Durham Market Analysis

The Toronto Real Estate Board tracks statistics using geographic boundaries called MLS areas.  These areas typically correspond quite closely to counties or regions.  In the case of Durham, it is basically the Regional Municipality of Durham, typically called Durham Region.  With just under 650,000 residents, Durham includes Pickering, Ajax, Whitby, Oshawa, Clarington, Uxbridge, Scugog and Brock.

We know your market and here’s where we prove it.

Below you’ll find the latest statistics on what’s going on in the Durham area and our take on what it means.  We do that by answering three questions for you.

  • What happened in the Durham real estate market this past month?

  • How did it feel to be a buyer or seller in Durham this past month?

  • What’s going to happen next with Durham real estate?

Let’s get started.

  • What happened in Durham in August, 2022?

Let’s review the big picture before we get into the details below. We saw the number of sales in Durham jump by a relatively minor amount in August and at the same time, our average sale price saw a small increase. In an indication of how sellers are feeling, we saw the number of new listings that hit the market drop by a relatively minor amount.

Here’s the latest charts for each of the three big categories (number of sales, average sale price and number of new listings), going back month by month for the last two years.

number of sales

Let’s begin by looking at the number of sales that happened in the last month.  This is a fundamental stat as it tells us how many deals are actually taking place in the market.  We’re particularly focused on how busy this month was compared to the last month as well as any trends we see in the number of sales that have been taking place recently.  It’s also interesting to see if this a typical month in terms of sales, which we do by looking at the chart below and seeing how it compares to the same time last year and the year before.

When we review the number of sales in Durham, we see that there were about 15% more sales in August than July.  In actual number of transactions, we went from 698 sales up to 806, which means on a month over month basis, there were approximately 110 more sales in Durham.
average sale price

The average sale price tends to fluctuate month by month and there are definitely seasonal variability.  Using the chart below, we can look for any recent market trends in terms of pricing rising or dropping for a number of months and look back at the same time last year and two years ago to see what sort of annual appreciation we’ve been seeing for sale prices.

While the number of sales is an important aspect of the market, the big question is what happened with the average sale price in Durham in August?  In July the average price was $901,695 and August saw that go up by 2.1% to $920,269.  That works out to a difference of about $19,000 when compared to last month.
Number of New Listings

The final indicator of what’s happening in the market is the number of new listings that came on the market.  Again, we look for trends to see if the number are steadily increasing or decreasing, whether this month saw more or fewer new properties get listed and of course how it compares to this time of year by looking at this time a year ago and two years ago.

When we review the number of new listings that came onto the market in Durham in August, we see that we had 1,275 new listings, compared to 1,465 new listings in July.  That’s approximately 13% fewer new listings, on a month over month basis.
  • How’d it feel to be buying or selling in Durham in August, 2022?

In order to get a sense of how it felt if you were buying or selling in Durham, we can look at how long it took properties to sell in August as well as what sale price sellers received as a percentage of their list price. When we do so, we see that the average days on market saw what we would call a relatively minor increase and the sale to list price ratio saw a massive drop. Let’s get into more specifics below so we can see how those changes would have impacted how buyers and sellers felt in August.

Here’s the latest charts for these two categories (average days on market and average sale to list price ratio), going back month by month for the last two years.

Days on Market

One of the best indicators of how a market feels is how long homes remain on the market.  The quicker they fly off the market, the more frantic and stressful it can be for both sides.  While it may seem like that is always positive for sellers, make no mistake, it can be stressful when sellers receive lots of attention or offers quickly.  The fear of making a mistake and pressure to decide quickly is hard on both buyers and sellers.

Here’s the latest data on how many days on market it took for homes to sell in Durham.

One of the clearest indicators of how it felt to be buying or selling in Durham in August is how long it took for a home to sell.  The average days on market in Durham in August was 17 days, which is up 2 days from July, when it was 15 days.  That means it took 13% longer for homes to sell, and it felt less competitive.
Sale to List Price Ratio

The other statistic that gives us a good idea of how it feels to buy and sell in this month’s market is the sale to list price ratio.  This is a percentage that tells us how close to the price the sellers wanted they actually received from buyers.  If the sale to list price ratio is 100%, it means buyers paid exactly what the sellers were asking for the property.  If it’s under 100%, then the buyers negotiated a discount and if it’s over 100%, then the sellers got even more than they were asking for as a sale price.

Now that we’re clear on the meaning, here’s the average sale to list price ratio each month for the last couple of years.

