Ron’s Candid Comments on the Victoria Real Estate Market - April 2013 "Our Spring Market has Sprung with the warm weather and flowers and while sales did pick up over the previous month as they have done consistently in history, the volume of sales is still substantially below last and prior years’ levels. The bottom line is that “The Buyers’ Market Continues” with great selection, continuing low interest rates (to those who qualify which has become increasingly challenging for many) and downward pressure on prices from sellers in distress who don’t have the liberty to wait for better times and who are competing for reluctant buyers. There really are some great opportunities arising and it’s a particularly good time to “move up” in the market."
MARKET ACTIVITY FOLLOWS TRADITIONAL REAL ESTATE CYCLE IN GREATER VICTORIA
VICTORIA, BC–Greater Victoria’s real estate market is following tradition with a spring upswing in activities with month-over-month increases in showings, new listings and total sales. The Victoria Real Estate Board reports a total of 483 sales processed through the Multiple Listing Service (MLS®) in March 2013, an increase of 23% over the previous month. Sales figures are 15% lower than March 2012’s 570 sales. “The market continues to unfold as predicted,” says Shelley Mann, President of the Board. “March resulted in the highest number of sales since July 2012 when the lending rules changed. With sales below the historical norm, there is potential pent-up consumer demand developing in the market. We expect quarterly activity to increase over the next two quarters. “The real estate market peaked in 2008, and then the market adjusted during the global economic crisis. The first six months of 2012 were reasonably strong, and then mortgage amortization rules changed in July. The revised lending rules affected buyers’ abilities to qualify for mortgages and we are still feeling those effects on the market,” Mann explains. “With different lending rules in effect, it is challenging to compare the first six months of 2013 with 2012,” she adds. The median price of a single-family home is $510,777 compared to $555,000 in March 2012, a decrease of 8%. The six-month average shows a decrease of less than one percent month-over-month. Annual differences are skewed by four single-family home sales over $2 million in March 2012. There were 121 condominium sales in March, with a median price of $265,000 – down 3.3% year-over-year and 2% over last month. Townhouses saw increased sales in the past month with a median price of $384,450, an increase of 2.86% year-over-year and 13.91% since February 2013. Current active listings at the end of March were 4,333. Total Waterfront Single Family Dwellings sold: 13 down 1 over March 2012 Total Non-waterfront Single Family Dwellings sold: 264 down 47 sales from March 2012 Single Family Dwellings sold over 1 million: 15 (1 over $2 million) While the use of average price information can be useful in establishing trends when applied over a period of time, e.g. six months or longer, the Victoria Real Estate Board cautions that an average price does not indicate the actual value of a property in a particular neighbourhood. Those requiring specific information on property values in their area should contact a REALTOR®.
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