GTA builders providing smaller, more affordable homes

By Staff | November 22, 2016 | Last updated on November 22, 2016
3 min read

October saw a modest increase in the supply and mix of new homes in the GTA, as well as a slight decrease in average prices, says the Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD).

Plus, the average price of new low-rise homes, which includes detached and semi-detached homes and townhomes, was $937,689 in October, according to Altus Group, BILD’s official source for new-home market intelligence. That’s a $54,702 decline from September, but a 17% increase from this time last year. The average price per square foot was $394, a slight increase from September.

“The industry is doing what it can to provide new homebuyers with ground-related choices that they can afford,” said BILD President and CEO Bryan Tuckey. “Builders brought more semi-detached homes and townhomes to market in October than in previous months, and they are smaller and more affordable than single detached homes.”

Low-rise supply increased slightly from September. There were 2,282 new low-rise homes available for purchase in builders’ inventory. But, despite the increase, supply levels are still a fraction of what they were a decade ago and offer less than two months of inventory based on recent purchase trends.

Read: Would more rental units make the GTA more affordable?

There were 1,621 new low-rise homes sold in October, down 10% from the same time last year but above the 10-year average. Of those sold, 802 were detached homes, which is a 16% decline from October 2015.

“The October numbers confirm that buyer interest in the GTA new home market continues to be strong,” says Patricia Arsenault, executive vice-president of Research Consulting Services at Altus Data Solutions. “The additional townhouse product recently released is welcome news for those seeking more affordable low-rise options.”

Two-thirds of the low-rise sales in October took place in York and Halton regions.

More details

  • There were 2,421 high-rise homes sold in October, which is down 27% from a year ago, but overall high-rise sales are still on pace for a record year with 23,189 sales to date.
  • Prices of new high-rise homes in October declined slightly to $483,656, but that is still 10% above last year’s average. The average price per square foot in the high-rise market fell to $594, a modest decrease from September but up four per cent from October 2015.
  • The decline in high-rise prices is due to the increasing amount of new project launches outside downtown Toronto and in other parts of the GTA where prices are lower. Ten of 15 projects launched in October were in the 905 regions, compared to seven of 20 a year ago.
  • Supply of new high-rise homes in builders’ inventory increased slightly in October to 18,210 units. The increase came as a result of several new project launches in the GTA and mostly affected pre-construction condominiums.

“While inventory has grown slightly, it’s important to understand that one month does not a trend make and constrained supply is still a serious issue in the GTA,” Tuckey says. “What we are seeing in the market is how the development industry is implementing provincial intensification policies by building more affordable low-rise homes and a variety of high-rise communities all over the GTA.”

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