The other stat that we can look at to see how it felt in Durham is the sale to list price ratio, or how much over (or under) the list price buyers had to pay in order to buy a home.  The average sale to list price ratio in Durham in August was 100.%, which is down from July when it was 101.1%.  That’s a 1.1% drop in how much over list price sellers received, which means the market felt less competitive in August.
  • What’s going to happen in Durham in September, 2022?

In order to predict what is coming next for Durham’s real estate market, we can look at three predictive stats, which we go into in detail below. The big picture is that when you combine all three predictive stats and you consider the recent and predicted interest rate changes, as well as current economic sentiment, we are predicting that prices will rise slightly in Durham in September. There, we said it!

Here’s three charts for our predictive stats, looking at the Sales to New Listing Ratio, number of Active Listings and Months of Inventory.  It is interesting to see fluctuations over the past two years but we’re particularly focused on the most recent month as that is the best predictor of what is coming next.

Sales to New List Ratio (SNLR)

Let’s start with an acronym!  The Sales to New Listing Ratio (SNLR) tells us how many of the sales we saw this month were new listings in the month versus existing listings that had been on the market from previous months.  It’s considered a strong predictor of what happens in the next month because it tells us if inventory is sticking around or selling quickly.

  • If the SNLR is around 50%, we have a balanced market, with sales equal to half the number of new listings coming on the market. A good amount of sales and a good amount of new options means reasonable price increases.
  • Over 50% is heading towards a seller’s market, as we have sales outpacing the new inventory coming on the market. In extreme cases, we can have an SNLR of over 100%, which means we saw more sales in a month than inventory came on the market, meaning next month is very likely to see a price increase.
  • Under 50% tells us that the we are headed towards a buyer’s market. The lower the SNLR, the more of a net increase in properties available the following month.  This means prices typically drop as buyers react to having lots of choices by pushing down the price they are willing to pay.

Let’s look at the latest SNLR in to see where we’ve landed and what sort of market we start next month with in Durham.

The first of our three predictive stats is the sales to new list ratio (or SNLR) which increased in August, going up 15.6% to 63.2%, which is an effective 32.8% increase in one month.  On its own, a increasing SNLR indicates prices should rise but we also need to consider how balanced the market is before we can make that prediction.  In this case, given the SNLR of 63.2% we would describe the current market in Durham as a bit of a a seller’s market but not far off from being balanced.  In such a market, it is normal for prices to go up, so based solely on the SNLR, we would predict that taking place in Durham in September.
Number of Active Listings

As we turn to active listings, we need to be clear about what that means.  The number used for active listings is the number of actual, currently for sale properties at the end of the month.  This number is therefore comprised of the older listings already on the market at the start of the month, plus any new listings that didn’t sell in the month, less any older or new listings that did sell before the end of the month.

Fewer active listings tend to indicates that prices will rise as buyers battle for the properties on the market.  Let’s take a look at the latest numbers.

The second predictive stat is the number of active listings in Durham.  We had 1,122 active listings on the market as of the end of August, which is a 17% decrease compared to July when we had 1,353 listings on the market at the end of the month.  On it’s own, this sort of change in the number of active listings would predict that prices would rise as the level of available options for buyers has decreased.  Our second predictive stat therefore indicates that prices should rise in Durham in September.
Months of Inventory (MOI)

Finally, let’s look at the Months of Inventory in Durham.

This statistic tracks how long it would take for all houses on the market in Durham to sell if we stopped having any new listings.  The higher the MOI, the more of a buyer’s market, the lower the MOI, the more of a seller’s market.  Somewhere between three to four months is considered a balanced market.

How is Durham doing in terms of months of inventory?  Remember that the lower the levels of inventory, the more likely it is that prices will rise.

Let’s look at what our current months of inventory for Durham predict what will happen to prices next month.  The MOI as of the end of August was 1.4 months, which means that technically, the Durham market is a strong seller’s market as of right now.  We will take that with a grain of salt, as we’ve seen such low levels of inventory relative to demand over the past few years, we’ve had to adjust our definitions for the market.  Nonetheless, on its own, our current months of inventory predicts that the average price in Durham should rise in September.

We hope you found this review of the latest market stats helpful!  Within the Refined team we work throughout the GTA and we often partner with local agents we know and trust to make sure our clients get the best of both worlds.  If you’re considering buying or selling and want to work with people who understand your market, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.  Otherwise, check back near the start of next month to see the latest Durham market analysis!