Toronto home prices steady as short supply offsets mortgage woes
Home sales climbed a seasonally adjusted 0.2% from August to 6,455, 1.9% more than a year ago, the Toronto Real Estate Board said Wednesday. The average home price fell 0.5% from August to C$796,786 ($621,421), 2.9% higher than a year earlier. The benchmark price, which measures the value of a typical home, was up just 0.1% on the month to C$765,400.
"While higher borrowing costs and tougher mortgage qualification rules have kept sales levels off the record pace set in 2016, many households remain positive about home ownership as a quality long-term investment," the board's president, Garry Bhaura, said in a statement. "As the Greater Toronto Area population continues to grow, the real challenge in the housing market will be supply rather than demand."
Toronto's housing market has kept its footing over the past few months as sales grew and prices stabilized, following a correction earlier in the year when government regulations came into place to tame speculative buying.
"Generally speaking, annual rates of price growth have been stronger for higher density home types in 2018, including condominium apartments, townhouses and semi-detached houses," said Jason Mercer, TREB's director of market analysis. "In many neighborhoods, these home types provide more affordable home ownership options."
Detached homes fell behind other housing segments in September, with the benchmark price dropping 1.6% from a year ago to C$914,200. In contrast, condo apartments led the price gains, jumping 10.1% from last September to C$506,300.
New listings were down 3.1% from a year ago to 15,920. Active listings rose 5.6% to 20,089 from 19,021 last year.