The June statistics from Altus Group are in from BILD, and once again, condominium sales continue to dominate new housing, as purchasers opt for more attainable price points and a carefree lifestyle. And all of this is in the face of condo prices rising! I call condos the strongest arm of our new home real estate industry, and they certainly have been thus far in 2018. That trend is likely to continue, if June is any indicator. Numerous new residences were launched that month, which increased inventory to 10,335 units – and by the end of June, nearly half of those had sold.
Last year did send the housing market into a sort of roller coaster ride, with Ontario’s Fair Housing Plan being implemented, as well as the stress test and higher interest rates imposed by the federal government. It’s true that a lot of potential buyers who were uncertain postponed their decisions. Obviously, this year, many have decided to make their move.
Condos are the affordable choice for some, especially first-time buyers. Our strong empty-nester market is also responding by purchasing more expensive suites as they rightsize their homes from large residences. They want to stay in the areas they know and love, and in response, developers are creating new condos in desirable areas. Many are the first ever in their established surroundings, such as Yonge and Finch, Eglinton and Bayview, Church and Shuter, and Sheppard and Don Mills. We are even seeing this trend in downtown Toronto.
In addition to price and lifestyle, condominiums represent the highest and best use of land, a top priority in Ontario right now. Remember that in our cyclical business, the market always eventually stabilizes. Competition for condos is fierce, so buy sooner than later.