Market Update Nov 16

Thanks to Marko for providing the numbers.

  November 2015
Nov
 2014
Wk 1 Wk 2 Wk 3 Wk 4
Unconditional Sales 145
270
465
New Listings 238 426
682
Active Listings 3060 3029
3631
Sales to New Listings
61%
63%
68%
Sales Projection 609 567
Months of Inventory

7.8

Sales are 15% ahead of this time last year but new listings are up just a smidge more.   This is the first time I’ve seen in a long time where the sales to list is not up year over year.   Given that we’re going on 2.5 years of continuously improving market conditions, at some point it can’t go on.  Maybe this is the start of a stabilization.

Lots of overvaluation talk in the media these days.  It seems that the argument is less over whether there’s a national correction coming, but who will be screwed, and to what degree.  Of course depending on your point of view that media salivating might be just a buying indicator.

 

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80 thoughts on “Market Update Nov 16

  1. Sorry for assuming Hawk, it‘s just that a while ago you said “Precious metals are a separate beast I am bullish long term on.”

    I went to school with a gloomy guy who told me he bought a bunch of silver coins when it was $40/ounce, sold his house couple years ago (probably after reading those Maclean’s cover stories) and I’ve been trying to help him see the boom that’s starting here ever since.

  2. Hawk, thanks for reminding us what getting up on the wrong [grumpy] side of the bed looks like. Reboot and see you tomorrow? 😉

  3. As for investing, it’s almost disturbing about how little I care about the money once it’s in the investing account. Given I will spend hours researching almost every purchase, and spent 4 years and hundreds of posts researching before buying a house, it’s odd that I have near zero interest in whether my investments are going up or down. Just keep putting money in to diversified, low cost ETFs and forget about it.

  4. Good for you Marko, success is an excellent experience if you handle it correctly by not boasting publicly about personal investments and staying professional. So many rich folk I have known over the years that lost it all, blew it/went bankrupt etc. had a history of openly bragging about their wealth, toys and accolades. Had something to do with not seeing the forest for the trees until it was too late. Wealth/career bragging is indeed the biggest character turn off to most people I know, especially the rich ones. Just sayin.

  5. Aha! Now a use for your tiled garage floor. My garage looks a little different. Plain cement, 5 bicycles, and 3 bike trailers. Not much money involved in bike review videos though!

  6. Don’t own any gold stocks Mike, the bottom isn’t in yet. Patience is a virtue as they say. Things must be slowing down in the condo pumping blog biz for you, because I don’t see any other industry spokespeople stating such insane numbers. Why don’t you go public with all your predictions and start a website,hit the circuit and charge big bucks instead of wasting time here ?

  7. There’s still plenty of time for you Hawk. Now dump your losing gold stocks and hop on the prosperity train.

    All aboard…million median core by 2020…toot, toot 😉

  8. You’re right Hawk. I added it all up and it definitely equals a bust…
    lowest vacancy rate in the country + extremely high employment growth (double Vans) + incoming zoomers & Van’ites + one of the most affordable cities in country…

    Did you want me to show you a bunch more houses and condos that are cheaper to own than rent?

  9. Starting a new youtube channel reviewing cars…..position will eventually open up with Tesla in Croatia and being from Croatia I think I am the right guy to be the VP of the Balkans for Tesla. You guys will probably be happy to get rid of me for a while if that pans out.

    I just logged into my waterhouse and things look fine to me? TRP dropped and offset by gain in RCI?

  10. I drive a nice car too but don’t need to post a video to make myself feel better. Ego much ? LOL

    BTW when you post five stocks and tout how much percent you made then that’s called pumping. Since they all tanked and you say it suddenly doesn’t mean anything, then the cred problem comes to mind. Just sayin.

    I guess the engineering business doesn’t pay as well in Victoria as other places and/or there isn’t enough work here to set up shop and is seen as a short term blip. Last time I looked UBC and other universities are pumping out engineers by the hundreds.

  11. “the loser stocks you and Marko were pumping that are below August lows but that’s your credibility problem, not mine.”

    lol…pumping stocks? Common now. Reminds me of a random guy I met in an elevator a few years ago in one of the buildings I bought a pre-sale in.

