When writing a story on something as important as Ontario’s real estate industry, it’s important to get your sources right. The Toronto Star article published on February 17 used incorrect data sources to arrive at its conclusions.

The article has since been updated to clarify that “an exodus of 45,000 real estate agents and brokers” between February 2022 and December 2023 using Statistics Canada data includes more than real estate agents and also includes appraisers, property managers and rental housing professionals.

This is important as the real change for individuals trading in real estate is much less dramatic than what was initially reported. In fact, the Real Estate Council of Ontario (RECO) reports a modest increase of 2 per cent from 103,381 agents/brokers in 2022 to 105,752 at the end of 2023.

The article also suggests that 65,000 GTA home sales in 2023 account for all real estate activity by 73,000 REALTORS®. The truth is REALTORS® support every segment of the market. Our Members work with home buyers, sellers, landlords and tenants. Thousands of REALTORS® also work in the commercial market, across office, retail and industrial segments, in leasing, sales, and property development. When you add it all up, REALTORS® supported sale and lease transactions for over 200,000 properties through the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board (TRREB) MLS® System in 2023. TRREB Members were also involved in transactions reported through MLS® Systems operated by other Ontario associations. Finally, many REALTORS® are involved in non-MLS® System transactions, including pre-construction sale of new homes. All told, TRREB Member activity in 2023 was more than three times what was referenced in the article.

The article did get it right when it mentioned the strides by Minister McCarthy and Premier Ford to increase standards through the Trust in Real Estate Services Act (TRESA). TRREB will continue to play a leading role in TRESA working with policymakers to strengthen the real estate profession.

Jennifer Pearce
TRREB President