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Why Retail Property Sales Lost Their Mojo

Toronto Retail

The start of the year was happy days for retail property sales in the GTA, with $1.1B in trades in Q1 alone. Since then things have been on the decline, with a paltry $380M worth of retail properties changing hands last quarter, down 17% from Q2. What’s going on? Avison Young capital markets group leader Robin White tells us good quality core assets are few and far between and investors aren’t keen to part with them. Even smaller plazas are generating good returns, he notes, and owners are happy to hold on to them because they have no better places to invest their money. 


Among the bigger retail deals of the last quarter was First Capital Realty's $39.7M purchase of Shops of Oakville South (above). Tenants at the 231k SF plaza include Whole Foods, LCBO and Longo’s. First Capital also snapped up 102-104 Yorkville Ave for $14M last quarter. Things likely won’t stay slow for long, Robin points out, noting Avison Young is bringing properties to market this quarter that will create resale opportunities. And his team predicts pending deals will push overall retail sales for 2014 beyond 2013’s total of $2.1B.