toronto real estate

Toronto has a concerningly high number of condos sitting on the market

Even with interest rates due to ease up later this year, people have still been extremely hesitant to purchase real estate in Toronto — especially condos, which are a perennial favourite of investors, first-time homeowners and all sorts of buyers.

The housing type has been experiencing a particularly difficult recovery from last year's market lull — spawned by prohibitive lending rates, inflated cost of living and tough economy in general — and things only appear to be worsening when they should be doing the opposite.

It's gotten to the point that developers are actually putting entire complexes on ice due to lack of interest, even amid a housing crisis that leaders are trying to address through the construction of as much new housing as fast as possible.

And now, another somewhat alarming development, in the form of a near-record for the city: thousands of resale condos on the market at one time, all of them awaiting buyers that just aren't coming.

Local realtor Robert Marsiglio has been keeping an eye on the number of units listed in Toronto recently, noting on X this week that we were approaching the record for most resale condo inventory since a high in October of last year.

During that month, 5,797 condos were sitting on a market that most balked at given the sheer lack of affordability of high mortgage rates on top of the city's obstinately exorbitant real estate prices.

Then, this Tuesday, we apparently came within 10 active listings of that number, apparently surpassing it by Thursday evening, per the agent's social media.

As Marsiglio has noted, this came after an April that was slower for Toronto condo sales (relative to new listings) than even pandemic-plagued April 2020.

The number of sales last month equalled only 38.4 per cent of the number of new listings. By comparison, in April 2020, this figure was 42.4 per cent.

This proportion should technically classify Toronto as in a buyer's market (for condos), but the agent notes that our sky-high prices and lack of affordability make this "more of a frozen market, as transactions aren't happening relative to new listings."

Though this spells bad news for realtors, owners looking to sell and other stakeholders, residents are expecting that this will have to push the market to a breaking point where prices will need to drop in order for the city's well-overpriced units to change hands.

But, given that prices for homes in the city failed to budge very significantly even with such dismal sales volumes last year, perhaps it is naive to hope for such good news for would-be condo buyers, even if the market is pointing in that direction.

Lead photo by

Royal Lepage Signature Realty, Brokerage/Strata.ca


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