Key-Move Realty Ltd.

Office (204) 339-1661

WINNIPEG -   February continues to show significant increases over the same month last year with 1,240 sales, a 48% rise in early year market activity and 68% in comparison to the 5-year average. The $395 million in dollar volume transacted in February was more pronounced with a 67% jump over February 2020.

Rapid turnover of listings due to heightened market activity resulted in current supply at the end of February down 41% — 2,501 versus 4,266 in 2020. New listings coming on the market in February were 1,661, down less than 3% compared to the same month in 2020 and up 5% over the 5-year average.

“New listings entered on our MLS® in February are in keeping with previous years," said Kourosh Doustshenas, president of the Winnipeg Regional Real Estate Board. “The difference in 2021, and much like the second half of 2020, is we are experiencing record-setting month over same month sales, so sellers remain in the driver's seat."

Evidence of the strength in turning new MLS® listings into sales is the remarkable 75% conversion of the equivalent number of listings to sales in February. This percentage is well above the previous four-year average of 48%.   

Year-to- date MLS® sales of 2,174 are up 39% while dollar volume of $680 million has vaulted 53% over the same period in 2020.

February MLS® property type sales increases were impressive in more than just the two main property types of residential-detached and condominiums with 45% and 46% respectively. There were 105 vacant land sales, a 139% increase over February 2020, and 31 duplexes transacted in comparison to 13 in 2020.

“Momentum from 2020 continues uninterrupted in 2021," said Doustshenas.  “I see no signs of it letting up as we head into March and in all likelihood will see a quick start to our spring market," said Doustshenas. 

Another indicator of buyers being more engaged in our region in February is the metric which shows almost one in two residential-detached sales went for above list price.

As for price range sales activity, a move to higher prices presented in the residential-detached price range activity with the $350,000 to $399,999 just edging out the normally most active price range of $250,000 to $299,999. In third place by a small margin was the $500,000 to $749,999 range.  All ranges each had over 100 sales in February.

In contrast, condominium sales remained most active in the $150,000 to $199,999 price range at 26% of total sales.  Nearly 65% of all condominiums in February sold for under $300,000.

Something to watch out for this year is price movement within Winnipeg and the outlying rural areas. This was a trend in February 2020, with Winnipeg's average residential-detached sales price heading upward to $378,234 from $312,315. Rural had a similar average sales price of $312,708 in 2020 but its sale price increased less in 2021 to $325,787.

Backing up the sharp increase in above list price sales and the sales price increases in both Winnipeg and the rural region was the fact the overall sales price to list price ratio rose over the 100% equilibrium mark to 102.5%. In February 2020 it was 98.4%.

“This month is one of the best examples I can recall which shows how real estate markets can ebb and flow from year to year," said Doustshenas. “This year it is on the rise and we would like to see listings come along with it."

“You can say time is of the essence in a fast-paced market such as the one we have now," said Marina R. James, CEO of the Winnipeg Regional Real Estate Board.  “Your REALTOR® will keep you informed on and help you navigate through it."

​​The Winnipeg Regional Real Estate Board (WRREB) is a not-for profit corporation founded in 1903 by a small group of real estate practitioners. Today, as one of Canada's longest running real estate boards, WRREB serves more than 2,100 licenced real estate Brokers and Salespersons, along with other industry related professions in and around the Winnipeg Metropolitan Region providing them with essential resources to enhance professionalism, advance the industry's development and enrich the communities they serve. WRREB is the collective voice for both its residential and commercial REALTOR® Members and operates under the direction of an elected voluntary Board of Directors.

Read full post

WINNIPEG – December 2020 MLS® sales of 970 elevated year-end total sales to 16,033, a 17% increase over 2019.  This year has been a remarkable record-setting one with 7 consecutive months of new highs. December continues this record with sales up 44% over December 2019 and 41% over the 5-year average.

December dollar volume of nearly $290 million increased 46% over December 2019 and pushed dollar volume up to over $4.9 billion, a 21% increase over the previous highest dollar volume year of 2019.

For all of the record sales activity the last 7 months, active listings or inventory going into 2021 is down 38% to 2,316 listings. Residential-attached properties (include single-attached, townhouse and duplexes) help illustrate this point.

In December, the 90 residential-attached sales transacted doubled last year's total and represented 90% of the supply at month end of 100 listings.  While not to the same extent, the impressive residential-detached and condominium sales activity were equivalent to 66% and 35% of remaining inventory respectively.

“While total listings entered on MLS® ended up being down less than 9% in 2020, it was months like December where listing supply was easily outstripped by accelerated buyer demand," said Catherine Schellenberg, outgoing 2020 President for WinnipegREALTORS®. “Listings never had a chance to catch up after falling behind earlier in the year."

One of the best examples of what happened in 2020 is in the Waverley West MLS® area. It had a significant decrease in condominium listings in 2020 (117 versus 188 in 2019) yet recorded 69 sales in both years. Similarly, Waverley West's residential-detached sales overcame a 10% drop in listings to end up with a 32% increase in sales compared to 2019.

Last year also showed how not all MLS® areas behave the same. Proof of that is how the rural MLS® areas outside Winnipeg were the primary reason for the double-digit percentage increase in MLS® sales in 2020. Sales in rural municipalities were up 40% compared to Winnipeg's 7% increase.  The two rural frontrunners are Steinbach and Morden/Winkler with 881 and 697 sales respectively. The most active MLS® area in Winnipeg is Waverley West at 607 sales.

The 37% increase in rural residential-detached sales was bumped up a few more percentage points because of the 72% jump in vacant land sales (861) which occurred largely outside Winnipeg and a 24% rise in resort property sales (142).

