TREB’s President’s News Beat: A Message From The New President

Author: Toronto Real Estate Admin / Category: Toronto Realtor

TREB President’s Column as it appears every Friday in the Toronto Sun’s Resale Homes and Condos section.

July 24, 2015 — I am excited about representing the Greater Toronto Area’s more than 41,000 REALTORS® during the next 12 months, as President of the Toronto Real Estate Board.

I see it as a great opportunity to share information with you about the real estate market in our city, which is teeming with potential. I believe that as a centre of finance, innovation and creativity, Toronto is destined to become one of the world’s great mega-cities. In fact, the Globalization and World Cities Research Network already classifies ours as an alpha city, one that links major economic regions into the global economy.

People from all over the world want to be here and enthusiasm for Toronto is reflected in study after study. This year, the Economist Intelligence Unit named Toronto the best city in the world in which to live and global real estate consultancy Knight Frank ranked Toronto 12th among the world’s 40 most important cities. We placed in the same spot in a study of the world’s most sustainable cities conducted by the global engineering consultancy Arcadis, and we ranked 10th on The Atlantic’s Global Economic Power Index.

As a runner, I enjoy exploring our city’s diverse neighbourhoods and marveling at the pace of development as Toronto evolves into a vibrant, global oasis. A trek through just about any community proves that ours is a city of entrepreneurs, and one of Toronto’s most energetic go-getters, is your REALTOR®.

Our energy is derived from the passion we have both for the GTA, and for connecting people to help them realize their dreams. In today’s digital world, each of us has vast amounts of data available at our fingertips and Greater Toronto REALTORS® recognize that you expect more than just numbers. I see a REALTOR’S® role not only as a provider of information, but more importantly, as a purveyor of insight. Distilling all of the variables that can affect your transaction, from nearby development plans to school zoning, and providing you with insightful opinions, is one of the most important services you can expect when working with a REALTOR®.

A home transaction is one of the most emotional and financially significant steps you will ever take, and as such, it only makes sense to bring an informed, objective head to the table to help you maximize your dollar. We understand that the stakes are high and we want you to hold us to equally high standards. Today’s REALTORS® are smart, driven and committed to staying on top of the information stream in order to provide you with the best possible service.

While this year’s soaring real estate sales activity and prices in the GTA reflect buyers’ enthusiasm for our city, they don’t have to mean that your goals are out of reach. Your REALTOR® can help you employ strategies that will allow you to put your best possible stake in this living, breathing metropolis of opportunity. To learn more, talk to a Greater Toronto REALTOR® and visit

Mark McLean is President of the Toronto Real Estate Board, a professional association that represents 41,000 REALTORS® in the Greater Toronto Area.

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GTA REALTORS® Release Q2 Rental Market Figures

Author: Toronto Real Estate Admin / Category: Toronto Realtor

TORONTO, July 17, 2015 — Toronto Real Estate Board President Mark McLean announced that GTA REALTORS® reported 8,821 condominium apartment rentals through TREB’s MLS® System in the second quarter of 2015.  This result represented a 20.3 per cent year-over-year increase compared to 7,333 condo apartment rentals reported in Q2 2014.  Growth in the number of units rented tracked growth in supply quite closely, with the number of condo apartments listed for rent during the second quarter increasing by 23 per cent annually.

“The demand for rental accommodation in the Greater Toronto Area increased in the second quarter in response to the sustained population growth we continue to enjoy as a result of our region’s status as one of the best places to live and do business,” said Mr. McLean.

“Many renter households continued to focus their attention on investor-owned condominium apartments.  So much so that the strong growth in the supply of units for rent was closely matched by the growth in the number of units rented, indicating that there exists a certain degree of pent-up demand in some segments of the rental market,” McLean continued.

For TREB’s market area as a whole, average rents for one-bedroom and two-bedroom apartments, which made up a combined 94 per cent of rental transactions, were up by 1.5 and 4.5 per cent respectively to $1,608 and $2,239.

“Growth in average rents is generally impacted by both market conditions and the type and size of units rented from one period to the next.  Both of these factors played into rent increases over the past year, but the bottom line is that despite robust listings growth, strong renter demand has provided a firm foundation for rents,” said Jason Mercer, TREB’s Director of Market Analysis.

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GTA REALTORS® Release Q2 Condominium Market Figures

Author: Toronto Real Estate Admin / Category: Toronto Realtor

TORONTO, July 17, 2015 — Toronto Real Estate Board President Mark McLean announced that there were 7,656 condominium apartment transactions reported through TREB’s MLS® system in the second quarter of 2015, representing a year-over-year growth rate of 17 per cent relative to Q2 2014.

Sales growth greatly outpaced growth in listings, with new listings up by a lesser rate of 7.3 per cent year-over-year and active listings at the end of the second quarter down by 1.3 per cent.

