Great ideas for a dryer day!
Great ideas for a dryer day!
Difficult to believe that summer (as we know it) will be over in a week’s time……..lazy days, children at play, for some of us a happy respite in an interesting locale during the last two months. Real Estate Sales in Victoria have continued on apace as though summer was not the “traditional” quiet period of some summers past…
Indeed, the last 2 quarters have seen robust sales results in our market. From April 1st it appears that listings are down (11% year over year for single family homes and 18% for condos) and we could be on the edge of a “balanced market” for the first time in a long time. Brisk activity since that time has led to an increase of sales/listing ratio of 56% in July 2013 over July 2012. Only 47% of signle family homes listed in July 2012 sold.
Average sale prices for single family homes are only down -2% year over year. Averages for condos down -7% this year. But better news on the 6 month average prices: Single family – holding at .36% higher; condos up 1.22% and townhouses holding at .40% up.
All properties that sold in The Greater Victoria area were on market an average of 76 days in July 2013. Houses took an average of 57 days to sell; condos took an average of 70 days to sell and townhouses took an average of 83 days to sell.
The British Columbia Real Estate Association has released a 3rd quarter update stating that after a pull back of consumer demand in 2012 (we all know about that) that the market is transitioning toward elevated activity and sales are to increase approximately 3.9% over those of 2012. I believe this demand is borne out by statistics of the last 5 months.
I predict that Sales for August 2013 should be above those of last year – as interest rates slowly rise – there are buyers out there who want to preserve the 140 day rate-hold that they have been promised.
Two big qualification changes for insured mortgages (those with less than 20% downpayment) will come into play at the end of December 2013. In a nutshell, guarantors of mortgages will now have to be on title & qualification calculations will encompass a higher figure for home heating (based on a square footage model) after the end of the year. Every penny counts and that will be even more the case as we head into 2014.
But interest rates are still historically low – still great opportunities in our market as sellers are wending their way to realistic prices and seeing great success as a result!
Questions – queries? That’s what I’m here for……….Vicky 250-217-2313 cell phone
Sales are moving on apace for July 2013 as well – if numbers keep up my prediction is that we will surpass July 2012 in residential home sales in the Greater Victoria area…….click on the link below to hear “sage” Cameron Muir, Economist with The British Columbia Real Estate Association…..
Sales for the 2nd quarter of 2013 are up 65% from the 2nd quarter of 2012 – what great news for our market and both buyers and sellers.
Prices have not risen, but activity has – big time. 27 homes over 1 million sold last month – in a town of 350,000 people? Yes, true…
Thought you might be interested in the June stats that were just published by our Board today – impressive gains in activity in the 2nd quarter of this year. Prices are not necessarily up but the buyers are buying…..I would be happy to answer any queries you might have. Vicky
From: Maggie Kerr-Southin [mailto:email@example.com]
SENT TO: VREB MANAGING BROKERS
VREB MEMBERS SUPPORT STAFF (upon request)
July 2, 2013
GREATER VICTORIA REAL ESTATE MARKET REBOUNDS IN SECOND QUARTER
VICTORIA, BC–For the third consecutive month, the Victoria Real Estate Board reports sales through the MLS® System remained strong with 65% more activity in the current quarter than in the first quarter of 2013.
“With 664 sales this month, and 1,938 sales this quarter, the market is definitely rebounding,” says President Shelley Mann. “We are now headed into the quieter summer months, so I’m interested to see where this leads.”
There were 382 single family homes sold in June at a median price of $525,250, up 1% over June 2012 at $520,000. Condominium sales were 164 at a median price of $265,000 and 79 townhomes sold at a median price of $365,000. There were 4,833 active listings on the MLS® System at the end of June, bringing the active-listings-to-sales ratio to 17%, well within the balanced market range.
“While sales are up, prices remain flat,” Mann says. “It is more important than ever to focus on the median prices. With six family home sales between $2 million and $7 million in June, the average price was pulled higher. The median price – the middle price – remained stable.”
