The Canadian housing market is on the rise again, and Toronto’s benchmark home prices rose for the first time in 11 months as a result.
The price of a home in Canada’s largest city rose 1.1 per cent to $1.09 million (US$803,000), in February on a non-seasonally adjusted basis, according to data released Friday by the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board. February’s gain is the first month-over-month price increase since the central bank started raising borrowing costs in March 2022.
Average home pricing rose 1.1 percent in February to $1.09 million, according to information released today by the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board. Last month’s increase is the first month-over-month price hike since the Bank of Canada began raising borrowing costs in March 2022.
The good news for Torontonian home buyers, though, is that home prices are still down 19 per cent from last year’s peak. The central bank’s borrowing cost increase campaign was put into place to combat rising home prices and pressure home sales, and the process seems to be working.
“It has been almost a year since the Bank of Canada started raising interest rates,” said Toronto Regional Real Estate Board (TRREB) President Paul Baron. “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.”
The number of sales rose 8.5 per cent in February from the month before, totalling 5,224 transactions on a seasonally adjusted basis. That number is the highest since August of 2022, but still signals a slowdown, as it still is only about half of the transactions processed in February 2022.
The data presented by TRREB also noted that new listings were down 41 percent from the same month last year. All of these numbers could represent a decrease in both supply and demand, which could, in turn, stabilize the market. But, a decrease in supply without a change in demand could also pose a problem for Torontonian home buyers, and pricing.
“Increased demand will run up against a constrained supply of listings and lead to increased competition between buyers,” Jason Mercer, the real estate board’s chief market analyst, said in a statement. “This will eventually lead to renewed price growth in many segments of the market.”