As a result, rural municipalities' total MLS® market share went from 30% in 2019 to 36% in 2020 and represents 57% of Winnipeg's MLS® sales.

“One of the impacts of COVID-19 was a quest for more space and it is clear rural municipalities were beneficiaries of being a place with space," said Schellenberg.

Looking north to cottage country in three MLS® areas that encompass lake communities such as Gimli, Winnipeg Beach, Grand Marais, Victoria Beach, and Lac du Bonnet, MLS® sales went up 67% from 507 in 2019 to 848 in 2020.

As for prices, the residential-detached average sales price increased 5% from $324,122 to $341,175. Condominiums went up less than 1% from $238,088 to $240,060. With respect to the different MLS® zones within Winnipeg and the rural municipalities, the southwest zone saw the biggest average residential-detached sales price increase at 8%. It is also the highest at $460,301. Helping reach this new level were 45 million dollar plus sales with one home selling for $3,750,000 in Tuxedo.

Higher average residential-detached price increases were driven by more sales activity in higher price ranges in 2020 than ever seen before. For the first time, the $300,000 to $349,999 price range equaled the usual dominant one of $250,000 to $299,999 at 17% of total market share. Moreover, sales under $300,000 only edged 2019 by 2% yet ones above this price point level vaulted 31%.

The $500,000 to $749,999 price range stood out through the 7-month record sales run. It went over 1,000 sales for the first time in 2020 and showed a 49% increase over 2019.

Condominium sales remained most active in the $150,000 to $199,999 price range at 25% of total market share with the second highest at 20% of sales being the next higher price range from $200,000 to $249,999.  Sales were actually lower for condominiums over $500,000 than in 2019.

“2020 was a year where Manitobans were determined to make their home of utmost priority and that came in ways where it often meant more functional space and different amenities to satisfy their ne

“I am proud of how our REALTOR® Members and the industry as a whole responded to all of the health measures and protocols by adopting new and safer approaches to make 2020 the best year on record," said Marina R. James, CEO of WinnipegREALTORS®.

For a recap and insights on the local market and what lies ahead in 2021, WinnipegREALTORS® is proud to be hosting its Market Insights event on Wednesday, February 3rd. The informative virtual event will shed more light and details on what can be expected to happen in the local housing and commercial market in 2021. Headlining the event and presenting a national perspective is Canadian Real Estate Association's Senior Economist Shaun Cathcart.  Media interested in attending this event, can contact to register.

Read full post

WINNIPEG – Six consecutive months of record monthly sales have pushed year-to-date sales over 15,000 for the first time. This total is over 2,000 sales greater than the 11 months of MLS® market activity in 2019. November sales of 1,193 were up 32% over the same month in 2019. Up until 2020, 900 sales has been the upper limit of this month.

New listings coming on the market in November are down 12% compared to a very active listing month in November 2019. Inventory or current listing supply going into December is 3,136. There were over 5,000 listings available for sale at this time last year.

Year-to-date sales of 15,066 are up 16% over the same period last year while dollar volume of $4.6 billion is ahead of 2019 by 19%. There are 22,646 listings entered on MLS® this year, down 9% from the number of listings entered last year up until the end of November.

“Momentum for real estate purchases has clearly taken hold of our local market this year once buyers determined that their current home was no longer suitable for their changing preferences," said WinnipegREALTORS® president Catherine Schellenberg.

“The incredibly low mortgage rate environment this year is enabling buyers to move into a new living arrangement," she added.

In a month and year like no other, some numbers really stood out in November beyond pushing WinnipegREALTORS® to a new all-time milestone level of 15,000 sales.

The November average residential-detached sales price of $358,465 was up 10% over the same month last year.

Sales this month were particularly elevated in the higher price ranges with sales over $500,000 really standing out. The 123 sales over $500,000 were close to double the 65 which sold the same month last year.

There were 14 sales over $1 million with southwest Winnipeg having 10 of them. Southwest Winnipeg's average monthly residential-detached sales price was close to half a million dollars at $495,000. Meanwhile in November southeast Winnipeg climbed to a high of $420,000 and rural sales averaged $340,000.

95% of the equivalent number of new residential-detached listings entered in November sold while the ratio of sales price to list price for this property type was at 100%. This percentage signals an overall market equilibrium between sellers and buyers though many listings are still selling for above list price - 32% in November.

Many MLS® areas within Winnipeg and the R.M. of Tache had more residential-detached sales than what listings remained available for sale at the end of November. Two to note are Windsor Park with only one listing available when there were 7 sales, and 2 listings available in Garden City with 9 sales in November.

“Residential-detached listings are in short supply based on current demand in many Winnipeg neighbourhoods," said Schellenberg.

Schellenberg added, “Strong condominium sales activity the last few months, including November, is putting more pressure on listings, too. However, supply remains in better shape with 4 months of listings available compared to 1.6 months for residential-detached."

Speaking of property types, the real stand-out this year is vacant lots with the 84 sales in November increasing 180% over November 2019. Year-to-date sales are up 69.7%.

“The huge year-over-year increase in vacant lot sales in 2020 is largely a rural phenomenon as there are much fewer listings in comparison for sale in Winnipeg," said Schellenberg. “Of the 84 lots sold in November, only 5 were located in Winnipeg."

Heading into the final month of 2020, Schellenberg stresses, “We as an organization are remaining vigilant by reminding our REALTORS® to follow all the public health protocols and adopt a myriad of practices to keep everyone safe from COVID-19," said Schellenberg.

“REALTORS® are adapting to new ways of conducting business during these times," said Marina R. James, CEO of WinnipegREALTORS®. “They understand change and will continue to serve as professionals to help buyers and sellers meet their current and future real estate needs.

