Chart: Bosley Real Estate

Greater Toronto Area real estate has seen a number of boom-and-bust cycles over the years, and a local realtor has charted half a century’s worth.

Using historical figures from the Toronto Real Estate Board, Marisha Robinsky, a long-time agent currently with Bosley Real Estate, shows the peaks and valleys of GTA price growth dating back to 1953.

The average-price chart (adjusted for inflation using 2016 values) shows large-scale corrections, including one in the mid-‘70s and another in the early ‘90s, the result of speculation driving overbuilding, says the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.

Gains in recent years have raised alarm bells with some market watchers predicting another correction is on the way. However, Robinsky notes in a second chart that yearly price appreciation, at least percentage wise, pales in comparison to previous booms this time around.


Chart: Bosley Real Estate

Twice since 1953 the average price of a GTA home has surged around 35 per cent annually — including the all-time high of 36 per cent in 1987 — on an unadjusted basis. In 2016, the average price increased 17.3 per cent to $729,922, according to TREB.

Robinsky draws attention to the fact that looking strictly at dollar values adjusted for inflation, prices rose approximately $50,000 in 1987 but gains were roughly double that last year.

Ups and downs may make some potential purchasers wary — and present risks for speculators — but Robinsky doesn’t think the average homebuyer should be worried.

“I think if somebody’s buying [a home] for themselves for the long term it probably doesn’t really matter,” says Robinsky tells BuzzBuzzNews in an interview.

“They’re going to love the place and live in it,” says Robinsky, who admits she bought her home in 1988 when the Toronto market peaked. “Do I regret it? No,” she says. “I still live in it,” Robinsky laughs.

If a homeowner holds onto their property for a decade, Robinsky suggests they will end up on top: “You can’t go wrong in any kind of market.”

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