GTA Commercial REALTORS Release Monthly Figures

In November 2013, Toronto Real Estate Board Commercial Division Members reported an annual increase in leased square feet in industrial, commercial/retail and office properties.  There was a total of 630,466 square feet of space leased on a per square foot net basis in November 2013 – up by approximately 23 per cent in comparison to 510,933 leased square feet in November 2012.

 Approximately 80 per cent of leased space, or 506,918 square feet, was accounted for by the industrial segment of the market in November 2013.  This share was down from 86 per cent in November 2012, suggesting that the mix of transactions became slightly more diverse this year compared to last.

 Average lease rates on a per square foot net basis were flat to down compared to November 2012.  Much of the change in the commercial/retail sector was due to year-over-year differences in the location and type of space leased, which is often the case when comparing monthly transactions from one year to the next.

 “In the third quarter of 2013, the Canadian economy grew at its fastest pace since 2011.  While the rate of growth was still less than we would like to see, this was still welcome news.  The uptick in economic activity in the third quarter may have prompted some businesses to lease more space,” said TREB Commercial Division Chair Cynthia Lai.

 Combined industrial, commercial/retail and office property sales were also up on a year-over-year basis in November 2013.  Total November sales amounted to 64 this year versus 58 in 2012.  The industrial and commercial/retail market segments each accounted for 25 and 26 transactions respectively. The remaining 13 deals were accounted for by the office segment.

 Average selling prices were up considerably on a per square foot basis compared to November 2012.  However, these increases, especially where the commercial/retail and office segments are concerned, can almost entirely be attributed to changes in the mix of properties sold in November 2013 compared to November 2012.  Some relatively large commercial/retail and office properties changed hands in the City of Toronto last month at prices well-above the GTA norm.

 “Looking forward, it appears that demand for commercial real estate in the GTA remains strong.  This, coupled with the fact that interest rates are expected to remain somewhat flat over the next year, suggests that pricing for commercial real estate will be stable to up in 2014,” continued Ms. Lai.

November 2013: Per Square Foot Net Commercial Leasing Summary

Lease Transactions Completed on a Per Square Foot Net Basis with Pricing Disclosed on TorontoMLS*

Leased Square Feet Average Lease Rate

Nov. 2013 Nov. 2012 % Change   Nov. 2013 Nov. 2012 % Change

Industrial

506,918 439,570 15.3%

Industrial

$5.25 $5.26 -0.1%

Commercial

75,834 44,662 69.8%

Commercial

$14.16 $18.65 -24.1%

Office

47,714 26,701 78.7%

Office

$14.20 $14.37 -1.2%

Total

630,466 510,933 23.4%

Source: TREB Commercial Division

November 2013: Commercial Sales Completed with Pricing Disclosed on TorontoMLS*

Sales (Price Disclosed) Avg. Sale Price Per Sq. Ft. (Pricing Disclosed)

Nov. 2013 Nov. 2012 % Change   Nov. 2013 Nov. 2012 % Change

Industrial

25 23 8.7%

Industrial

$112.53 $90.57 24.2%

Commercial

26 23 13.0%

Commercial

$424.00 $236.76 79.1%

Office

13 12 8.3%

Office

$274.12 $167.86 63.3%

Total

64 58 10.3%

Source: TREB Commercial Division

GTA REALTORS RELEASE MONTHLY RESALE MARKET FIGURES

Greater Toronto Area REALTORS® reported 6,391 residential sales through the TorontoMLS system in November, representing a 13.9 per cent increase over the sales result for November 2012.  Over the same period, new listings on TorontoMLS were down by 4.4 per cent and month-end active listings were down by 12.1 per cent.

“Growth in sales was strong for most home types in the Greater Toronto Area.  Sales growth was led by the single-detached market segment followed by condominium apartments.  Together, singles and condos accounted for almost three-quarters of total GTA transactions,” said Toronto Real Estate Board President Dianne Usher.

“With National Housing Day having just passed, housing affordability is top of mind in the GTA and indeed nationally.  Despite strong price growth and an uptick in borrowing costs this year, monthly mortgage payments on the average priced home remain affordable for a household earning the average GTA income,” continued Ms. Usher.

The average selling price for November 2013 TorontoMLS transactions was $538,881 – up by 11.3 per cent in comparison to the average of $484,208 reported for November 2012.  The MLS® Home Price Index (HPI) Composite Benchmark was up by 5.7 per cent over the same period.

