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  • Writer's pictureDiana Boyd

Your Market Report for January

In the dynamic realm of real estate, Toronto faced an intriguing landscape in 2023. Driven by unprecedented immigration, the housing demand soared, yet a distinctive shift towards the rental market emerged. Affordability challenges, largely attributed to soaring mortgage rates, impacted Greater Toronto Area (GTA) home sales, prompting a closer examination of the market dynamics.

With GTA home sales totaling just under 70,000, affordability hurdles took center stage. High borrowing costs, coupled with stringent federal mortgage qualification standards, created an environment where homeownership became an unattainable dream for many households. However, optimism prevails as Jennifer Pearce, the newly appointed Toronto Regional Real Estate Board (TRREB) President, anticipates relief on the horizon.

Hope on the Horizon: Pearce asserts, "Borrowing costs are expected to trend lower in 2024. Lower mortgage rates, combined with a resilient economy, set the stage for a rebound in home sales this year." This optimism hints at a potential turnaround in the real estate market, offering hope to those previously hindered by financial barriers.

TRREB's MLS® System reported 65,982 home sales in 2023, reflecting a 12.1% decline from the previous year. Despite a seasonal uptick during the spring and summer, new listings experienced a decline, exacerbating a decade-long trend of flat-to-downward listings. In November, sales showed a monthly increase, but new listings decreased for the third consecutive month.

The average selling price for all home types in 2023 settled at $1,126,604, marking a 5.4% decrease from 2022. However, a closer look reveals a more nuanced picture – a monthly seasonally adjusted increase in the average selling price alongside a dip in the MLS® Home Price Index Composite.

Active buyers in 2023 seized the opportunity to negotiate lower prices amidst increased housing options. Jason Mercer, TRREB Chief Market Analyst, notes, "Assuming borrowing costs trend lower this year, look for tighter market conditions to prompt renewed price growth in the months ahead." This suggests a potential shift in favor of buyers as the market conditions evolve.

Future Considerations: As the GTA anticipates record immigration in the coming years, TRREB CEO John DiMichele emphasizes the need for a corresponding increase in available homes for rent or purchase. The stability of an affordable place to live is crucial for individuals planning their lives and futures amid a growing population.

The Toronto real estate landscape witnessed a transformative year in 2023, navigating through affordability challenges and a shifting focus towards the rental market. With positive indicators for 2024, including lower borrowing costs and a resilient economy, stakeholders eagerly await a potential resurgence in home sales and a renewed emphasis on creating housing stability for the future.

As always, if you have any questions about your neighbourhood, please reach out to us directly.


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