Toronto Regional Real Estate Board releases sales numbers for February 2023

Market Watch Toronto Real Estate Board February 2023

After steep increases in borrowing costs, prospective buyers and homeowners with variable mortgages may see rates stay the same or trend lower in the second half of this year. This forecast is part of TRREB’s 2023 Market Outlook & 2022 Year in Review report. It also features Ipsos polling on homebuying intentions and points to an uptick in buying activity this year.

Uptick in Homebuying Expected Later This Year
TORONTO, ONTARIO, MARCH 3, 2023 – February sales in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) were down
substantially from the pre-rate hike levels of early 2022. However, the number of new listings also
dropped substantially year-over-year. The result was that the average selling price and MLS® HPI
continued to level off after trending lower through the spring and summer of last year.
“It has been almost a year since the Bank of Canada started raising interest rates. Home prices have
dropped over the last year from the record peak in February 2022, mitigating the impact of higher
borrowing costs. Many homebuyers have also decided to purchase a lower priced home to help offset
higher borrowing costs. The share of home purchases below one million dollars is up substantially
compared to this time last year,” said Toronto Regional Real Estate Board (TRREB) President Paul
GTA REALTORS® reported 4,783 sales through TRREB’s MLS® System in February 2023 – down 47
per cent compared to February 2022, the last full month before the onset of interest rate hikes. The
number of new listings entered into the system was down by a similar annual rate of 40.9 per cent to
“New listings continued to drop year-over-year in the GTA. Recently released Ipsos polling suggests
buying intentions have picked up for 2023. This increased demand will run up against a constrained
supply of listings and lead to increased competition between buyers. This will eventually lead to renewed
price growth in many segments of the market, especially those catering to first-time buyers facing
increased rental costs,” said TRREB Chief Market Analyst Jason Mercer.
The average selling price for February 2023 was $1,095,617 – down 17.9 per cent compared to February
2022. Some of this decline is attributable to the fact that the share of sales below $1,000,000 was 57 per
cent in February 2023 versus only 38 per cent a year earlier. On a monthly basis, the average price
followed the regular seasonal trend, increasing relative to January 2023. The MLS® Home Price Index
(HPI) Composite Benchmark was down year-over-year by a similar annual rate of 17.7 per cent, but was
also up on a monthly basis.
“As we move toward a June mayoral by-election in Toronto, housing supply will once again be front and
centre in the policy debate. New and innovative solutions, including the City of Toronto’s initiative to allow
duplexes, triplexes and fourplexes in all neighbourhoods citywide, need to come to fruition if we are to
achieve an adequate and diverse housing supply that will support record population growth in the years
to come,” said TRREB Chief Executive Officer John DiMichele.

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