Read full post

WINNIPEG – Five consecutive months of record-setting market activity puts an exclamation mark on a year like no other. As a result, the v-shaped recovery from the early spring economic shut-down, which began in earnest in June, brings year-to-date results to a record total of 13,876 sales.

Sales have risen 15% over the same period in 2019 and are ahead of the 13,662 annual total sales record set last year. Similarly, year-to-date dollar volume of $4.24 billion is up 18% over the same period in 2019, and higher than last year's record dollar volume of $4.06 billion.

October sales of 1,595 increased 36% over October 2019 and dollar volume of $505.3 million eclipsed last October's total by 48%. New listings of 1,786 entered in October were actually down 8.8% in comparison to October 2019. The 3,545 listings available for sale in November have declined 35% from the same time in 2019.

“Delayed spring 2019 market sales has more than made up for in the last few months with brisk sales activity, “said Catherine Schellenberg, president of WinnipegREALTORS®. “Listings on the other hand, have been less so as a consequence sellers' market conditions prevail."

Backing up a survey WinnipegREALTORS® and the Manitoba Real Estate Association conducted with Probe Research in June which indicated strong buyer interest in purchasing a home despite COVID-19, are two recent national surveys by Nanos Research Group and the Mortgage Professional Association (MPA).

Nanos weekly survey indicates 45% of Canadians believe values of homes in their neighbourhood will go up over the next six months while only 13% said they will go down. The MPA survey of 1,000 Canadians conducted between September 25 to October 8 show 90% of Canadians are happy with the purchase of their home with only 2% expressing complete regrets. In this same MPC report, the percentage of people who never expect to own a home dropped in half compared to the end of 2019.

A local indicator of how robust buyer sentiment is in October is called the sales to new listings ratio. A 60% to 70% ratio would be considered very good whereas this October it was 89% for all MLS® sales and an amazing 99% for single family homes. Moreover, 72% of the equivalent number of single family listings on the market at the beginning of October sold.

“Homes in particular have become so sought after since the pandemic took hold." said Schellenberg. “Condominiums have performed well with 201 sales in October and year-to-date activity now surpassing last year."

Both single family homes and condominiums experienced increases over 10% in average sale price compared to the same month last year. While it is more common to see a home sell over a $1 million, in October we saw a downtown condominium sell for $1,150,000.

As the third busiest property type with 708 sales this year, vacant land represents over 5% of total MLS® sales and continues its incredible percentage increases over last year with a 124% rise in October and 63% year-to-date.

Schellenberg emphasized, “REALTORS® have adopted important measures to ensure the safety of you and your family with safe showing practices, including virtual showings, digital signatures and scheduled open houses to assist buyers and sellers navigate the real estate process safely and professionally."

“Your REALTOR® is professional and informed," said Marina R. James. “They know the market and will provide you with expert advice on how best to buy or sell based on current situation."

Read full post

WINNIPEG - September MLS® sales reaching an all-time high of 1,777 for this month compared to 1,211 in 2019 indicates the resurgence of sales since June continues throughout the third quarter.

Sales dollar volume in September of over half a billion dollars rose 57% compared to September 2019. The higher percentage increase in dollar volume compared to the 47% gain in sales is an indicator of upward pressure on prices. This is due to the accelerated sales activity and the rapid depletion of listings.

Active listings at the end of September are down 34% from 6,012 in 2019 to current inventory of 3,942.

“We are witnessing unprecedented times and certainly our third quarter sales activity of over 5,500 sales is unrivalled from any previous quarter in WinnipegREALTORS® history," said Catherine Schellenberg, president of WinnipegREALTORS®. “For comparison sake, last year's third quarter performed exceptionally well and there were fewer than 4,100 sales."

As a result of another robust month of MLS® sales, year-to-date sales activity of 12,286 is up nearly 13% over the same period in 2019. MLS® dollar volume for the first nine months increased 15% to over $3.7 billion in comparison to last year. The 19,493 listings entered on the MLS® this year are down less than 9% from the same period in 2019.

“As much as we have witnessed a shortage of listings, this can be attributed to the strong pace and growth in demand for property the last four months," said Schellenberg. “Similar to a store owner, we have not been able to stock the shelves fast enough to keep up with a spike in demand in a number of sought after neigbourhoods and municipalities within our market region."

Proof of demand outstripping supply or at least making it necessary for residential-detached listings to be replenished were experienced in Winnipeg neighbourhoods including Norwood Flats, Riverview, Lord Roberts, Fort Richmond, Waverley Heights, St. Norbert, Whyte Ridge, St. Vital, River Park South, Windsor Park, East Kildonan, North Kildonan, Kildonan Estates, Mission Gardens, Amber Trails, Garden City, Maples, Tyndall Park, Woodhaven, Westwood and Crestview.  Some rural municipalities that were seeing higher conversions of their inventory were the City of Selkirk and the RMs of Ritchot, Rockwood, Woodlands and West St. Paul.

In the last few months condo market sales have been strong. Condo sales in September helped reduce the sizable deficit built up earlier in year compared to the same period last year to less than 3% at the end of this month.

Given price pressures the average residential-detached sales price in September was $352,010, an 11% increase over September 2019. This can be explained by the wide differences in sales in price ranges above $300,000. For example, the $300,000 to $349,999 price range has edged out the $250,000 to $299,999 range which has been the perennial leader.

The one price range to show the largest percentage gain over last year is from $350,000 to $399,999 with a 114% increase over September 2019. Higher end sales above $500,000 were brisk with the highest selling for $3,750,000.

