Corinne McCabe , Broker

Bosley Real Estate Ltd., Brokerage

Cell 416-888-9842 | info@corinnemccabe.com

Usually by this this time in February we are normally gearing up for the spring market to start. One problem however...Seller’s didn’t get the memo. Like most of last year we continue to struggle with low inventories, Is it economic uncertainty that is causing this or is affordability the likely culprit within the freehold sector? Despite a continued increase of listings over the last few weeks it is important to note that overall listings for freehold homes is down significantly from last year, despite the influences of a brutal winter of snow storms and freezing rain. This is not the news that buyers want to hear as they are still out there waiting to purchase.


The freehold sector last week saw a 29% drop in new listings but an increase in sales up by 7%. The good news is the number of sales is 20% higher than a year ago and the percentage of sales at or above the list price remains at a notable 54% which indicates that bidding wars are still happening in certain neighbourhoods. We are experiencing very localized market conditions. The number of new condo listings also continued to contract last week while demand and sales were up 7% from the week before. With fewer listings the increased competition resulted in 42% of available condos selling at or above the list price. We are still experiencing the impact of the “stress test” which varies by location, housing type and price.

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Real estate disrupters come and go. Many of these new “disrupters”, some coming here from the USA will offer you a quick estimate using an algorithm without doing a market analysis. Are they overlooking the emotional aspect of selling a home and are they just order takers? The market in the last couple of years was booming. You would list a house and it would sell within days. Now in some areas, realtors need to brush up on their negotiating skills and a lot of that comes with experience and training.


Studies were done in the USA and those sellers not using traditional Realtors, sold on average 6-8% lower than an MLS sale for a similar property. American real estate and Canadian real estate are not the same. Through our nationwide listing system Realtor.ca homebuyers and sellers are able to see virtually all listings in the country. Go south of the border and you see only the company’s listings. It is no wonder that third-party, non-Realtor websites dominate America. The road ahead is going to be exciting as we adapt and respond to the changing times!


Freehold listings continued to climb last week by as much as 45% with the central core leading the way and the bulk of the new listings were listed between $1.5M and $3M. The number of sold freehold properties did not see an increase from the previous week, but of the properties sold 58% sold over the asking price. A similar market exists in the resale condo sector.


New listings were up 38% week to week but not much change in the number of condos sold. Sales happening at or above the list price seem to be hovering in the 40-45% range, which we consider to be healthy.

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The Toronto Real Estate Board released its market outlook for 2019 this week and the forecast is all good news! It’s predicting the average sale price to be about 4% higher for 2019 and a moderate increase in total sales to come in around 83,000 ends, compared to 77,375 sale ends we had in 2018. It’s also encouraging to see a slight increase in the selling price for The City of Toronto in January, coming in at $777,674 up 1.4% compared to January 2018, and up 1.9% from December. Taking into account the entire GTA region the number of transactions edged upwards and inline with TREB’s forecast for higher sales in 2019.


The resale condominium market continues to lead the way in terms of price growth, up 8.8% on a year-over-year basis with the average sale price at $591,444 for the City of Toronto. The rental market in the GTA is expected to remain tight in 2019 with the supply of rental units still expected to be of concern.


The number of new freehold listings decreased last week but that could be because of the massive snowstorm Toronto had. 20% fewer listings week-over-week created increased competition with 45% of sales selling at or above the asking price. The busiest part of town is still the east end of the city where multiple offers are still the norm. More than 85% of the properties sold over asking.


The condo sector saw a small 6% uptick in new listings last week and no change in the number of sold condos from the previous week. TREB has based its predictions on a lpsos survey and 26% of those looking to buy this year are planning to buy a condo. The proportion of buyers who are planning to buy their first home are still finding it difficult to qualify for loans under the new mortgage stress test.

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New featured property at 2324 Danforth AVE in Toronto.
Bright & Clean Retail Space On The Danforth Perfect For Professionals. Currently A Travel Agency & Suited Towards A Professional Office, Real Estate, Law Or Accounting Firm. Ceramic Tile Floor Throughout The Main Space, Almost 900 Sq. Ft. Total Including A Wheelchair Accessible Washroom, Kitchenette & Separate Coffee Station. Full Partially Finished Basement For Storage, Shared Back Patio, One Parking Space Available At 2404 Danforth In Vincenzo's Parking Lot
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Toronto is digging itself out of a major snowfall this week and now a polar vortex of extreme cold has moved in. Looks like the spring market will start a little later this year. So far in January the market has been “slow”. In traditional years that was typical for the first month of the year, but we have been spoiled with the last couple of years where house hunters were eagerly pouncing on listings as they appeared in January. FOMO ‘fear of missing out’ has calmed a little. This is not the case for all of Toronto. Certain neighbourhoods are still crazy busy, especially Riverdale/Leslieville where 75% of the properties sold last week in a bidding war.


Freehold listings across the 416 where down 23% last week and this continues to be a source of concern. Sales on the other hand have doubled from the week before. In the central core, there were no new listings below $700k, 29 between $1.5M and $3M, and 28 new listings over $3M. The east core continues to be a hot district where sales are outpacing new listings by a 3 to 1 margin.


The condo market has an equal share of heat this week as well. Sales of existing suites has outpaced listings. It is evident that the contraction of listings (down 32% from the previous week) and a small increase in sales (up 8%) is having an impact on pricing, with over 50% of condos sold last week at or above the list price. The majority of sales that occurred were in the $400K to $700K price range.

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