The affordability crisis in Toronto's housing market continued to worsen in August as supply dwindled further.
Data from the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board (TRREB) showed 8,596 homes changed hands in August, down 19.9 per cent from a year earlier, while new listings plunged 43 per cent. Sales were down 8.2 per cent from the prior month.
“The fact that new listings were at the lowest level for the past decade is alarming,” TRREB President Kevin Crigger said in a release Friday.
Sales of detached homes were down 31.5 per cent in August from the same month a year earlier with with only 3,704 houses sold in the month, while sales of semi-detached and townhouses also fell. Only the condominium segment saw an increase in sales, rising 11.3 per cent from last year.
Meanwhile, the average selling price of a home in the Greater Toronto Area jumped 12.6 per cent from a year earlier to $1,070,911. Price growth was driven by single-family and townhouse property segments. On a sequential basis, prices rose by about 0.8 per cent, the TRREB data showed.
Housing affordability has become a key issue on the federal election campaign trail, with politial party leaders promising to implement a range of measures including new foreign buyers taxes, banning blind bidding and encouraging new supply.
“Working with provincial and municipal levels of government on solving supply-related issues is much more important to affordability than interfering with consumer choice during the home buying and selling offer process or revisiting demand-side policies that will at best have a short-term impact on market conditions,” Crigger said.
Despite the myriad of election promises, TRREB doesn’t anticipate much relief on the horizon for frustrated home buyers, especially as population growth in the Greater Toronto Area returns to pre-pandemic levels.