TREB Applauds Protection Of First-Time Home Buyers But Remains Concerned About LTT Increase For Repeat Buyers

Author: Toronto Real Estate Admin / Category: Toronto Realtor

TORONTO, January 25, 2017 — The Toronto Real Estate Board is encouraged that the City of Toronto’s Budget Committee has decided not to currently move forward with proposed Land Transfer Tax increases on first-time home buyers; however, TREB remains concerned about a proposal to increase the Land Transfer Tax by $750 for all other buyers, and is also calling for changes that will help first-time buyers.

“The City’s Budget Committee has done the right thing by taking proposals to hike the land transfer tax on first-time buyers off the table.  TREB has been voicing its concern on these proposals since they were first announced late last year, and we are glad to see that City Hall is listening.  We believe that Mayor Tory understands the importance of keeping Toronto affordable for everyone, especially first-time buyers, and we applaud his leadership in this regard,” said Larry Cerqua, President of the Toronto Real Estate Board.

The City’s Budget Committee was considering a City staff recommendation to increase the City’s Land Transfer Tax by $475 on all first-time buyers, and by as much as $4,475 for some first-time buyers. Staff also recommended increasing the Land Transfer Tax by $750 on all other home buyers. The City’s Budget Committee decided not to move forward with any increases for first-time buyers by increasing the rebate to $4,475 from $3,725 to offset the $750 which other buyers will face.  TREB has been speaking out against the proposed increases and recently launched a campaign to highlight this proposal to the public, encouraging them to visit to let Councillors know how they feel about these proposals.

“We are glad that the Budget Committee has addressed some of the concerns that home buyers have with these proposals, but City Council needs to go further.  A proposal to hike the Land Transfer Tax by $750, or 7%, for all repeat buyers is still on the table.  City Hall’s take from this tax has increased by 200% since 2008, from $3,725 to over $11,000 on an average priced property.  Hasn’t City Hall already taken enough from home buyers?” said Von Palmer, TREB’s Chief Communications and Government Affairs Officer.

While TREB is encouraged that the Budget Committee is not moving forward with the proposed increase for first-time buyers, TREB believes that City Council should be going further by providing new relief for first-time buyers.  Currently, first-time buyers are allowed a rebate of the Land Transfer Tax that is payable on a purchase price of up to $400,000, which was the average price when this tax was implemented in 2008. The average price in 2016 was over $700,000, which means that first-time buyers have lost substantial ground on the rebate.  The provincial government recently recognized this concern by doubling the provincial Land Transfer Tax rebate.  TREB is calling for City Council to make similar adjustments to the City Land Transfer Tax rebate to account for increases in housing prices.

“When the Land Transfer Tax was implemented, City Council put in place a rebate that essentially meant first-time buyers purchasing an average-priced home paid zero City Land Transfer Tax.  Today, that purchaser would pay over $6,000 in Land Transfer Tax.  City Council should follow the provincial government’s lead and give first-time buyers the relief that they deserve,” said Palmer.

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GTA REALTORS® Release Rental Market Statistics

Author: Toronto Real Estate Admin / Category: Toronto Realtor

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GTA REALTORS® Release Condominium Market Statistics

Author: Toronto Real Estate Admin / Category: Toronto Realtor

TORONTO, January 26, 2017 — Toronto Real Estate Board President Larry Cerqua announced that condominium apartment sales reported by Greater Toronto REALTORS® in the fourth quarter of 2016 were up by 22.3 per cent year-over-year to 6,831.  Over the same period of time, new listings were down by 13.4 per cent.

With a double-digit annual increase in sales and a double-digit annual decline in new listings, condo market conditions tightened substantially over the past year.

“Gone are the days when we were concerned about a potential glut in inventory in the condominium apartment market.  The supply concerns that have been top-of-mind for ground-oriented home types are also now a reality for the condo market segment.  Regardless of the price measure considered, heightened competition between condo buyers has resulted in double-digit price inflation,” said Mr. Cerqua.

At the end of the fourth quarter, the MLS® Home Price Index apartment benchmark price was up by 15.2 per cent.  The average condominium apartment selling price for the fourth quarter was up by 14.5 per cent to $437,281.

“First-time buyers represent an important component of home ownership demand.  Many households looking to purchase their first home will consider a condominium apartment.  Interest in this market segment has continued to grow as prices for low-rise home types have increased on a sustained basis,” said Jason Mercer, TREB’s Director of Market Analysis.

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Toronto Housing Starts Post Healthy 2016

Author: Toronto Real Estate Admin / Category: News Bulletin

TORONTO, January 10, 2017 — Housing starts in the Toronto Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) trended at 37,269 units in December compared to 39,230 in November according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). The trend is a six month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR) of housing starts.

“Compared to earlier in the year, new home construction slowed down in Toronto during the final month of 2016,” said Andrew Scott, CMHC Senior Market Analyst for the GTA. “While fewer apartment starts have led to an overall annual decline when compared to 2015, single-detached home starts were up by 16%, hitting their highest level in nearly a decade. This demand for new homes is supported by improved economic conditions and migration.”

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 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 standalone monthly SAAR was 34,396 units in December, up from 30,560 units in November. The increase was the result of greater apartment starts.

The City of Toronto recorded the highest number of starts among municipalities in December, as construction of many new apartment units started. Not far behind was Brampton, which resulted from mostly single-detached and row unit starts. This was followed by Mississauga, where construction started on a number of apartment units. The municipalities of East Gwillimbury, New Tecumseth and Brampton led the increase in singe-detached construction in 2016. Meanwhile, the decline in apartment construction was the result of fewer apartments built in suburban areas like Vaughan and Mississauga.

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.

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Information on This Release:

Media Contact:

Angelina Ritacco
Cell: 647-210-7420

Additional data is available upon request.

Source: CMHC

Source: CMHC
1 Census Metropolitan Area
2 The trend is a six-month moving average of the monthly seasonally adjusted annual rates (SAAR). By removing seasonal ups and downs, seasonal adjustment allows for comparison of adjacent months and quarters. The monthly and quarterly SAAR and trend figures indicate the annual level of starts that would be obtained if the same pace of monthly or quarterly construction activity was maintained for 12 months. This facilitates comparison of the current pace of activity to annual forecasts as well as to historical annual levels.
Detailed data available upon request

Source: CMHC

Source: CMHC

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