The Toronto Real Estate Board has reported home sales statistics for the month of February, and the final numbers show a flattening of the decline of both average price and total number of sales. Comparing February ‘09 versus February ‘08, the average selling price declined 5.4% to $361,305, while the number of home sales decreased from 6,015 to 4,120.
Although homes are taking longer to sell (average of 45 days on the market, versus 30 days for February 2008), sellers appear to be pricing their homes close to market value. Across all Toronto real estate districts, homes sold fairly consistently for an average of 96% of list price. And as I mentioned last month, multiple offers have not completely disappeared. For example, in the E3 district (East York, Playter Estates, and the north tip of Riverdale), 6 out of 41 freehold homes sold were sold for over asking price.
With home buyers receiving motivation from mortgage rate decreases and the increased affordability of homes, I believe the market should soon find a more solid footing. From a market sentiment perspective, last week’s poll released by RBC and Ipsos Reid lends further evidence to this, with two-thirds of Canadians indicating that they believe it is a home buyer’s market, and 30% of Ontario residents stating they expect to buy a home within the next two years.
Read the complete February 2009 Market Watch report from the Toronto Real Estate Board.