, in which big city housing activity represents a small part of the picture but accounts for a large part of the gains in national average home prices,” says Royal LePage.

But that growth should ease in the coming year.

“Compared to other major forecasts, our year-beginning national outlook predicted a higher level of 2014 average price appreciation, yet supply constraints in a handful of our largest cities necessitate a revision upwards,” said Soper.

“Looking ahead to 2015, we expect house prices to track more closely to the rate of general economic growth. That is, we see price increases in Canada’s largest cities moderating, just as our smaller city markets should see a lift.”

Across the GTA, two-storey homes and detached bungalows saw the biggest price growth, at 8.3 and 7.2 per cent respectively in the first half of 2014, year over year. That brought the average price of two-storey to $730,806 and a bungalow to $611,906, says Royal LePage.

On the condo front, strong demand and price appreciation continues to be driven by investors looking to hold for the long term and cash in on Toronto’s high rents, as well as young buyers looking for affordable homes close to downtown jobs, especially in bigger units that can accommodate families, says Gino Romanese, a senior vice president.

By: Business Reporter, Published on Wed Jul 09 2014

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