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Toronto Real Estate Board says GTA resale housing market still down

TORONTO, March 19, 2008 -- Resale home transactions in the Greater Toronto Area continued at a moderate pace during the first half of March, Toronto Real Estate Board President Maureen O’Neill announced today.

With 3,183 transactions to mid-month, sales in the GTA and in Toronto declined 14 per cent and 18 per cent respectively compared to the same timeframe a year ago.

“It’s important to recognize that we have endured the snowiest winter since 1939 and this has undoubtedly affected the market,” said Ms. O’Neill. “The storm that pounded the GTA during the second weekend of March likely had more people focused on shoveling sidewalks than house hunting.”

Despite moderate activity, the value of homes in our city continues to appreciate. At an average of $385,405 in the GTA and $409,116 in Toronto, prices have increased five and four per cent respectively compared to a year ago.

As well, some neighbourhoods experienced an increase in activity during the first half of March.

At the North end of the Greater Toronto Area, Georgina (N17) experienced a 39 per cent increase in sales during the first half of March, driven mainly by detached home transactions.

The Agincourt area of Scarborough (E07) experienced a 12 per cent overall increase in sales compared to a year ago based primarily on strong condominium apartment sales.
Strong condominium apartment sales also allowed the Weston area in York (W04) to hold strong, with a 28 per cent overall increase compared to a year ago.

Toronto's Downtown core (C01) has also experienced healthy sales activity so far this month, due to strong condominium apartment sales as well. Overall sales in this area were up 11 per cent compared to a year ago.

“Condominium apartments have weathered the winter best so far this year, with 733 sales to date but we remain confident that once the snow has melted, we will see a very active spring market overall,” said Ms. O’Neill. “The land transfer tax in Toronto concerns us and we continue to keep a watchful eye on how this tax plays out in the market.”.

Toronto REALTORS® are passionate about their work. They adhere to a strict code of ethics and share a state-of-the-art Multiple Listing Service. Serving over 27,000 Members in the Greater Toronto Area, the Toronto Real Estate Board is Canada’s largest real estate board. Greater Toronto Area open house listings are now available on www.TorontoRealEstateBoard.com.

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