Ron’s Candid Comments on the Victoria Real Estate Market - March 2013
Our real estate board reports “Spring Perks Up Greater Victoria Real Estate”. In reality while yes we have seen our typical seasonal activity increase in activity, sales are lagging far behind last year’s numbers and the number of listings offered for sale is up marginally. There are bargains to be had for home buyers and those who “price their homes right” are selling them, even in some cases with competing offers. Those home sellers in need of last year’s prices are, however, finding themselves out of luck as the market dropped sharply in sales volume and price especially since the latest mortgage rule changes introduced in July 2012. My personal crystal ball sees prices continuing to slip a little before stabilizing in the near future, but most of the drop has already occurred. It doesn’t show up in the statistics of average and median price but will when they get around to reporting the housing price index where they track the value of an example home, rather than the simple numeric average that people are currently spending. Lenders have money to lend and while the rules are tight, the rates are easing. I continue to believe that it’s a great time to move up and/or get into the market provided you find/negotiate the right price of course. For assistance with your real estate needs please contact Ron Neal, your trusted advisor for Greater Victoria Homes. SPRING PERKS UP GREATER VICTORIA REAL ESTATE MARKET VICTORIA, BC–The Victoria Real Estate Board reports a total of 394 sales were processed through the Multiple Listing Service (MLS®) in February, an increase of 34% over the previous month. The highest activity was in single-family homes and condominiums. Compared to February 2012, sales were down by 18.26%. Shelley Mann, President of the Board, says it’s more important to look at monthly trends and compare monthly buying behaviour year-over-year. “The trend lines for November, December and January are the same for the last three years. “We’ve seen a slow increase in sales activity over the last three months and we still hold to our forecast of a modest 2-4% sales increase in 2013,” Mann says. “The typical spring market is perking up. I spoke to 10 REALTORS® yesterday and nine said they are experiencing definite increases in their activity over the last two months and have a positive outlook. Many buyers are still waiting for prices to drop, but it’s clear to me that sellers are in a holding pattern regarding the value of their homes,” Mann says. “However, if a house is priced properly, within the market value range, it will likely sell more quickly.” The median price of a single family home is $505,500 compared to $530,250 in February 2012, a decrease of 4.67%. The six-month average shows an increase of less than one percent year-over-year, and a less than one percent decrease over last month. “In other words, no change,” Mann adds. There were 112 condominium sales in February, a 38.27% increase over January 2013. While the median price of $270,500 for condominiums is down 2.08% year-over-year, it increased 13.49% over January 2013. Townhouses saw increased sales in the past month with a median price of $337,500, which is down by 11.65% year-over-year and 10.82% since January 2013. Current active listings at the end of February were 4,072. Total Waterfront Single Family Dwellings sold:12, up 5 over February 2012 Total Non-waterfront Single Family Dwellings sold: 203 down 55 sales from February 2012 Single Family Dwellings sold over $1 million:11 (3 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®.
* All Areas includes Shawnigan Lake/Malahat, Gulf Islands and Up Island
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