Happy homeowner

by Paul Golini: Chair, BILD



Condo construction under control

It seems that BILD's latest news release stirred up some questions about the health of the high-rise market, so I'm going to start this column by offering my outlook on the real estate situation in the GTA.

Sales of new condominium units took a dip in April, down about 20 per cent from 2011 - a year that saw more than 28,000 condos sold in the GTA. It was the beginning of the shift towards high-rise living as more and more people moved closer to the downtown core in favor of more affordable, amenity-filled living.

We are talking, of course, about a banner year. A year that brought 165,000 jobs into the GTA while generating $8.6 billion in wages and $1.6 billion in tax revenue for the federal and provincial governments. While it was a great year for our industry and our economy, the time has come for a healthy normalization.

The 3,121 high-rise units sold in the GTA in April is the second-highest total ever recorded, and the first sign of a steady, necessary correction for stability in our market.

With fewer launches in April, our industry is showing discipline as we control the flow of new condos and projects entering the market. Having said that, recent trends have shown a need for approximately 40,000 new homes each year to satisfy the demand from new residents coming into the GTA and new household formations.

With 205 high-rise projects currently under construction in the City of Toronto alone, we hope to satisfy that demand while ensuring that the market remains stable, with no major corrections to sales or pricing.

The GTA is a growing market and there is still lots of room to grow. Our industry works closely with various levels of government to build communities and cities that satisfy both the affordability and choice factors while preserving the quality that makes the GTA a great place to live, work and play.

Paul Golini Jr. is Chair of the Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD). You can read more from Paul and BILD by visiting the Association's official blogTwitterFacebook and Youtube accounts.