Toronto Real Estate Board announced strong growth in the number of home sales and the average selling price reported by Greater Toronto Area REALTORS® in July 2018.
Home sales result in substantial spin-off benefits to the economy, so the positive results over the last two months are encouraging. However, no one will argue that housing supply remains an issue. The new provincial government and candidates for the upcoming municipal elections need to concentrate on policies focused on enhancing the supply of housing and reducing the upfront tax burden represented by land transfer taxes, province-wide and additionally in the City of Toronto.
Residential sales reported through TREB’s MLS® System for July 2018 amounted to 6,961 – up 18.6% compared to July 2017. Over the same period, the average selling price was up by 4.8% to $782,129, including a moderate increase for detached home types. New listings in July 2018 were down by 1.8% year-over-year. The market still remains hugely in favour of buyers, although Sellers can take advantage of the lesser listings in certain property categories and neighbourhoods.
Preliminary seasonal adjustment pointed to strong month-over-month increases of 6.6% and 3.1% respectively for sales and average price. Seasonally adjusted sales were at the highest level for 2018 and the seasonally adjusted average price reached the highest level since May 2017.
The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) Composite Benchmark for July 2018 was down slightly compared to July 2017. However, the annual growth rate looks to be trending toward positive territory in the near future.
We have certainly experienced an increase in demand for ownership housing so far this summer. It appears that some people who initially moved to the sidelines due to the psychological impact of the Fair Housing Plan and changes to mortgage lending guidelines have re-entered the market. Home buyers in the GTA recognize that ownership housing is a quality long-term investment.
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