Just last September, Toronto’s real estate news was abuzz with reports that Swiss bank, UBS, had included Toronto and Vancouver in a list of the top six worst real estate bubbles in the world. Only Hong Kong and Munich beat the Toronto housing market bubble, and Vancouver was right behind us.
Fast forward just six months, and the Toronto real estate market news is quite different. It’s difficult to even find a mention of housing bubbles. It’s been replaced by somewhat more pressing issues, including interest rates, the need for an affordable housing plan and mortgage stress tests.
Toronto Real Estate Market Update
There have been some interesting real estate news stories recently that are worth knowing.
- Calls for an Affordable Housing Plan – A recent article in the Toronto Star, highlighted a downtown Toronto apartment, that looks like it was “thrown together with duct tape and glue”, on the market for $1,100 a month rent. The case is cited by industry watchdogs as signs that government must step in to create more affordable rental housing like the federal government did in the middle of the 20th century.
- Slowing Home Sales – While house prices remain stable across the Greater Toronto Area, the number of homes being sold was down in February versus February 2018 and versus January 2019. Market watchers recommend changes to rules surrounding the mortgage stress test that many first-time homebuyers must meet, and the foreign buyer’s tax, to help boost the market.
- Interest Rates – Insiders also suggest that, if interest rates stabilize, the market could see improvements very soon. TD Bank’s senior economist, Rishi Sondhi, says “…an improvement in market conditions by mid-year remains a reasonable bet.”
While interest rates have risen marginally since 2017, it’s important to note that they remain close to historic lows. So if you’re looking for Markham, Richmond Hill or Vaughan houses for sale, it’s still a great time to buy.
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