Toronto home sales down 49 per cent from last year as listing decline and rates rise

Home sales plunge 49%

The Toronto Regional Real Estate board says November home sales showed a similar retreat to recent months with activity down by about half from last year.

The board says November's 49 per cent decline from last year to 4,544 sales came as rising interest rates continue to put pressure on affordability and the real estate market.

It says the total of 8,880 new listings for the month was about a 12 per cent decline from a year earlier, while also down from last month. 

Listings have slowed in part as sellers hold off over fears they won't make as much as they would have 10 or 12 months ago when the market was moving at a torrid pace.

The composite benchmark price was down 5.5 per cent in November compared with last year, while the average price across home types was down by 7.2 per cent.

The average price of a detached home was down 11.3 per cent to $1.39 million, while the average price of a condo was down 0.9 per cent to $709,000. 

Selling prices saw declines earlier in the year as interest rates started to rise, but have held relatively steady in recent months, said TRREB's chief market analyst Jason Mercer in a news release.

"The marked downward price trend experienced in the spring has come to an end. Selling prices have flatlined alongside average monthly mortgage payments since the summer."

The retreat in the market overall is more of a short-term trend, with the longer concern still one of supply given the huge share of record immigration that will head to the Toronto area, said TRREB president Kevin Crigger in the release.

"The long-term problem for policymakers will not be inflation and borrowing costs, but rather ensuring we have enough housing to accommodate population growth."

Toronto's sales numbers showed a similar trend to Vancouver, where the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver said last week that home sales were down 53 per cent from a year earlier. 

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