Condos the only option for average Toronto first-time homebuyers

Investors may be in the same boat as first-time homebuyers – the outside looking in when it comes to detached homes, as prices in Canada’s largest city continue to rise, making condos their only option.

The Re/Max Hallmark Ltd. Homebuyer Survey found those planning to buy their first home in the Greater Toronto Area over the next 18 months expect to spend $455,000 on average, barely above the average condo price of $418,603 and well below the $1,053,871 average price of a detached home in the 416 region, according to the Toronto Real Estate Board’s September housing figures.

All of this is likely to translate to a great deal of disappointment for some buyers. Over 60 per cent say they are looking for property in the City of Toronto, and 56 per cent say they prefer detached homes, according to the Re/Max Hallmark survey. While detached housing outside of Toronto is considerably more affordable at $732,852, prices are still well beyond the average budget.

Millennials will bear the brunt of the disappointment, according to Ken McLachlan, an owner and broker at RE/MAX Hallmark. The survey found 18 to 34-year-olds make up 57 per cent of those shopping for a home.

“The emphasis that millennials, in particular, place on homeownership is especially interesting. It appears owning a home is just as coveted by those born between the early 1980s and the early 2000s as in previous generations,” said McLachlan in a statement.

Jason Mercer, TREB director of Market Analysis, added that they expect strong rates of price growth to continue through the remainder of 2015 and into 2016.

“While September was the second straight month where annual growth in new listings outstripped annual growth sales, total active listings at the end of the month still remain below last year’s level.”

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