    Random guy: “I got my Shaw set up today.”

    Me: “Didn’t the sales team tell you Telus is doing 12 months completely free promotion of optik TV/internet?”

    Random guy: “Yea, I know about that but I have shares in Shaw.”

    I’ve kind of lost interest in stocks over the last few years. I’ve had my 25k RRSP contribution sitting ideal in cash due to lack of interest in stock investing.

    Instead of reading stupid crap on Garth Turner, RedFlagDeals, and investing websites these days more pre-occupied reading stupid crap on the BMW and Tesla forums. Just ordered a bunch of equipment crap for making car review videos. Arrives next week.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CQ44ERCPrRQ

  12. 4, 5, 6% unemployment is pretty much all the same thing. Annyoing who is willing to work hard (and not suffering from mental/physical health problems, other issues) can obtain a job. You always have 1 out of 20 people allergic to work.

    If you sit in an office desk at a big institution you just don’t get exposed to how tight things are out there in certain sectors. Recently I had to get some custom millwork installed at my home and out of 5 calls I made only 1 individual was willing to come out to provide a quote which was $1,000 and I had to wait three weeks to be fitted in on a Saturday. He showed up with his appreintnce at 8 am and the two of them were done at 2:15 pm and I was writting the cheque.

    I investment some $ in a 2,600 sq/ft new residential build in Fairfield and I am involved in the initial design of the project. I emailed 8 engineering firms for the structural engineering work on the blue prints.

    • 5 did not reply or replied with “we have too much work, sorry”
    • 2 replied with “at least one month” and prices were more than 50% higher than last year
    • 1 replied with “2 to 3 weeks” and price 50% higher than last year

    Last year in September I had my personal 5,000+ sq/ft (way more complicated due to three levels and lots of overspanning) home engineered for the same price engineers are quoting this year for a simple 2,600 sq/ft home. And last year the turn around for my engineering work was 3 business days.

  13. Looks like the BC tech industry investment scene is in decline. Where there’s smoke there’s fire. Down $200 million in past 2 years and $100 million so far this past 9 months. Not a good sign.

    “Venture capital investment in British Columbia dropped in the first nine months of this year compared to 2014, bucking a trend that saw VC investment up across Canada.

    Investors channeled $290 million to BC companies in the first nine months of this year, a drop of more than $100 million from VC investment in the same period last year and down more $200 million from 2013.”

    http://blogs.vancouversun.com/2015/11/16/vc-investment-in-bc-down-more-than-100-million-in-the-first-nine-months-of-2015/

  14. What matters is all those unemployed eventually leave Victoria for greener pastures. It’s been a trend in every boom and bust cycle in Victoria since the early 80’s. People don’t stick around long if they can’t find a job, especially low paying service jobs in cyclical industries.

    Those savvy tenants also don’t overpay for bloated real estate prices with sim pickings to choose from. They stay renters and save cash and live life versus the ball and chain of a large mortgage with rates heading up.

  15. What matters is employment here is up 5.8% since last year…one of the highest employment growths in all of Canada! For comparison sake, Van is up 2.9% (or half as much). You can see unemployment is only up because the labour force has grown so much (6.6%).
    http://www.statcan.gc.ca/tables-tableaux/sum-som/l01/cst01/lfss03l-eng.htm
    That’s nearly 10,000 more people working in Victoria from year ago. It’s no wonder we have the tightest vacancy rate in the whole country @ 0.6%… and soon those savvy tenants with their new careers will begin buying homes.

  16. FWIW Mike, the unemployment rate has gone up from 4.7 in February to 6.1 in October so the trend is definitely up, not shrinking. I know people looking for work right now and it’s no slam dunk even if qualified, there’s a lot of competition out there which keeps wages growth flat.

  17. > Agents that sell their own home will get 2 to 3 percent more for the property than non agent owned properties.

    Do you have a source for this? Would love to read more about the reasons

  18. I’m sure all those BC government workers who just got a whopping .45% increase will be blowing it on financial planners and eating out. Wage growth is in decline Mike, show us the stats they are growing. Seniors are more active and build their own decks and fix their own stuff. What do you think Home Depot is half filled with everytime you go in there. ..seniors. On top of that most seniors are known skin flints who will do without rather than pay through the nose. You underestimate the demographic entirely.