“We are seeing first-time home buyers having to go above $300,000 in their offer to acquire a home they may have been able to purchase under this benchmark level last year," said Schellenberg.

Other MLS® property types exceeded market expectations in September with vacant lots up 179%, townhouses increasing 150%, mobile homes ahead by 86% and single-attached rising 58%.

“REALTORS® know the market and it is in your best interest to work with one to become familiar with the ebb and flow of listings, sales and pricing," said Marina R. James, CEO of WinnipegREALTORS®.

Read full post

WinnipegREALTORS® August Real Estate Market Release - Recovery in sales since June has turned into a strong resurgence in MLS® market activity with August registering 1,845 sales, the third straight month of 1,800 plus sales.  Sales in August are up 28% over August 2019 and the five-year average for this month.

Listings however have not rebounded with the same vigour.  The 2,374 new listings entered on the market in August are down 1% from last August and dropped 9% in July when compared to the same month in 2019.   As a result, it leaves the current inventory of 4,232 listings down 30% from the same time last year. The number of sales in August represents 44% of the current inventory whereas last August it was 24%.

“Following three months of overall heightened sales activity we are not seeing the same response with listings coming on the market," said Catherine Schellenberg, president of WinnipegREALTORS®. “The impact is a shortage of listings for eager buyers and increased situations where multiple offers and bidding wars are occurring."

Year-to-date sales which were running a deficit at the end of May of 8% are now up the same percentage at the end of August. There are 10,511 sales compared to 9,702 last year. Listings entered this year to the end of August are 17,208, off more than 9% from the 18,962 in 2019. Dollar volume of close to $3.2 billion has increased 10% in comparison to last year.

With high turnover of listings to sales this year, especially in the last three months, overall listing inventory shows a tilt in the current market to favour sellers.  The high turnover of listings converting to sales this year, especially in the last three months, is creating a real lack of supply in available listings for buyers at this present time. Most affected are residential-detached  properties  with only one and one-half months of supply based on the current sales pace. Condos are in a more balanced position at 4 months.

In terms of specific MLS® property type sales activity for the busiest August on record, residential-detached sales increased nearly 31% while condos edged ahead by 7%. The third most active property type at 98 sales was vacant land - a 66% increase over August 2019.

Similar to July 2020, there were close to one out of three residential-detached listings selling for above list price. Number of sales equated to 67% of the entire inventory and 86% of the new listings entered in August.

The most active price range for the second month in a row is $300,000 to $349,999 at over 16% of total sales with the $250,000 to $299,999 just five sales behind and the $350,000 to $399,999 close at 14%.

When you compare sales under and over $300,000 to August 2019, the major gains are in the upper end of the housing price spectrum.  This indicates real strength in the move-up market.  Where the percentage gain in sales for houses selling under $300,000 is 5%, and only a difference of 26 sales, for over $300,000, the percentage increase is a whopping 57% with 787 sales compared to 502.

The upper end of the residential-detached market was punctuated with the highest sale price ever at $3.9 million. The previous record was set last month at $2.8 million. Not surprisingly, with this move up to more spacious and expensive homes, the average square footage for a home sold in August was just under 1,400 square feet compared to 1,313 square feet in August 2019.

Condominiums were most active in the $150,000 to $199,999 price range with one in four sales, however the next three higher price ranges up to $349,999 all exhibited strong activity with another 44% of total sales. One condo sold for just over $1 million.

“A work from home trend is changing the way one thinks about the kind and extent of space and has definitely garnered more thought and attention," said Schellenberg. “This coupled with historically low mortgage rates are motivating factors for a number of sellers and buyers to make a change during this pandemic."

 “Unprecedented times call for experts who can help you navigate safely and seamlessly through the home buying and selling process," said Marina R.  James, CEO of WinnipegREALTORS®.  “REALTORS® are there to advise you on all aspects of our ever changing real estate market.

Read full post

WINNIPEG — On record for the first time, WinnipegREALTORS® market region experienced consecutive months for top monthly MLS® sales. July MLS® sales are 1,898 compared to 1,897 in June which outpaced the previous record month in May 2019 of 1,705 sales.

July 2020 MLS® sales are up 32% over July 2019 while dollar volume ($596.1 million) is up 36% over July 2019. Year-to-date MLS® sales of 8,672 is 5% ahead of the same period last year and the dollar volume reached $2.61 billion in the first 7 months or a 7% increase over last year.

“We are witnessing a very different market this year, with the record month in July bringing us beyond our year-to-date sales in 2019," said Catherine Schellenberg, president of WinnipegREALTORS®. “While WinnipegREALTORS® forecasted another strong year following a successful 2019 with an expanded rural area, we did not expect such a significant recovery from the drop off in April and May sales activity due to the economic shutdown."

MLS® listings on the other hand, have not had the same v-shaped recovery as sales in the last two months. They have a bigger deficit to bounce back from, given the drop off in April (-42%) and May (-21%). In July, new listings entered on the MLS® were down 9% from July 2019 (down 10.9% year-to-date) leaving current inventory heading into August at 4,408, or a 27% decrease from 2019 and 15% from the 5-year average at this time of year.

“Less inventory suggests sellers have been reluctant to participate in our real estate market as opposed to buyers, which has created inventory shortages in a number of MLS® areas," said Schellenberg. “This market change has resulted in multiple offer situations," said Schellenberg.

Over 31% of single family detached home sales in July sold for over list price – nearly doubling the percentage of above list price sales in July 2019. July's demand for all single family detached listings was brisk with total sales volume close to equaling total listing volume.

July single family home sales equaled 88% of the new single-family listings entered this month. The single family homes sales-to-listings ratio for the first 7 months is 65% or 10 percentage points higher for the same period last year.