“Much of the new condominium apartment inventory that has been brought to bear on the market in the recent past has been absorbed.  In fact, market conditions have tightened with months of inventory trending lower.  This suggests that recent condominium apartment completions, while strong from a historic perspective, simply helped satisfy a growing demand for this housing type.  Absorption rates and price growth statistics point to a healthy market,” said Mr. McLean.

The average selling price for condominium apartments in the TREB market area as a whole grew by 5.8 per cent year-over-year to $388,066.  In the City of Toronto, which accounted for 70 per cent of sales in the GTA, the average selling price of $416,728 represented a 6.1 per cent increase compared to Q2 2014.

“Condominium apartment prices have been appreciating at a moderate pace, on average, over the past year, especially when compared to low-rise home types like detached and semi-detached houses and townhouses.  However, it is possible that we could see an acceleration in condo price growth in the second half of this year, as growth in sales remains strong relative to growth in listings,” said Jason Mercer, TREB’s Director of Market Analysis.

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Governments of Canada and Ontario Celebrate New Affordable Rental Housing in Waterloo Region

Author: Toronto Real Estate Admin / Category: News Bulletin

CAMBRIDGE, ONTARIO, July 15, 2015 — The governments of Canada and Ontario celebrated the official opening of seven new affordable rental housing projects for people with disabilities and low-income individuals and families in Waterloo Region today. Combined, these seven projects received more than $5.1 million in funding from the federal and provincial governments. The construction of these new rental housing properties has supported economic growth and helped create 103 jobs in Ontario.

The Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State (Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario) and Member of Parliament for Cambridge, on behalf of the Honourable Candice Bergen, Minister of State (Social Development); Kathryn McGarry, Member of Provincial Parliament for Cambridge, on behalf of Ted McMeekin, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, and Councillor Geoff Lorentz, on behalf of Region of Waterloo Chair Ken Seiling, made the announcement today.

“Our Government is committed to helping those in need, which is why we are proud to have invested in several projects in Waterloo Region,” said Minister Goodyear. “These new housing developments play an integral role in ensuring that people with disabilities, low-income individuals and families have an accessible, safe and affordable place to call home.”

“We’re committed to reducing poverty and ending homelessness in Ontario,” said MPP McGarry. “Investing in affordable housing is a big piece of the puzzle. Kiwanis Village and the projects we’ve announced today provide people with accessible and affordable housing, and more importantly, a place to call home in their community.”

“Since 2001, 2,129 affordable housing units have been created in the Region of Waterloo through partnerships the Region has forged with local municipalities, community housing proponents and the Provincial and the Federal governments”, said Regional Councillor Geoff Lorentz, Chair of the Community Services Committee. “Cambridge Kiwanis Village and the six other recently completed affordable housing developments announced today are all examples of the continued partnerships formed to leverage much needed affordable housing across our growing community.”

The event celebrated the official opening of seven new affordable rental housing projects in Waterloo Region. Projects include:

  • Cambridge Kiwanis Village, 365 Linden Drive in Cambridge received $2,760,000 for 23 units for people with disabilities and low-income individuals.
  • 75 McGuire Lane, in Elmira received $775,423 for 6 units for people with disabilities.
  • Preston Arbour, in Cambridge received $240,000 for 2 units for people with disabilities.
  • Nafziger Road, in Wellesley received $189,560 for 2 units for low-income families.
  • MennoHomes – David Street, in Wellesley received $240,000 for 2 units for low-income families.
  • MennoHomes – Elmira 2, in Elmira received $360,000 for 3 units for low-income families.
  • DeafBlind Ontario, in Ayr received $540,000 for 4 units for people with disabilities.

The funding for all seven projects comes as a result of the $481 million Investment in Affordable Housing 2011-2014 Agreement between the Governments of Canada and Ontario. The federal and provincial funding is complemented by $344,646 in federal HST rebates and SEED funding, and more than $3.36 million in municipal grants, land contribution, non-profit and charitable contributions, and loans.

Annually, the Government of Canada, through Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) invests approximately $2 billion in housing. These investments improve the quality of life for low-income Canadians and households living in existing social housing, including individuals who are homeless or at-risk of homelessness, seniors, persons with disabilities, recent immigrants and Aboriginal people. Economic Action Plan 2013 continued this commitment with a federal investment of more than $1.25 billion over five years to extend the Investment in Affordable Housing Program to 2019. The Government of Canada will ensure that funds provided to provinces and territories support the use of apprentices, which will support training of skilled labour.

Ontario continues to build new affordable housing and repair existing units for Ontarians with housing needs. Since 2003, the province has committed more than $4 billion in funding for affordable housing, which has helped support more than 20,000 new affordable rental housing units, more than 275,000 repairs and improvements to social and affordable housing units and rental and down payment assistance to more than 90,000 households in need. Ontario’s Long-Term Affordable Housing Strategy has set a strong foundation for a more efficient, accessible affordable housing system.