Mann also advises buyers to consider long-term mortgages as she is hearing that long-term rates are starting to increase and lenders are providing fewer discounts on posted interest rates.
Total Waterfront Single Family Dwellings sold: 18, up two over June 2012
Total Non-waterfront Single Family Dwellings sold: 364, up 10 over June 2012
Single Family Dwellings sold over $1 million: 27 (6 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®. The Victoria Real Estate Board has 1,230 Members.
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Maggie Kerr-Southin APR
June 2013, MLS® Real Estate Sales, and Average and Median Prices, Greater Victoria
SFD = Single-family Dwelling
June 2013, MLS® Real Estate Sales and Six-Month Average Prices over May 2013
* All Areas includes Shawnigan Lake/Malahat, Gulf Islands and Up Island.
Maggie Kerr-Southin APR, Manager, Communications, Victoria Real Estate Board
I ran across this blog post today by a guy in The States….wanted to share it with you. I have been noticing a trend at open houses lately – downsizers really do want to “downsize” – the days seem to be disappearing where those who leave a large, single family home are happy moving into a property that might be equally as large but in a strata (condo or townhouse). Today’s downsizers are looking for somewhere between 1200 – 1600 square feet with 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms and perhaps a den. Or, if strata living is not for them, a rancher of around 1,300 square feet or so often fits the bill…..
Perhaps there is becoming a point that we realize that being an “acquirer” (is that a word?) is not giving us the same kick as it used to? Have you ever rented or visited at a furnished condo on a holiday? There is an “aha” moment when you might start to think that having 6 plates, 6 wine glasses (OK maybe not wineglasses) is not so bad? Is locking your door and heading out to explore without worrying about the chores of managing a larger home seem like a reasonable idea? Our children don’t want our stuff (the only things they seem to want are the things we want to keep…).
Footloose & fancy free – you choose! A very happy Canada Day Weekend to all, Vicky
12 Reasons Why You’ll Be Happier in a Smaller Home
by joshua becker
Recently, my parents bought a smaller house. And this past week, while on vacation in South Dakota (yeah, I vacation in South Dakota), I got to see it for the first time. During our stay, I was surprised at how often my mother commented that “they just love their smaller house.” I wasn’t so much surprised that she felt that way (I am a minimalist after all), but I was surprised at the frequency. It was a comment that she repeated over and over again during our one-week stay.
Toward the end of the week, I sat down with my mom and asked her to list all of the reasons why she is experiencing more happiness in her smaller house. And this post was written… my first post co-authored with my mother.
12 Reasons Why You’ll Be Happier in a Smaller House by Joshua and Patty Becker (I get top billing because it is my blog).
People buy larger homes for a number of reasons:
Another reason people keep buying bigger and bigger homes is because no one tells them not to. The mantra of the culture again comes calling, “buy as much and as big as possible.” They believe the lie and choose to buy a large home only because that’s ”what you are supposed to do” when you start making money… you buy nice, big stuff.
Nobody ever tells them not to. Nobody gives them permission to pursue smaller, rather than larger. Nobody gives them the reasons they may actually be happier in a smaller house.
So, in an attempt to break the silence, consider these 12 reasons why you’ll actually be happier in a smaller house:
The spring quarter (April and May 2013 so far)….has proved a different story from the previous 6-8 months since lending rules were modificed by the Government early last summer.
We realtors are actually writing more offers than at any time in the past few months. Financing continues to be tricky (for buyers with insured mortgages) with tons of additional questions asked by the insurers of mortages of less than 20% downpayment…..very picky – more so than we have seen in years……but as you have probably all read about, mortgage rates continue to be a bargain and buyers are putting pen to paper – finally.
Sales are up (in April & May 2013), prices are down. Sellers who “get that” continue to be successful with a good number of sales taking place right out of the gate. I had one competatively priced listing in May, held offers for 2 days, had 35 showings, 8 offers and it sold 37k over list price. Tricky but obviously a correct analysis of the market situation here and it worked.
