Victoria real estate: Fewer listings, fewer sales in October | Times Colonist

Fewer listings translated into a slow month of home sales in October, according to figures released Wednesday by the Victoria Real Estate Board.

There were 664 properties sold last month, a drop of nearly 10 per cent compared with the same time last year.

At the same time, there were 1,905 active listings for sale at the end of October, a 3.6 per cent drop compared to September and 1.7 per cent fewer than the 1,938 active listings for sale at the end of October 2016.

“As expected, we saw fewer sales than this time last year. Looking at the longer-term picture, however, sales last month were 17.1 per cent above the 10-year average of 567 properties for the month of October,” said board president Ara Balabanian. “So the market is still very active here in Victoria, and this is in spite of the ongoing low inventory levels.”

The benchmark value for a single-family home in the Victoria core last month was $821,900, a 9.3 per cent increase over the $752,000 benchmark value in October 2016.

“The fact that we’ve seen such a controlled levelling off in the market directly following a year which felt so uncontrollable in terms of demand and pressure on prices illustrates the depth and stability of the Victoria market,” said Balabanian. “An unstable market may have experienced a heavy correction or shift, whereas in our market sales are moderating at a reasonable rate.”

Historically speaking, the region’s pricing is unprecedented.

According to a survey conducted by Century 21, the price per square foot of a typical single-family home has increased 238 per cent over the past 10 years to more than $424.

The study gathered the price-per-square-foot for a typical home across the major towns and cities in Canada in 1997, 2006 and 2017.

According to Century 21, Victoria’s 10-year increases — 182 per cent for condos to $435 per square foot and 173 per cent to $354 per square foot for townhomes — was considered healthy.

“It has really changed. It gives you a snapshot of where you are living and Victoria, Vancouver and Toronto have seen some big increases,” said Chris Markham managing broker at Century 21 Queenswood.

The biggest increase was seen on the west side of Vancouver where the typical price per square foot — building and land — increased 400 per cent to $1,210.

Markham said the price point in Greater Victoria is a growing problem that is pushing young people out of the equation. He said the large number of condos that are under construction might help in terms of added supply and improving the 0.5 per cent rental vacancy rate, but might not do much in terms of price.

Markham cited increased building costs and scarcity of skilled trades as factors driving up cost.

He also noted foreign investment in homes and businesses has been great for spurring on growth, but it’s made getting into the housing market that much more difficult.

“[Foreign investment] goes to Vancouver, Vancouver comes to Victoria and we spin it up Island,” he said.

Foreign investment in the capital region remains fairly low, with just 4.3 per cent of all property transfers in the last six months involving foreign nationals.

Markham said the current market conditions are unprecedented, and it’s anyone’s guess when it will slow down. “I do think we are seeing more balance,” he said, noting the market is not building up its inventory but rather matching new listings with sales each month.

But he doesn’t think the market has seen the end of high prices and demand. “If you and I had talked a year ago, I’d have said be in cash and out of the market by the end of this year. But now what I’m seeing is there’s so much momentum that even if they jacked up interest rates and even if a bomb dropped there’s so much momentum I don’t see it dying. There’s too much already committed,” Marjham said, adding the unemployment rate remains low, interest rates are relatively low and in-migration continues.

The VREB said a balanced market will continue over the next few months as low inventory levels will match the traditional slowdown in buyer and seller behaviour.


The article was originally posted on Times Colonist, November 1, 2017. Written by Andrew A. Duffy.

Active Victoria Real Estate Listings Slide Below 2,000 Mark | Times Colonist

  • vka-sold-1681-jpg
    The median sale price of a single-family home in the capital region was $759,000 last month, a 14.3 per cent increase from the $664,000 recorded in July last year. Photograph By BRUCE STOTESBURY, Times Colonist
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    Strong sellers' market continues in Victoria Photograph By Times Colonist

With less than 2,000 active listings, Victoria’s real estate market remains firmly weighted in favour of the seller, according to data released Tuesday by the Victoria Real Estate Board.

There were 1,921 active listings at the end of last month, a drop from the 2,161 on the market in July 2016, which led to sellers getting excellent prices for their homes.

The median sale price of a single-family home in the region was $759,000 last month, a 14.3 per cent increase from the $664,000 recorded in July last year.

[Read more…]

Victoria ranked second in world for luxury real estate | CHEK News

A new report from Christie’s International lists Victoria as the second hottest luxury real estate market in the world.

When you think of a luxury home you probably picture a house on the ocean, or a large estate, but with the Victoria real estate market booming, the face of luxury is changing.

One townhouse in Oak Bay Village is about to go on the market for just over a million dollars.

“If this was a single family home we’d be talking about a much different number especially in today’s market,” said Jordy Harris, a realtor with Newport Realty.

Home prices, especially in desirable neighbourhoods like this one, have gone up.

“In the last three years has gone up by about 40 to 50 per cent,” said Ara Balabanian, President of the Victoria Real Estate Board.

And that may be why a new report from Christie’s International lists Victoria as the second hottest luxury market in the world, behind Toronto, and just ahead of San Francisco.

“Luxury can be something that is just over a million, and I say that with some respect, but our prices have risen to that point,” said Jack Petrie, Managing Partner of Newport Realty, a Christie’s International real estate firm.

While 2016 saw a big increase in homes that sold for a million or over, only a handful went above three million.

