Ontario Real Estate Market Update: August 2020
August was another strong month for all major Ontario markets!
Records continued to be broken in some parts of the province as market activity remained unseasonably high. Though some areas saw prices leveling off from the upward trajectories set in June and July, others witnessed even more growth, revealing that buyer demand is still strong. With new listings quickly turning to sales, most markets continue to see low inventory levels and homes selling for top dollar. For the second month, most regions have seen a year-over-year average home price increase of 20% or more.
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The Toronto Regional Real Estate Board (TRREB) reports1 that the City of Toronto continued to experience strong demand in August with 3,365 sales, up 32% year over year. “Generally speaking, market conditions remained very tight in the GTA resale market in August,” says Jason Mercer, TRREB’s Chief Market Analyst. “Competition between buyers was especially strong for low-rise home types, leading to robust annual rates of price growth. However, with growth in condominium apartment listings well-outstripping condo sales growth, condo market conditions were comparatively more balanced, which was reflected in a slower pace of price growth in that segment.” The average selling price for a home in the City of Toronto is $1,012,506, with a year-over-year increase of 24%. Homes were selling quickly at an average of just 16 days on market, with many sellers receiving asking price or higher.
The Toronto Regional Real Estate Board (TRREB) reports2 2,301 residential sales in the Peel region in August, which represents a whopping 35% year-over-year increase despite a 2% month-over-month decrease. The region also saw the average days on market drop to 14, down 2 days since July, and an inventory of available homes sitting at only 1.4 months, making it a strong seller’s market. Brampton accounted for 52% of total August sales. The average selling price for a home in the Peel region is $897,391, a year-over-year increase of 20% and a month-over-month decrease of just 0.5%.
The Ottawa Real Estate Board (OREB) reports3 continued year-over-year increases in sales activity with 2,017 residential properties sold, representing an increase of 17% year over year. According to OREB President Deborah Burgoyne, “August’s resale numbers were undoubtedly driven by the considerable increase in new listings that came onto the market in both July and August. There were at least 300 more residential and 175 more condo listings added to inventory than we saw last year at this time. In fact, we have not seen new listing numbers like this since August 2015.” Yet, despite the notable increase in new listings, buyer demand remains high, and multiple offers continue to drive prices up. The average selling price for a condominium-class property is $383,640, a year-over-year increase of 24%, and the average selling price for a residential-class property is $592,548, a year-over-year increase of 22%.
The Toronto Regional Real Estate Board (TRREB) reports4 the Halton region is continuing to see a dramatic increase in sales activity with 10,775 homes sold in August – a year-over-year increase of 40%. New listings increased by 48% year over year, but with 13% fewer active listings than in August 2019, homes are in high demand. Average days on market decreased from 18 to 17 month over month, and with only 1.7 months of inventory, Halton is clearly in a seller’s market. The average selling price for a home in the Halton region is $1,031,721, a year-over-year increase of 20% and a month-over-month increase of 4%.
The REALTORS® Association of Hamilton-Burlington (RAHB) reports5 sales are up 13% year over year, though they’ve fallen 21% from last month’s unseasonably high numbers. As the average selling price for residential properties across the region nudges up by 0.2% month over month, inventory levels remain low with new listings down 16% from July 2020. Kathy Della-Nebbia, RAHB President, reports, “This month’s activity was in line with what we would typically see for August; however, due to COVID-19 the trends for the year are not what we would normally experience. Over the spring, we saw lower than normal activity, but a balance between supply and demand. Into the summer months we saw an increase in activity where we would normally see a decrease. As we move into the fall, we would expect a return to higher activity.” The Hamilton region is comprised of an array of cities, which results in varying home prices. In Niagara North, the average selling price is $651,220, a year-over-year increase of 12% and a month-over-month decrease of 10%. In Haldimand County, the average selling price is $559,535, a year-over-year increase of 15% and a month-over-month increase of 2%. In Burlington, the average selling price is $856,056, a year-over-year increase of 13% and a month-over-month decrease of 3%. In Hamilton, the average selling price for a home is $662,257, a year-over-year increase of 21% and a month-over-month increase of 5%.
The Niagara Association of REALTORS® (NAR) reports6 record-breaking sales in August, with a total of 978 homes sold, with a majority of sales occurring in St. Catharines and Niagara Falls. Overall sales for the region were up 37% from August 2019, though numbers dipped by 2% compared to July 2020. Terri McCallum, President of NAR, comments, “Steady inventory with multiple offers was still putting an upward pressure on sale prices in August in all areas and decreasing the average days on market.” The average selling price for a home in the Niagara region is $482,600, a year-over-year increase of 15% and a month-over-month increase of 2%, while the average days on market is 35, down from 39 in July.
August saw record-breaking sales in Kitchener-Waterloo7, with 686 residential homes sold – an increase of 48% over the same month last year. Though sales dipped by 8% compared to last month, it’s still a hot market favouring sellers. Colleen Koehler, President of the Kitchener-Waterloo Association of REALTORS® (KWAR), states, “Following a spring market where most people were observing physical distancing guidelines, sales in August continued to be very active with demand continuing to outstrip supply forcing buyers to act quickly.” The number of houses on the market, also known as months of inventory, was so low that if sales continued at the August pace, all active listings would be sold in the period of one month. Despite 833 new listings added to the MLS® System in Kitchener-Waterloo – a whopping 44% increase over August 2019 – buyers are extremely active and continue to compete for properties. The average selling price for a home in Kitchener-Waterloo is $634,409, a year-over-year increase of 21% and a month-over-month drop of just 0.8%.
The London and St. Thomas Association of REALTORS® (LSTAR) reports8 the second-best August for sales since 1978 with 931 homes sold across the region, resulting in a 2% increase over August last year. Blair Campbell, 2020 LSTAR President, commented, “August capped off a very strong summer for home sales in the region. For the first time, the average home sales price was over $500,000. It’s a testament to the pent-up demand caused during the COVID-19 lockdown months.” The average selling price for a home in the London region climbed 3% since July to $501,584, representing a year-over-year increase of 22%. The median days on market is 10 – down from 13 in August of last year, with months of inventory at just 1.1, positioning August as a clear seller’s market.
The numbers of MLS® residential sales continued to nudge their way up in the Windsor-Essex County9 with 728 sales in August, a 18% year-over-year increase and a 6% increase over July. Prices leveled off slightly after the big increases observed from April to July: the average selling price for a home in the Windsor region is $430,810, a year-over-year increase of 28% and a month-over-month increase of just under 1%. In August, 63% of sales occurred in the $300,000-$549,999 price range.
The Brantford Regional Real Estate Association (BRREA) reports10 record-breaking sales for the month of August, with 250 residential properties sold – an increase of 13% over August 2019. “New listings have started to return to the market, but overall supply is still at historically low levels,” said Rose Sicoli, President of the Brantford Regional Real Estate Association. “Strong demand combined with low overall supply have once again pushed the average price of homes sold in our region to a new record for a third consecutive month.” The average price for a home is $567,773, up 31% from August 2019. Total new listings came in at 304, which is a year-over-year increase of 21% and the highest number of listings added to the August market in 25 years. Nevertheless, inventory was down to just under one-month’s supply, meaning it would take less than one month for all active listings to sell at the current rate of sales.