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A new study from an urban land economist and city planner shows how home prices have evolved in Toronto neighbourhoods since 1996.

In a blog post, Igor Dragovic analyzes home price data from the Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB), looking at annual price changes in each of its 35 local areas, which can include several neighbourhoods in one, over the past three decades.

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East end neighbourhoods dominated in terms of price gains. Since 1996, the top-performing submarkets are Leslieville-Riverdale, East York-O’Connor, and the Beaches. “The three highest growth neighbourhoods since 1996 are all next to one another,” writes Dragovic.

Leslieville-Riverdale and East York-O’Connor were the only two TREB areas to see annual increases average more than 20 percent, unadjusted for inflation — far above the citywide average of 13 percent.

On average, the three leading submarkets have also had the lowest level of months of inventory, an indicator that looks at how long it will take for all available homes in an area to sell out if no new listings appear and the current rate of sales persists.

North York Centre East was the only market that didn’t see yearly price increases crack the double-digit mark.

However, these numbers don’t tell the full story, suggests Dragovic. What types of homes are found in each neighbourhood has an influence on pricing, so a lower rate of growth doesn’t necessarily reflect weakness.

“Some neighbourhoods such as the North York Centres (C07 and C14), Yonge-Eglinton (C10), and the Downtowns (C01 and C08) may show relatively lower dwelling value growth to 2019,” writes Dragovic.

“[I]t is largely because the majority of transactions in those neighbourhoods are condos, which are priced lower than ground-related homes and have appreciated in value less since 1996,” he continues.

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