While not as brisk as previous weeks we are experiencing another strong week of sales in the Downtown Toronto market. Week over week, we have seen a slight decline in the number of new listings but we suggest that this is nothing more than a small blip in an otherwise healthy Spring. The number of homes being sold at or over asking has remained consistent at nearly 60%. Interestingly, there has been a significant rise in the number of conditional deals which clearly illustrates that people are beginning to tire of bidding wars.
No question that the Toronto real estate market got off to a relatively slow start in 2013 due to unusually bad weather and tightening mortgage rules but we expect more listings and a forward shift of the traditional Spring Market. We forecast steady sales continuing later into the summer, possibly into July. Buyer demand is still strong and it may take longer to feed that demand. Jason Mercer, senior economist for The Toronto Real Estate Board believes that more freehold homes will come available over the next 4-6 months as people start to shake off fears of a housing bubble.
In the Downtown Core sales of first-time buyer homes, those priced in the $400k to $700k range continues to pose the biggest challenge as only 21 new listings came to market versus 76 sales. The mid-market, homes priced between $700K and $1.5M is also experiencing tight availability, with 63 units sold to only 53 new listings. As expected, the high-end luxury market continues to open up with 11 new listings and only 5 sales.
Condo sales continue to improve, and currently represent 50% of overall sales units in the Downtown Core. We currently see a small increase in prices most likely due to fewer resale units coming to market. We see this trend continuing into the late summer.