March Preview

Full market summary coming soon.   For now I’ll just leave the output of our automated market summarizer here.  If you recall, that output is automatically generated by the stats.  This market is not slowing, it’s accelerating.

As of March 2016 the market in Greater Victoria is ludicrously hot. This means that the market strongly favours sellers and prices are expected to rise extremely quickly.

There are currently 1.9 months of inventory which is extremely low for this time of year.   In the last year, prices for median single family homes have risen by $42300 (8%) to $651500 while prices for median condos have risen by $5800 (2%) to $285500.

If current market conditions prevail, you should expect the median single family home price to increase at a rate of about $90000 (14%) annually.

Can you believe that price trajectory??

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38 thoughts on “March Preview

  1. I think Nottingham is Fred’s (Caspian Carpets). Neighbours refer to it affectionately as “the hotel”. $5 mil ask was too much. You can be in a better location for that kind of money.

  2. I was walking by the following house today and saw a “New Listing” sign.

    The ReMax website says the listing is now off the market.

    ZooCasa had it listed as follows:

    1418 Brooke St, Victoria, BC, V8S1M3 for $1,639,000

    Did it sell already, and if so, does anyone know what the house actually went for?

  3. Wow, wrong 4M house for the hood from google streetview.

    Nah! It’s not a problem. They’re just at the leading edge. Soon, every remaining old shack in Oak Bay will have been torn down and replaced by a six or eight thousand square foot villa, with basement gymnasium, movie theatre and eight bathrooms.

  4. @Hawk: gold over long term is essentially useless vs stocks. Gold standard was abandoned in 1930’s.

  5. “Wow, wrong 4M house for the hood from google streetview.”

    But it’s the Uplands Mike. You should study up on mass psychology and herd mentality. It never ends well. Looks like cracks showing with the deep pockets of the world, which eventually leads down the chain to the joe-average “human”.

  6. @Michael, ABX has performed well since I left! What I moved it into has also done well so I’m not fretting… Lots of stocks were at a bottom so I reshuffled and bought too. So it wasn’t a panic sell at the bottom. That’s not me…. Held my Tesla shares through that nasty dip….

  7. Hawk, it’s understandable that “gold does’t mean much anymore” to dasmo…

    January 16, 2016 at 3:23 pm
    I also took my small profit in ABX and got out of gold too.

    Most people sell at bottoms. Why do you think home sales are so high lately. It’s just human nature and from what I can tell, most of us are human here…

  8. CS,
    I believe Nottingham started out at $5 million, so that’s a million off the top. Guess the luxury home market is starting to crumble here, like in London & New York.

    I didn’t say plough all your cash into into gold, just saying many others are doing it due to their declining currencies. NIRP and ZIRP’s will be a disaster and is nothing more than another experiment.

    The house price rise is coincidence. Where has the media once quoted any agents suggesting it’s because of world economic policies that people are buying like drunken sailors ? Every agent has said it’s something they’ve never seen before and at best say it’s the great economy boom, but I’m still looking for where those jobs actually are besides restaurants and other low paying retail, and tourism jobs. Not a peep on any new large scale industry hirings or new corporations coming to town.

  9. Hawk… have you ever considered that the 1Q in houses is similar? a flight out of paper money in a ZIRP and NIRP ? Houses being more of a utility females appreciate than Gold itself (one being portable the other being shelter)

    (try convincing your wife you want to plow $250,000 into gold to stash in a vault rather than into a liveable house for quality of life)

  10. ICYMI, gold also had it’s best Q1 in 30 years. Someone thinks it has value and is better than holding fiat paper pumped out of the presses.

  11. If gold doesn’t mean anything it wouldn’t be selling for $1220 an ounce and China wouldn’t be buying tons of it to back the yuan to get accepted by the IMF. Not to mention Russia and many other countries using it back their deflating currencies.

    Agents with any credibility should blackball the Hamiota flipper. Who would lead a client into a scam.

