While the residential property market in the GTA continues to fly, there are more challenging conditions for the commercial sector. April 2016 figures show a sharp decline in leased space from a year earlier.

The combined office, industrial and commercial/retail space leased through the Toronto Real Estate Board’s MLS in April 2015 was 811,123 square feet; in April this year it was 306,003.

“There is no doubt that we have experienced some volatility in commercial leasing and sales activity over the past few months.  This mirrors the broader Canadian economy.  The most recent monthly GDP result released from Statistics Canada represented a decline in economic activity following four consecutive increases.  Many businesses may still be in a holding pattern with regard to further real estate investment,” said TREB president Mark McLean.

Average lease rates for properties transacted on a per square foot net basis, where pricing was disclosed, were up for the industrial and office market segments, but down for the commercial/retail segment.

Commercial sales in April totaled 48, down from 72 a year earlier.

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