Toronto_areaToronto’s housing market has just capped a record year, new numbers show.

And the industry believes it would have been even better had more homeowners wanted to sell.

The Toronto numbers released this morning and the Vancouver statistics reported yesterday show yet again why those two cities are the focus of bubble speculation, though few see a meltdown in the making.

“Despite stricter mortgage lending guidelines and the possibility of slightly higher borrowing costs on average, there will be many buyers who remain upbeat on the purchase of ownership housing,” Jason Mercer, the Toronto Real Estate Board’s director of market analysis said as the group released the 2015 statistics.

Sales in the Toronto area climbed 9.2 per cent last year to 101,299, according to the real estate group, and the average price rose 9.8 per cent to $622,217.

But that masks big differences in the type of house and the regions of the area.

The average price for a detached home in the city’s 416 region surged 12.6 per cent from a year earlier, to $1.05-million, while that for a semi-detached soared 10.3 per cent.

Average prices were lower in the outlying 905 area.

“If the market had benefitted from more listings, the 2015 sales total would have been greater,” said TREB president Mark McLean, referring to the fact that, in December, active listing were down almost 11 per cent from a year earlier.


SOURCE: Globe and Mail