  19. Lol, so oil’s been in the tank for over a year now while Vic’s market is breaking records. Your need to reread your TC link you posted on Nov 5. You should probably get used to Vic’s employment picture going the opposite direction of house prices.

    And the employment rate is shrinking year by year. It dropped five points over the past four years. “This is consistent with a growing number of retirees and a shrinking labour force, which suggests that population growth is being influenced by factors other than economic opportunities.” In other words, people move here for the ambience, the life of leisure, much more than they do for actual work.

    However I do think Vic’s remaining working stiffs will soon start to see surging wages to service all the newcomers. Tradespeople, health workers, chefs and restaurant owners, financial planners…numerous businesses will flourish alongside the incoming wealth. Which is great since these sectors stagnated for years as the US stole our wealthy retirees.

  20. No oil rigs, just oil workers by the hundreds in Victoria who are now laid off and have large houses, trucks and toys who thought it would never end….. and their EI which will run out at some point. I have heard of many. Also many that were unskilled labor too, notice how Victoria’s unemployment numbers jumped half a percent last month.

    Funny you avoid all the loser stocks you and Marko were pumping that are below August lows but that’s your credibility problem, not mine.

  21. So, it was different then 😉 On the commodities front, last I checked I haven’t noticed many oil rigs driving around Victoria. Besides, at the risk of tooting my horn, my commodity related holdings are up alot since that black Monday in late Aug… PSX, GE, XOM, so I don’t see much to worry about. I won’t even bring up what happened to Victoria in the 8 years following the similar mid-80s commodities bust (up 160%…but, shhh…don‘t anyone tell Hawk).

  22. You did drink too much last night Mike, Victoria didn’t have a serious tech industry then. You also forgot about 30,40 year mortgages and free downpayment loans. No more life jackets left for next correction. Justin won’t bail out the banks like Harper did and dump billions onto taxpayers via CMHC because they bought too much house. Did you miss the news yesterday ? Canada’s economy is in the tank and your commodities boom is in tatters.

    http://stockcharts.com/h-sc/ui?s=%24CRB

  23. Maybe I drank too much last night, but didn’t SF & Vic prices more than double from 2000-2007 during the dot-com crash? …iow, if there’s another tech wreck, does it for sure mean property wreck for Vic?

  24. The tech industry in the mid levels that are the core of growth and are not publicly traded companies rely on venture capital to survive more than the ones that are public and can issue shares. If the taps to that source of money gets turned down, companies in Victoria will be the first to get hit.

    All you need is more slowdown from China, or a slowdown in the US even and things change fast. Employees are mobile in that industry and will leave town at the drop of a hat if they get wage cut backs or lose their job.

  25. Anyone in the industry knows the difference. The tech bubble was exactly that. Full of hot air. A lot of BS and non companies. Get a website, a management team and a prospectus and away you go to an IPO. These Web 2.0 companies are real, making real products. Some making real good money. It’s a huge difference.

  26. Could Silicon Valley be one of the catalysts in a Victoria market correction ? Highly possible since the industry is one of the largest employers. Since Mayor Helps had to travel to Frisco to help rustle up some cash for companies here it makes sense. Feels like there is a complacency in an industry with a history of tanking hard when things go south.

    San Francisco real estate looking like it did before dot-com crash in 2000

    “Surging rents, skyrocketing real-estate prices and booming tech companies. Sounds like San Francisco in 2015, right? It also describes the city just before the tech bust of 2000, according to a recent report.

    John Burns Real Estate Consulting of Irvine, Calif., and Pacific Union, a San Francisco real-estate brokerage, say that based on the appreciation (and apparent correlation) of venture capital deals and rent prices, the rise in the Bay Area’s rapid real estate and rent price appreciation today is looking more like a repeat of the dot-com bust of 2000.

