Extreme weather and the unseasonably frosty temperatures appear to have had an influence on the Georgian Triangle real estate market as well as so many other aspects of life in the area, and the province generally for that matter. Travel conditions were often hazardous, and many properties remained snowbound affecting access and the ability of potential buyers to fully appreciate the outdoor components and landscape of properties, to say nothing of the willingness of property hunters to venture out into the winter storms to view listings and keep their scheduled appointments. It is difficult to pinpoint and quantify the impact of any one factor on market trends, but property sales did continue to lag behind last year’s pace, which was compounded in part by a lower inventory of available properties.

 
With the publication of the Southern Georgian Bay Association of REALTORS® (“SGBAR”) February MLS® Statistic Report for the Georgian Triangle month over month improvement in the market was evident with 122 sales as compared to 83 the month previous, consistent with seasonal trends. Despite narrowing the substantial negative differential of 27% year over year in the month of January, however, February sales still came in 3% behind last year for the month when 126 sales were reported. Year to date figures therefore remain 14% behind last year’s pace when 239 sales had been logged compared to only 205 this year.
 
Despite the “polar vortex”, sellers were able to bring out 428 new properties on the market which was 6% more than last year when only 405 new listings were recorded. That was not enough, however, to make up for last month’s shortfall in new supply. Year to date figures for new listings amounted to 918. That remains 6% behind last year’s numbers of 975 at this time. Nor did it make any dent in the limited inventory of properties for sale in the area which continues to trail 2013 figures. At the time of the creation of the SGBAR report there were 1851 active listings on the market which is 130.000000ewer than last year at this time when 2128 properties were recorded as being on the market. The lack of supply inevitably limits the choice available to potential buyers looking in the area which plays out as a further depressant to market activity and volume of sales.
 
Limited availability, however, also means buyers are fighting over fewer properties and that tends to put upward pressure on prices. Year to date, the average residential sale price has gone up over 8% coming in at $391,311 compared to $361,487 at the end of February 2013. The year over year comparison of the average sale price for single family residential properties for the month of February is even more significant coming in a whopping 15% higher than last year’s figures for the month, breaking the $400,000 mark at $404,588 compared to $352,100 last year. Measured over a longer twelve month period the annual increase is a more sustainable 3.5% ($335,421 compared to $323,846). Whether the surge in average sale price recorded in February is an anomaly explained by the particular composition of properties sold in the month with a higher concentration of high end sales, or is a broader phenomenon of recovering prices due to basic supply and demand forces remains to be seen, but certainly affordability will be adversely affected if these sorts of price increases continue at the pace recorded this month.
 
Generally speaking, the market remains on firm ground despite the deep freeze. Moreover, interest rates show no sign of any significant uptick within the foreseeable future, moderating the negative influence of rising prices on affordability. While signs of general economic recovery persist, continuing sluggishness in job and income growth remain sticking points to a broader more robust economic picture with lasting traction and qualitatively transformative benefits to the real estate market.
 
 
Prepared by: Chris Kapches, President & CEO
 
(Image provided by http://www.travelandescape.ca/)
 

 Extreme weather and the unseasonably frosty temperatures appear to have had an influence on the Georgian Triangle real estate market as well as so many other aspects of life in the area, and the province generally for that matter. Travel conditions were often hazardous, and many properties remained snowbound affecting access and the ability of potential buyers to fully appreciate the outdoor components and landscape of properties, to say nothing of the willingness of property hunters to venture out into the winter storms to view listings and keep their scheduled appointments. It is difficult to pinpoint and quantify the impact of any one factor on market trends, but property sales did continue to lag behind last year’s pace, which was compounded in part by a lower inventory of available properties.

 
With the publication of the Southern Georgian Bay Association of REALTORS® (“SGBAR”) February MLS® Statistic Report for the Georgian Triangle month over month improvement in the market was evident with 122 sales as compared to 83 the month previous, consistent with seasonal trends. Despite narrowing the substantial negative differential of 27% year over year in the month of January, however, February sales still came in 3% behind last year for the month when 126 sales were reported. Year to date figures therefore remain 14% behind last year’s pace when 239 sales had been logged compared to only 205 this year.
 
Despite the “polar vortex”, sellers were able to bring out 428 new properties on the market which was 6% more than last year when only 405 new listings were recorded. That was not enough, however, to make up for last month’s shortfall in new supply. Year to date figures for new listings amounted to 918. That remains 6% behind last year’s numbers of 975 at this time. Nor did it make any dent in the limited inventory of properties for sale in the area which continues to trail 2013 figures. At the time of the creation of the SGBAR report there were 1851 active listings on the market which is 13% fewer than last year at this time when 2128 properties were recorded as being on the market. The lack of supply inevitably limits the choice available to potential buyers looking in the area which plays out as a further depressant to market activity and volume of sales.
 
Limited availability, however, also means buyers are fighting over fewer properties and that tends to put upward pressure on prices. Year to date, the average residential sale price has gone up over 8% coming in at $391,311 compared to $361,487 at the end of February 2013. The year over year comparison of the average sale price for single family residential properties for the month of February is even more significant coming in a whopping 15% higher than last year’s figures for the month, breaking the $400,000 mark at $404,588 compared to $352,100 last year. Measured over a longer twelve month period the annual increase is a more sustainable 3.5% ($335,421 compared to $323,846). Whether the surge in average sale price recorded in February is an anomaly explained by the particular composition of properties sold in the month with a higher concentration of high end sales, or is a broader phenomenon of recovering prices due to basic supply and demand forces remains to be seen, but certainly affordability will be adversely affected if these sorts of price increases continue at the pace recorded this month.
 
Generally speaking, the market remains on firm ground despite the deep freeze. Moreover, interest rates show no sign of any significant uptick within the foreseeable future, moderating the negative influence of rising prices on affordability. While signs of general economic recovery persist, continuing sluggishness in job and income growth remain sticking points to a broader more robust economic picture with lasting traction and qualitatively transformative benefits to the real estate market.
 
 
Prepared by: Chris Kapches, President & CEO
 
(Image provided by http://www.travelandescape.ca/)
 

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