Single family is singled out as this leading MLS® property type with almost a 73% market share achieved its highest monthly July sales total.  With 1,374 sales and a 65/35 split between Winnipeg and outlying rural areas, the dollar volume total of $485 million puts the year-to-date dollar volume to over $2 billion for the first 7 months of this year.

Another first in our market is the most active price range moved up to the $300,000 to $349,999 with nearly 18% of total sales, replacing the $250,000 to $299,999 range which had 15.5% share of total sales.  The third most active price range was from $350,000 to $399,999 at 13%.

Helping push the average single family home price of $353,450 up 9% from July 2019 is the 7 million dollar plus in sales. Contributing to this, was a premium luxury home which sold for $2.9 million, the highest price recorded on WinnipegREALTORS® MLS® market region.

For July, condos did not have the highest average sales this year, however the 223 sales reduced the year-to-date decline from 18% last month to 10% at the end of July.  Nearly 65% of condos sold in three price ranges from $150,000 to $299,999.

Other property types outpacing 2019 sales are resort properties, vacant lots and vacant lots with buildings. Their respective year-to-date increases over 2019 in July are 57%, 38% and 73%.

“Our local market continues to show a strong recovery with buyers taking advantage of historically low interest rates and some of the most affordable house prices in the country," said Schellenberg. “The shift to a tighter housing market means more potential multiple offer situations so you need to be working closely with your REALTOR®."

“REALTORS® are professional and informed," said Marina R. James, CEO of WinnipegREALTORS®.  “Your REALTOR® operates in an ever-changing real estate industry with new technology, regulatory changes and most importantly, market conditions. REALTORS® know the local market and can help their clients through the buying and selling process."
Read full post

Winnipeg - Sales of 1,377 decreased 19% in May compared to the same month last year while just over $400 million worth of dollar volume transactions fell 23% compared to May 2019. The 2,428 new listings entered in May were down 21% from last year.  There are still 4,621 listings available for sale in June.

“May market activity was clearly impacted by COVID-19 at the outset of May with MLS® sales down similar to the 30% drop off in April sales by mid-month,” said Catherine Schellenberg, president of WinnipegREALTORS®. “It is worth noting however that recovery took hold in the second half of the month with sales from May 20-26th actually outpacing the number recorded the same week in May 2019. Listings also saw an improvement over April with the percentage decline cut in half.” 

Year-to-date MLS® sales are at 4,884, less than 8% off the pace set in 2019 while dollar volume of $1.44 billion is down close to 10% from the same period last year. 50% or one in two listings have sold this year and that is higher than 2019 when 47% of total MLS® listings sold.

With the exception of condominiums where COVID-19 has created a deeper setback in sales, for those sellers and buyers engaged in the market, many performance metrics are in line with May 2019. Residential-detached homes had slightly more above list price sales at 24% than last May and price levels trended higher based on CREA’s MLS® Home Price Index prices.  The equivalent of 64% of new listings entered in May sold and this compares favourably to 63% in 2019 and 59% in 2018.

“To use a sports analogy, and why not hockey, since our Winnipeg Jets may well be playing again this year, you have less participants in the market due to reasons we all know, yet the ones in the lines you put on the ice are delivering similar results,” said Schellenberg.

Speaking of less numbers on what is normally the busiest time of year, residential-detached home listing inventory is thin in a number of Winnipeg MLS® areas.  A return to more typical spring market conditions in June with a good injection of new listings coming on the market will be welcome.

There are too many neighbourhoods spread throughout the city to mention.  The common denominator for most is having more sales in May than listings remaining at month end. Waverley Heights for example had 6 sales in May with only 3 listings available for sale going into June while St. Norbert had 6 sales too with only 2 listings for sale this month.

While Winnipeg had the tightest market conditions for residential-detached homes in comparison to the outlying rural MLS® areas, the latter represented nearly 36% of total residential-detached sales.

“This month in particular shows the extent of WinnipegREALTORS® market region beyond Winnipeg   with residential-detached sales gaining an increasing market share of total sales,” said Schellenberg.  She added, “Vacant lot sales which are experiencing double-digit percentage increases this year are largely rural in make-up with only 3 of the 68 lots sold in May located in Winnipeg.”

Residential-detached sales decreased 18% from May 2019 while condominiums saw a decline of 41% compared to the same month last year.

35% of residential-detached sales were equally divided between the $250,000 to $299,999 and the $300,000 to $349,999 price ranges with another 13% occurring from $200,000 to $249,999. 5 sales went for over $1 million with the highest selling for $1,525,000. The lowest sale price was $15,000.

The most active price range for condominium sales was from $200,000 to $249,999 at 23%. Just slightly behind was the $100,000 to $149,999 price range at 22%. The usually most active price range of $150,000 to $199,999 was third at 18% of total sales. The highest sale price for condos in May was $488,920.

“As we are now in the second phase of reopening Manitoba’s economy, REALTORS® will continue to follow and adhere to Manitoba health directives and safe practices to ensure buyers and sellers can transact safely,” said Schellenberg.

“All markets are local and can vary within a market as large and diverse as WinnipegREALTORS® market region,” said Marina R. James, CEO of WinnipegREALTORS®. “You need to be talking to your REALTOR®  about how your particular real estate needs can be met to your satisfaction.”

Since 1903, WinnipegREALTORS® has assisted its Members in achieving high levels of excellence in organized real estate by providing superior tools and services that enhance and build a vibrant real estate industry. Representing over 2,000 REALTORS® and other industry-related professions active in Winnipeg and its surrounding areas, WinnipegREALTORS® exists to provide services and resources for Members to ensure a high standard of business practices and ethics. WinnipegREALTORS® is recognized as the voice and our Members as the experts in the real estate market.

