Prices up, sales down in Greater Victoria housing market

Supply of real estate in Greater Victoria now matches demand, meaning the region is no longer the seller’s market it once was, the Victoria Real Estate Board’s past president said.

“Market conditions are balanced between buyer demand and the seller,” said Randi Masters. “It’s not the seller’s market we used to see in the … (early) 2000s. Then we flipped to the buyer’s market in 2009.”

VREB’s real estate statistics for March show a decrease in sales from March 2010 – 622 properties sold last month, compared to 789 in March last year. In addition, inventory levels are 10 per cent higher today than one year ago.

Masters said after the recession of 2008, prices tumbled, resulting in a high number of sales. She said sales peaked in May 2010 “and since that point, we have just balanced right out.”

The average, median and six-month average price for properties increased across the board, according to stats from last month, except for townhouses.

The average price for single-family houses in Greater Victoria in March was $619,275, up from $610,975 in February. The median price rose slightly to $568,500 while the six-month average also rose to $625,992. There were 22 single-family home sales over $1 million last month.

The average price for condominiums was $325,581 last month, up slightly from $323,844 in February. The average for the last six months also rose slightly to $325,188. The median price for condos in March rose to $290,000.

The average price of all townhouses sold last month rose to $434,626 from $415,591 in February. The median price also rose to $408,150 while the six-month average declined slightly to $431,975.

In March, 351 single-family houses, 172 condominiums, 75 townhomes and 10 manufactured homes sold through the Multiple Listings Service in Greater Victoria.

“I am so glad it’s not that heated frenzied market” of 2000-08, Masters said.

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