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Bidding wars gone for condos, slowing for houses Add to ...

Sellers seem to be feeling a bit more jittery in Toronto’s fall real estate market. Thanksgiving weekend is typically quiet so the light traffic at open houses last weekend isn’t necessarily a reliable barometer for the October market.

Sure enough, new listings picked up again right after the weekend.

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Real estate broker John Pasalis of Realosophy Realty Inc. says the market is definitely nerve racking for condo owners who are trying to sell, but some people with a single-family property are also looking at the resale numbers for September and quickly becoming realistic. That means, for example, they’re not so quick to demand offers on a specified date.

“A lot are just taking offers any time.”

While multiple offers for condos have all but disappeared, agents say, bidding wars are still common for semis and detached houses. Mr. Pasalis confirms that, but he says they have slowed considerably since spring. Some houses have seen offer dates come and go without a bid, he adds.

So a great house on a coveted street may attract several bids, but a marginal house in a less ideal location will sit longer.

This new sobriety comes after the Toronto Real Estate Board reported that resale condo sales in September declined 27 per cent in the Greater Toronto Area compared with the same month last year. Sales for detached houses dropped 19 per cent and semis 20 per cent in the same period.

“The market definitely has cooled quite a bit,” he says.

Mr. Pasalis also crunched the numbers for the fall survey of market values, which appeared in Globe Real Estate last week. The results show how resale prices in Toronto neighbourhoods have changed compared with the same period last year.

Most of the neighbourhoods that see big swings in prices are not moving in or out of favour with buyers, Mr. Pasalis says, but more likely are seeing the numbers skewed by the mix of sales.

In the Annex, for example, resale prices fell 12 per cent in the period from January to August compared with the same period last year. Mr. Pasalis points out that those neighbourhoods have properties in a huge range of prices. If the sample size is small, a few multimillion dollar sales can warp the results .

 

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