Canada's Condominium Magazine

Pre-build condos growing in popularity. More than 1/3 of Toronto home-buyers in market prefer condos, generally. Survey: what home buyers want

In Toronto, where “ground” living is at a premium, only 37% of prospective home-buyers focused on a detached home, versus 34% for condominiums — but the preference for condominiums is on the rise. The previous data was cited in TREB’s 2017 Market Outlook, early this year. [1]

Since that earlier study by Ipsos Reid, Jason Mercer, TREB’s Director of Market Analysis announced in September: “consumer polling results from the spring that pointed toward a shift to condos in terms of buyer intentions.”


The new Auberge from Tridel is typical of what condo buyers prefer: prime location, luxury and size. Increasingly, people in the condo market are buying pre-build.


Clearly, as we’ve previously reported, due to increasing pricing (amongst other factors), vertical living is becoming the new preference for urban Toronto (416 area.) A Higher value is being placed on urban living, short commutes and lifestyle downtown for many. As of June 2017, there was an 89% increase in sales of new condos (as opposed to resale condos). [See our earlier story here>>]

Home Buyer Preference Survey

According to BILD’s data in the 2017 Canadian Home Buyer Preference National Study, the big demand, when it comes to condos, in urban Toronto is for 1,000 square feet or more and at least 2 bedrooms. Also, indicated in the study, storage was a critical feature, including clothing, lockers and car-parking. This is where listings are shortest and prices can be pressured upwards.

23% are willing to accept a smaller home as a tradeoff to affordability. 20% are willing to travel further to work for similar reasons.

Top ten features

Kitchen’s remain among the top 10 list of home features, with open-concept layouts and kitchen islands being important.

Energy-efficiency was also a top 10 feature. In the case of condos, this generally means a new building with LEED standard, such as the Tridel “Built Green” homes. For resales, it would likely mean a very recent-build project.


New lifestyle choices, partially due to market forces such as pricing and location availability, have contributed to an 89% increase in sales for new high-rise condominiums for June 2017 over the previous June 2016. Shown Bianca, by Tridel>>


New build alternative

For those able to wait for a developer pre-build, the prices tend to be more stable for condominiums in this market, and — of course — the homes are new. Inventory in pre-builds isn’t high, but it’s reliable. New projects, such as the just-announced Auberge from Tridel — in a prime location near Leslie and Eglington — are likely to be hotly contested by buyers due to location and the size of suites/homes. Never-the-less, pre-build is a good option for people able to wait.

As preferences continue to swing, developers will continue to respond with new-build projects. Increasingly, larger suites and 2-3 bedrooms are available.

Other indicators

  • In the 2017 market outlook, 19% of respondents in Toronto indicated they would likely pay more than $1 million for their home, up from 10% in 2016.
  • More than 1/3 of respondents to the Market Outlook survey had indicated they would prefer to buy new.
  • 60% of households would finance with a fixed rate, closed mortgage.

Summary of Toronto September market

Here’s the latest TREB data for September for the GTA market. See our full story here>>


Summary or pricing and sales as reported by TREB in Sept 2017.




[1] TREB commissioned survey by Ipsos Public Affairs June 23, 2017

[2] Globe and Mail “The Buyers are Back” article Sept 6, 2017 by Carolyn Ireland.

Auberge on the Park-Tridel


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