Toronto Condo Sales Plummet + Home Prices Stable - For Now

In Toronto: Condo sales plummet 69%, but one measure shows better news for larger market.

Elsewhere: Vancouverites pull their homes off the market, Americans are finally fixing that creaky door and Britain's housing class divide shows.

Corona Crisis - Week 6: Is Toronto's Real Estate Market Stabilizing? (Move Smartly) 

This would mean that the housing market is not heating up or cooling down - it’s on cruise control in the 4 months of inventory range where home prices tend to stay stable, which is a good thing. Now, while this is a positive sign this week, the market is still very fast-changing (hence the weekly tracking) - I would advise that it is still a time for caution for both home buyers and sellers. 

Toronto region home sales suddenly tumble by 69% (Toronto Star)

“Home buyers and sellers have concerns about the economy and, indeed, their own employment situations. On top of this, many buyers and sellers are avoiding any type of in-person interaction. In the condo market in particular, individual condo corporations have curtailed entry for non-residents,” he said in a news release.

Toronto home sales plummet in April as coronavirus shutdowns hit housing market (The Globe and Mail)

In the Toronto region, condo sales declined the most, falling 72 per cent year over year. TRREB, which typically reports activity once a month, said condos traditionally attract a high share of first-time buyers, who in times of uncertainty can put their decision to purchase on hold. Sales of detached houses more than $2-million also decreased, which pulled down the average selling price.

Coronavirus: 61% of Toronto businesses would close down in 3 months, survey says (Global)

Meanwhile, landlords in the survey indicated that 74 per cent of them did not receive all of April’s rent, and 82 per cent of landlords feel they will not receive all of May’s rent either.


Home prices could fall 5% amid pandemic: Capital Economics (Bloomberg)

While sales activity and price gains were firm in the first half of March, real estate boards from across the country are reporting a near halt in activity as government shutdowns and physical distancing have people staying home.

Forced Selling May Be Headed For Canada’s Housing Market (Huffington Post)

In Vancouver, they are down around 50 per cent in the first few weeks of April, according to realtor and housing analyst Steve Saretsky. Inventory is growing, but many Vancouverites have pulled their homes off the market in the pandemic, with new listings down even more than sales, around 60 per cent.

'COVID Clauses' Await Buyers In Canada's Housing Market (Reuters)

The COVID clauses include confirming buyers’ health and recent-travel history and waivers that free the seller and agent from any liability in the event the client gets sick following a property viewing.


Pandemic Is A Worsening Threat To The Rental Housing Market (Forbes)

“There is a misconception that all landlords are wealthy,” he said. “The fact of the matter is that many rental housing owners are small businesses who have bills they need to pay. A rent strike or rent freeze can ultimately put every resident in a community at risk if the landlords can’t meet their financial obligations to keep the property operating.”

How Coronavirus Has Made Us All Very Handy (NY Times)

They may be taking on repairs that they’ve been putting off for too long, or they might be focusing on small projects around the house that they suddenly realized needed immediate attention now that they’re spending so much time at home.

For Cities, This Is a Fiscal Disaster (City Lab)

The CARES Act contains a particularly gaping hole when it comes to Cincinnati and cities like it. The act only provides direct aid for government operations to cities of more than 500,000 people. But it is the very cities and towns under this threshold that will now be the hardest hit economically without federal support. Kansas City, Oakland, Tampa, Louisville, Cincinnati, Buffalo, New Orleans, Albany, Cleveland, Anaheim, and Pittsburgh all fall beneath this poorly conceived threshold.


Lockdown has laid bare Britain's class divide (The Guardian)

Our experiences of the lockdown are shaped by class. How can they not be, when the rich have escaped to second homes, when bus drivers and nurses are dying on their jobs, and when our ability to tolerate large amounts of time at home or to properly self-isolate is determined by how much space we have at our disposal?

On the Margins of Paris, the Food Bank Queues Grow Longer (Reuters)

In Paris's depressed suburbs, the number of people relying on food handouts is soaring as a strict coronavirus lockdown plunges France into its deepest recession since World War Two. Many worked in the grey economy before the outbreak, and now receive little protection from France's generous welfare state.

Top Photo Credit: Getty-istock/redtea

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