    “The San Francisco Bay Area is on our watch list for a correction,” said John Burns, his company’s chief executive, in an interview. He said that while San Francisco has become a permanently more expensive place to live and should be one of the most expensive places to live in the world because of its status as the center of the high-tech and Internet economy, the recent increases in home prices and rents have been fueled mainly by speculation.”

    http://www.marketwatch.com/story/san-francisco-real-estate-looking-like-it-did-before-dotcom-crash-in-2000-2015-11-20?dist=afterbell

  27. Canadian mortgages are calculated differently than a car loan or an American mortgage which use “simple interest rates”. Due to the effect of compounding a simple interest rate loan is slightly higher than the stated rate. Years ago when governments cared about their people Canada changed their method of mortgage calculation to be fair to their people. The rate you saw was the rate you actually paid.

    I’ve heard that there are some lenders that are not doing mortgages but demand loans that have many of the same aspects of a mortgage. Those loans will be calculated using simple interest rates. In that way they can advertise lower rates but in effect you are paying the same as a mortgage rate.

    The interest rate is the hook to get you to sit down with the loans officer. It’s the terms in the mortgage that are the really important part.

    You should read the mortgage document before you sign. Even take it to your lawyer to read. However the housing industry is now like the fast food industry. With short deadlines to remove conditions it isn’t possible to do proper due diligence.

    We need a mandatory 7 business days cooling off period where the buyer can get all that is needed done. And 7 days is pushing things quickly.

    It’s necessary because of how the industry has changed. High pressure selling tactics to get a buyer to waive their conditions prematurely or not have conditions at all. Prospective home owners NEED protection.

    We have gone from the days when real estate may have been your largest life investment to where a mistake in real estate may now destroy your entire financial life. 40 years of savings blown on one bad deal. The buying public needs protection.

  28. The interest component of your payment goes down every month, because the principle to which the rate is applied each month also goes down. (because you pay some off each month). I like to do amortization schedules in Excel, using one row for each payment. You can set this up in maybe 2 minutes.

  29. Nevermind I found the answer. First of all, the interest rate on the mortgage is the APR. So 3% in this case. In Canada mortgages are compounded twice annually, so to convert this to an effective annual rate we go EAR = (1+r/m)^m – 1 = (1+0.03/2)^2-1 = 3.0225%
    Then you convert that to an effective rate for compounding on your payment schedule, which for bimonthly would be 24.
    Monthly Rate = (1+EAR)^(1/m)-1 = (1+0.030255)^(1/24)-1 = 0.12427%

    Then interest component of our payment is $300,000*0.12427%= $372.81
    Not far off the simplistic calculation I had assumed, which ended up with $375 in interest, but far enough to mess up my spreadsheet.

  30. According to the PCS listing, it’s Bldg Insurance, Bldg Maintenance, Management, Water, Yard Maint.

    Has anyone had experience with recent townhome builds? How’s the soundproofing between units?

  31. Can someone explain to me the math behind mortgages? Lets say you have a $300,000 mortgage at 3%, bimonthly payments. To calculate the interest component at any given payment, I would assume it would be $300,000*(0.03/24).
    But this always gives me a tiny bit higher than the actual amount. Whats the accurate formula?

  32. Talk about low supply: MLS search tonight seems to show only two detached SFHs between $500K and $650K in all of Gordon Head. That’s weirdly low, isn’t it?

  33. As for what’s happening with prices, one way to answer the question may be to see whether the people selling crazy-priced houses seem like the kind of people who could pay the kind of price they’re asking (assuming they had no house of similar price to sell). If not, I would say, beware.

  34. What the heck is going on with the prices?
    Another shocker for me that 4023 Malton Avenue (in the Blenkinsop/Mount Doug area) was listed for $624K, then re-listed for a HIGHER price days later ($634K) and appears to have sold for $660K. This is an 80’s bungalow with no basement. Two similar houses sold in the same neighbourhood for $500K last year. The one on Malton appeared to be nicer, but still…
    I keep asking myself if this is the height of the insanity or if the bull has just started trotting. I don’t know the answer, but I do know I need to move out of my present residence and the rental availability is also bad. Either way, I will be holding my nose and praying I am making the right decision (if it’s possible to do both at once).

