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Toronto Housing Sales Nose-Dive In April

In one of the clearest indications of the coronavirus's effect on the Toronto housing market, a new report has found sales declined 69% year-over-year in early April.

Skyline GTA
Toronto housing sales took an expected hit in early April due to the coronavirus.

In the latest report from the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board, 1,654 GTA home sales were reported in the first 17 days of April, down from 5,343 during the same period last year.

Year-over-year sales declines hit all home types hard: with detached (-69.1%), condos (-72%) and semi-detached (-64.4%) all down significantly.

“The state of emergency measures currently in place, including the necessary enforcement of social distancing, has impacted the real estate market in many ways,” TRREB President Michael Collins said in a statement.

“Home buyers and sellers have concerns about the economy and indeed their own employment situations. On top of this, many buyers and sellers are avoiding any type of in-person interaction. In the condo market in particular, individual condo corporations have curtailed entry for non-residents.”

The number of new listings was also down on a year-over-year basis, declining by 63.7% to 3,843, down from 10,595 in 2019.

Unfortunately for would-be buyers, prices did not decline so dramatically. The average selling price reported during the first 17 days of April was $819,665, down by only 1.5% compared to the same period in 2019.

Collins characterized the dramatic drop in transactions as "temporary," with a turnaround coming once there’s a "meaningful and sustained" decline in the number of [coronavirus] cases.

“However, once recovery begins, it will likely accelerate in earnest as buyers seek to satisfy pent-up demand that will build up over the course of the spring and at least part of the summer,” Collins said.

Related Topics: Toronto housing