Feb 4 | Posted by Barry Cohen

Surprising GTA Home Ownership Facts

There has been a lot said about the housing market in the GTA in recent months ranging from a bubble about to burst to continued growth and strength, some of the information was opinion based but a lot was simply hearsay.  Well, now we can look at some actual facts about our market based on consumer survey data collected by Ipsos Reid on behalf of the Toronto Real Estate Board in November 2015.  This survey provides a comprehensive view of recent home transactions, predominantly purchased in 2015. 

The Ipsos survey information is compiled into a lengthy report entitled GTA Housing Market Year in Review and Outlook Report.  I have listed some of the more interesting and even surprising facts surrounding home ownership in the GTA area.

  • Recent homebuyers tended to purchase a home close to where they previously lived in the GTA.  This was most notable in the city of Toronto where 81 percent of buyers who purchased a home in the city had lived there previously.
  • Close to 60 percent of homes purchased in 2015 represented resale transactions, therefore roughly 40 percent of homebuyers purchased new homes.
  • Looking at all home buyers who purchased last year, it is estimated that buyers on average, have owned two homes including their current home, this finding was consistent across the GTA.
  • On average GTA homeowners have been living in their current dwelling for 10 years.
  • Older homeowners  have spent more time in their current home on average.  Those aged 55 and older have been in their current home for an average of 19 years.
  • Those in the 18 to 34 age category have been in their current home an average for 4 years.
  • Approximately 43 percent of home sales reported through TREB’s MLS system in 2015 fell into the price range affected by the new government regulations regarding down payments.
  • Small down payments were not common, in fact, according to the Ipsos survey of recent buyers, only a small share of the deals involved down payments between five and 9.9 percent.
  • Properties that sold for more than $500,000 and less than $700,000 reported only six percent of buyers with down payments of between 5 and 9.9%.  
  • Properties that sold between $700,000 and a million, reported an even smaller share of buyers, only 3% who put down between 5 and 9.9%.
  • 57 percent of recent buyers in the GTA plan to renovate their home over the next year.

This survey provides a new insight into the housing market in the GTA and will be a useful resource for both realtors and buyers and sellers alike in the coming year.


If you are considering buying or selling in 2016, I would be happy to meet with you, answer your questions, address your concerns and use my decades of experience in this market to assist you every step of the way.