December capped off a record year for real estate in the Greater Toronto Area -- both in sales and price.
According to the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board (TRREB), 121,712 sales were reported through its MLS® System in 2021 -- up an astounding 28% from 2020's already hot market and some 7.7% over the previous record high set in 2016.
The real estate market as a whole was marred by severe lack of supply throughout 2021, with new listings up just 6.2% -- a far lesser annual rate than sales. As such, the incredibly tight market led prices to jump a further 17.8% over 2020's record ($929,636) to reach an average sale price of $1,095,475.
“Despite continuing waves of COVID-19, demand for ownership housing sustained a record pace in 2021. Growth in many sectors of the economy supported job creation, especially in positions supporting above-average earnings. Added to this was the fact that borrowing costs remained extremely low. These factors supported not only a continuation in demand for ground-oriented homes, but also a resurgence in the condo segment as well,” said TRREB President Kevin Crigger.
Indeed, the death of the downtown condo being foretold throughout 2020 could not have been more turned on its head in 2021. So much so that TRREB credits the condo recovery in the '416' as a leading reason behind the resurgence of sales within the City of Toronto. While sales in the surrounding GTA were up an impressive 23.6% compared to 2020, the City of Toronto saw a significantly higher increase in its annual rate, with 2021 clocking in a rather stunning 36.8% above 2020 -- a more than 50% higher jump in sales than the suburbs.
In other words, if 2020 was the great migration from Toronto, 2021 was the great return.
December, for its effort, was a strong month historically but simply couldn't match 2020 when it came to ending things on a high note. While some 6,031 sales were reported in the GTA in the twelfth month of 2021, this was 15.7% below 2020's all-time December record of 7,154. That said, prices simply did not slow down, as all home types saw between an 18% (condos) and 29% (townhomes) increase year-over-year.
In a theme that is sure to continue into 2022, TRREB Chief Market Analyst Jason Mercer added that, “Tight market conditions prevailed throughout the GTA and broader Greater Golden Horseshoe in 2021, with a lack of inventory noted across all home types. The result was intense competition between buyers, pushing selling prices up by double digits year-over-year."
TRREB will release its latest Market Outlook and Year in Review report on February 3, 2022.