Buyers were relieved last week as listings of freehold homes in the core improved by slightly over 11%. The number of sales remained unchanged but with more homes on the market, the number of multiple offers retreated 4% off the historic high of the week before (70%). The west core was the only area where available listings dropped yet sales increased signifying a tightening in that market. In the east core, the opposite held true. There we saw a significant increase in available listings (up 34%) and a 20% decrease in sold properties. It is often interesting to see how the tide in buyer habits shifts east to west and then back again, while the central core remains relatively constant.
We are feeling much more comfortable with the condominium market right now. While the number of suites coming on the market has fluctuated, listings have been trending down. This is only good news (and a sign of a more balanced market) when sales are trending up or, at the very least, not trending down at the same rate. Last week, listings fell by over 16% while sales declined by only 13%. For the second week in a row, the number of suites that sold at or above the list price remained at 25%. While the bulk of the sales activity continues to focus on the first time buyer category ($200k-$400k) there has been some movement in the upper middle end ($700k - $1.5m) possibly from frustrated home buyers.
Like the returning geese anxious to touch down on Toronto green space, the other clear sign that Spring is here is the substantial (21%) increase in available listings in the freehold sector over the last two weeks. Unfortunately sales were not as frothy as expected. While we saw a sharp decline in sold listings throughout the downtown core (60%), the number of homes that traded in bidding wars has held relatively steady at between 58% and 64%. We recognize that the dip in sales is due in part to March Break.