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THE VICTORIA MARKET & MARKET INVENTORY

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The real estate market in Victoria started out strong in the 1st Qtr of 2020. Demand (i.e., the number of sales) was up dramatically, although it should be recalled that sales in the 1st Qtr of 2019 were the lowest recorded in the past decade. The inventory (i.e., the number of homes on the market) tightened. Sale prices continued to climb in the 1st Qtr. In summary, the market edged into seller’s market territory. However, the impact of the COVID-9 virus
outbreak on the economy became clear towards the middle of March 2020. There remains a lot of uncertainty going forward. Many people have plans to either buy or sell real estate this year. Realtors have been given guidelines to minimize the risk to both buyers and sellers.

The number of “residential properties” (i.e., all types of housing excluding lots/acreage and commercial properties) listed through the Victoria Real Estate Board’s MLS® in the 1st Qtr of 2020 was 2,714, down a bit from 2,762 in the 1st Qtr of 2019. Residential sales through the VREB’s MLS® totalled 1,488 in the 1st Qtr of 2020, up +12.6% from 1,321 in the 1st Qtr of 2019. The sales-to new-listings ratio was .55, up from .48 last year. Properties that sold in the 1st Qtr of 2020 were on the market for an average of 47 days, unchanged from last year. The average sale price of a residential property in Greater Victoria and other areas was $726,163 in the 1st Qtr of 2020, up +8.7% from $668,144 in the 1st Qtr of 2019. The median sale price was $649,900 in the 1st Qtr of 2020, up +6.5% from $610,000 last year. Notably, the average sale price of $726,136 is a new quarterly high from the pervious market peak of $705,531 in the 3rd Qtr of 2018. The figures for Victoria compare with average residential sale prices and year-to-date percentage changes of $995,028 (+3.2%) in Vancouver, $882,841 (+15.2%) in Toronto, $762,277 (+12.1%) in the Fraser Valley, and $436,372 (-0.6%) in Calgary for the first two months of 2020.

SINGLE FAMILY DWELLINGS (SFDS)


There were 703 sales of SFDs in Greater Victoria in the 1st Qtr of 2020, up +11.6% from 630 in the 1st Qtr of 2019. The average sale price of SFDs in the 1st Qtr of 2020 was $946,851, up +10.5% from $856,580 in the 1st Qtr of 2019. The median sale price was $822,000 in the 1st Qtr of 2020, up +6.8% from $770,000 last year. SFDs that sold in the 1st Qtr of 2020 were on the market for an average of 46 days, little changed from 45 days a year ago. The sales-to-new-listings ratio was .58 in the 1st Qtr of 2020, up from .46 last year. As shown in Chart 3, both the average and median sale prices had been on a steady upward trend over the past year. The average sale price has now surpassed the ppevious peak of $929,567 in the 3rd Qtr of 2018.

CONDOMINIUMS


Sales of condominiums in the 1st Qtr of 2020 totalled of 468, little changed from 455 in the 1st Qtr of 2019. The average sale price for a condo was $498,066 in the 1st Qtr of 2020, up +7.7% from $462,524 last year. The median sale price was $437,500, up +5.4% from $415,000 last year. Condos that sold in the 1st Qtr were on the market for an average of 37 days, down slightly from 39 days last year. The sales-to-new-listings ratio was .49 in the 1st
Qtr of 2020, down from .53 last year. As shown in Chart 4, the average and median sale prices of condominiums have been fairly flat until the past Qtr, which experienced an upward spike and a new quarterly high.


TOWNHOUSES


Townhouse sales totalled 202 in the 1st Qtr of 2020, up +26.4% from 158 last year. The average selling price was $601,727 in the 1st Qtr of 2020, down -1.1% from $608,458 in the 1st Qtr of 2019. The median sale price was $574,900, up +4.5% from $550,000 last year. Townhouses that sold in the 1st Qtr of 2020 were on the market for an average of 45 days, up from 43 days last year. The sales-to-new-listings ratio was .60, compared to .52 last year. Average and median sale prices have remained flat over the past several quarters.


LOTS/ACREAGE


There were 49 sales in the 1st Qtr of 2020 compared to 21 sales in the 1st Qtr of 2019. The average and median sale prices of lots/acreage in Greater Victoria in the 1st Qtr of 2020 were $559,351 and $425,000 respectively.