TORONTO, ONTARIO, April 3, 2020 – Toronto Regional Real Estate Board President Michael Collins announced that Greater Toronto Area REALTORS® reported 8,012 home sales through TRREB’s MLS® System in March 2020 – up by 12.3 per cent compared to 7,132 sales reported in March 2019.
The Effect of COVID-19
However, despite a strong increase in sales for March 2020 as a whole, there was a clear break in market activity between the pre-COVID-19 and post-COVID-19 periods. In surveying the real estate market numbers, the start of the post-COVID-19 period was the week beginning Sunday, March 15. • The overall March sales result was clearly driven by the first two weeks of the month. There were 4,643 sales reported in the pre-COVID-19 period, accounting for 58 per cent of total transactions and representing a 49 per cent increase compared to the first 14 days of March 2019.
There were 3,369 sales reported during the post-COVID-period – down by 15.9 per cent compared to the same period in March 2019. For March as a whole, new listings were up by three per cent year-over-year to 14,424. However, similar to sales, new listings dropped on a year-over-year basis during the second half of the month (beginning March 15) by 18.4 per cent. The MLS® Home Price Index Composite Benchmark price was up by 11.1 per cent year-over-year in March The average selling price for March 2020 as a whole was $902,680 – up 14.5 per cent compared to March 2019. The average selling price for sales reported between March 15 and March 31, was $862,563 – down from the first half of March 2020, but still up by 10.5 per cent compared to the same period last year.
Toronto Regional Real Estate Board Update
It appears that the onslaught of the COVID-19 pandemic is having a profound effect on the local Toronto real estate market, and time will tell how long this will last. Currently, while stay-at-home protocols are in effect, it seems likely that sales activity will remain slow in the near future.