“We had approximately 16 homes in 2015, we had 20 homes sell in 2016,” said Balabanian.

The report lists offshore buyers, put off by Vancouver’s new foreign buyers tax, as one of the driving factors for the luxury sales boom, but local realtors aren’t seeing it.

“It’s not as if there was a sudden floodgate where all those buyers, foreign buyers, looking to buy in Vancouver, came over here, it just didn’t happen like that,” said Harris.

“It’s still a small component of the marketplace, it’s somewhere around 5 per cent,” said Balabanian.

They say the largest segment of home buyers remains locals, followed by those from elsewhere in Canada.

But if prices continue to soar, “luxury” may need to be re-defined.


The article was originally posted on CHEK News, May 10, 2017. Written by April Lawrence.

Macdonald Realty listings get extra exposure on international website LeadingRE.com

PrintMacdonald Realty offers consumers an easy way to search home listings and identify top real estate firms in markets worldwide through its participation in the new LeadingRE.com.

The site also brings global exposure for our BC real estate listings and provides consumer resources, such as cost of living comparisons, school information, recent home sales and other local resources and statistics. LeadingRE.com can be accessed via macrealty.com by clicking the Global Home Search logo on the homepage.

“LeadingRE.com now provides home buyers and sellers an easy way to identify the top-performing real estate companies in a given market by searching over 400,000 member listings or by using our comprehensive member directory,” notes Leading Real Estate Companies of the World Director of Strategic Development Rhett Damon. “Our network linking strategy connects many of our high-traffic member sites to LeadingRE.com’s national or global search, providing valuable listing exposure to home sellers.”

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For more information about Macdonald Realty and our LeadingRE partnership please email macrealty@macrealty.com or call 1-877-278-3888.  Looking to buy or sell, locally or globally?  Allow us to make a quality introduction to be matched with an independent brokerage and REALTOR® working in your area.

Quality | Connections | Independence

PrintMacdonald Realty is a member of Leading Real Estate Companies of the World™, a global community of real estate companies awarded membership based on rigorous standards for service and performance.

This LeadingRE distinction ensures that you can count on a quality real estate experience when working with us and will benefit from our global connections to buyers and high quality real estate professionals around the world.

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Macdonald Realty Luxury Homes Magazine | Spring 2016

The latest edition of Macdonald Realty Luxury Homes is now available! This publication showcases unique and luxurious homes listed with Macdonald Realty from across the province.

Highlights of this Spring 2016 issue include an exceptional “Super Prime Real Estate” in Vancouver, an article on Americans Investing Abroad and a new LuxeTrends: Make 2016 a Family Focused Year, content courtesy of our partner Luxury Portfolio International.

Simply click the cover image below to see the digital version!

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Selling a Home in Victoria

Selling a home can be a difficult task for even the most seasoned of sellers. There is so much that goes into the process of placing a property on the housing market. First, the owner needs to get the home in condition to present it to potential buyers. From there, taking proper pictures that display your residence in its best light is a must. These are the images that are going to grab the attention of those that are searching online through all the homes available for sale. Unfortunately, even the best pictures don’t ensure that your property will be seen. After all, you are competing with your neighbours for the attention of a select few buyers.

As with any competition, it is important to find an edge. This is where an experienced REALTOR® can be your ace in the hole. With an extensive list of interested buyers, as well as the knowhow to market your listing to a greater audience, real estate agents make it their mission to get the most money for your property. When you have a team of skilled agents on your side, the competition gets left in the dust!

I would be happy to sit down with you and explain the home selling process and all that I can offer to maximize the exposure of your home to potential buyers.

sell your home

Buying a Home in Victoria

Buying a home is both an exciting and scary venture. With the status of homeowner comes the costs of maintaining the property you are now tied to. If you are going to take on a lot of added responsibility it is your right to be selective when choosing a home. While your search may start out with enthusiasm, it can quickly grow tiresome as their are so many listings to browse.

Our question would be: why do all of the work when there is someone willing to help? The process goes a lot smoother with more that one set of eyes scouring the housing market for your perfect property. This is where our team truly shines, as we make it our duty to get our clients the keys to their ideal home! Simply tell us what you are looking for and we will go to work searching through our database of available homes. From there, we will give you a list  that most accurately match your requirements. With a list that is narrowed down to a handful of properties, your decision will be much more manageable.

Whether you are a first time buyer, or it has just been a few years since you’ve last bought a home, the process of buying a home can seem like a bit of a mystery.  I would be happy to sit down with you to walk you through the home buying process and the key milestones we will hit along the way.

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Real Estate in Victoria

Whether you are buying or selling real estate, it is important to know the state of the local housing market. This way, each side knows where the advantages lie. For sellers, the market is at its best when there are fewer homes up for grabs. Less competition makes for an easier time getting your property viewed by the right individuals. On the flip-side, buyers will find top deals when there is a saturation of listings. When sellers are competing for your business, you end up the winner!

The housing market can give us a list of relevant information, such as: the number of homes for sale, the average selling price for real estate in the area, and the amount of homes sold during a specific period of time. With this data, both buyers and sellers can formulate a strategy on when to make a move. Perhaps more homes are sold during the summer. Maybe the average cost is lowest at the beginning of the year. Whatever the housing market shows, it is important to take the information into consideration.