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Posts from the ‘Market News’ Category

Sooke Real Estate In Review 2015

One of the 300 sales in Sooke in 2015

One of the 300 sales in Sooke in 2015

Overall, 2015 was a great year for real estate in Sooke. Sales were up markedly, and prices also increased across the region. I’ve compiled a few statistics, and also the top five most-and-least expensive single family homes in Sooke this year. Finally, I’ll talk about predictions for 2016. Read on… Read more

82% of Sooke Home Sales Unaffected By Federal Mortgage Insurance Rule Changes

6201 Hensbro Place, East Sooke.

Starting February 15, you’ll need a $37,500 down payment to buy this home, instead of $31,250. http://TimAyres.ca/167

This morning, federal finance minister Bill Morneau announced changes that his Liberal government is making to CMHC-backed mortgages in this country. The changes were hinted at by well known Canadian Mortgage Trends blogger Robert McLister back on December 1st. The actual changes aren’t quite what he had predicted, but are pretty close. Read more

Sooke Real Estate Update – Fall 2015

One of the many properties that sold in Sooke this summer

One of the many properties that sold in Sooke this summer

Sales up, listings down. Prices…?

It has been a busy spring and summer market for real estate in Sooke and all over the greater Victoria region. In the overall Victoria Real Estate Board trading area, sales as of August 31 showed a 21.7% increase in number of sales for August 2015 over August 2014, and the highest number of single family sales in August since 2007. At the end of the month, there were 3688 active listings on the MLS® system, representing nearly 15% fewer than were available in August last year. All of this is pushing the overall market into sellers’ territory fairly strongly. Prices in Victoria overall are on the rise, with the benchmark home up nearly 7% over the same home last year.

So how is Sooke looking this year?

Read more

A Return to a Seller’s Market in Greater Victoria?

Photo credit: zedzap on Flickr

Photo credit: zedzap on Flickr

Yesterday, the Victoria Real Estate Board released statistics for February 2015. While the rest of the country contended with a seemingly never-ending winter, the cherry blossoms were out early in Victoria and vicinity, and so, apparently, were the buyers.  Read more

Sooke Real Estate Market Update for February 2015

Gorgeous February Weather in Sooke

Gorgeous February Weather in Sooke

Well – it’s been a while. Between being a busy dad, REALTOR®, 2014 president of the Victoria Real Estate Board, and a few other things, I certainly have neglected this blog. I’d like to start posting regularly again, even if it’s short bits and pieces. Let’s take a quick look at how the market has been performing in the last year or two.  Read more

Sooke Real Estate Statistics – February 2013

24

With Spring coming, our thoughts turn to gardening at outdoor activities

Ah February, we hardly knew ye! The shortest month of the year has come and gone – and not including my trip to Winnipeg, I didn’t see a single snowflake – it looks like we’ve escaped winter this year in Sooke. But how did the real estate market do this month?  Read more

Sooke Real Estate Sales Statistics – January 2012

Where did January go? A fun start to the new year, a short trip to New York, and a couple of snow days and all of a sudden it was February! I’m going to try to keep track of statistics for Sooke at the end of each month and post them here so you can follow along. Along with the numbers, I’ll give you my opinion of what the vibe is like in the market and what the other REALTORS® are saying. Read more

New Canadian Mortgage Qualification Rules Announced Today

Flaherty Puts The Squeeze On Mortgages

Following a couple months of speculation, Finance Minister Jim Flaherty brought in some new regulations designed to tighten up lending practices and cool off the housing market in Canada. The government didn’t go so far as to reduce maximum amortization from 35 to 30 years, or increase minimum down payment requirements higher than 5%, but did take the following three actions:

  • Borrowers must now qualify for a five-year fixed rate, even if they are applying for a variable rate mortgage. Variable rate mortgages are based on the prime rate, which is at a rock-bottom 2.25% currently, and is expected to rise over the next 12-18 months. By qualifying buyers at the higher 5-year fixed rate, it is hoped that a cushion will be created such that borrowers can still afford the payments when the prime rate increases, as it will inevitably do.
  • Home owners who want to take out some equity from their homes when they refinance their mortgage will no longer be able to take out up to 95% of the lending value of their homes, only up to 90%. This is designed to prevent home owners from using their homes as an ATM and getting in over their heads if their property value declines. Probably not a bad idea, but it will prevent some home owners from paying off high-interest debt with low-interest mortgage funds. Overall, I’m happy about this one.
  • Purchasers of non-owner-occupied real estate, ie, investment properties, will now need 20% down instead of 5%. The government says this is to prevent speculation by investors. I’m of two minds on this move. It will certainly put a squeeze on buyers of investment properties, which may in turn lead to fewer rental properties available and hence a corresponding rise in rents.

