Are Condos the Key to the GTA Real Estate Market?
A new report suggests that while housing affordability remains an issue throughout the GTA, condos are the key for buyers looking the enter the market.
The Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB) announced that realtors in the Greater Toronto Area reported 7,038 condominium apartment sales through TREB’s MLS(r) System in the second quarter of 2019. This result was up by 3.2 per cent compared to 2018’s second quarter.
“As has generally been the case in the region since the implementation of the Ontario Government’s Fair Housing Plan in 2017, the condo market segment has remained tight in comparison to other major housing types,” said TREB president Michael Collins.
New condominium apartment listings entered into TREB’s MLS(r) System were down by 3.5 per cent compared to Q2 2018, with 11,110 listings added in 2019 versus 11,512 listings added in 2018.
“From a price-point perspective, condo apartments continue to offer prospective buyers a relatively affordable housing option when looking across the GTA,” Collins said.
In the Halton Region, the average sale price in the second quarter of 2019 was $500,874, down slightly from the same time in 2018 at $513,742.
In Peel, the average price in 2019 Q2 rose to $461,771 from $419,394 in Q2 2018.
The TREB report points out that through the first six months of 2019, condominium apartment completions reported by CMHC were down substantially on a year-over-year basis compared to the first half of 2018. Completions correlate to a certain degree with listings, as some investors choose to list their units for sale when title transfers to them from the builder.
For renters in the GTA, the market was better supplied in the second quarter of 2019 than that of 2018, the report finds.
There were 9,749 condominium apartment rental transactions through TREB’s MLS(r) System in the second quarter of 2019. This result was up by 14.9 per cent compared to Q2 2018.
The average Q2 2019 one-bedroom condominium apartment rent for the GTA as a whole was $2,192, up 6.7 per cent compared to Q2 2018. Over the same period, the average two-bedroom condominium apartment rent increased by 4.3 per cent to $2,873, the report says.
“We have seen an acceleration in the number of units listed for rent, which has provided renters with more choice in the marketplace and has coincided with a slower pace of average rent growth over the past year,” said Jason Mercer, TREB’s chief market analyst.