2020 RESALE MARKET
1 For those in the industry, the focus is always on sales numbers. For 2019, we forecast 87,000 units when everyone else was much lower. We turned out to be correct with a year-end estimate of 89,000 units. Our estimate was based on sales per adult population. The long-term average for our current population is about 93,000 units. We think final sales will be 95,000 units reflecting pent up demand from 2018.
2 For the public, everyone wants to focus on prices and in particular price increases over 2019. Economists come up with a single figure for the GTA when in reality this market represents 20-25% of all sales in Canada. Hence, you need to look at a number of sub markets. We have provided these figures based on our analysis of the sales-to-new listings ratio in two time periods. See Figure 1.
3 Price increases for 2020 will range from 1% to 12+% depending on the property and its location. See Figure 2.
4 The possibility of a Real Estate Bubble in 2020. NONE. Price bubble theorists talk about the average real estate price versus the average income of the population. Tracking this figure over 20 years suggests that Toronto is in trouble. But there are three reasons why this figure is no longer meaningful. First, it was based on an economy where most people were employees. Today, we have a significant self-employed population whose income is difficult to measure. Secondly, the number of non-resident buyers with no income in Canada is significant (many also send money to family in Toronto to buy). Finally, we are seeing a generational wealth transfer from ‘baby boomers’ to their children to help them buy.
So, what is a real estate bubble and how does it burst (price crash)? At some point, demand decreases or stagnates at the same time supply increases, resulting in a sharp drop in prices—and the bubble bursts. Has demand for housing in Toronto dropped? No, we have about a 100,000 people a year moving to the GTA and that is not stopping in 2020. In fact, the Government wants even more immigration to Canada and most come to the GTA. Has supply increased, yes, but not enough. Read our section on the Pre-Construction market.