2006 Sales Sets New Record [media clip]

Resale record set; average price rises

From Friday’s Globe and Mail

A sizzling housing market is adding to the warm feeling experienced by homeowners in the City of Toronto this unseasonably mild winter.

The city had its hottest year ever for home sales in 2006, surpassing the previous resale activity record set in 2005 by 1 per cent, the Toronto Real Estate Board reported.

The average resale price for a home in Toronto rose 5 per cent during the year to $378,775, TREB said, and 34,404 properties changed hands through the board’s multiple-listing service in 2006.

Sales for the board’s whole catchment area, which encompasses the Greater Toronto Area from Burlington to Newcastle and north to Lake Simcoe, came in at 83,084 — only slightly below 2005’s record of 84,145 — thanks to a surprising surge of sales in December.

The average home price for the region reached $351,941, TREB reported.

Jason Mercer, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp.’s senior GTA analyst, said the strong economy is behind the market’s continued high performance.

“Households remained confident in their ability to purchase a home last year,” Mr. Mercer said. “Steady job growth in a number of different sectors and very low mortgage rates will keep buyers upbeat about home ownership in 2007.”

The development industry is also expecting strong results when it issues its annual totals next week.

The tally of new homes and condos sold in 2006 is expected to exceed 40,000, according to the Greater Toronto Home Builders Association.

Posted January 11th, 2007

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