Market Minute

Ding! Ding! – Round 2

January 2nd, 2020

If the experts are right, the BC real estate market is poised for another round of price increases.  Round 1 started in January 2015 with overheated demand from offshore buyers coupled with a lack of inventory.  Michael Campbell and Ozzie Jurock both point to current geopolitical tension in Hong Kong and Europe as a major impetus for Round 2 of a real estate feeding frenzy.

Some readers may be concerned, as I am, with structural weaknesses in the Canadian economy: record high household debt and the loss of close to two hundred billion dollars of investment in the Alberta oilfields in the past five years.  In spite of these and other factors, such as massive government deficits, Canada is rated third in the world behind the USA and Germany, if safety (keeping your capital) is the main consideration.

The December VIREB statistics point to strong sales in Campbell River and the Comox Valley: dollar volume of sales up 91% and 60% respectively compared to last December.  Remember, the November statistics also reflected an upsurge in sales, so the trend may already be under way.

In Vancouver and Toronto, and other world centres, property prices have less and less bearing on what the local market can afford. Planners and policy makers are playing a not-so-subtle word game when they speak of ‘affordability’, or ‘affordable housing’. I used to think that philosophy was a harmless field of study for old men. I have come to learn that philosophy is King, and unless you understand the metanarrative, you may just end up as grist for the mill.  Most of Canadian land use policy is driven by the philosophy behind Agenda 21 and Agenda 2030 – both UN Initiatives. The vast majority of Canadians know very little or nothing about these policies which result in a very high degree of expensive regulation.  To my knowledge the policies have never seriously been challenged.

Michael Campbell’s World Outlook Conference takes place at the Westin Bayshore, Vancouver, on Friday Feb 7 and Saturday Feb 8.  It is also available online. We at  Kutyn Property Services will be tuning in.

In next month’s newsletter we will be looking for inventory.

Positive stats for November house sales.

December 3rd, 2019

In the single family market sector for the Comox Valley and Campbell River the statistics for the month are remarkably similar. Both show increased sales volumes and upward pressure on price. In the Comox Valley, November sales were up 14% to $30 million with a 12% increase in the average price to $619,559 on 49 sales.

In Campbell River, November sales were up 24% compared to last year. The average price was up 13% to $494,320 on 33 sales.

It is noteworthy that the number of active listings/inventory is up in both markets. Coupled with this are modest increases in the days-to-sell for the month of November: 48 days in the Comox Valley and 51 days in Campbell River.

From Kutyn Property Services we wish you all a very merry Christmas!

Similar Trends Prevail

September 3rd, 2019

Once again this month the trends in the Single Family market are similar in the Comox Valley and in Campbell River. Sales volumes are down, but the average price continues to creep up. Again this month there are modest increases in the number of active listings: 284 in the Comox Valley and 130 in Campbell River.

In the condominium sectors, with the exception of apartment condos in the Comox Valley, inventory levels for apartments, patio homes and town houses remain very low. There is a plus side to these low inventory levels in that a number of multi-family developments are currently under way, in Campbell River, Comox and Courtenay.

Comox Valley

August 2019 VIREB stats

Single Family Dwelling Sales

504, down 14% YTD Jan 1 – Aug 31

686, down 19% 12 MTD In the past 12 months

Average Price

$565,351, up 6% average sale price based on 686 sales

Campbell River

August 2019 VIREB stats

Single Family Dwelling Sales

326, down 8% YTD Jan 1 – Aug 31

459, down 17% 12 MTD In the past 12 months

Average Price

$478,202, up 8% average sale price based on 459 sales


“Idealism is fine, but as it approaches reality, the costs become prohibitive.”

William F. Buckley Jr. Author and commentator.

Good News… for some

July 1st, 2019

Over the past five years, one of the major factors  playing havoc with the market was the supply side:  that is to say restricted supply or low inventory. This continues to be an issue in most of the Condominium sectors  in the Comox Valley, but especially in Campbell River.

The 12 month stats for single family markets point to an increase in the average price, but a fall in the dollar volume in sales.  We feel this is due, at least in part, to low inventory.

This month in the Comox Valley market, there is good news for buyers, as the inventory has increased from 234 at this time last year to 302 this year; an increase of 29%. The response from the market for the month of July was a 49% increase in the dollar volume of sales: $51 million in sales this July compared to $34 million in July 2018. There was a 34% increase in the inventory of Single Family houses in Campbell River to 138.  This is a move in the right direction, but in July 2015 there were 283 active listings.

Steady As She Goes

May 9th, 2019

In the single family house sector, both the Comox and Campbell River markets continue to point to reduced sales volumes, combined with some upward pressure on price. Both markets have more active listings than at this time last year; Comox shows a 40% increase to 258, and Campbell River shows a 21% increase to 132.  This is good news, but more listings are needed to meet the pent up demand.

Similar trends apply in the Condo sector – apartments, patio homes and townhouses. Inventory level s are low in Comox, and almost non-existent in Campbell River.

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