“Whether we consider the average TorontoMLS selling price or the MLS® HPI Composite Benchmark, annual home price growth remained well-above the rate of inflation in November.  This makes sense given the fact that competition between buyers increased last month.  Transactions were up strongly year-over-year while the number of homes available for sale was down,” said Jason Mercer, TREB’s Senior Manager of Market Analysis.

Summary of TorontoMLS Sales and Average Price November 1 – 30
2013 2012
Sales Average Price New Listings Sales Average Price New Listings
City of Toronto (“416″) 2,528 $590,366 3,849 2,234 $516,426 4,019
Rest of GTA (“905″) 3,863 $505,190 5,496 3,379 $462,907 5,756
GTA 6,391 $538,881 9,345 5,613 $484,208 9,775
TorontoMLS Sales & Average Price  By Home Type November 1 – 30, 2013
Sales Average Price
416 905 Total 416 905 Total
Detached 913 2,200 3,113 855,188 609,557 681,597
Yr./Yr. % Change 23.9% 16.3% 18.5% 16.0% 9.7% 12.3%
Semi-Detached 267 418 685 640,208 419,318 505,417
Yr./Yr. % Change -1.1% 9.1% 4.9% 9.9% 7.1% 7.4%
Townhouse 249 712 961 472,722 378,569 402,965
Yr./Yr. % Change 4.2% 10.9% 9.1% 6.4% 8.8% 7.7%
Condo Apartment 1,081 434 1,515 385,968 277,389 354,864
Yr./Yr. % Change 12.7% 14.2% 13.1% 10.0% -0.4% 7.4%

New Poll Shows Increasing Public Support for Phasing-Out Toronto Land Transfer Tax

In light of the launch of the City of Toronto’s 2014 budget-setting process, the Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB) has released the results of new public opinion research that shows a strong majority of Torontonians, 69 percent, support a phase-out of the Toronto Land Transfer Tax, up four points from May 2013.

The poll was conducted by Ipsos Reid and found that:

  • Seven in ten Torontonians, 69 percent, support a phase-out of the Toronto Land Transfer Tax.
  • 30 percent of recent first-time home buyers, in Toronto, had to pay some Toronto Land Transfer because City Hall’s first-time buyer rebate is insufficient because it has not kept pace with inflation.
  • 72 percent of Torontonians planning to purchase a home in the next two years are more likely to consider purchasing outside of Toronto to avoid paying the Toronto Land transfer tax.

“Torontonians overwhelmingly support a phase-out of the Toronto Land Transfer Tax. They have waited long enough. A phase-out of this unfair tax should start with the City’s 2014 budget,” said Dianne Usher, TREB President.

Toronto is the only municipality in Ontario where home buyers are forced to pay a municipal land transfer tax.  This tax costs the buyer of an average detached Toronto home $12,500, which has to be paid in full to City Hall, up front, as a closing cost, and cannot be tacked on to a mortgage. This is in addition to a similar amount payable to the Province.

“This tax penalizes growing families and retirees simply for changing their living arrangements to accommodate their new needs and priorities at a time when they can least afford it. It even forces many first-time buyers, who often struggle to save for a down payment, to pay thousands because the City’s first-time buyer rebate has not kept pace with inflation,” said Usher.  “Furthermore, because of the way the tax is structured, even someone purchasing a home priced below the City’s current average price of $564,000, is being charged the highest Land Transfer Tax rate, which kicks in on homes priced over $400,000.”

The amount that City Hall collects in Land Transfer Tax from each average re-sale home purchase has increased by 78 percent since the tax took effect in 2008, more than twice the rate of home price increases over the same time period.

“City Hall has been cashing in on the Land Transfer Tax at a rate that greatly outpaces inflation,” said Usher.

REALTORS® are also highlighting the surplus generated by the Toronto Land Transfer Tax.

“City Hall has collected over $300 million more than budgeted from the Land Transfer Tax, since it took effect in 2008. That means home buyers are being over-taxed,” said Von Palmer, TREB’s Chief Government and Public Affairs Officer.

TREB will be participating in the City’s 2014 Budget process, and is encouraging the public to speak out against the Toronto Land Transfer Tax at www.LetsGetThisRightToronto.ca.

“We have been consistently, and loudly, speaking out on behalf of Torontonians on this issue and we will continue to do so because it is the right thing to do,” added Palmer.

