It has been a volatile year for everyone in Ontario and the rest of Canada.

But is it all bad news? Not in the Ontario housing market as the real estate market is seemingly in full rebound mode, particularly in the 905 area.

Clarington is a real estate market that endured some pain and price stagnation at the height of the coronavirus pandemic in March and April. But now that the worst appears to be over, the region is enjoying an impressive comeback based on the July numbers.

Early indicators suggest that the best is yet to come for the municipality over the next couple of months.

Ontario Housing Market and Trends in the Region of Clarington:

  • In July, the real estate recovery was strongly felt in Clarington as housing prices rose 5.5 per cent to an average sale price of $657,000. Clarington housing prices are also up a whopping 15.2 per cent year-over-year.
  • The city also saw high demand for all types of housing. Sales for detached homes climbed 45 per cent, townhouses surged 88 per cent, and condominiums spiked 100 per cent in July. Overall, there were 310 new listings, 261 homes were sold, and the typical property stayed on the market for 13 days.

At the same time, inventory levels are on the decline, potentially resulting in rising housing prices.

In the overall Ontario real estate market, Clarington is joining the broader 905 boom. According to the latest data from the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board (TRREB), it is the 905 region that is on fire, outpacing the 416 in nearly every housing segment.

Aside from condominiums, the 905 is witnessing a greater number of sales and housing valuations for semi-detached and townhouses compared to its 416 neighbour. One of the driving factors for this trend? First-time homebuyers.

At the start of the Coronavirus pandemic, many had anticipated a sharp decline in buying real estate. However, the opposite trend has played out across the province, primarily because of pent-up demand among consumers who could not find a property in the spring market and even before the pandemic, and summer buyers who are now diving headfirst into listings.

Small-Town Vibe Mixed with Big City Amenities

Clarington, like other municipalities outside of downtown Toronto, blends small-town charm with the amenities of a larger city. Due to recent investments by the provincial government, Clarington maintains a better transit system, with easy access to Toronto. It also possesses plenty of affordable housing, which is a big draw for many families who choose to relocate from Toronto. Another great selling point are the ample nature trails that stretch across Clarington and the Durham Region.

Durham Region at large is enjoying impressive development. With many companies adopting a work-from-home policy, and greater public transit options available for the population, it is no longer a necessity to be living in Toronto. Could we see a trend of migration from the big city to rural areas? Many industry experts are suggesting that this could be the case in the post-coronavirus world.

Will 2020 and 2021 Be a Continuation of 2019?

Last year, it was forecast that the  Durham housing market would experience relatively the same positive market conditions in 2020 as they were in 2019. Average residential sale prices were expected to increase three per cent, while sales were projected to be dominated by first-time buyers. Have things changed all that much?

The virus outbreak did spark some concern about the health and steadiness of the general Canadian real estate market. Now that the initial shock of COVID-19 appears to be dissipating, the province is back on track to meet pre-pandemic expectations. Clarington is no exception – and expectations may be exceeded over the next 12 months due to a diverse array of bullish factors.

Borrowing costs remain at historic lows as the Bank of Canada keeps interest rates near zero per cent. The national economy is expanding, the labour market is recovering, and many consumers are opening up their wallets again. There may be some hurdles to overcome, but for the time being, the positives outweigh the negatives in the Ontario real estate landscape.