  35. That’s a pretty high strata fee. Do you know what it includes? The house probably has annual insurance of $1200, monthly water bills , and that cedar siding will require maintenance. I don’t think $400 mth is too far-fetched for the house so I dunno if taking the strata fee out of the equation is valid.

  36. Remember to include the $463 monthly strata fee when considering the Rainbow Hill townhouse. I put that into Tangerine’s rent calculator and it suggests $463/month is equivalent to $87,000 on your 25-year mortgage.

    Mind you, the strata fee includes building insurance and other things you’d pay extra for on the house.

  37. Would you rather be higher up on the hill and have a private backyard of Garry Oak trees, http://www.realtor.ca/Residential/Single-Family/16124537/4015-Rainbow-Hill-Lane-Victoria-British-Columbia-V8X2A8

    or.. pay an extra $200k for a single family home with a 1-bed suite (+rental income), BUT be lower on the hill, have no backyard privacy (townhomes looking directly into your yard) and less square footage for your own use? (3031sqft – suite 700 sq ft=2331) http://www.realtor.ca/Residential/Single-Family/16208322/4015-Rainbow-St-Victoria-British-Columbia-V8X2A8

  38. How will potential buyers react once the media starts playing the new story headlines of “Mortgage Rates Going Up” ?

    Depends on how serious the Fed is seen to be about raising rates. Between 2004 and 2007 the Fed raised by 0.25% 17 successive times (that is a quarter percent increase every couple of months). If it’s thought likely they’ll do something similar this time, then the RE market will be hammered. But if they raise by a tenth of a percent and say we’ll see how that pans out before doing anything else, then we’ll know its probably just PR.

    An argument for raising rates is that the US is not internationally competitive due to high wages. Therefore, we need not Keynsian stimulus to drive labor demand and wages up, but the exact opposite, i.e., tight money to drive unemployment higher until labor capitulates and accepts wages on a sharper convergence course with the Third world.

    I don’t see the latter option as likely so close to the next election. My bet, therefore is a token rate rise, if any, that will make little difference to RE affordability. Still a rate rise of any size may have a significant psychological effect.

  39. You mean they went up with 30 and then 40 year mortgages plus zero downpayments and/or downpayment loans. Let’s keep things in perspective Michael. It was the only thing that made it affordable at those rates.

  40. But can the core sustain price increases greater than the Western Communities forever?

    Not really. The lump sum price differential between the two areas would become astronomic quickly.

    $600,000 compounded at 8% for 5 years
    versus
    $400,000 compounded at 2% for 5 years.

    What you will find is what is happening right now. Prospective purchasers are substituting locations.

    Why by an Iphone 6 when you can buy a Samsung at a fraction of the price.

  41. Lol, I’ve been on vacation… did I miss you buying a house?

    On your “higher rates” warnings you should keep in mind that the last rate cycle from ’03 to ’07 saw prices here go up over 50% as the Fed raised from 1 to 5.25%. Stock markets soared too between ‘03-‘07.

  42. Where have you been Michael, last time the positive jobs report came out for the US the market tanked for last 2 weeks. Not to forget a straight month of red on the TSX. You missed the memo on those dead cat bounces.

    Once the media gets a new story line they run hard with it. Headlines of higher rates for the first time in 9 years is extremely newsworthy. It could easily spook the share of the market that is on the fence financially which could be enough to stifle things for awhile. “Wait til spring” could be the new mantra.

  43. How will potential buyers react once the media starts playing the new story headlines of “Mortgage Rates Going Up” ?

    My bet is they’ll react like buyers of the stock market did today when they heard rates are going up.

  44. Change that single family housing to multi-family and guess what happens.

    Another reason core prices will forever outpace Langford.

  45. The house can become an impairment to the property and reduce the underlying value of the land. The most notable example is leaky condominiums. Another would be a ruptured oil tank in the home that has leaked into the ground. Asbestos, PCB’s, dumping fees. Where the cost of removing the home has become so atrocious that the property would now sell well below the value of the land if it were vacant and unimproved. Another example of impairment is stigma related to some hideous crime such as the murder house of O.J. Simpson.

    While hypothetically you can separate a property’s value into land and improvements in reality that isn’t possible. The land has a building on it, you can’t just magically say the building doesn’t exist so the site can’t be less than land value.

