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Sales of $3 million-plus homes up 86% in Toronto

Staff Writer |
Sales of homes priced over $1 million were up year-over-year in Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary, Victoria and Oakville in the first nine months of 2016.

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In the Greater Toronto Area and Vancouver, Canada's largest high-end housing markets, sales of $3 million-plus homes saw significant increases, of 86 percent in the GTA and 41 percent in Vancouver.

While Vancouver sales of $1 million properties were up by three percent overall, single-family home sales in that range declined by seven percent year-over-year.

One factor contributing to this decrease is the foreign buyer tax implemented by the provincial government in August, which has resulted in slowing demand for single-family detached homes from off-shore buyers.

The Greater Toronto Area's market has experienced continued strong demand for luxury properties, with sales of homes over $3 million rising by 86 percent year-over-year.

This is largely attributable to overall price appreciation in the market, driven by low inventory and high demand for single-family homes, which has resulted in more homes meeting the higher dollar threshold.

Additionally, significant price appreciation throughout the housing market has allowed move-up buyers to build up enough equity in first or second homes to purchase a high-end home.

High demand in the GTA and Vancouver has resulted in a spillover effect in neighbouring markets, as buyers look further out for more selection and value.

Victoria saw sales of properties over $1 million increase 82 percent over the same period in 2015, driven primarily by downsizers relocating from Vancouver for retirement.

In Oakville, an affluent suburb to the west of the GTA, sales of $1 million-plus homes increased by 111 percent year-over-year, driven by price appreciation throughout the market as well as increased interest from foreign buyers.

Calgary's luxury market has stabilized over the first nine months of 2016, and after a period of declines, sales of $1 million-plus homes were up 13 percent year-over-year.

There have been fewer luxury homes coming on the market, as sellers hold back until values rebound. Meanwhile, buyers have increasingly looked to take advantage of lower prices for luxury properties.

If these trends continue, Calgary's luxury market is expected to remain stable with properties holding their value for the remainder of the year and into 2017.

Sales of luxury condominiums in Canada's two largest luxury markets have experienced significant growth in 2016, driven by increasing demand from downsizers, as well as limited inventory of single-family homes.

Condos sold for over $2 million rose by 42 percent in Toronto, while Vancouver saw sales grow by 60 percent compared to the same period in 2015.

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