Like most regions in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), the Durham housing market came to a near halt at the end of March as a result of the pandemic, with activity and new listings drastically down.
However, as summer began, more buyers and sellers returned to the market, which caused an overall increase in activity that has continued to climb.
In fact, according to the latest data from the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board (TRREB), year-over-year sales growth in the Toronto-area this July was driven by low-rise home types, particularly in the regions surrounding the City of Toronto, with a large share coming from the 905 region, which outsold the 416 area in nearly every housing segment save that of condo apartments. The hottest sales segment in the 905 area was detached homes, which were selling for 14% more than July 2019, with an average price of $1.06 million.
It’s not just west of Toronto that’s performing though, it’s also east.
According to the RE/MAX Fall Market Outlook Report, the Durham region is also going to continue to see an increase in activity in the months to come, with the lack of supply and increased demand, average home prices will continue to climb through the remainder of the year.
Based on these factors, RE/MAX agents forecast that the Durham housing market is expected to see a 14% increase in average residential prices for the remainder of 2020. Currently, the average price for a single-detached home in the Durham region is $779,430, up 8.11% from Q2, while condominium/townhouses reached an average of $421,090, up a slight 2.76% from last quarter.
According to the report, rural areas and cottage properties in the region have seen an increase in buyer interest, as working from home continues to not only be an option but a requirement for many as they continue to reevaluate their living situations. As such, more and more buyers are in search of greater space, something they often can’t find in the downtown core.
RE/MAX is now expecting that the Durham housing market will continue to see a healthy amount of interest and activity over the next 12 months, due to its larger homes and properties in relation to nearby Toronto, coupled with a growing university, new malls, and the Highway 407 expansion.
“We have seen an increase in demand for housing in the Durham Region, and supply continues to be a major issue. The lack of supply and the increasing demand has caused average home prices to increase to the extent that they have thus far, and as more families look to reevaluate their housing options, we will continue to see an increase in average residential prices through to the end of this year.”
“Durham Region has seen immense growth in economic development this past summer, and as the workplace changes, more families, as well as individuals, are exploring their options in cities East of Toronto. Go Transit, the 407 expansion as well as good schools and a growing university, all make Durham Region a viable region to live, work, and raise a family in,” added Jafrey.
The forecast from RE/MAX is aligned with other reports, which have found that more and more buyers are looking to move out of the downtown core in search of greater space and affordability, which can be found in more suburban neighbourhoods in the Durham region, such as Oshawa, where, despite the slow but steady growth in housing prices amid lower inventories, the city continues to rank in the top 10 of Canada’s most affordable cities, beating out Hamilton, Kitchener-Waterloo, and Victoria.