These are some of the findings of an Ipsos Reid poll conducted from Oct 30th to Nov 4th on behalf of TREB.  For this survey a sample of 600 residents of the City of Toronto was interviewed online.  The results are accurate to within +/- 4.6 percentage points had all Torontonians been surveyed.

Importance of affordable housing solutions recognized on National Housing Day

In celebration of National Housing Day the Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB) is teaming up with related organizations to host a symposium at Daniel Spectrum Artscape Lounge in Regent Park November 22nd, highlighting positive initiatives and challenges related to affordable housing.

“We are delighted to be hosting this year’s National Housing Day symposium in Regent Park, as it serves as a fine example that healthy communities are derived from quality affordable housing options,” said TREB President Dianne Usher. “Our city’s exemplary world standing depends on the development of more neighbourhoods like this one.”

The symposium will feature keynote speaker Spider Jones, an award-winning journalist and former three-time Golden Glove champion who traces his beginnings to the gang-infested, inner-city projects of Detroit and Windsor. The extraordinary path his life has taken gives him a unique ability to connect with, and motivate young people through Believe to Achieve; a youth outreach development and counselling charity.

Representatives from the City of Toronto, Habitat for Humanity Toronto and Ontario credit unions will also be on hand to share their perspectives on issues related to affordable housing.

“The City of Toronto is pleased to celebrate our partnerships with the private sector, non- profit organizations and other governments,” said Councillor Ana Bailao, Chair of the Affordable Housing Committee. “Together, we will continue to successfully create affordable homes and healthy mixed-income communities across Toronto.”

Catering for the event will be provided by Paintbox Bistro Catering, which has played a key role in the revitalization of Regent Park, offering start-up companies use of kitchen facilities, storage space, a business address, shared support services, and business and professional development training.

“When government, industry, non-profit organizations and the private sector come together to share their perspectives on fostering affordable housing communities, inspired solutions follow,” said Ms. Usher.

As part of the symposium participants will be asked to work in groups to construct gingerbread houses – purchased as a charitable donation to Habitat for Humanity Toronto’s Gingerbread Build fundraising campaign – as they focus discussions on affordable housing issues.

“Developing affordable housing solutions is a formidable challenge, but of vital importance to the economic health and wellbeing of the entire city,” says Habitat for Humanity Toronto’s CEO Ene Underwood. “By sharing and developing ideas with our partners, we can better generate solutions for affordable housing in Toronto, making a better city for all.”

In addition to supporting Habitat for Humanity Toronto, Greater Toronto REALTORS® regularly assist a number of other shelter-related causes through the REALTORS® Care Foundation, which offers grants throughout the province on an annual basis. Last year alone, Greater Toronto REALTORS® contributed more than $440,000 to the REALTORS® Care Foundation and distributed grants to 38 organizations throughout the GTA.

Greater Toronto REALTORS® also foster consumer efforts to achieve home ownership by offering guidance on options such as the Five Per Cent Down Payment Program, the RRSP Home Buyers’ Plan and various tax rebates, which make home buying more affordable.

“As a number of studies have illustrated, the benefits of home ownership include improved financial stability, physical health, personal safety and academic scores,” said Ms. Usher. “Given the positive, far reaching effects of home ownership, Greater Toronto REALTORS® regard their contribution to National Housing Day celebrations as an investment in our city’s future.”

The National Housing Day Symposium takes place November 22nd, 2013 from 7:30am to 10:00am at Daniel Spectrum Artscape Lounge in Regent Park, (585 Dundas Street East, Toronto).

Greater Toronto REALTORS® are passionate about their work. They are governed by a strict Code of Ethics and share a state-of-the-art Multiple Listing Service. Over 37,000 TREB Members serve consumers in the Greater Toronto Area. The Toronto Real Estate Board is Canada’s largest real estate board.

Media Relations contact information:

 Mary Gallagher, Toronto Real Estate Board

Senior Manager Public Affairs (416) 443-8158 maryg@trebnet.com

 Gil Hardy, City of Toronto

Affordable Housing Office (416)-397-4701 ghardy@toronto.ca

 Joanna M. Dwyer
Director, Marketing & Communications, Habitat for Humanity Toronto

Phone: 416 755 7353 ext.259 Cell: 416 708-6481

GTA REALTORS RESALE HOUSING MID-MONTH FIGURES

Greater Toronto Area REALTORS® reported 3,131 residential transactions through the TorontoMLS system during the first two weeks of November 2013.  This result represented a 21 per cent year-over-year increase compared to 2,582 sales reported during the same timeframe in 2012.  Over the same period, new listings were down by more than four per cent.

