The Greater Toronto Area housing market lives in interesting times. It might seem like a daring invocation, but the Toronto condo market in particular and a surge of young buyers will meet together with a promising confluence of factors this spring.
By virtue of being young and new to their careers, Toronto buyers fresh from university or only a few years into their careers of choice often start their hunts with the most conservative budgets. Lowered mortgage rates such as BMO’s rate cut announced during the end of March from 3.49 per cent down to 2.99 will only further entice buyers who saved wisely over the last three years in response to stricter mortgage-lending reforms championed by federal Conservatives.
Throw in the Greater Toronto Area’s ongoing surge in new condo developments throughout the metropolitan landscape with rising house prices, and Toronto’s ever-younger homebuyers have every reason they could need to invest in the GTA’s ever-growing condo market.
► WHAT’S CHANGED?
As winter thaws into Spring 2014’s seasonally bustling real estate sales season, the Toronto inventory of houses for sale is actually shrinking. Oh, the demand for single-family homes exists in plentiful supply among GTA buyers. The inventory just hasn’t necessarily caught up with it.
Meanwhile, Toronto twenty something’s are enjoying what every year of low interest rates they can. In 2013, they ventured out in force armed with pre-approvals, loans co-signed by parents and any additional federal aid available to first-time buyers or buyers who can only put a 5-per-cent or so down payment after a year or two of saving.
And really, why not? A young Toronto professional can afford some of the speculative risk of leasing a $4,900 Moss Park two-storey penthouse in the Lower Don Lands with the confidence that the combined rehabilitative efforts to stimulate the area, its downtown core and Distillery District proximity and the building of the 2015 Pan Am Games athletes’ village will in time invigorate the neighbourhood as expected. Time is on his or her side.
If nothing else, browsing a flush condo market at this point may beat chancing increasingly escalating bidding wars.
In a market where bidders are increasingly willing to pay as much as $150,000 over asking price for a home in Toronto, more and more fiscally limited buyers just may not mind being realistic about how much space they really need, as long as it comes with the right location.