The inventory of homes available for purchase in the Greater Toronto Area fell sharply last month in a sign that competition among buyers could be heating up in the country's largest housing market, according to the regional real estate board.  

New listings of properties available for purchase in the GTA sank 26.1 per cent year-over-year in November, according to data released by the Toronto Real Estate Board on Wednesday. Meanwhile, total active listings fell 9.8 per cent to 16,420 units. 

Sales also fell sharply as 6,251 properties traded hands in the month, marking a 14.7 per cent downturn from the previous year. TREB noted in a release that activity in Nov. 2017 was "distorted" as buyers rushed to beat the new stress-test rules that took effect in January of this year. 

The average selling price across the GTA in November was $788,345, marking a 3.5-per cent increase from a year earlier, but a modest drop from October's average price of $807,340. 

“New listings were actually down more than sales on a year-over-year basis in November," said TREB President Garry Bhaura in a release. "This suggests that, in many neighbourhoods, competition between buyers may have increased. Relatively tight market conditions over the past few months have provided the foundation for renewed price growth."