GTA Condo Market Report Q2-2023
The most recent Q2-2023 GTA Condominium Market Report from Urbanation revealed a diverse market environment this quarter. While remaining stable in comparison to some historical averages, the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) condo market continued to face the challenges of rising interest rates. Sales were down compared to last year, but up compared to the first quarter of this year, as the market corrected itself after pandemic highs and the effects of rising interest rates.
Since 1981, Urbanation has been conducting quarterly surveys of the GTA condo market through established connections with local brokerages, lenders, and developers. The company then produces reports every three months that contain data gathered from about 100 sources with a connection to the market. For essential knowledge about the condo market right now, check out this summary of their most recent report.
YOY: New Condo Sales Dropped While Resale Sales Rose
In the Q2-2023 GTA condominium market, new condo launches, new condo sales, and pricing per square foot for new condos, unsold inventory, and resale condos were all down year over year. The Bank of Canada has increased interest rates ten times since March 2022, which has been a significant factor in the continued buyer stagnation faced by developers. As a result, unsold new inventory has increased by 56 percent over the past year, reaching its highest level since Q2 of 2014.
Sales of resale condos increased by 23% year over year, which is a more encouraging statistic. Resale condo sales increased despite there being fewer active listings and a slight increase in the time it took for these units to sell (20 days vs. 14 days in Q2-2022).
Q1 vs Q2: New Sales Soared, and the Scene for Investors Improved
When looking at a quarterly basis, buyer confidence showed signs of growth. With a total of 4,610 units sold, the number of new condo units sold increased from Q1 to Q2, reaching a four-quarter high. With the quantity of units sold more than doubling, this represented a notable increase of 118 percent quarter over quarter.
A surge in launches that brought 27 developments and more than 7,300 new units to market was another positive development; it was exactly in line with the GTA’s ten-year Q2 average.
According to Urbanation, investors in rental properties are now more capable of achieving neutral cash flow because new condo buyers have shifted their attention to lower price points.
For new launches sold in Q3-2023, the estimated ownership carrying costs (which include mortgage payments at current interest rates, condo fees, and property taxes) were $6.71 psf. The median rent for condos in the GTA’s second quarter of 2023 was $4.03 per square foot. The good news is that compared to the record average set in Q1-2023, the difference between ownership costs per square foot and rent per square foot decreased significantly, from 88 percent in Q1 to just 66 percent in Q2.
It’s important to remember that investing in GTA real estate can yield significant long-term returns, according to history. According to the Bank of Canada’s inflation calculator, the average home price in Canada in 2001 was $250,000, which would be $361,534.55 in 2021. According to additional data, the average home price in Canada exceeded $1 million in 2021, demonstrating that home values quadrupled in just two decades, significantly outpacing inflation.
The first half of 2023 saw the slowest sales of new condominiums since 2013, with new condo sales declining by 35% from the previous year. In spite of this, unit sales increased in Q2 compared to Q1 as previously mentioned.
With 18,890 units introduced to the market through presales, the opening quarter absorption rate over the previous four quarters was on average 40%, which was significantly lower than the 60 percent average over the previous ten quarters.
In Q2, the 905 region represented a record-high percentage of GTA new condo sales, while the former City of Toronto represented a record-low 14 % of sales.
When compared quarter to quarter, the number of new projects under construction increased slightly in Q2 despite a slight year-over-year decline. An all-time high since 2014 is represented by the 102,448 units currently being built.
The focus of recent condominium investors has been on purchasing apartments within developments.
perceived as providing good value in emerging areas. With an average top 10 sold price of $1,208 psf in Q2-2023 compared to $1,412 psf in Q2-2022, the top 10 selling projects in the GTA condominium market have seen increased sales. As the market continues to be driven by location and price point, prices have decreased.
Prices for unsold new condos in the 905 area were 30% lower than the previous average for the City of Toronto.
This quarter in the GTA, 27 new projects and 7,349 new units were introduced. The number of new units launched in Q2 was down from the previous quarter, but it was exactly in line with and slightly higher than the ten-year average of 7,276 new units.
With only one project launched in Hamilton-Grimsby, there were thirteen new launches in the “416” region and fourteen in the “905” area. The most new launches were in Toronto.
With sales rising 23% year over year, the resale market’s circumstances improved in the second quarter. Prices sat 4.6 percent below the Q2-2022 average but hit a four-quarter high of $898 psf. The price difference between units sold at new launches and those sold on the secondary market decreased to 38%, which was the lowest difference seen since Q3-2021.
Message for Investors
Rising interest rates, according to Urbanation, have caused the launch of over 10,000 new condo units to be delayed. They warn that number may increase to 20,000 units by the end of 2023. This stalling occurs at a time when there is an urgent need for new housing construction.
According to provincial data, the population of Ontario increased by a record 505,000 people over the past year. This growth is anticipated to continue as the federal government strives for record levels of immigration and the number of non-permanent residents from temporary foreign workers and students increases.
The GTA typically contributes to about half of Ontario’s population growth, and the majority of the region’s new housing construction is condominiums, indicating that the market will continue to be undersupplied. In the end, location and price point continue to be the factors that influence sales. Market difficulties for developers have been made worse by supply chain difficulties brought on by labor shortages and disruptions, and it is anticipated that development times for new launches will keep lengthening.
The GTA condo market is a great place to make an investment right now. To find out more and get in touch with our knowledgeable team of experts, register here.