Hi everyone, I hope this message finds you and your families safe, healthy and in good spirits. I endeavour to bring you relevant market information, new listings, and the latest news which is shaping our local real estate market.
Before I jump into June’s statistics, I would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge that the Carroll Group has grown this month, with the addition of an assistant to our growing team. More information on this latest addition will be posted to our business Facebook Page (www.facebook.com/RealEstateVic/) in the next few weeks.
The conversation continues to circle around the COVID-19 pandemic, although this month marked an explosion of real estate activity. After a few months of waiting on the sidelines, many buyers and sellers have returned to the market.
It has been a steady ramp up from the 287 total sales in Greater Victoria in April and 457 sales in May. For June 2020, there were an astonishing 808 sales. Despite this influx of buying activity, our inventory levels still remain historically low. For single family homes, we only had 1380 active listings at the end of June. For comparison, in a very ‘hot’ seller’s market in June 2016 there were 1325 active listings.
As a consequence of this relationship between sales and active listings, there was upward pressure on prices in June. The average sale price of a single family home was over $1,000,000 for the first time ever. I expect this price jump to be an anomaly of the month and not to hold for the remainder of the Summer months.
There are plenty of headlines and misleading information about the trajectory of Canadian real estate in the wake of trends in global markets, rising unemployment, and a looming recession. Based on the low inventory and healthy demand I’ve mentioned above, there is no reason to believe Victoria will experience any downward pressure on prices in single family homes in the near future.
I will continue to monitor the situation as developments continue with mortgage deferrals coming due in Q4 and the government intervening to suppress interest rates. Currently the Bank of Canada is ramping up its purchases of mortgage bonds, providing more confidence to banks and purchasers alike by creating liquidity (for banks – clearing balance sheets) and in turn helping to suppress interest rates from rising.
As in demand as single family homes are at the moment, the condo sales are a little more sluggish (209 sales, 764 active listings) although this relationship has improved significantly from May (7.5 months of inventory). The median price of a condo in May was $390,000 (the lowest it has been in over 1 year) and jumped by 9% to $425,000 in June. There are a few buildings nearing completion in the downtown core that will feed supply and I’m expecting prices to stabilize here in the short term.
For those that are currently participating in the market, our industry has adopted new business practices and is emphasizing the use of technology in order to showcase properties as safely as possible. Listings can include video property tours and 3D tours and we are using health disclosures, social distancing, and disinfecting/sanitary procedures to help limit the risks associated with property visits.
If you would like to hear me speak on the current environment, be sure to watch the video above!