Real Estate in the News

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This week’s top real estate news in Ontario and how your real estate business could be affected.

TREB Market Watch August 2016 (PDF)
The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) Composite Benchmark for August 2016 was up by 17.2 per
cent on a year-over-year basis. Similarly, the average selling price for all home types combined
was up by 17.7 per cent on an annual basis to $710,410. Both the MLS® HPI benchmarks and
average prices for low-rise home types were up by double digits percentage-wise.

Statistics Canada releases new housing price index
StatsCan reported new home prices are up 1% from June 2016 to July 2016 in the Toronto market, with an average increase of 0.4% nationally. Toronto continues to drive price increases and investor ambitions, and the cooling effect of Vancouver has yet to fuel any further price increases or demand within the GTA.

Growth plan will fill in ‘missing middle’ of housing choices: Report
“Highrise condo towers are being built in downtown Toronto and suburban centres, but these do not always offer units suitable for all family sizes,” says the report, called Suburbs on Track, released Wednesday. Without alternatives to single-family homes and small condos, the province risks losing a “once-in-a-generation opportunity” for a return on its $32 billion regional transit investment, said CBI executive director Cherise Burda.

Toronto area’s home sales, average prices continue to soar in August
The Toronto Real Estate Board says its members had 9,813 sales last month. That was 23.5 per cent more than in August 2015 — although last month’s volume was assisted by two additional working days. Even adjusting for an equal number of days, last month’s sales volume in the Greater Toronto Area was up about 13 per cent from August 2015. The average price for homes sold, regardless of type of property, was $710,400 — with the average price for detached homes in the city of Toronto itself going up 18.3 per cent to $1.2 million.

CMHC says expectations high for proposed national housing strategy
CMHC president and CEO Evan Siddall says the Crown corporation is looking to craft a path forward on housing for the federal government that makes the best use of available government funds to maximize social and economic outcomes for Canadians. He says officials at CMHC will be wading through mountains of information in the coming weeks to craft policy recommendations that will be privately passed along to the federal government.

Understanding Canadian real estate bubbles
Most people understand that sometimes when property values rise quickly, such as in the late 1980s in Canada, they fall quickly, as they did in 1990/1991. But that wasn’t actually a bursting price bubble. It was caused by an increase in demand followed by a decline in that demand. The demand increase was stimulated by a surge in wealthy immigrants from Hong Kong into new construction markets in Vancouver and Toronto. The sellers then pushed prices up in the more desirable trendy markets.

GTA low-rise home prices surpass record in July
The average price of new detached and semi-detached homes and townhomes was $906,508, up 12 per cent year-over-year. According to Altus Group, prices have climbed more than $100,000 over the past 12 months. The average price of semi-detached homes showed the largest increase, growing by $196,546 year-over-year to a new record high of $771,530. The average price of a townhome was $758,434, an increase of $122,491 since July 2015. In single-family detached homes, the average price in July was $1,095,910. This average first surpassed $1 million in March 2016.

Academic opines on Toronto’s foreign investment
“Yet, 82 per cent of Vancouverites say the foreign-buyer tax was long overdue,” Josh Gordon wrote. “Don’t let the Ontario government lead you into the same crisis Vancouver now faces.”

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