The local real estate market showed some minor improvement over the past month compared to the previous 3 months. Overall, sales YTD are still well below last year by about 50% in the number of unit sales.
Following Januarys pattern, it was again interesting to see that the number of new listings for the month was lower than in the previous year. Typically, we expect to see an increase in listings during recessionary periods however, this decrease may signal general stability among homeowners not having to sell.
The following information was obtained from the MLS® statistics provided by the Georgian Triangle Real Estate Board. The first number is for February 2009 with January 2009 results in brackets:
Total Number of Sales in all areas reported: 79 (46)
Total # of Listings in all areas reported: 382 (437)
# Active Listings as of end of February: 1799
Single Family Residential Only
(Data is limited to Collingwood, Clearview, Grey Highlands, Meaford, Blue Mountains and Wasaga Beach areas only):
# Single Family Residential Sales: 51 (25)
12 month average Sale Price: $285,069 ($290,483)
YTD Sales-to-Listings Ratio: 18% (12%)
# Condo Sales: 12 (8 )
# Farms Sold: 0 (1)
# Vacant Land Sold: 5 (0)
# Commercial Sold: 5 (0)
Points To Note:
• The number of new listings YTD is down 1% over this time last year
• The number of new listings in February is down 5% compared to the same month last year
• There were 72% more properties sold in February compared to January but the total sales for the month were still 43% below 2008 levels.
• The most active price range continues to be from $150,000 – $249,9000 with 44 sales compared to 24 in January (versus 63 in 2008)
• There were 7 sales in the $300,000 – $350,000 price band compared to 2 in January
• There were 6 sales over $500,000 compared to 4 in January
Many of you may have read the scathing Macleans magazine article last week suggesting that real estate prices could drop by as much as 20%! I have to make a comment on that. They quoted their source as being the Teranet – National Bank House Price Index. Within 24 hours, we had written statements from both these organizations denying that they ever stated such a thing. Be careful what you read and believe!
On that note, the Teranet-National Bank House Price Index is an interesting and likely accurate view of house values as they use a “repeat sales methodology” whereby they compare the sale prices of properties that have sold more than once in a given period of time. They have just released their February report which includes year end data for 2008. You might be surprised to read the results (versus what was stated in Macleans magazine): “Canadian home prices in December were down 0.6% from a year earlier, according to the Teranet–National Bank National Composite House Price Index™. “ Yes, that’s less than 1%. The Index monitors just 6 major markets and there are regional variations in housing prices for 2008: Vancouver (?1.5%) and Toronto (?0.6%) showed 12-month deflation for the first time, joining Calgary (?7.6%), where 12-month deflation prevailed throughout the second half of 2008. Meanwhile, December prices were up from a year earlier in Montreal (5.4%), Halifax (4.6%) and Ottawa (4.2%).