The reader needs to bear in mind that the above rules are for CMHC-insured mortgages only. Private insurers like Genworth and AIG Guaranty may be more flexible. Mortgage insurance is mandated on all mortgage loans in excess of 80% loan to value ratio, which offers the lender protection should the borrower default. This way, lenders are able to offer borrowers lower rates because they do not have to compensate for the additional risk of a high-ratio mortgage.

Also, most lenders qualify a buyer on a 3- or 4-year fixed rate already when applying for a variable rate mortgage, so this won’t be a huge change for most institutions.

The new rules are set to come into force April 19th. I would expect a surge in activities in the market as buyers and investors try to get in under the deadline, even though most residential, owner-occupier borrowers won’t be too affected by the changes. All they will hear is “harder to get a mortgage” and they’ll rush out to get pre-qualified and then go shopping.

Tim Ayres – Sooke Real Estate Professional

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Victoria BC Real Estate Buyer’s Profile – Where are the Buyers Coming From?

An initiative we started late last year at the Victoria Real Estate Board is giving us some excellent data on market trends in the Victoria BC real estate market. As a director and chair of a Communications Task Force, I helped devise a market survey that is sent out via email at the end of the month to each Victoria-area REALTOR® who sold a house to a buyer that month.

The data that comes in is an invaluable snapshot of the situation for the average agent ‘on the street’ as to where the buyers are coming from, what they’re buying, and other interesting data.

I just received this past month’s results this morning. Some interesting facts:

  • 31% of buyers last month were first-time buyers
  • 51% of buyers purchased with a conventional (ie, more than 25% downpayment) mortgage.
  • 15% of buyers were single females, a trend that has been noticeably increasing in recent years
  • Nearly three-quarters of buyers were moving within the Greater Victoria area, and 3.5% were from outside of Canada.
  • 82% of buyers found the property through information provided by a REALTOR® (client portal, PCS, phone call, etc.), or through REALTOR.ca

I’ll continue to post this information on a monthly basis, as it is a “real world” snapshot of activity in our marketplace. You can read the full survey results here.

If you have any questions about buying or selling real estate, I am always available to chat. Call me any time, directly,  at 250-885-0512, email Tim@TimAyres.ca, or find me on Twitter.

If 2010 is the year to buy your first home, I invite you to an informative, free seminar on February 9. Hear from a financial planner, mortgage broker, and me about creating a plan to save for a down payment, get a good mortgage and find a great home. More details and sign-up can be found at TimAyres.ca/seminars

Tim Ayres – Sooke Real Estate Professional

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How to Sell Your Langford or Victoria BC Home In A Day

Fast-Sale-East-Sooke

Call your REALTOR®, and list it now.

Of course, not every home is going to sell overnight, but supply of good, moderately-priced homes is tight, and seems only to be getting tighter. I’ve been tracking listings of single family homes in Sooke, Langford, and Colwood for a client of mine. Check out this spreadsheet (I’ll keep updating it, so feel free to bookmark it). Listings are up a little bit this week, but often conditions come off on Fridays, so you can expect quite a few drop off before the week is out.

From a days on market standpoint, I’m simply amazed at how quickly well-priced, mid-market homes are selling. Out of all sales (80 total) in Langford, since September 1, the average time to sell is 36 days. There were a few 100+ days on market listings that drag the average up a little. To better illustrate my point, there were fully 32 single family homes that sold in 14 days or less. Keeping in mind that conditions on an offer usually take a week or longer, you can comfortably assume that homes that sell in 14 days or less have an accepted offer within a week.

During the same period, it seems that most of the core areas of greater Victoria are experiencing similar time to sell. Next door, Colwood had an average of 45 days on the market, with 31 sales. The central core of Victoria (Victoria, Saanich, Esquimalt, Oak Bay) saw 307 homes sell in an average of 36 days.

Interestingly, Sooke, which has much more moderate prices, had 36 sales in an average of 76 days on market. This is not unexpected – Sooke’s market has always been a little slower than the rest of greater Victoria. Still – well priced, mid-market homes are selling quickly in Sooke.

At a time of year when things are usually expected to start slowing down, this market is as busy as ever. If you’re thinking of selling your home, now would be a very, very good time. There is still time to move before Christmas, or start the new year off in a new home.

I’m always available to answer questions, run stats, and of course I’d love to evaluate your home and show you my marketing plan. I can be reached at 250-885-0512, Tim@TimAyres.ca, or you can fill in my contact form.

Tim Ayres – Sooke Real Estate Professional

Your comments are welcomed and encouraged!
Just use the form or link below this post.

You can bookmark this post using the button below,
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