  12. Ya ya Leo I was exaggerating. It feels like the last few months though…. That’s a pretty steep curve.
    @Hawk, Gold doesn’t mean much anymore. Can’t eat it or live in it so why use it as a gauge for inflation?

  13. 2348 Hamiota St was listed 675k a month ago, sold in a week. Now it is re-listed for $879k. WTF?

  14. A huge area of east Saanich was treeless farmland prior to Saanich’s massive suburban growth after WW2.

    Yes, and the “many large mature trees” that I said were preserved are actually mature second-growth trees. But the point is that they were preserved during Gordon Head’s development, not bulldozed to stuff in a few more lots.

    Keep up the snootiness though. You pretty much sum up everything that is Victoria. Do you hide your face when you make your weekly trek out to costco? Pack a lunch I bet for that 10 minute drive.

    I’m so snooty that I never shop at Costco. I hate that place. I’ve shopped there twice in the nine years I’ve lived in Victoria. I hate Walmart too. The independently owned and very charming Pepper’s, in Caddy Bay, is my grocery store.

    I try to avoid Langhole like the plague. Langford is nice when it’s in your rear-view mirror, as you’re driving to somewhere better (which is almost anywhere).

  15. @bolides, yes I’ve noticed quite a few more listings – hope that makes it easier for you to find a new home. Maybe it’s Easter break or sellers realizing they can get a good price.

    Re: why people live in Oak Bay. Sure there’s a few that do it for the prestige, but my family has lived here simply because of geography: you can access medical care, UVic, Camosun College, major shopping, beaches, etc without having to cross more than 1 or 2 major roads. It makes biking & raising kids easier. Camosun & Mt Tolmie are similar, but you still might have Richmond or McKenzie to deal with.

    BUT all areas of Victoria are lucky for easy access to any sort of everyday activity, so you can’t really lose anywhere.

    As for QE, that’s part of the story – but a spike in prices is always due to a number of factors, not just one (and we’ve had QE for many years). We’re getting a lot more demand from Vancouverites & out-of-towners is because of all the factors discussed in the Globe and Mail, Province, & Walrus articles – tax evasion by foreign buyers, money laundering, and wholesalers, which unfortunately is increasing here too …

    … which also causes too many empty high density condos. Some developers also like to claim that families “don’t want to” live in a war shack, but then don’t give those families enough time to bid on the small house because they pounce on it to build a $1-$2M mansion for the luxury market.

    If researchers, Fintrac, realtors, & the RCMP can admit there’s a problem, then you know it’s happening.

    I started posting on this board because I couldn’t believe how many messages I’ve gotten over the last few months from friends in Vancouver, including 1 today that said his best friend is now moving to Victoria. Crazy. A realtor that’s selling a condo for a family member (who’s moving to a retirement home) told us it’s happening in Nanaimo as well, and she’s been shocked by the prices there.

  16. Yeah ZERO mature trees left in langford. The HA clubhouse was booted out by the mayor while the mayor of Victoria welcomes them and their associates opening up pot shops all around town. Keep up the snootiness though. You pretty much sum up everything that is Victoria. Do you hide your face when you make your weekly trek out to costco? Pack a lunch I bet for that 10 minute drive.

  17. “Too much money out there…”
    Quantitative Easing printed $60 BILLION new dollars per month in the USA and Canada wasn’t far behind on a per capita basis. All that new money needs to find a ‘home’, or should I say a ‘house’.

  18. Thank goodness it was a joke, I was about to load up the kid’s super soaker with Louisiana Hot Sauce and head down to City Hall and get meself a CRD varmit.

  19. “I’m sure Gordon Head has always been the way it is. There just happened to be a bunch of open land with no trees on it and BOOM they plopped houses on it.”

    A huge area of east Saanich was treeless farmland prior to Saanich’s massive suburban growth after WW2. Check out old photos from Mount Tolmie. I’m not suggesting Gordon Head = good and Langford = bad or anything like that. I just thought it was interesting how you phrased it.

