Booming Vancouver condos, dwindling Toronto suburbs latest stars of Canada’s ‘fickle’ market

By HUB SmartCoverage Team on November 12th, 2018

Real estate giant Century 21 released a report breaking down Canadian housing prices and the cost per square foot by neighbourhood. Its findings show a “seriously unpredictable market” over the last year, with its own share of Canadian winners and losers.

“Trends in real estate prices per square foot have been fickle for the last year – soft in some cities but stable in others, even varying from suburb to suburb in some cases,” said Century 21 Canada’s report via HuffPost.

“The trend of fluctuating prices has very likely only increased further since out cut-off for data earlier this summer,” said Brian Rushton, executive vice-president.

Vancouver’s condo market remains one of the most competitive in the country, despite the city’s “serious slowdown” this year. Downtown core property values have heightened, up around 40% over 2018.

Vancouver’s downtown property market is the most expensive in Canada, costing $1,345 per square foot. Comparatively, Toronto’s cost per square foot comes in at $903.

The unaffordability of detached homes in both Toronto and Vancouver have forced buyers into the condo market, making the cost of a condo more volatile even while detached home sales dwindle.

Toronto’s market is showing signs of stability after a weak start to 2018. Century 21 data shows, however, that suburban markets around the city core –particularly to the north– are seeing “major” price declines.

Richmond Hill and Markham have had their price per square foot drop over 24%; price in Vaughan dropped too, nearly 18%.

Condo prices in downtown Toronto have jumped 10.3% over the last year. With the price per square foot at $903, small studio apartments can cost nearly $400,000.

Most volatile

The most volatile market in the country is Peterborough, Ont.

Home prices there have fallen 24% per square foot, while condo prices spiked up another 24%. HuffPost names Peterborough as one of the top 10 “fastest-growing” for housing prices while putting it on the “fastest-falling” list at the same time.

Canada still has a wealth of affordable housing stock, with most of it in the east coast provinces of New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador and Nova Scotia. The cost per square foot in some of these communities range between $100 to $155.

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