High-rise activity keeps GTA new home sales robust

Year-to-date sales remain strong despite a slightly more modest August

High-rise activity keeps GTA new home sales robust
Although showing signs of moderation, sales of new construction homes in the Greater Toronto Area remained strong on a year-to-date basis, according to latest data from the Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD).

August sales were down 69 per cent from August 2016 and 62 per cent below the 10-year average, year-to-date sales kept ahead of last year at this point and 28 per cent above the 10-year average.

The majority of the 31,749 new homes purchased so far this year were multi-family units, condo apartments in high-rise and mid-rise buildings, and stacked townhomes, while 20 per cent of year- to-date sales were low-rise single-family homes.

A total of 795 new homes were sold in August, with low-rise single-family homes accounting for 114 transactions, while the remaining 681 sales were those of multi-family homes, condo apartments in high-rise and mid-rise buildings, and stacked townhomes.

BILD President and CEO Bryan Tuckey cautioned against reading too much into the decline, saying that August is typically a slow month.

“One month does not make a trend. Late summer is a quiet time for real estate, and most builders wait until September to launch developments and bring new product to market,” Tuckey explained. “We are expecting fall to be very busy, and 2017 could still be a record year of new home sales driven by the incredibly strong condo market.”

“The longer-term decline in single-family’s share of new home sales has now kicked into hyperdrive –  dropping from about one-half in 2015, to one-third last year, to less than one-sixth in recent months,” according to Patricia Arsenault, Altus Group’s Executive Vice President of Research Consulting Services. “While underlying demand suggests the pendulum should start to swing back a bit towards the single-family side, in reality it will be stopped in its tracks unless there is a significant increase in new single-family product making it to the market.”

BILD’s full August 2017 data for the GTA market can be viewed here.

Related stories:
National sales numbers rally in August despite current GTA policies
August housing activity well below potential peak—DLC’s Cooper