  20. I’ll preface this by saying that I’m pretty new to this blog, and to house hunting in Victoria. As a younger buyer that came over from Vancouver in late January due to the high Mainland prices, I thought things looked pretty good in Victoria. But after a few weeks, it seemed like inventory dried up overnight. Or, maybe it was a combo of things selling and the remaining inventory losing its novelty.

    Anyway, I’ve gotten pretty desperate and things seemed to reach a new low last week (no surprise after seeing the stats posted at the end of the week.) Then, yesterday, my phone starts lighting up with email alerts for new listings. I’m almost certain I haven’t gotten that many alerts since we started looking. The alerts have continued to stream in today. I went from having a couple of properties to stop by this weekend to a roster of over a dozen. Granted, none of them are what I would call my “dream home,” but I don’t think many people actually get that – especially not in today’s market.

    Did anyone else notice a sudden influx of listings? If so, do you think it’s a sign of a bit more inventory coming, or just a backlog from people who decided not to list over Easter/spring break?

  21. I want a like button so I can up vote comments. With the lack of that I’ll just go with, well said Introvert!

  22. So you think all that appreciation was just in the last few months.

    Let’s look at the Sales to Assessment ratio for Saanich East in the fourth quarter of 2015. Back then it was 116%. This March it was 124%. That’s a 6.8% increase in the last 6 months. Half the annual increase happened in the last 6 months.

    Yes, there are some amazing prices being paid over asking price. But that’s mostly due to the agents under listing the property to get an auction started. If the agents can build up excitement they can get some people to pay 10%, 15% 20% and more over the asking price. Simply by under listing the property and having the auction in less than a week. And those are the ones you read about.

    The key is to under price and under expose the property to the market.

    An auction is the opposite side of the coin to flipping assignments. The government has stepped in to protect sellers they should also step in to protect buyers.

  23. Yeah no one ever chopped down any trees to build any other developments in Victoria. I’m sure Gordon Head has always been the way it is.

    No, it hasn’t, of course. But Gordon Head was developed intelligently, by comparison. Many large mature trees were preserved. It has a multitude of parks. Nowhere in my neighbourhood are houses squished six feet apart from one another. And it thankfully doesn’t have 16 big box stores or a Hells Angels clubhouse.

  24. I’m excited to see what descriptions are in the summarizer’s database after “ludicrously hot.”

    “Painfully searing.”
    “Difficult to comprehend. Possibly a misprint.”
    “A madman’s reverie of fire.”
    “Detached from reality. 100 percent unicorn.”
    “Situation magma.”

  25. Rented a SFH in Gordon Head for 2400. One across the street rented for 3000. What is happening???”

    Hyperinflation my ass. Gold would be at $3000 already if that was happening.

    My $1300 apartment with a better view than any of Abstracts overpriced million dollar boxes got a $40 increase. Life is tough. Who needs a $3000 rental when you can buy one for the same mortgage ? What is wrong with these people ? BUY, BUY, BUY ! (says the bulls) 😉

  26. Yeah no one ever chopped down any trees to build any other developments in Victoria. I’m sure Gordon Head has always been the way it is. There just happened to be a bunch of open land with no trees on it and BOOM they plopped houses on it.

  27. From previous thread:

    March stats are out. The core is running at 16.4% y/o/y.
    Oak Bay at 18.9%. Langford for comparison is at 4.7%.

    Poor Langhole.

    The other day, Stew Young noticed some trees still standing, so he and Council immediately approved another development so that they’d be chopped down pronto.

  28. And most of that is in the last few months. It’s Hyper inflation…. Going to be 10%/month for the spring I bet….
    I agree with Numbers. This is all to do with too much money out there combined with a low dollar and a fear of the stock market. Lots of free money piling in…. What a difference from even last year. Even rents are in hyper inflation right now. Rented a SFH in Gordon Head for 2400. One across the street rented for 3000. What is happening???

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