Toronto remains likely to see elevated housing demand and prices this summer despite the COVID-19 market pause, RE/MAX predicted.
Data from the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board indicated that the GTA suffered a 69% annual decline in home sales in the first 17 days of April. This also accompanied a 1.5% drop in the market’s average home prices, with the most pessimistic observers predicting 5% devaluation by July.
“Yet, we cannot be sure that this trend will continue into the summer and that prices will necessarily drop further,” RE/MAX said. “[TRREB] notes that the pause on activity will lead to more demand once measures loosen. As a result of banned open houses, homebuyers have resorted to creative ways of viewing listings and engaging with the market, leveraging technology to facilitate the home-buying process while mitigating the impact of coronavirus on real estate activity in Toronto.”
And while mobility restrictions might last for much of the summer, “we expect buyers who have been waiting patiently to continue their home search will quickly re-enter the market when we return to some normalcy,” RE/MAX said.
Still, any such predictions will have to give way to just how fast the market recovers in the first place, especially considering the mounting concerns surrounding many Canadians’ long-term purchasing power.
“Those who are concerned about their employment in the coming months could pull demand down. However, those who have stable employment and cash that isn’t tied up in investments can take advantage of low interest rates,” RE/MAX said.