Toronto home sales take a dive in April, prices remain steady
Due to the coronavirus pandemic and social distancing measures, Toronto's typically strong housing market has seen a drop in sales and the slightest drop in prices.
Home sales declined by a 69 per cent in early April compared with the same period last year, according to the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board (TRREB). New listings also declined, falling to 63.7 per cent compared with the same period in 2019.
For those hoping that housing prices would go down, there was a small but not significant change – the average selling price was $819,665, down by 1.5 per cent compared to the same period last year. Detached homes saw the largest drop: 9.1 per cent.
“The state of emergency measures currently in place, including the necessary enforcement of social distancing, has impacted the real estate market in many ways," said TRREB president Michael Collins in a statement. "Home buyers and sellers have concerns about the economy and indeed their own employment situations.
"On top of this, many buyers and sellers are avoiding any type of in-person interaction," he added. "In the condo market in particular, individual condo corporations have curtailed entry for non-residents."
However, Collins says he doesn't foresee a huge long-term impact on the market due to "pent-up" demand.
“All of the COVID-19 related issues and measures have translated into a temporary drop in the number of transactions – a drop that will persist until we experience a meaningful and sustained decline in the number of cases," Collins added. "However, once recovery begins, it will likely accelerate in earnest as buyers seek to satisfy pent-up demand that will build up over the course of the spring and at least part of the summer."
In place of in-person open houses, many realtors have been staging virtual open houses, along with webinars to find ways to use technology to move forward with those looking to buy and sell.