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Builders are Flat-Out Busy!

According to a report released by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) on February 8th, the number of January starts – 100 units – is down from 175 starts last January.

CMHC Stats

However, 2017 was a near-record year with close to 4000 units started. That’s nearly double what the Capital Regional District normally sees – on average 2000 – 2200. Builders in the Greater Victoria region started 2,966 multi-family units and 896 single-family homes last year for a total of 3862 new homes. This number beats every other year except 1976 when the region saw 4439 starts.
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Lack of Inventory in Greater Victoria Continues to Drive Prices

Real estate prices have risen a good deal in the last year, driven by the lack of inventory which was at a record low in January.
There was a total of 1,491 active listings for sale on the Victoria Real Estate Board Multiple Listing Service® at the end of January 2018, 1.6 percent fewer than the 1,516 active listings for sale at the end of January 2017.
The lack of inventory in our market is maintaining pressure on pricing, especially as high demand continues in many areas of Victoria.
The Multiple Listing Service® Home Price Index benchmark value for a single-family home in the Victoria Core in January 2018 was $831,900, a 9.3 percent increase from January 2017.

HPI benchmark value for a condominium in the Victoria area in January 2018 was $450,600, a 20.1 percent increase from January 2017. 
Read the full report on the Victoria Real Estate Board website.

Pricing Trends of Condominiums in Langford and Greater Victoria

Like all real estate sales in 2017, condominiums saw brisk sales! There was a total of 2,773 sold in Greater Victoria through the year, 370 of those being in Langford. At Triple Crown, we sold 34 of the 46 condominiums we have available, which means we contributed just over nine percent to that figure.

The average price of condominiums rose significantly through 2017, as did all other types of housing. We're happy to say our prices have remained the same, so we didn't contribute to the average rise in price. The Multiple Listing Service® Home Price Index benchmark value for condominiums was $449,460 in the Victoria downtown core, an increase over last year of 16.3 percent.


An interesting trend to note over the past 50 years of real estate prices in Greater Victoria is that prices tend to be flat for an average of eight to 13 years, then shoot up rapidly in a short time. In Langford, prices have more than doubled since 2005 but remained relatively flat from 2008 to 2016. What’s b…

November Saw Greatest Number of Sales Since 1996

November saw the greatest number of home sales in Victoria BC since 1996!
Is this a start of a new trend? Not according to Victoria Real Estate Board President Ara Balabanian. “The fact that we've had an unusual month does not necessarily mean that this is the start of a new trend. It is, however, a good example of how outside forces can impact a housing market."
Balabanian suggests buyers have accelerated their purchase timelines in order to avoid the upcoming stress test on uninsured buyers coming into effect on January 1st. The new stress test will now include those with a down payment of 20 percent or more. The test will require purchasers to prove they can make meet their commitment if interest rates rise above the five-year benchmark rate published by the Bank of Canada or 2 percent higher than their contracted mortgage rate, whichever is higher.
"Judging by the sales we saw in November and what I have heard from our REALTOR® members, some buyers have indeed acce…

Tips for First Time Home Buyers

Much like owning your first car, buying your first home brings you a whole lot of freedom, but it can also bring you a whole lot of emotional stress.
Many first-time home buyers quickly tire of the home buying grind and they end up settling too quickly before they find out what is possible. It gets really difficult to be patient when the search stretches into weeks or even months – especially after your bank or mortgage broker has given you the green light – but patience and diligence will reward you in the end.
If you see what you like right away, don’t immediately succumb to that “it’s meant to be” feeling. Even in current market conditions of high demand and low inventory, it’s almost always better to take your time for a thorough look rather than make an impulsive purchase only to find your property’s downsides later on. Finding a place to live isn’t hard; finding a home requires patience, diligence, research, and, yes, a bit of frustration along the way.
Financial Readiness:
Run a …

Markets Stable in Victoria BC

“The fact that we’ve seen such a controlled levelling off in the market directly following a year which felt so uncontrollable in terms of demand and pressure on prices illustrates the depth and stability of the Victoria market,” says Victoria Real Estate Board President Ara Balabanian.
“An unstable market may have experienced a heavy correction or shift, whereas in our market sales are moderating at a reasonable rate.”
The Multiple Listing Service® Home Price Index benchmark value for a condominium in the Victoria Core in October 2017 was $449,176. The benchmark value for the same condominium in October 2016 was $394,571

Analyzing Home Affordability in Canada and the World

In the news of late, there is a good deal of discussion about home affordability in cities around the world. A major contributor to this conversation is Demographia International. They just published their 13th annual Housing Affordability Survey in which they use a simple method to determine affordability. They take the median price of a home in a city and divide it by the median income of a family in the city. The resulting number is the “Median Multiple”, or simply, the number of years of income it would take to pay a mortgage for the home.
It was no surprise Hong Kong’s homes are the least affordable in the world, and for good reason: A densely populated island with over seven million inhabitants packed into 1,106 square kilometers, it’s a major hub of world commerce, and mainland developers are driving up costs with the government’s blessing. Demographia International’s recent survey put the median home price at 18.1 times the gross annual median income. In other words, it will …