The MLS® is a co-operative real estate selling system operated and promoted by WinnipegREALTORS® that includes an up to date inventory of listings from participating REALTORS®. 

The trademarks MLS®, Multiple Listing Service® and the associated logos are owned by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify the quality of services provided by real estate professionals who are members of CREA. The trademarks REALTOR®, REALTORS® and the REALTOR® logo are controlled by CREA and identify real estate professionals who are members of CREA.​​

Read full post

WINNIPEG – MLS® sales activity in February replicated January's 15% increase resulting in 837 sales. The extra day helped as the only other year to see sales rise above 800 in February was in the 2016 leap year.  Dollar volume of $236 million was not as strong with a 10% increase over February 2019.

The over 1,700 new listings entered on MLS® is an indicator of early year enthusiasm as are up 18% over the same month last year. This keeps the local market well supplied with 4,266 active listings available for sale in March. The big difference from year to year is in residential-detached listings as they rose 22%  over February 2019 while condominium listings entered  were slightly down.

As a result, total MLS® inventory is sitting at just over 5 months based on current sales activity.

“It is important to keep in mind some of the spike in residential-detached listings this year is attributable to WinnipegREALTORS® 2019 expansion into rural areas outside Winnipeg which did not fully materialize until later in the year" said Catherine Schellenberg, president of WinnipegREALTORS®.  “Listings entered for first 2 months outside Winnipeg were up 23% while listings inside the city rose 7%."

One MLS® area within Winnipeg which is seeing a significant increase in residential-detached listings this year is Waverley West and that is due in part to its continued growth in new communities such as South Pointe. There have been 148 listings entered for the first two months compared to 119 for the same period in 2019.

Many MLS® property types experienced increases in February with condo sales activity rebounding with an 8% increase after a slow start in January.  Vacant land and vacant land with buildings are both performing exceptionally well in comparison to last year. The 44 vacant land sales in February resulted in a 63% increase over February 2019.

Housing affordability is a real strength of WinnipegREALTORS® market region. The latest from National Bank's Housing Affordability Monitor based on the fourth quarter 2019 indicates only Vancouver and Winnipeg saw income increase faster than housing prices during this quarter.  In Winnipeg's case, an income of $68,780 allows you to buy a median priced home of $324,094 while an income of $47,793 is enough to buy a median priced condo at $225,203.

Winnipeg's North End, which encompasses three MLS® areas, showed improvement in residential-detached sales after being negatively impacted the last few years by the mortgage stress test. Sales in February doubled the number sold in February 2019.

This bodes well heading into the spring, In light of the federal government announcing recently that they will be adjusting the mortgage stress test for insured mortgages on April 6 to be more responsive and align with the median five-year fixed insured mortgage rate from mortgage insurance applications plus two percentage points. This new qualifying rate will be lower than the Bank of Canada's five-year benchmark qualifying rate.

Speaking of the Bank of Canada, the overnight lending rate was lowered this week by half a percentage point from 1.75 per cent to 1.25 per cent.  This is on the heels of other major countries lowering their rates with the US Federal Reserve dropping its interest rate by half a percentage point too.

Our local market's high level of affordability relative to other major housing markets positions home buyers well to take advantage of any further developments to lower mortgage costs. It opens up more buyers to the opportunity to purchase a home," said Schellenberg.

“If you are selling in what is a competitive housing market, you need to be talking to your REALTOR®," said Marina R. James, CEO of WinnipegREALTORS®. “REALTORS® have the knowledge and expertise to develop a strategy to sell your home or purchase residential or commercial real estate."

Since 1903, WinnipegREALTORS® has assisted its members in achieving high levels of excellence in organized real estate by providing superior tools and services that enhance and build a vibrant real estate industry. Representing just over 2,000 REALTORS® and other industry related professions active in the Winnipeg metropolitan area, WinnipegREALTORS® promotes the value of a REALTOR® and organized real estate. WinnipegREALTORS® provides its members with essential market information, professional development sessions, networking opportunities, marketing products, an effective industry voice and strong leadership to further their professional success.

The trademarks MLS®, Multiple Listing Service® and the associated logos are owned by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify the quality of services provided by real estate professionals who are members of CREA. The trademarks REALTOR®, REALTORS® and the REALTOR® logo are controlled by CREA and identify real estate professionals who are members of CREA.

Read full post

WINNIPEG - 2020 got off to a strong start with 731 MLS® sales, a 15% increase over January 2019 and 18% more than the 5-year average total. Dollar volume rose 18% to $207.4 million. The 1,870 listings entered on MLS® in January were up less than 5% and at month end there were 4,002 listings available for sale, nearly 7% higher than last year.

“Positive momentum from the end of 2019 continues in 2020 with brisk sales for this time of year," said Catherine Schellenberg, president of WinnipegREALTORS®.  “Helping kick start 2020 are very favourable mortgage rates with 5-year fixed residential mortgage rates available for under 3%."

Affordability is a real strength in the WinnipegREALTORS® market region and makes the dream of homeownership possible. Over half of all detached homes and condominiums are listed below $300,000 and another 20% are listed from $300,000 to $400,000.

The flight to affordability was born out in January with 55% of the 511 detached home sales selling for under $300,000 and another 23% successfully transacted from $300,000 to $399,999. There were still gains in upper end market activity this January compared to the same month last year. It was punctuated by two detached homes each selling for over one million dollars.

