The hot Greater Toronto Area real estate market is continuing to heat up. We started 2020 where we left of in 2019, with demand for housing outstripping the number of new and available home listings. Increased demand has resulted in increases in the average sale price in comparison to a year ago. The volume of sales is up by 15.4% in January 2020 compared to January 2019. In January 2020 sales were up by 4.8% compared to December 2019 so we are continuing to see the trend that started in Q4 2019.
The steady population growth, low unemployment, and low borrowing costs continue to place upward pressure on prices as we see aggressive buyer competition to purchase the limited supply of housing. As a result, we are seeing bidding wars on any property that is competitively priced and that shows well, which has resulted in an increase in average selling price by12.3% in comparison to January 2019. This is the highest growth in home prices since October 2017.
There is a clear difference in the January 2020 price growth compared to January 2019 in the detached housing segment, we are seeing a substantial increase in sales and price increases in this housing segment. Over the past year detached home sales and prices have increased the most, followed by townhouses and then condos. Across the Greater Toronto Area detached homes sales volumes have increased by 23.3 and average prices have increased by 10.5%. With townhouse sales increasing by 15.9% and average prices increasing by 8%.
It is clear that many buyers who were on the sidelines due to the introduction of the mortgage stress test in 2016 are moving back into the market and driving very strong year-over-year sales growth particularly in the detached housing segment. Strong demand against limited supply continues to put upward pressure on prices.