    So yes an improved property can sell below lot value in a neighborhood.

  46. It isn’t just land. It’s appropriately zoned land. Victoria has lots of land that has low density housing. Change that single family housing to multi-family and guess what happens.

    In contrast a new Mayor and city council in Langford could restrict new development.

  47. The Fed minutes left no doubt a rate hike is definitely on the table next month and mortgage rates will be going up which they have already in the US the past two weeks, and Canadian 3 & 5 year rates.

    How will potential buyers react once the media starts playing the new story headlines of “Mortgage Rates Going Up” ? The real estate industry and house pumpers will poo poo it as “only a quarter point” of course but how will the lenders react ? I could easily see new buyers getting put through the higher rate affordability squeeze test if the plan for a series of interest rate hikes shows through by the new year. In which case Langford will clearly be the only place to buy for the average family and the core will stagnate.

    Fed minutes show majority willing to raise interest rates in December

    WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — A large majority of Federal Reserve officials last month signaled they were nearly ready to make their first interest-rate hike in nine years.

    “Most participants” anticipated that the conditions for beginning to raise interest rates “could well be met by the time of the next meeting,” according to the minutes of the October meeting released by the Federal Open Market Committee on Wednesday.

  48. I don’t think Langford will see the same gains as the core not just because of supply but also depreciation component due to type of homes being sold out there.

    If you pay 800k for a home in Oak Bay you pay 600k or more for the land and 200k or less for the house, for example. House can’t depreciate much more.

    If you pay 800k for a home on Bear Mountain, for example, you pay 250k for the land and 550k for the house. There is plenty of room for depreciation as it ages.

  49. Downtown commuting times and the new interchange.

    The new interchange will have an effect on travelling times and that will alter home prices in various neighborhoods. If you live in Oak Bay the effect will likely be minimal. But how about Gordon Head? Travel times taking a bus from downtown Langford could be the same as taking a bus from Gordon Head and having to make more stops and a transfer to get downtown.

    How about the effect on Esquimalt? House prices in Esquimalt for similar homes is close to that of Langford today. Will the new interchange make fewer people choose Esquimalt with the stigma of the Navy Base as a place to live when they can live in a newer subdivision in Langford? Making Esquimalt home prices fall behind that of Langford? Will View Royal be bypassed all together – once again?

    The new interchange is a game changer for several municipalities. The city planners in these hoods are going to have to up their game to attract development for both residential and commercial.

  50. The key reason Langford’s price gains will forever lag the core is simply land supply.

    Subdivisions can and will continue popping up all over the place out there.

    Similar reason as to why say Langley‘s price gains will never come close to matching Van’s % gains.

  51. Why are prices in the core rising faster than the western communities when demand is increasing far less than in the Westshore?

    It’s a supply problem. If the number of listings were to increase to the levels of say 2007 and 2009 at current demand levels then we might be looking at declining prices in the core rather than increasing.

    High prices have an effect on buyer’s demand and prospective purchasers are making that clear in where they choose to buy.

    What is astonishing to me is how BIG of a difference it has been in the last year. More than likely it is related to affordability. Even at these low interest rates prices in the core are too expensive for most middle income households. They have weighed the commuting time, age, condition and maintenance of homes in the different areas and have, on a large scale, determined that the Western Communities provides the better value for their money.

    And while it is true that if you already own a home in the City your home has likely increased more than a home in the Western Communities that doesn’t help you in spotting the future trend.

    https://youtu.be/M3K3Qcn5cYQ

  52. The volume of house sales in the core is up 5 percent from last year’s third quarter.

    In contrast the volume of sales in the Western Communities for the third quarter is up 29 percent.

    Law of Demand and what you call the “ripple effect” but is really called the substitution effect on demand

    https://youtu.be/QvGLcCTXk9o

  53. Not quite yet. Latest core yearly gains are 9+% whereas Langford is barely up (~2%?). Langford will eventually start to see some better gains over the next few years as the ripple effect extends out from the core.