Investing in affordable housing is part of the Ontario government’s economic plan to build Ontario up. The four-part plan includes investing in people’s talents and skills, making the largest investment in public infrastructure in Ontario’s history, creating a dynamic and innovative environment where business thrives, and building a secure retirement savings plan.

To find out more information on:

Media contacts:

Dean D’Souza
Public Affairs Central
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Deb Schlichter
Director, Housing Services
Region of Waterloo

Mark Cripps
Office of the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing

Conrad Spezowka
Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing

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June 2015 Housing Starts in Toronto

Author: Toronto Real Estate Admin / Category: News Bulletin

TORONTO, July 9, 2015 — Housing starts in the Toronto Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) trended at 39,170 units in June compared to 38,415 in May according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). The trend is a six month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR)1 of housing starts.

“Despite a slight pull-back in condominium apartment starts, low rise home starts trended higher, supporting an increase in total housing starts in June,” said Dana Senagama, CMHC Principal Market Analyst for the GTA. “With inventories of new and resale low rise homes hitting all-time lows, households are increasingly looking for more choice and builders are channelling this demand towards new projects.”

CMHC uses the trend measure as a complement to the monthly SAAR of housing starts to account for considerable swings in monthly estimates and obtain a more complete picture of the state of the housing market. In some situations, analysing only SAAR data can be misleading in some markets, as they are largely driven by the multiples segment of the markets which can be quite variable from one month to the next.

The stand alone monthly SAAR was 30,807 units in June, down from 58,469 units in May. This was the result of a decrease in apartment starts this month.

The City of Toronto maintained the highest number of starts as construction began on many apartment units. However, the 905 regions saw increased activity as more new home starts shifted out of Toronto this month. The City of Mississauga had the next highest number of starts, which included a significant number of apartments. This was followed by the municipalities of Vaughan, Oakville, Markham and Brampton, where starts were bolstered by single-detached and row homes.

Preliminary Housing Starts data is also available in English and French at the following link: Preliminary Housing Starts Tables.

As Canada’s authority on housing, CMHC contributes to the stability of the housing market and financial system, provides support for Canadians in housing need, and offers objective housing research and information to Canadian governments, consumers and the housing industry.

1 All starts figures in this release, other than actual starts and the trend estimate, are seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR) — that is, monthly figures adjusted to remove normal seasonal variation and multiplied by 12 to reflect annual levels. By removing seasonal ups and downs, seasonal adjustment allows for a comparison from one season to the next and from one month to the next. Reporting monthly figures at annual rates indicates the annual level of starts that would be obtained if the monthly pace was maintained for 12 months. This facilitates comparison of the current pace of activity to annual forecasts as well as to historical annual levels.

Information on this release:

Media Contact:

Angelina Ritacco

Follow CMHC on Twitter @CMHC_ca

Additional data is available upon request.

Source: CMHC
1 Census Metropolitan Area
2 The trend is a six-month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR).
Detailed data available upon request

Source: CMHC

Source: CMHC

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GTA REALTORS® Release Commercial Market Figures

Author: Toronto Real Estate Admin / Category: Toronto Realtor

TORONTO, July 7, 2015 — Toronto Real Estate Board President Mark McLean announced that TREB Commercial Network Members reported 5,896,493 square feet of leased industrial, commercial/retail and office space during the second quarter of 2015.  This result was little changed from Q2 2014 when a total of 5,806,376 square feet of space was leased.  The industrial segment accounted for almost three quarters of total space leased.

The average second quarter industrial lease rate for properties leased on a per square foot net basis with pricing disclosed was $5.42, representing a 6.5 per cent year-over-year increase compared to the second quarter of 2014.  The average commercial/retail lease rate was up over the same period by 1.6 per cent to $19.27.  The average office lease rate was down by 8.6 per cent to $12.27.

“The fact that second quarter industrial leasing activity remained quite strong on a year-over-year basis, and was coupled with a respectable annual increase in the average lease rate, suggests that many firms in the GTA have taken on new space with the expectation that their businesses will expand moving forward,” said Mr. McLean.

Total sales in the second quarter were down by 22.1 per cent year-over-year to 250 from 321 transactions reported in Q2 2014.  The number of deals reported were down on a relatively uniform basis across major property classes.  Average selling prices on a per square foot basis, where pricing was disclosed, were marginally lower for the industrial and commercial/retail property segments.  The average selling price was up considerably for office properties, but this was largely due to a different mix of properties sold this year compared to last, specifically in the City of Toronto.

“The latest results for Canadian gross domestic product suggest that the dip in the oil and gas sector continued to be a drag on the overall economy in the second quarter.  Looking ahead, the GTA economy stands to benefit from the decline in value of the Canadian dollar, especially in export-oriented sectors.  However, the timing for these benefits to materialize may be longer than originally expected, which may be prompting some would-be property investors to remain on the sidelines,” continued Mr. McLean.

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