GTA new home sales drop to 20-year low in 2018: BILD

Overall in 2018, there were 25,161 new homes sold in the GTA, according to Altus Group, BILD’s official source for new home market intelligence, making 2018 the year with the lowest number of new home sales in the GTA since Altus Group started tracking new home data in 2000.

2018 was a historically slow year for new home sales in the GTA. Photo via Shutterstock / Altus Group.
2018 was a historically slow year for new home sales in the GTA. Photo via Shutterstock / Altus Group.

There were 21,330 condominium apartments sold in 2018, including units in low, medium and high-rise buildings, stacked townhouses and loft units, down 38 per cent from 2017 but only 4 per cent less than the 10-year average. Setting a record low since Altus started tracking new home data in 2000, there were only 3,831 single-family homes sold in 2018, including detached, linked, and semi-detached houses and townhouses (excluding stacked townhouses), down 50 per cent from 2017 and down 74 per cent from the 10-year average.

“A number of factors combined to produce the drop in GTA new home sales in 2018,” said Patricia Arsenault, Altus Group’s Executive Vice President, Data Solutions. “More stringent mortgage stress testing, rising interest rates and lack of single-family product affordable to a broader range of buyers all played a role. As well, the record new condo apartment sales in 2017 brought forward some demand that would otherwise have occurred in 2018.”

In December, the benchmark price for new condo apartments was $796,815, which was up 11.2 per cent over the last 12 months, and the benchmark price for single-family homes was $1,143,505, which was down 6.7 per cent over the last 12 months.

“From our point of view, the market is out of balance,” said David Wilkes, BILD President & CEO. “We must continue to work with all levels of government to ensure that policies don’t artificially price consumers out of the market.”

“We commend the provincial government for taking action toward increasing housing supply in Ontario,” Mr. Wilkes said. “We join other industry groups in calling on the federal government to revisit the stress test and allow a longer amortization period for first-time buyers. And we look forward to working with our municipal partners on removing barriers to development such as excessive red tape and outdated bylaws.”

At the end of December there were 15,768 new homes available for purchase, comprised of 10,687 condominium apartment units and 5,081 single family homes. Remaining inventory includes units in pre-construction projects, in projects currently under construction, and in completed buildings.

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