  54. Are we finally seeing the effect on sale volumes due to high prices and poor selection in the core districts?

    Markets are about making choices. If prices in one area become too costly then demand for that area slows and prospective purchasers chose less costly areas and demand increases in those less costly areas.

    Isn’t that what we are seeing now in the urban areas of Victoria? High prices are making prospective purchasers alter their preference from Victoria to Langford and Colwood.

    I suspect that some areas of the city will always command high prices. The few upper income neighborhoods in our city should always have some of the highest prices in southern Vancouver island for properties with similar physical characteristics (ceteris paribus).

    But most of the core is not made up of upper income neighborhoods. Most of the core comprises first time house owners and middle income households. And those income groups are price sensitive not only to mortgage payments but utility fees, property taxes and user fees.

    And where the jobs are located is changing too. New jobs in Langford and Colwood are now having people commute from Victoria City to the Westshore for work. There is now a mini morning traffic rush out to Langford and Colwood in the morning. It isn’t as big as the traffic coming into the city but it is increasing every year. It’s only a matter of time for those workers to question why they are living in Victoria and choose to relocate to where they work.

    And Greater Victoria isn’t like Vancouver we have lots of surplus land that can be opened up with new roads, interchanges and zoning that should always keep Langford and Colwood affordable for most families in the decades to come.

  55. That area does have a history of drainage issues. I’m sure there are a lot of new homeowners finding out their weak spots the past couple of days.

  56. This is how I’m seeing the break down in sales so far this year compared to last year

    Core Districts
    Projected house sales in the core are tracking about the same as last year
    Projected condo sales in the core are up 10%.

    Western Communities
    Projected house sales are up 29% from last year
    Condos projected at 40% more sales (there were only 8)

    The Peninsula
    Projected house sales up 47%
    Projected condo sales up 20%

    Projected sales are expected to be higher than last year with most of the increase in sale volume coming from the Western Communities.

    We haven’t seen as many big ticket prices paid for houses so far this month in the core. That’s going to make it tougher to compare last month to this month’s median and average. Right now it looks to be lower but get a couple of 4 or 5 million property sales to happen and we would be back up to last months figures.

    Last November there were only 113 house sales in the core districts at a median price
    of $569,000 and an average at $644,000. The limited data so far shows a 7.5% increase in the median and a 19 percent increase in the average. Pretty wide difference between the two. The sales to assessment ratio for housing in the core is more reserved showing just a 5 percent year over year increase. I can’t determine the HP Index because the math is too far above my comprehension.

    On a month to month basis the data is just too skewed because of the uncharacteristic increase in high end sales.

    So pick the number that best works for you. 7.5% 19% or 5%

    On a happy note the Assessment Roll is closed so no new information is going to change the numbers. If you live in the core I would expect your house assessment to show an increase of 5 to 8 percent from last years. A little more in property taxes to keep the party going at City Hall.

  57. Some interesting things you may want to consider as prospective purchasers.

    Agents that sell their own home will get 2 to 3 percent more for the property than non agent owned properties.

    Recently refinished homes will get a couple of percentage point premium over homes that were refinished just six months before.

    Homes that are staged with good quality furniture and de-cluttered will sell for a little bit more than others that are just well kept.

    These premiums are not necessarily cumulative in nature but they are transitory. The premiums are gone once you purchase the home. That means that if you have to sell six months later, assuming the market has remained stable, you’ll likely sell for a couple percent points less than what you bought the home for. Not really a big deal if your planing to live there for the next decade or so. But something to think about if you are transferred 6 months from now.

    If you’re looking at buying a home with these factors, you can’t just say that I’m not going to pay the premium. Because the guy behind you waiving his cheque book in the air is more than willing to.

  58. I thought that one was listed @ 499k a month ago?
    They should do ok as they sure cheaped out on the renos. It’s a shabby area outside the core but the house sits nice and high with south backyard and some north views. Sure would be cheap payments after the suite income.

  59. I don’t know the area but, from the photos, I’d investigate the drainage. The back yard appears to slope towards the house which is a potential problem.

  60. For a 1950’s bung stuck high out of the ground like a radish it seems pricey notwithstanding the ?$50,000 reno.

    And no garage.

    Nice rug, though.

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