“The results for mid-November indicate that GTA households remain comfortable with the costs of home ownership,” said Toronto Real Estate Board President Dianne Usher.  “If not for the persistent shortage of listings for most home types, we would likely be experiencing an even higher level of sales as more buyers would be able to make a deal on a home meeting their needs.”

The average selling price for November 2013 mid-month transactions was $538,708, representing an 11 per cent increase compared to $485,988 in 2012.

“More buyers competing for a smaller number of listings has translated into an accelerating pace of price growth.  This theme has been most prevalent in the low-rise market segment, including single-detached and semi-detached houses and townhomes.  However, it is important to note that the condominium apartment market has also become tighter,” said Jason Mercer, TREB’s Senior Manager of Market Analysis.

TorontoMLS Sales & Average Price  By Home Type November 1 – 14, 2013
Sales Average Price
416 905 Total 416 905 Total
Detached 468 1,067 1,535 845,883 595,545 671,869
Yr./Yr. % Change 43.1% 19.5% 25.8% 11.5% 7.7% 10.5%
Semi-Detached 133 202 335 662,447 427,599 520,837
Yr./Yr. % Change 6.4% 24.7% 16.7% 10.9% 10.1% 8.6%
Townhouse 125 352 477 477,096 378,518 404,351
Yr./Yr. % Change 5.9% 20.1% 16.1% 9.3% 6.9% 7.0%
Condo Apartment 526 205 731 395,865 274,664 361,876
Yr./Yr. % Change 19.8% 15.8% 18.7% 14.1% -0.6% 10.8%
Summary of TorontoMLS Sales and Average Price November 1 – 14
2013 2012
Sales Average Price New Listings Sales Average Price New Listings
City of Toronto (“416″) 1,259 $598,924 2,049 1,025 $518,825 2,196
Rest of GTA (“905″) 1,872 $498,210 2,941 1,557 $464,371 3,018
GTA 3,131 $538,708 4,990 2,582 $485,988 5,214

GTA Commercial REALTORS Report Commercial Market Figures

Toronto Real Estate Board Commercial Division Members reported almost 506,000 combined square feet of leased industrial, commercial/retail and office space through the TorontoMLS system in October 2013.

 This result was down compared to October 2012, when 821,118 square feet of leased space was reported.  Lease transactions reported include those undertaken on a per square foot net basis for which pricing was disclosed.

 Average lease rates were up on a year-over-year basis for the three major property types.  The annual increases were based on market factors and changes in the characteristics of properties sold this year compared to last.

 “While the amount of leased space was down this past October in comparison to the same period in 2012, it is important to note that we do see volatility in the commercial leasing market from one month to the next.  Continued growth in the Canadian economy, albeit at a slightly slower pace than originally expected, should provide a foundation for sustained demand for commercial space in the GTA,” said TREB Commercial Division Chair Cynthia Lai.

 There were a combined 61 industrial, commercial/retail and office property sales reported through the TorontoMLS system in October 2013 – up from 55 sales recorded in October 2012.

 Annual changes in average sale prices were mixed for transactions where pricing was disclosed, depending on market segment.  Average selling prices on a per square foot basis for industrial and commercial/retail properties were up in October, whereas the average sale price for office properties was down.

“Recent reports suggest that it will take longer than originally expected for the economy to reach full capacity.  The impact of this could be mitigated by the expectation that borrowing costs will remain low over the next year, which may prompt businesses to make further capital investments including real estate acquisition,” continued Ms. Lai

October 2013: Per Square Foot Net Commercial Leasing Summary

Lease Transactions Completed on a Per Square Foot Net Basis with Pricing Disclosed on TorontoMLS

Leased Square Feet Average Lease Rate

Oct. 2013 Oct. 2012 % Change   Oct. 2013 Oct. 2012 % Change

Industrial

408,928 715,787 -42.9%

Industrial

$5.57 $3.96 40.9%

Commercial

47,244 57,567 -17.9%

Commercial

$21.32 $15.73 35.5%

Office

49,803 47,764 4.3%

Office

$12.46 $11.62 7.2%

Total

505,975 821,118 -38.4%

Source: TREB Commercial Division

October 2013: Commercial Sales Completed with Pricing Disclosed on TorontoMLS

Sales (Price Disclosed) Avg. Sale Price Per Sq. Ft. (Pricing Disclosed)

Oct. 2013 Oct. 2012 % Change   Oct. 2013 Oct. 2012 % Change

Industrial

26 23 13.0%

Industrial

$100.13 $94.97 5.4%

Commercial

25 23 8.7%

Commercial

$186.77 $171.58 8.9%

Office

10 9 11.1%

Office

$177.85 $219.36 -18.9%

Total

61 55 10.9%

Source: TREB Commercial Division

NOTE: Some table totals may differ due to conversion and rounding.

