The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) says home sales in June posted their largest monthly drop since 2010, with the GTA market leading the decline.
It was the third consecutive monthly decline since March, with sales for June down 6.7% compared with May on a national basis, the association said. 70% of local markets registered month-over-month declines, it added. Sales dropped by 11.4% compared with June of 2016.
The biggest drop by far occurred in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) the numbers show.
Sales of existing homes fell by over 15% in Toronto, the second straight double-digit decline, with resale activity now down by a whopping 42% from its March peak.
Toronto now officially a buyers’ market
The sales-to-listings ratio is the statistical benchmark that real estate boards use to determine whether a market is in sellers’ or buyers’ territory. A ratio of around 50% cent means around 5 homes are sold for every 10 that come on the market. It denotes a balanced market. A ratio above 60% indicates a sellers’ market.
The ratio of sales compared to new home listings fell below 40% in Toronto, according to this metric, Toronto has now fully moved from sellers’ territory to buyers’ territory.
That’s where the Toronto-area market is right now. In March, by comparison, the ratio stood at 86%, meaning homes were being snatched up pretty much as soon as the “for sale” sign went up.
The dramatic U-turn in home sales happened after the Ontario government introduced a slew of housing measures in April, including a Vancouver-like tax on foreign buyers.
The higher end of the Toronto market (call it $1.5 million plus, for argument’s sake) has gone stone cold, with prices now edging down and crickets echoing through open houses.
Average home prices dropped 5.8 per cent in June compared to May on a seasonally-adjusted basis.
But prices were still up compared to June 2016. The average price tag for a home in the GTA was $793,915, 6.3 per cent above the level seen a year ago.
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