Proof that all MLS® areas within a local market do not all perform the same is the St. James MLS® area in West Winnipeg. It stood out in January with a very high conversion rate of 90% of detached home sales to listings (19 out of 21). It also had one of the highest detached home sales totals of any MLS® area and resulted in the highest ratio of sales to active listings (19 sales versus 14 active listings at month end).

Of the 70 condominium sales, 85% of them sold for under $300,000 with the most active price range being from $100,000 to $149,999 at 20% of total sales. The highest condo price to sell in January was $589,900.

It is worth noting that single-attached properties which saw double-digit growth in sales activity last year recorded  44 sales in January, a 42% spike in sales from January 2019. Commercial properties also shone in comparison to last January with 23 sales and one mixed use commercial building selling for $2.6 million.

“Lots of choice and options for buyers in 2020 and that will prevail in February and into the spring, “said Schellenberg. “ This is in stark contrast to a number of other housing markets in the country where they are concerned about a housing supply shortage." 

“Variations exist within local markets depending on the property type, price range and MLS® area you are interested in." said Marina R. James. “Your REALTOR® is available and ready to help you understand your specific real estate needs in the current marketplace."

Since 1903, WinnipegREALTORS® has assisted its members in achieving high levels of excellence in organized real estate by providing superior tools and services that enhance and build a vibrant real estate industry. Representing just over 2,000 REALTORS® and other industry related professions active in the Winnipeg metropolitan area, WinnipegREALTORS® promotes the value of a REALTOR® and organized real estate. WinnipegREALTORS® provides its members with essential market information, professional development sessions, networking opportunities, marketing products, an effective industry voice and strong leadership to further their professional success.

The trademarks MLS®, Multiple Listing Service® and the associated logos are owned by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify the quality of services provided by real estate professionals who are members of CREA. The trademarks REALTOR®, REALTORS® and the REALTOR® logo are controlled by CREA and identify real estate professionals who are members of CREA.
Read full post

WINNIPEG - December sales of 674 were exceptional — up 25% over the same month in 2018 and 8% above the 5-year average. As a result, activity this month propel year-end sales to the highest level on record at 13,662, a 7% increase over 2018 and slightly ahead of the 13,632 MLS® sales transacted in 2016.​

Similarly, December's impressive dollar volume of close to $200 million pushed the year-end dollar volume total over the $4 billion threshold level for the first time. Dollar volume in 2019 of $4.059 billion rose over 7% compared to 2018.

Last year also ushered in the highest number of listings entered on WinnipegREALTORS® MLS®. The 25,741 listings increased 8% over 2018 and 6% above the 5-year average. The percentage of MLS® listings selling or what is referred to as the sales-to-listings ratio is still within 2% of the 5-year average. Notable in 2019 is that residential-detached listings sold, on average, for 98% of their list price.

“December market results are not only indicative of a strong second half to 2019 but a very active year as a whole," said Kenneth Clark, outgoing president of WinnipegREALTORS®. “Buyers in particular benefited from a healthy supply of listings and sales gains across most MLS® property types show they were actively engaged in the 2019 real estate market."

It is important to note 2019 saw an increase in overall MLS® activity as a result of welcoming new rural brokerage offices, such as ones in the South Central Plains MLS® area (e.g. Winkler, Morden and Altona), onto the WinnipegREALTORS® MLS®. They formerly had been on the Manitoba Real Estate Association (MREA) MLS®. As they were main contributors to MREA's MLS® market activity in previous years, their contribution to WinnipegREALTORS®' MLS® in 2019 was instrumental in generating higher listings, sales and dollar volume totals.

The city of Winnipeg remains the dominant selling area within WinnipegREALTORS® market region with 71% of residential-detached and nearly 85% of condominium sales. However, when it comes to vacant lot sales, of which there were 502 in 2019, rural MLS® areas dominate with over 90% of total sales.

WinnipegREALTORS® market region showed very little change in average 2019 residential-detached and condominium sale prices in comparison to 2018. The 2019 average residential-detached sales price was $324,122 versus $321,945 in 2018. Condominiums showed less than a $1,000 difference with a slight decrease from $238,916 in 2019 to $238,088 in 2018.

Speaking of the main MLS® zones within Winnipeg and those many MLS® rural areas outside Winnipeg, average residential-detached sale prices in 2019 were remarkably similar to 2018. The biggest gain at 3.5% was the Winnipeg west MLS® zone (north of Assiniboine River). It went from $251,588 in 2018 to $260,453 in 2019. The only decrease was in the rural MLS® zone which saw its average sales price drop from $308,320 to $305,035. The highest average sales price is in the southwest Winnipeg MLS® zone at $426,573.

As for sales, the rural MLS® zone saw a 16% jump in sales activity due primarily to the significant increase in activity in the South Central Plains MLS® area on WinnipegREALTORS®' MLS®. The only drop in sales activity was in the Winnipeg west MLS® zone. It was a very modest 2.6%.

For the two main property types, residential-detached and condominiums, total sales were up 5% and 7% respectively compared to last year. There were 9,788 residential-detached sales and 1,750 condo sales. While representing less than 5% of total MLS® market share, single-attached properties really stood out in 2019 with 640 sales, a 24% increase over 2018.

Affordability remains firmly intact as nearly three out of four condominium sales in 2019 were at prices under $300,000, whereas 76% of residential-detached sold for under $400,000 with nearly one in two selling for under $300,000.

The highest residential-detached home to sell in 2019 was for $2,290,000, while the most expensive condominium to sell was $1,300,000.

