new-single-family-homes-durham-york Photo: James Bombales

October was another stellar month for new single-family home sales in the Toronto region, but some municipalities were responsible for an outsized amount of the annual sales gains.

Overall, new single-family sales rose 44 percent last month compared to a year ago. October’s total, at 1,914, was also 42 percent above the 10-year average for the month.

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But a closer look at the data from the Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD) shows that Durham and York region were responsible for 67 percent of the single-family sales in October.

Durham saw 501 sales last month, almost exactly double its total recorded for October 2019. York sales were even stronger, with 780 transactions logged for an annual increase of 127 percent.

The single-family home segment includes detached, linked, and semi-detached houses and townhouses.

York and Durham have seen consistently high new home sales since the summer rebound began to ramp up in June. The other two major Toronto regions that offer a significant number of single-family homes — Peel and Halton — have experienced spikier sales activity since June.

Peel, for example, recorded 673 single-family home sales in August, a massive 300 percent increase compared to the same month in 2019. The municipality repeated this feat in September.

But by October, Peel actually posted an annual sales decline, with new single-family home sales more than cut in half.

Rather than demand drying up, this is likely due to a lack of new home inventory and possibly a reflection of Peel’s relatively challenging experience with the COVID-19 resurgence in the fall compared to other municipalities in the Toronto region.

Now, with Peel and Toronto in lockdown and other municipalities facing “red zone” restrictions, November is unlikely to impress with sales activity. It also is typically among the slower months as focus begins to shift to the holiday season.

That said, market experts have predicted that buyer appetite for single-family homes will continue to play an outsized role in overall home sales activity in 2021.

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