GTA REALTORS RELEASE MONTHLY RESALE HOUSING FIGURES

Greater Toronto Area REALTORS® reported 8,000 home sales through the TorontoMLS system in October 2013 – up from 6,713 transactions reported in October 2012.  Over the same period, new listings on the TorontoMLS system were down.

 “The GTA home ownership market has been broadly characterized by a rebound in sales since the summer.  Market conditions have been tighter in some market segments more so than others.  Ground-oriented homes listed for below one million dollars in some areas of the GTA have been especially popular with buyers, while listings for these home types have been constrained,” said Toronto Real Estate Board President Dianne Usher.

 “The supply of listings for many home types and price points has either been down year-over-year or at least not up by the same annual rate as sales.  The additional Land Transfer Tax in the City of Toronto and the removal of the government guarantee on high ratio mortgages for home purchases over one million dollars have arguably led many homeowners not to list,” continued Ms. Usher.

 The average selling price for TorontoMLS sales in October 2013 was $539,058– up by more than seven per cent in comparison to the average price of $502,127 in October 2012.  The MLS® Home Price Index (MLS® HPI) Composite Benchmark was up by 4.5 per cent year-over-year.

 “Growth in the average selling price and the MLS® HPI Composite Benchmark will continue through 2014.  Inventory levels for ground-oriented home types will be low from a historic perspective and home ownership demand will stay strong as affordability remains in check due to the continuation of accommodative borrowing costs,” said Jason Mercer, the Toronto Real Estate Board’s Senior Manager of Market Analysis.

Summary of TorontoMLS Sales and Average Price October 1 – 31, 2013
2013 2012
Sales Average Price New Listings Sales Average Price New Listings

City of Toronto (“416″)

3,190 $593,807 5,349 2,673 $538,120 5,837

Rest of GTA (“905″)

4,810 $502,748 7,761 4,040 $478,313 7,848

GTA

8,000 $539,058 13,110 6,713 $502,127 13,685
TorontoMLS Sales & Average Price By Home Type October 1 – 31, 2013  
Sales Average Price  
416 905 Total 416 905 Total  
 

Detached

1,125 2,695 3,820 873,509 607,849 686,087  

Yr./Yr. % Change

23.6% 15.4% 17.7% 12.4% 6.3% 9.0%  

Semi-Detached

331 514 845 642,112 417,124 505,255  

Yr./Yr. % Change

-2.4% 15.5% 7.8% 11.7% 6.7% 7.4%  

Townhouse

355 915 1,270 473,240 378,688 405,118  

Yr./Yr. % Change

26.3% 20.7% 22.2% 4.0% 6.0% 5.5%  

Condo Apartment

1,347 560 1,907 384,441 295,166 358,225  

Yr./Yr. % Change

20.4% 35.6% 24.5% 7.2% 4.3% 5.9%

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GTA REALTORS Release Mid-Month Resale Housing Figures

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Greater Toronto Area REALTORS® reported 3,460 sales through the TorontoMLS system during the first 14 days of October 2013. This result was up by 21 per cent in comparison to 2,849 sales reported during the same period in 2012. October mid-month sales were also up by 13 per cent compared to the 10-year average.

“With October mid-month sales well-above the 10-year average, it seems clear that we have more than recovered from the temporary dip in residential transactions that resulted from the onset of stricter mortgage lending guidelines,” said Toronto Real Estate Board President Dianne Usher.

“It is also important to note that the supply of ground-oriented listings remains constrained, due in part to the additional land transfer tax and stricter lending guidelines. If this were not the case, the number of sales could have been greater because more households would have been able find a home to purchase,” continued Ms. Usher.

The average selling price for October mid-month transactions was $536,301 – up 7.3 per cent compared to the first 14 days of October 2012.

“Price growth has been stronger in the second half of 2013, as sales growth has outstripped growth in listings. There have been more buyers competing for available properties compared to the first half of the year, which has led to increased upward pressure on average selling prices,” said Jason Mercer, the Toronto Real Estate Board’s Senior Manager of Market Analysis.

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