Victoria home sales drop while inventory rises
There were 2,131 residential properties for sale at the end of February 2019. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward)
Home sales are down in Greater Victoria while the average price of a single-family home in the city’s core continues to slide.
That’s according to the latest numbers from the Victoria Real Estate Board, which saw 421 properties sold last month.
The number represents an improvement from the 329 sales in January, but a 22.8 per cent drop from the 545 properties sold in February 2018.
Sales of single family homes are down 15.8 per cent from February 2018 with 219 sold. Condo sales are up from January by 15.8 per cent but down from last February by 25.9 per cent, with 129 units sold.
"Buyers and sellers appear to be looking at the current real estate market from different perspectives," said board president Cheryl Woolley on Friday.
"Buyers are hoping to see reductions in prices because governments have told the public that policies like the mortgage stress test and the speculation tax will improve affordability. However, the actual result of some of these policies seems to have softened the higher priced end of the market and increased competition for properties at the lower priced end.”
The benchmark price for a single-family home in Victoria’s core dropped by $2,700 from last February to $845,900 in February 2019. The benchmark price for a condo in the core, however, rose from $483,700 last February to $502,800 in 2019 – a 3.9 per cent increase.
The number of active listings on the real estate board’s multiple listing service (MLS) rose dramatically last month compared to February 2018.
There were 2,131 residential properties for sale at the end of February 2019, an increase of 3.6 per cent over January and an increase of 37.9 per cent over the 1,545 listings advertised at the end of February 2018.
"Currently, we still have very low inventory compared to the long-term average with little having come into the market this past month,” said Woolley.
“As the spring thaw comes, there's a good chance more listings will come onto the market which will create more options for prospective buyers. Homes in sought-after areas and those that are lower priced remain in high demand.”