Sotheby's International Realty Canada

Sotheby's International Realty Canada

January 07, 2016 06:00 ET

Toronto, Vancouver Record Banner Year for Luxury Real Estate Sales, Reports Sotheby's International Realty Canada

Sales over $1 million surge in Toronto and Vancouver, Montreal remains balanced and Calgary sales decline

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - Jan. 7, 2016) - The market for residential real estate over $1 million continued to thrive in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) and Vancouver in 2015, with the most significant percentage gains in sales experienced in luxury real estate over $4 million, according to a report released today by Sotheby's International Realty Canada. Montreal's top-tier real estate market continued to exhibit balance, while activity in the Calgary market declined.

Following years of significant growth, the GTA continued to lead the country in sales of $1 million-plus real estate (condominiums, attached and single family homes), posting a year-over-year, record-setting increase of 48% in 2015 that surpassed the 38% surge experienced in 2014 over 2013. Vancouver real estate sales over $1 million also accelerated, increasing 46% in 2015 compared to 2014 and exceeding the 25% year-over-year gains posted at the end of 2014.

In Montreal, the 15% year-over-year increase in sales of $1 million-plus real estate indicated a balanced market, with prices stabilizing across condos, attached homes and detached single family homes. Calgary's top-tier real estate market slowed in 2015 with the downturn in the energy sector and continued economic uncertainty, and sales of properties over $1 million decreased 41% compared to 2014. As a result, Calgary's high-end real estate market shifted from one skewed towards sellers, to a market favouring buyers and investors.

Sotheby's International Realty Canada's bi-annual Top-Tier Real Estate Report examines the market for million dollar-plus residential properties sold from January 1 to December 31, 2015, and analyzes the sales volume, number of days on market and percentage of homes sold over the asking price. The report also highlights recent home sales in a sampling of luxury neighbourhoods.

According to Sotheby's International Realty Canada, the GTA and Vancouver are expected to continue to lead the $1 million-plus real estate market into early 2016, propelled by low interest rates, below-national average unemployment levels, sustained international investment and immigration, and high levels of consumer confidence in the real estate market. Balance is expected to prevail in Montreal's high-end real estate market, while top-tier real estate sales in Calgary are anticipated to slow as the local economy adjusts to the impact of declining oil prices. As a result, market-sensitive data and marketing strategies will become critical to prospective buyers and sellers.

Canadian top-tier real estate market highlights include:


With climbing prices, tightening inventory, and rising consumer demand, Vancouver remained a leader in Canadian top-tier real estate sales in 2015, with all residential property types experiencing year-over-year growth. Overall, 4,578 properties (condominiums, attached and detached single family) sold over $1 million in Vancouver in 2015, a 46% increase compared to the 3,134 units sold in 2014. As in 2014, the greatest percentage gains were experienced in the $4 million-plus market, where sales increased 67% from 253 units in 2014 to 422 in 2015. Vancouver's detached single family home market continued to be the most active of the property types with a total of 3,454 units sold above $1 million in 2015, an increase of 42% over 2014. Attached home sales over $1 million surged 95% year-over-year, while the city's condominium market experienced a 44% year-over-year increase in sales volume over $1 million.


Calgary's market for homes over $1 million experienced a significant shift in 2015: sales activity slowed following several years of record-setting growth and the market changed in favour of buyers. In total, 494 properties (condominiums, attached homes, and single family) sold over $1 million in Calgary in 2015, representing a decrease of 41% compared to 2014. A steeper year-over-year decline of 45% took place in the second half of the year. Overall detached single family home sales, which comprise the bulk of the city's $1 million-plus real estate market softened 39% year-over-year to 428 units sold, while condo and attached home sales declined 32% and 55% respectively.

Greater Toronto Area (GTA)

In 2015, top-tier residential real estate in the GTA (Durham, Halton, Peel, Toronto and York) posted the strongest year-over-year sales gains out of Canada's largest metropolitan centres, in a market characterized by limited inventory, consumer confidence, pre-emptive and multiple offers, and sales above list price. A total of 11,112 properties (condominiums, attached and single family) over $1 million were sold across the region, representing a year-over-year increase of 48% over 2014, while luxury real estate sales over $4 million surged a notable 71% year-over-year. Detached single family home sales over $1 million increased 48% to 9,912 units sold in 2015, the greatest year-over-year percentage increase for this housing type across Canada's four largest metropolitan markets. Attached home sales over $1 million experienced 54% gains, while condominium sales increased 37%.


Montreal's high-end real estate market remained stable in 2015, reflecting steady consumer confidence. Overall, real estate sales over $1 million increased 15% with a total of 497 properties (condominiums, attached homes and single family homes) sold in 2015, compared to the 434 units sold one year prior. Balance continued in Montreal's single family home market with 268 homes sold over $1 million, up a nominal 10% from 2014. Attached home sales over $1 million increased 18% year-over-year, while condominium sales rose 24%.

About Sotheby's International Realty Canada

Combining the world's most prestigious real estate brand with local market knowledge and specialized marketing expertise, Sotheby's International Realty Canada is the leading real estate sales and marketing company for the country's most exceptional properties. With offices in over 30 residential and resort markets nationwide, our professional associates provide the highest caliber of real estate service, unrivaled local and international marketing solutions and a global affiliate sales network of over 825 offices in more than 60 countries to manage the real estate portfolios of discerning clients from around the world. For further information, visit


The information contained in this report references market data from MLS boards across Canada. Sotheby's International Realty Canada cautions that MLS market data can be useful in establishing trends over time, but does not indicate actual prices in widely divergent neighborhoods or account for price differentials within local markets. This report is published for general information only and not to be relied upon in any way. Although high standards have been used in the preparation of the information and analysis presented in this report, no responsibility or liability whatsoever can be accepted by Sotheby's International Realty Canada or Sotheby's International Realty Affiliates for any loss or damage resultant from any use of, reliance on, or reference to the contents of this document.

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