But, and there always is a but, it was mentioned that unit sales across the board are down 9% from 2012 in the Greater Victoria area…….other stats that may be of interest:
GENERAL STATS FOR FIRST 5 MONTHS OF 2013 IN GREATER VICTORIA AREA: (all types of real estate)
# if units listed: -12% from 2012 (should provide for more balanced market)
# of units sold: -9% from 2012
Sales Dollars: -11% from 2012 ($ generated by real estate sales)
Average price per unit sold: -3% for 2012
Price ratio: Unchanged year over year – properties selling at 97% of list price
Days to sell: On market an average of 17% longer than last year
Weekly financing update from a trusted source – Callum Greig from Prime Mortgage Works in Victoria, BC – Callum can be contacted at 250-580-5626.
There is absolutely no reason for buyers not to make a move in this extremely favourable lending climate – bargains are out there – take the plunge and enjoy the results!
As the Spring Market continues we are seeing the “proof in the pudding” as far as the most recent mortgage rule changes have had on both resales and a clients’ ability to refinance their mortgage. CMHC released a quarterly report this morning and truly the number reinforce what we are already feeling in the marketplace.
* CMHC wrote $8.2M of mortgage insurance in the Q1 of this year, compared to $19B in Q1 2012
* This decline is partially due to the government forcing CMHC to reduce the amount of bulk insurance (low ratio) they provide the banks
* CMHC Arrears rate remains very strong at a mere .35% (AKA Canadians pay their mortgages)
* Total insured mortgages by CMHC has dropped 54% from Q1 in 2012
* CMHC total Insurance in Force is $562.5 Billion Dollars (a decrease from the end of 2012 by $3.5B)
This news would appear to be what Minister Flaherty ordered as far as a restraining of the housing market. Further evidence of needing to continue this path came yesterday as the Bank of Canada kept interest rates put yesterday, analysts now predicting an increase in mid to late 2015. With Prime Rate possbily held until 2015, Variable Rate mortgages may find their way back en vogue though again under the new mortgage rules, are much more difficult to qualify for.
Finally, as hinted the last couple of weeks, FIXED Rates are rising this week some 5-10 Bps though are likely to float back down in the near future once more challenging economic realities come to light in Japan, China and the continued discord in the European Union.
For the most up to date rates, visit: http://www.primemortgageworks.com/our-rates
* TSX -17.90 to 12,732.61
*these numbers have been taken from www.tmxmoney.com<http://www.tmxmoney.com> at 8:00 AM EST
Canadian 5 year bond yields markets +.001 to 1.48 The spread (based on the 5 year published rate of 3.19%) is WELL BELOW the comfort zone at 1.71 http://www.investing.com/rates-bonds/canada-5-year-bond-yield.
The rate of return on your bond, can be read through a yield curve, If the increase in bond yield continues to go up, the spread will continue to shrink and this could be a trigger for interest rates to rise. The comfort zone is between 1.90 and 2.10
The Greater Victoria Real Estate Board has just manifested the excellent news to all in a press release which is copied below in its’ entirety (with stats afterward…..)
It has been a painful past 6 months to a year in our market. That trend seems to have dissipated due to the fact that during April 2013 real estate sales exceeded those of April 2012. That has not been the case of late. Less listings went on the market and there were less listings on market at month’s end……spring you say? Perhaps. But there has obviously been pent up demand. Again, a caution…….you can not list your property with unrealistic goals, it will be passed by and ignored. Price realistically and you will have great success. Times have changed, buyers know that, sellers have to realize that as well. There have been many instances of multiple offers over the past few weeks – but only for those sellers who “get it”….
May this activity continue – please enjoy the press release below + stats…..
