GTA new home market busy in March, inventory declines: BILD

The GTA new home market continued to see above-average sales and a decline in inventory in March, the Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD) has stated in an announcement.

There were 3,730 total new home sales in March 2020, which was up 67 per cent from March 2019 and 7 per cent above the 10-year average, according to Altus Group, BILD’s official source for new home market intelligence.

Sales of new condominium apartments, including units in low, medium and high-rise buildings, stacked townhouses and loft units, at 2,840 units sold, were up 108 per cent from March 2019 and 30 per cent above the 10-year average. It was the second strongest March of the past 20 years for new condominium apartment sales, after the record high of March 2017.

Single-family homes, including detached, linked, and semi-detached houses and townhouses (excluding stacked townhouses), accounted for 890 new home sales, up two per cent from last March but 32 per cent below the 10-year average.

“The March data reinforce the fact that new home sales in the GTA were positioned for a strong year – at least before the COVID-19 pandemic took hold in mid-March,” said Patricia Arsenault, Altus Group’s Executive Vice President, Data Solutions. “New condominium apartment sales in March were boosted by the record number of new projects launched in February, many of which opened near month-end. With dates for most planned launches now being pushed off, and buyer hesitation, sales in April are expected to be much more muted.”

With few projects launching in March, total new home remaining inventory decreased from the previous month, to 13,933 units. Remaining inventory includes units in preconstruction projects, in projects currently under construction, and in completed buildings.

The benchmark prices for both new condominium apartments and new single-family homes increased in March compared to the previous month. The benchmark price for new condo apartments was $983,133, which was up 25.9 per cent over the last 12 months, and the benchmark price for new single-family homes was $1,115,869, which was down 0.1 per cent over the last 12 months.

“The Ontario government’s decisive measures during the COVID-19 pandemic have allowed our industry to continue work on new homes moving towards occupancy while pausing the balance of construction,” said David Wilkes, BILD President & CEO. “When public health officials deem it safe for workplaces to return to more normal operations, the government must prioritize residential construction so we can continue to meet the region’s pressing housing needs.”

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