TORONTO, April 22 (Reuters) - Housing sales in Toronto slumped in the first half of April, as uncertainty about the economic impact of the COVID-19 outbreak weighed on demand, but a nearly commensurate drop in listings kept price declines in check, data from the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board showed on Wednesday. Total home sales across the greater Toronto area slumped 69% from April 1 to 17, while listings fell 63.7%, TRREB said in a report. Average home prices decreased 1.5% "Home buyers and sellers have concerns about the economy and indeed their own employment situations. On top of this, many buyers and sellers are avoiding any type of in-person interaction," TRREB President Michael Collins said in the statement. TRREB expects the biggest declines in home sales to come in the second quarter, with the market recovering following that "if public health forecasts assuming strong social distancing measures play out as expected." 1ST-HALF APRIL 2020 1ST-HALF APRIL 2019 YR/YR PCT CHANGE TOTAL SALES 1,654 5,343 -69.0% AVERAGE PRICE C$819,665 C$832,430 - 1.5% NEW LISTINGS 3,843 10,595 -63.7% Sales by type of property 1ST-HALF APRIL YR/YR PCT CHANGE DETACHED 758 -69.1% SEMI-DETACHED 187 -64.4% TOWNHOUSE 296 -67.6% CONDO APARTMENT 388 -72.0% Average price by type of property 1ST-HALF APRIL YR/YR PCT CHANGE DETACHED C$990,543 -4.6% SEMI-DETACHED C$857,023 2.9% TOWNHOUSE C$686,435 3.8% CONDO APARTMENT C$578,594 -1.8% (Reporting by Nichola Saminather in Toronto; Editing by Peter Cooney)
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