While real estate activity typically slows somewhat during July and August due to family vacation plans and other summer activities, the demand for area real estate has nonetheless remained very strong.
MLS® sales as reported by the Southern Georgian Bay Association of REALTORS® (SGBAR) in August totalled $76.5 million a 13% increase over August 2014 setting a new high water mark for the highest dollar volume ever during the month of August. Conversely, new listing activity in August was down as has been the case all year. New MLS® listings coming to market in August reflected a 25% decrease over August 2014 with 350 listings reported compared to 469 last year. The only threat to the ongoing strength in area sales appears to be the lack of available housing inventory coming onto the market. While we have seen significant sales increases every month during 2015, since the first
quarter these increases have continued to get progressively smaller
MLS® dollar sales year-to-date of $546.6 million reflects a 22% increase over last year while year-to-date unit sales are up 15%. New listing activity has decreased 16% from 2014 with 3,247 new MLS® listings coming to market in 2015 compared to 3,880 last year. The market has decidedly shifted more in favour of sellers with those listing their properties for sale finding themselves with far fewer competing listings for potential buyers to choose from.
Year-to-date MLS® single family home sales are up 16% with Wasaga Beach posting the strongest demand out of all area municipalities. Single family home sales in Wasaga Beach through the end of August are up 30% compared to one year ago. Results in other parts of our market are mixed, with home sales in the Municipality of Meaford up 14%, the Blue Mountains up 11%, and Clearview Township ahead 6% over 2014. Single family home sales year-to-date are down roughly 2% in both Grey Highlands and Collingwood. Please keep in mind these results are for MLS® listed properties most of which are re-sales and do not include sales made by developers for new homes in the area.
Area MLS® condominium sales are up 14% through the end of August with 324 sales reported in 2015 compared to 285 unit sales in the first eight months of 2014. The demand for vacant land has made a strong resurgence in 2015 with vacant land sales up a hefty 32% over 2014's sales.
As per the accompanying chart, sales in every price range are showing gains over 2014 but this is especially true from $300,000 to $500,000 where sales are up 35% from one year ago. As area prices continue to rise, we are seeing fewer and fewer annual sales in the lower price ranges. This speaks to the demographics of the buyers coming to this area with many coming from somewhere in the Greater Toronto Area in search of a secondary property for weekend use or those that are coming here for either a lifestyle change or to retire. The 12-month average price for a single family home in our market has risen to $342,800 in 2015 compared to $324,900 this time last year an increase of 5.5%. This increase in average price is being driven not so much by inflation but by the significant increase in the number of sales taking place in the upper price ranges of the market.
Heading into the fall market and with another ski season approaching, I expect we will see further sales gains but at a slower rate than what we have experienced during the first 8 months of the year. As stated earlier, the only negative aspect affecting sales right now is not the alleged presence of a nation-wide or global recession, the uncertain outcome of the upcoming federal election or other far reaching factors but the sheer reduction in available housing inventory to meet the seemingly insatiable demand for Southern Georgian Bay area real estate.
General market statistics such as those contained herein do not always tell the full story as it may pertain to your particular real estate situation. For a no obligation discussion and review of your particular real estate goals please feel free to Contact Me.