Toronto REALTORS® reported 7,570 sales in July 2012, representing a decline of 1.5 per cent compared to 7,683 sales reported in July 2011. The decline was most pronounced in the condominium apartment segment in the City of Toronto. Total sales in the rest of the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) were up compared to the same period last year."Very strong annual sales growth in the first half of 2012 and an earlier peak in sales this spring compared to 2011 help explain more moderate sales this summer. New mortgage lending guidelines and the additional upfront cost of the City of Toronto land transfer tax also prompted some households to put their buying decision on hold," said Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB) President Ann Hannah.
The average selling price in July 2012 was $476,947 – up by four per cent compared to July 2011. The MLS® Home Price Index (MLS® HPI)* composite index, which allows for an apples-to-apples comparison of benchmark home prices from one year to the next, was up by 7.1 per cent year-over-year.
"The GTA housing market became better-supplied in recent months. Buyers benefitted from more choice in the market place, resulting in less upward pressure on the average home price in July," said Jason Mercer, TREB’s Senior Manager of Market Analysis.
"The mix of homes sold in July 2012 versus July 2011 also appears to have changed, further influencing the average selling price. This is evidenced by the different annual rates of growth between the overall average price and the MLS HPI®," continued Mercer.
These types of market conditions are normal around this time of the year as the amount of listings on the market increases and the buyer pool for the year becomes smaller. The condo market in specific has seen a large number of new listings come on the market as new buildings start to close and investors who have bought for the purposes of resale are listing their units for sale. The month of August is usually a better month for buyers as the amount of listings are higher and demand is somewhat lower due to vacation season. There may be good opportunities on properties which have been listed for sale for some time and have not sold and sellers are starting to reduce prices, combined with this years low interest rates, this month will be a great time for buyers who are on hold to look at buying.
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