Market Minute

Every Last Dollar

April 4th, 2018

For both Campbell River and the Comox Valley, the number of single family houses sold In March were down but the average prices are up; Campbell River by 12 % and Comox by 11%.

We feel the decrease in the sale volume is due to low inventory levels. These low inventory levels, have resulted in aggressive competitive interest. The Vancouver Sun today reports on a similar trend in the Metro Vancouver market.

In this market, anyone can sell a property. However, you may want an expert on your side to market your home to get the best possible price. If you plan on buying something to replace it, you will need every last dollar.



Stress Test Stressing You Out?

March 1st, 2018

Due to a strong provincial economy the housing market on the North Island is still thriving. The average price of a home in the Comox Valley in February 2018 was $496,738 up 18% over this time last year. While in Campbell River the average price was $409,540 up 16%.

Currently, we are still in a “Seller’s Market” with sales to listing ratios at 69% for the Comox Valley and 81% for Campbell River. Market demand is strong and multiple offers are frequent! However, due to the affordability issues for consumers, how long can this continue?

Recently, a new mortgage stress test has been implemented, which reduces the purchasing power of consumers. In addition, interest rates are now rising, further diminishing the affordability of a home.

There is hope for prospective buyers as plans such as the Kensington Development (discussed last month) and recent initiatives implemented in the BC Governments budget would bring the demand and supply sides of the market into a more equilibrium state.

20 Years Later: Affordability

February 1st, 2018

The Comox Valley Regional District recently approved revisions to the Kensington Island Properties Master Development Agreement. The process of approving this agreement has been twenty years in the making since the sale of the land back in the late 1990’s. If this finally allows for development to start on the 1,000 acre property in Union Bay, it offers potential for over 2,000 housing units, as indicated in The Record. This phased development may address restricted supply and push the average lot price back down below $200,000.

 We applaud Mayor Jangula of Courtenay and his leadership to address the affordability issue. In fairness to all, few could have foreseen the “perfect storm” which has driven the property market in most of British Columbia over the past three years. Restricted supply and overheated demand has pushed many from the possibility of home ownership. It is our view that at least part of the problem (restricted supply) may best be solved by freeing up the private sector.


Happy New Year

January 2nd, 2018

For the Comox Valley and Campbell River, the year ended pointing to gains in the single-family average price of 19% and 18% respectively.  Dollar sales volumes were up, but the number of units sold was down; partly as a result of higher prices, but also because of low inventory levels. In the November Edition of the Market Minute, we highlighted the factors which are driving the perfect storm in the real estate markets; strong demand and over restricted supply. The new mortgage regulations might not noticeably diminish demand, and may only serve to put some at a further disadvantage in the qualification process.

An article, which appeared last month in My Comox Valley Now, introduced a motion which, in part, sought to address the affordability issue in the over heated rental market. Mayor Jangula and Councillor Theos were defeated in the motion. We fully support Mayor Jangula in this initiative. The matter of affordability needs to be addressed in the rental sector, and across the development application process.  Affordability may be difficult to achieve with average Comox Valley lot price at $241,741 up 35% from this time last year.

Great Time to List…

December 2nd, 2017

The statistics indicate that for both the Comox Valley and Campbell River the number of units sold is down compared to last year. However, average prices are up 19% and 18% respectively and inventory levels are low. Two years ago there were 257 single family dwellings for sale in the Comox Valley, and now there are 170. In Campbell River there are 89 houses for sale at this time.

Last month we highlighted the ‘the perfect storm’ whereby supply is tight and there is aggressive demand. The government is taking some steps to tinker with the demand side. In our view much could be accomplished on the supply side by simply getting out of the way.

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