GREATER VICTORIA RESIDENTIAL REAL ESTATE TRANSITIONS TO A BALANCED MARKET
VICTORIA, BC–Weighing in on the best monthly sales since April 2010, Shelley Mann, President of the Victoria Real Estate Board is cautiously optimistic that the Greater Victoria is back into a balanced market.
“Consumer confidence is increasing,” Mann says. “Our total number of sales for April was 615, a 5% increase compared to April 2012 with 585 sales. On the residential side, more properties are selling, and slightly fewer are entering the market, so we are moving from a buyers’ market to more balanced market conditions.”
Mann cautions that one month doesn’t indicate a market trend, but is encouraged by increased showings by REALTORS®, the number of sales, and comments from other REALTORS® about multiple offers on properties.
Prices remained relatively flat, as predicted by Cameron Muir, Chief Economist of the BC Real Estate Association. There were 367 single family homes sold in April at a median price of $540,000, a 16% increase of homes sold over April 2012. Condominium sales were 149 at a median price of $265,000 and with 62 townhomes sold at a median price of $415,450. There were 4,585 listings active at the end of April.
Total Waterfront Single Family Dwellings sold: 15, up 2 over April 2012
Total Non-waterfront Single Family Dwellings sold: 352, up 39 over April 2012
Single Family Dwellings sold over $1 million: 30 (5 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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Stats summaries attached and tables below.
Maggie Kerr-Southin APR
April 2013, MLS® Real Estate Sales and Average Prices, Greater Victoria
SFD = Single-family Dwelling
April 2013, MLS® Real Estate Sales and Six-Month Average Prices over March 2013
* All Areas includes Shawnigan Lake/Malahat, Gulf Islands and Up Island
Maggie Kerr-Southin APR, Manager, Communications, Victoria Real Estate Board
Here’s the British Columbia Real Estate’s take on the Bank of Canada Interest Rate Announcement yesterday. Canada’s economic capacity may not return to normal levels until 2015…..had been predicted for 2014. That means there are wicked mortgage rates out there and a prognostication for that to remain the status quo – c’mon buyers!
BCREA ECONOMICS NOW…..
Bank of Canada Interest Rate Announcement – April 17, 2013
The Bank of Canada kept its target overnight rate at 1 per cent this morning. In the statement accompanying the decision, the Bank forecast that the Canadian economy will gain momentum through the year following a weak second half in 2012, but slow growth through the first half of this year will limit real GDP growth to just 1.5 per cent in 2013 before rising to 2.8 in 2014. The Bank’s revised forecast means that the economy is now projected to return to full capacity in mid-2015, rather than in 2014 as previously predicted. A more persistent output gap will keep downward pressure on inflation, which is now expected to gradually rise to the 2 per cent target rate by mid-2015. The Bank continued to sound a much more dovish note on future rate increases, noting that the considerable policy stimulus currently in place will likely remain appropriate for “a period of time, after which some modest withdrawal will likely be required.”
With an expanding output gap and inflation trending well below its 2 per cent target, it is natural to ask if the next move by the Bank of Canada is a rate cut rather than the rate hike that almost all economists have penciled into their forecasts. However, unless the economy deteriorates much more or inflation trends much lower, the Bank is unlikely to lower interest rates since doing so would run counter to a year of loudly exhorting households to cut back on debt. Instead, the Bank will likely continue to use forward guidance about the need, or lack thereof, for future rate hikes in order to influence long-term rates and the Canadian dollar lower. The combined of effect of which should provide continued stimulus to the Canadian economy.
For more information, please contact:
BCREA represents 11 member real estate boards and their approximately 18,000 REALTORS® on all provincial issues, providing an extensive communications network, standard forms, economic research and analysis, government relations, applied practice courses and continuing professional education (cpe).
Real estate boards, real estate associations and REALTORS® may reprint this content, provided that credit is given to BCREA by including the following statement: “Copyright British Columbia Real Estate Association. Reprinted with permission.” BCREA makes no guarantees as to the accuracy or completeness of this information.