After a 7 years battle, The Supreme Court of Canada has refused to hear an appeal from the Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB) in a dispute over access to real estate data.
The fight for access to this data stretches back to 2011, when Canada’s Competition Bureau sued TREB for its monopoly over the data. The bureau stated that this monopoly gave TREB an unfair advantage in the real estate market. Many believe that access to this data will facilitate competition and innovation.
TREB was resistant, citing its concern for consumer privacy as the reason for withholding information from the public.
In April 2016, Competition Bureau Canada ordered TREB to open up their historical sold information in GTA, TREB appealed to the Federal Court of Appeal, putting the order on hold. TREB insisted that publishing sales and other market data online violated client privacy and its own copyright over the information. TREB said in a release after an earlier ruling in 2016. “Any disclosure or release of personal financial information without explicit informed consent is against the law.”
On Thursday August 23rd, the Supreme Court of Canada said it would not hear TREB’s case.
What Does This Mean For You?
You will now have more information at your fingertips!
Anyone who’s ever lost a bidding war for a home—or seen a “sold” sign on a neighbour’s front lawn —often have just one question: how much did the house sold for?
Well, in about 60 days (As TREB will have to conform with the decision), the public will be able to access data on how much homes are actually selling for.
This decision is expected to open new opportunities, bring more information, choice and transparency to consumers. It will make home sales histories and other market information widely available online.
Realtors will still provide the experience, education and tools to help you interpret this data, but accessing it will become faster and easier.
As your local Realtor, my goal is to get you where you want to be, in the least amount of time, for the amount of money you are comfortable with and as stress free as possible. There will be a learning curve and some adjustment for everyone, however I believe this decision is a step in the right direction to a more transparent industry. I will following developments, and look forward to helping people make use of this data in ways that add value and give them even more power in their real estate decisions.
Helping you make an informed decision will always be my goal! Please call me anytime, should you have any questions.
And if you know of a colleague, a friend or a family member who would like outstanding services, send them my way.
I live here, I work here, I am here for YOU!