As reported at the end of last month, the spring market has brought out buyers in certain areas.
As we started the new quarter of 2009, we saw the number of MLS® listings for the month of April actually drop below the number listed last April with 517 new listings last month. The number of sales for the month was only down by 10.1% or, 19 units compared to the same month last year. The sales-to-listings ratio was almost at par with April, 2008.
Looking strictly at year-to-date (YTD) figures for the first four months of 2009, the average residential sale price was down 4.1% compared to the same period as last year however, this is not an indication of actual values. For example, we’ve had 66.7% fewer sales over the one million dollar level which in itself, quickly impacts averages.
Looking at individual areas is rather interesting. For example, we’ve seen 63% fewer number of sales in Meaford, 41.5% less in Wasaga Beach and 44.2% fewer in Clearview while the Blue Mountains is down less than 28% and Collingwood is down just 5.7%. 12 month average sale prices were down in all areas except for Collingwood where it actually rose by 2.3%.
Looking at the statistics for April alone, we saw some strength return to the condominium market with an increased number of sales. In both condominiums and single family homes, we’ve seen a number of competing offers or sales at full price with many of these in typically lower priced homes.
If you follow the news reports, you can see they are all over the map these days. One economist will say they think we’ll see another dip and then, another economist will say the worst is over. Politicians, corporate interests, money managers, economists, forecasters and news editors all present competing viewpoints and the consumer is left to sort it all out.
One thing is sure though. Interest rates sit at a historic low and if you are financing any part of a real estate purchase, this is critically important. After all, it’s what establishes the figure of how much goes out of your pocket each month. I’d rather buy when prices are a little higher but rates are lower than the other way around.
(All statistical information obtained from the MLS® statistics provided by the Georgian Triangle Real Estate Board.)