Toronto Detached Homes See Median Sale Price Fall Below A Million

The Greater Toronto real estate roller coaster continues, with a pandemic thrown into the mix. Toronto Regional Real Estate Board (TRREB) data shows detached home sales and inventory made a sharp decline in April. Most people could have guessed that, but the impact on prices is a little less clear. The industry’s benchmark price shows detached homes are still rising in value. However, both the average and median sale prices have fallen below the million dollar mark.

Greater Toronto Real Estate Prices Rise According To Benchmark

The detached benchmark (a.k.a. typical) price advanced. The benchmark price across Greater Toronto reached $1,013,900 in April, up 8.49% from last year. The City of Toronto benchmark hit $1,221,200,  up 7.95% from the year before. The industry’s indicator shows prices advanced thousands of dollars from the month before.

Toronto Detached Benchmark Price

The price of a typical detached home across the Toronto Real Estate Board, in Canadian dollars.

Source: TREB, Better Dwelling.

The advancement wasn’t enough to push growth forward, as the rate began stalling. The rate of growth for TRREB is just under a peak reached in March, while the City’s detached growth peaked in February. Both indicators have deceleration, but those are substantial growth numbers. The slow moving benchmark is the only price indicator that shows advancement.

Toronto Detached Benchmark Percent Change

The 12 month percent change of a typical detached home across the Toronto Real Estate Board.

Source: TREB, Better Dwelling.

The Median Sale Price of Detached Homes Falls Below A Million

The median sale price dropped below a million, and is lower than the same month last year. The median detached home across TRREB sold for $858,000 in April, down 1.37% from last year. In the City of Toronto, the median sale price sold for $978,000, down 6.85% from last year. This means more than half of Greater Toronto detached homes sold 15.37% below the benchmark price. In the City of Toronto, more than half of detached homes sold 19.91% below the benchmark price.

Toronto Detached Average Sale Price

The average sale price of a detached house in the Toronto Real Estate Board.

Source: TREB, Better Dwelling.

Detached homes also saw the average sale price decline. TRREB’s average sale price fell to $983,630 in April, down 3.5% from the same month last year. The City of Toronto’s average sale price fell to $1,249,730, down 7.8% over the same period. The average sale price across TRREB is now at the lowest point since August 2019.

Toronto Detached Average Sale Price Change

The 12 month percent change of average sale price across across TREB.

Source: TREB, Better Dwelling.

Detached Home Sales Fell Over 66% Due To Pandemic

Sales volumes look a little more wonky than they normally do, due to the pandemic’s stay at home measures. TRREB detached sales came in at just 1,412 in April, down 66.0% from last year. The City of Toronto represented 313 of those sales, down 67.9% over the same period. Sales are at a multi-decade low, but you probably could have guessed that.

Toronto Detached April Sales

The total number of Greater Toronto detached sales made in the month of April.

Source: TREB, Better Dwelling.

Detached Listings Fall, But The Market Is Slipping From Sellers Quickly

Not a lot of Greater Toronto detached homeowners are interested in selling right now. TRREB reported just 2,972 new listings in April, down 68.24% from the same month last year. The City of Toronto represented 594 of those listings, down 71.02% from last year. It may appear the number of sales dropping faster than new listings would help boost prices. The sales to new listings ratio sits at 47%, which is technically a balanced inventory inflow.

Toronto Detached Sales Vs. New Listings

The total number of detached sales, compared to the number of new detached listings per month.

Source: TREB, Better Dwelling.

Detached listings still took a dive, even with roughly two new listings per sale. TRREB reported 6,127 active listings in April, down 44.56% from last year. The City of Toronto represented 1,155 of those active listings, down 45.67% from last year. The sales to active listings ratio is now 23%, indicating the market is still in favor of sellers. Although the drop from 58% just one month ago, indicates sellers are losing ground very quickly.

Toronto Active Detached Listings

The total number of detached listings available.

Source: TREB, Better Dwelling.

The extreme drop in volume makes it difficult to gain any real long-term insights. With such a large number of people on mortgage payment deferrals, we shouldn’t see any motivated sellers appear all of a sudden. Likewise, not a lot of buyers are going to be in a rush to purchase, with such an uncertain economic future for many. However, we’re still seeing more sellers than buyers every day in this segment. The longer this persists, the weaker price growth would be.

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  • Reply
    Trader Jim 4 years ago

    Indexes are smoothed to eliminate volatility, so a couple of months of activity would need to be apparent for a market breakdown. What I don’t understand is why people on deferrals aren’t selling?

  • Reply
    straw walker 4 years ago

    The 1st thing you do is tell the statistician what answer you want…then they fudge the numbers, and you get those results.

  • Reply
    Old guy 4 years ago

    Why do you publish anything put out by TTREB? Everybody knows that these people are just a bunch of industry shills, and this data shows it.
    Prices are going up? What a crock of BS.

    • Reply
      M.Bury 4 years ago

      I agree with you

      How it actually works:

      Month 1
      1 small house sells for $500,000, therefore the Benchmark Price is $500,000

      Month 2
      1 larger house sells for $1,000,000, therefore the Benchmark Price is $1,000,000
      The headline is “Prices increased 100%”.
      The problem with these stats is they don’t compare apples to apples.
      Take a house that has been purchased for say $400,000 then $200,000 put in to renovations and sells for $650,000. The stats will show that prices increased by $250,000. The stat completely ignores the improvements.

      If one Toyota Yaris and one Mercedes S-Class sold, the average price of a car would be $80,000. That would be absurd, but when it comes to real estate, that’s exactly how it is reported.

  • Reply
    Brad 4 years ago

    The most important thing about a market is that the bid/ask are absolutely meaningless without actual volume behind it. So until volume returns looking at any type of price movement is absolutely worthless.

    • Reply
      Mitch 4 years ago

      This is adorable that you used the terms, but don’t understand them. Bid/ask and execution are marginal influencers of price. The fact that these transactions are made, even in low volume, still creates a walk lower.

  • Reply
    Oakville Rob 4 years ago

    If want to know what something is worth, sell it. The definitive value is the sale price. If you *have to sell it this afternoon, you will get what you get this afternoon. Tomorrow you might get more or you might get less. All the graphs in the world will not tell you what you ‘will’ get, they only tell you what you ‘might’ get – so you can *manage *your *risk.

  • Reply
    Old Nick 4 years ago

    Well let’s see what price discovery looks like… I’m sure there is tons of “pent up demand”, the only demand there will be is landlords begging for tenants….

  • Reply
    Darren Stone 4 years ago

    Roller coasters go up and down.
    This one is heading for a cliff.
    Get aboard the”GTA Real Estate Ride of Broken Dreams”.

  • Reply
    SH 4 years ago

    Detached homes should retain their value fairly well in my opinion. Small correction yes, maybe 10%.

    But it’s all the 400 sq ft condos downtown that I’m watching and which I think could tumble 40%. Not only are foreign students gone, but even Canadian students at UofT and Ryerson might not come back in September if most classes are conducted online for the fall semester. Goes without saying that tourist volume will also remain low this summer. A disaster for overleveraged amateur landlords.

  • Reply
    Joe Brown 4 years ago

    Great article. The coronavirus is having a tremendous impact on housing markets all over the world and your analysis has very intriguing implications.

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