Circular Motion Flickr Photo By Freaktography After the peak numbers of 2012, it looks like Toronto’s condo market is taking a breather. According to Urbanation’s first quarter stats for 2013, sales of new condos are down, listings are up and overall, prices are holding steady.

In the first quarter of the year, the city saw 2,728 new condos sold, down by 29 per cent from the last quarter in 2012. The numbers are even more staggering when you consider year-over-year sales: this year saw a 55 per cent drop from the first quarter of 2012.

However, it should be noted that the first four months of last year set a record for new condo buys and thus far, 2013 has seen the lowest number of new project openings since the third quarter of 2009.

Here’s how some of the other key figures break down:

New condo activity 

  • There are more unsold units in active projects this year. During the first quarter of this year, 18,845 units were on the market, an increase of 21 per cent from the same time in 2012.
  • The share of active units that are sold came in at a respectable 79 per cent, only a hair lower than the five-year average of 80 per cent.
  • The bulk of unsold properties (64 per cent) are in projects still in the pre-construction sales phase.
  • Prices grew, but slower than the numbers tallied during previous years. The average index price increased by 2.5 per cent annually in the first quarter to $533 per square foot, a slower rate than the 6.4 per cent rate recorded over the last 10 years.

The resale market

  • Resale condo apartment sales were tallied at 3,204 units, a boost of 9 per cent from the fourth quarter. The first quarter of 2013 ranks fourth after the past three high-activity years.
  • However, there was a significant 25 per cent boost in new listings during the first quarter, largely because of an increased number of new registrations (4,859 units in Q1-2013, 7% of which were listed for resale).

“The market appears well positioned for an improvement through the rest of 2013. More competitive pricing and the upcoming release of some highly anticipated projects in the second quarter should attract a good amount of attention,” said Shaun Hildebrand, Urbanation’s Senior Vice President in the news release.

“Activity will remain below recent peaks, but should rise up to a level more consistent with the historical trend this year. An early indicator may be found in the resale numbers, which typically lead the new market during periods of recovery.”


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