By Lindsay Smith/Columnist
The numbers are in and homeowners in Oshawa are thrilled at how much the values have increased in their properties over the past year. However, buyers might not share the same sense of excitement, or maybe they are smiling with how “low” our prices are in town. Let’s dig in and see how things look to locals, and people from out of our area.
I recently had the opportunity to speak with a home inspector I have worked with for years. He shared his disbelief of the real estate market in Oshawa. He was asking how high the prices can go and was shocked at the recent increases in value.
Last week I mentioned a person I met who had moved to Durham Region last year after living in downtown Toronto. He sold his condo and purchased a detached home. We didn’t get into the exact numbers, however I am guessing that selling a condo large enough for two adults and a child would make for a sizeable down payment on a home locally. Selling prices in downtown Toronto are floating around $775,000 for a two-bedroom condo. The average price for a detached home in Oshawa is currently $723,700. A buyer could trade their condo for a lovely, detached home in Oshawa and put some money in the bank.
The only people who feel the prices in Oshawa are too high, well, are people from Oshawa.
The values locally are in such high demand that buyers are buying here like never before. Here are how detached home prices compare to some other areas in the GTA:
When I digest these numbers, I agree, they are shocking. However, Oshawa prices for detached and semi-detached are some of the lowest in the entire GTA. Semi-detached homes in Oshawa are the lowest in the GTA and as for detached, the only area that has prices as low as Oshawa is Georgina. Where is Georgina you might ask? It is on the shores of lovely Lake Simcoe, directly north of Toronto.
Having said earlier that locals complain about prices of homes in Oshawa, I might re-phrase that to say “on a regular basis Oshawa folks are shocked and surprised.” Like a few things, this is our “new normal” and I see the values in town continuing to escalate to price points that will really shock. There is no reason that Oshawa, being less than 10 minutes east of Pickering on the 401, should have average home values of $400,000 lower. We continue to be a bargain for people living outside of our area.
There is no question that affordability is an issue for younger couples and for singles, yet they are finding creative ways of buying homes and rental properties. More and more I am seeing first time buyers opting for homes with legal accessory apartments to help offset the costs of buying, or young people who are not in relationships purchasing homes to get into the market with the hopes of selling in the future and having enough equity to both buy their own individual homes.
2020 has proven we are resilient, creative and adaptable. As 2021 unravels, we will need to fine tune these skills to take advantage of the opportunities Oshawa continues to offer.
If you have any questions, or if you can see a real estate emergency on the horizon, I can be reached at email@example.com.