Slower sales in Toronto aren't necessarily a bad thing

by Neil Sharma on 04 May 2018

The Toronto Real Estate Board released April sales figures, and they’re down 32.1% year-over-year, but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

“It’s been slower in the sense of comparing this April to April 2017—and, of course, April 2017 was absolutely insane—but we’re also at one of the lowest levels of sales for the month of April we’ve had in years,” said Shawn Zigelstein, a sales agent with Royal LePage Your Community Realty. “We’re still up month-over-month. April numbers are up over March.”

Zigelstein says April marked the fifth straight month of sequentially rising sales. Moreover, the market correction—which, from a buyer’s perspective, was long overdue—signifies improved ability to buy homes.

“It’s definitely a corrected market,” he said. “When you see the drop we’ve seen, is it healthier? It’s a little more balanced and I believe it’s a buyer’s market at this point, and what we’ve seen is definitely a controlled market pace. Buyers are taking their time and waiting, not jumping like they were in March and April of last year before the Fair Housing Plan came into effect. That frenzy where people who last year jumped at properties that came onto the market, where there would also be six or seven offers in two days, is gone. People now have their chance to see properties and get into them.”

Zigelstein isn’t averse to the market correction because buyer’s remorse isn’t as rampant as it was during the frenzy.

“Buyers have choice and opportunities to put inspection clauses in, and opportunities to put financing clauses in to make sure they’re getting the right house for them rather than just a house.”

Jose Jafferji, a sales representative and real estate investment advisor with Rock Star Real Estate, attributes the slower sales cycle to the new mortgage lending rules, but says that the condo market in Toronto is on fire.

“The downtown Toronto condo market hasn’t slowed down at all, simply because it’s the most affordable type of property you can buy,” he said. “In other parts of the GTA, even townhouse condos are moving, but detached houses aren’t. However, the market is slow, especially for anything above a starter home.”


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