TORONTO HOUSING MARKET REACHES NEW HIGH
By Dee Guttman, Farhan Chaudhry and Diane Zaide
While Torontonians have been used to high prices regarding its housing market, it seems as though this new high will take quite some time to get used to. In February 2021, the housing market soared as the average home price surpassed the $1 million mark for the first time. This amid a pandemic has caused widespread unemployment and failure of many small businesses, has come at a shock for many.
Surpassed $1 million for the first time
HERE WE HAVE GTA RESIDENTS TALKING ABOUT THEIR EXPERIENCE BUYING A HOUSE DURING COVID-19
Newlyweds Lia and Kit Cooke hoped that their pandemic wedding would save them enough money to own a house in Toronto. Unfortunately, that was not the case. “We thought that with a pandemic that houses would be more affordable, but it was the exact opposite,” Lia said. “We’re both in our late 20s and don’t come from affluent backgrounds, which seems like a prerequisite to living in Toronto,” Kit added. They both spoke solemnly about their house-hunting search, which has seen the average Toronto home prices soar.
The average selling price for all home types was up 14.9% to $1,045,488, an increase from $910,142 in 2020 that was largely attributed to rising prices in Toronto. It can be attributed to a myriad of reasons. With the mortgage rates being offered at a premium, it will only make the prices surge in the remainder of the year.
^This graph details how the average home price has been increasing exponentially since 2018.
- The average sold price is higher than the average list price… meaning houses are being sold for more than what it is in the market for.
The Toronto Regional Real Estate board (TRREB) also commented on this historic milestone. TRREB believes that COVID-19 worries are not keeping buyers and sellers out of the market and that interest in purchasing or listing homes will fuel record prices to climb even higher. The discrepancy between supply and demand has shifted to favor sellers. While this pattern is expected to continue, young people in the city are finding it hard to keep up with the prices.
Real-Estate Agent of 35 years Robin Daniels advises young couples to continue to save up as the prices of houses will continue to grow. She added that “The rise in home prices is no surprise, as other provinces are displaying the same pattern, particularly British Columbia.” Vancouver and Toronto have seen prices surge. “This increase in prices has seen many Ontarians flock to greener pastures such as the Maritimes, where houses are much more in tune with the salaries of the average Canadian” Daniels highlighted.
*Average home prices across Canada
Toronto has been the major contributor in driving Ontario’s home prices to new highs. This doesn’t mean that Toronto is the only guilty one in this phenomenon. Surrounding cities like Mississauga, Oakville, and Vaughan have followed a similar trend in the housing price increase. While once these cities were seen safe, haven’t for raising families, they would now serve as a reminder of how expensive Toronto is. The prices have not dented the number of sales of Toronto homes. This year is expected to outsell the year 2012. Which was historic in it’s own right.
If you go by the current 2021 trajectory, it is estimated that there will be a total of 44,908 total homes sold in Toronto. Lia and Kit will have to save up for another year hoping that they can play catch up, a reality that is becoming all too familiar.