In its latest set of data releases, the Toronto Real Estate Board announced that the average price of a detached home in the downtown area increased by 33 per cent year-over-year, up to nearly $1.6 million. This represented the largest annual growth since February 1989.
However, Toronto mayor John Tory noted that while the city is taking steps to help address the affordability crisis and improve supply, there’s still no consensus on “the nature of the forces that are pushing the prices up the way they are,” as well as the most effective and appropriate response to the issue.
Tory was also hesitant to support the growing calls for a foreign buyers’ tax, as definite figures on the proportion of non-Canadian real estate investors in Toronto are unavailable.
“I don’t know how you can make a decision on a huge public policy matter that can have an impact on the marketplace without having that data,” the mayor said in a Bloomberg interview.
Tory added that he’s more “willing to explore” a tax on vacant properties to make more homes available.
The TREB data revealed that prices across every major housing type, including condos and townhouses, increased in March. New listings also climbed by 15 per cent (up to 17,051) last month, after a noticeable decline in February.
TREB president Larry Cerqua welcomed the city’s cautious stance in not implementing any
“Policy makers must remember that it is the interplay between the demand for and supply of listings that influences price growth,” Cerqua said in a statement.
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