“2019 is testimony to our hard-working REALTORS® really stepping up to lead WinnipegREALTORS® to a record number of transactions," said Marina R. James, CEO of WinnipegREALTORS®. “REALTORS® expertise and knowledge came to the fore in making a listing stand out in what has been a very competitive marketplace this year."
Read full post

WINNIPEG  -  WinnipegREALTORS® experienced its strongest third quarter of market activity on record with close to 4,100 MLS® sales worth 1.19 billion dollars. Each of the three months had their highest dollar volume totals ever for their respective months. A new sales record was also set for the month of August while July and September were right at the top.

As a result of this marked improvement in third quarter market activity over 2018, year-to-date sales are up 6% with 10,913 sales while dollar volume of $3.25 billion has increased 7% over the first nine months in 2018. This now places 2019 within less than 1% of the best years on record in 2016 and 2017 with respect to sales and the highest dollar volume of any previous year with three months to go.

September sales of 1,211 are ahead of the same month last year by 16% and only 4 sales shy of the best September on record in 2016. Dollar volume was up 16% too at close to $350 million.

It is worth noting that single-attached and duplex properties are showing double-digit sales percentage increases over last year as are up 17% and 27% respectively after nine months. 53 single-attached properties sold in September, a 43% increase over September 2018.

Another development more pronounced in the third quarter this year is the double-digit percentage increase in new listings each month over the same month in 2018.

In September, new listings coming on the market rose 10% to 2,365. So despite the impressive sales this month inventory remaining for sale going into October is over 6,000 listings as was the case at the end of August. This means that one out of five listings sold in September. 

“Good economic fundamentals, growth in our membership and market region well beyond Winnipeg, a healthy listing supply and favourable mortgage rates despite tougher qualifications rules, is behind the impressive market activity we have had this third quarter," said Ken Clark, president of WinnipegREALTORS®.  “However, it is important to keep in mind and be attentive to just how competitive the current market is with so many listings for buyers to choose from."

Due to the elevated supply in listings this year prices are being held in check. The year-to-date average single family home sales price is $325,215 ($322,828 in 2018) while the year-to-date average condo sales price is $238,820 ($239,877 in 2018). The percentage of listings selling at or above list price for single family homes this year is just over 27% while condominiums are at 21%.

Affordability remains a defining feature of the local market with more than one in two single family homes and 76% of condos selling in September for under $300,000. In a recent survey reported in The Canadian Press on affordability of Canadian cities by Forum Research, its President  Lorne Bozinoff said, “ When it comes to mortgages Winnipeggers are paying amongst the lowest proportion of their income every month."

When there are as many listings as we currently have on the market that means there are also many   sellers looking to buy another property within our local market," said Clark. “This bodes well for continued strong sales activity into the fourth quarter."

“All real estate markets are local and then some in terms of differences within their market region," said WinnipegREALTORS® CEO Marina R. James. “You need to hire a REALTOR® who has the knowledge and expertise to educate you on how you can best navigate your specific real estate need.
Read full post

A record month of sales and dollar volume activity for August capped off a very active summer. July and August were identical twins when it came to sales. However dollar volume differed with lower dollar volume in August due in part to condominium sales activity showing much larger gains than single family.

August MLS® sales of 1,439 were up 13% over August 2018 and rose 9% above the five-year average for this month.  The highest previous month of sales activity for August was 1,350 sales in 2016. August dollar volume of $411 million resulted in close to a 10% gain over the same month last year.  It is the first time August dollar volume has eclipsed the $400 million mark.

The real highlight of August 2019 was the 37% increase in condominium sales over August 2018. The 199 sales are 19% higher than the five-year average for this month and a few sales below the best condo month sales performances ever for the Winnipeg Metro Region.

With the exception of 9 new condo sales in a Fort Rouge project, the vast majority of condo sales in August were resales with many of the larger percentage gains over 2018 occurring in the southwest quadrant of Winnipeg.  When you add up the August condo sales activity of East Fort Garry, Linden Woods and Fort Richmond, there are 34 sales. There were 12 altogether last August.

As for single family sales, the 1,014 total for this month are record-setting too for this month but only up 4% over August 2018. 3% of these sales can be attributed to the expansion of MLS® this year to the south-central region of Manitoba in the Morden/Winkler area. Another 25% of total single family sales came from outside Winnipeg.

“It is not often, if at all, when we see condominium sales outperform single family to the degree they did this month," said Ken Clark, president of WinnipegREALTORS®.   He added, “It means their year-to-date percentage gain over 2018 sales is greater than single family's now."

If condominiums were the lead standout in this record-performing MLS® month, there was a strong supporting cast of other property types besides single family. All property types saw increases over August 2018 with large double-digit increases in many instances. The 27 resort property sales increased 50% over 2018.

Year-to-date MLS® sales of 9,702 are 5% higher than the same period of time last year while dollar volume of $2.91 billion is up 6% from 2018. Sales are within 1% of the best years on record in 2016 and 2017.

Inventory is somewhat elevated at over 6,000 listings and is 17% greater than we were at the same time last year, however overall we remain in balanced territory.

“It is becoming abundantly clear with the strong results we had in August that buyers are capitalizing on the incredible choice and vast array of affordably-priced properties available on our MLS® for sale," said Clark. “A very favourable 5-year fixed rate in the current mortgage market bodes well for buyers heading into the fall season."

“In a competitive market where there are so many listings to choose from, you need to hire a REALTOR® to make your property stand out and come up with the  right strategy to sell your home," said Marina R. James.  “REALTORS® have the knowledge, expertise and tools to sell your listing."

Read full post

WINNIPEG - The Winnipeg Metro Region market heated up in terms of dollar volume with a new record set for July with $437 million representing a 10% increase over July 2018. Sales of 1,440 trended upward with nearly a 5% rise over last July and only 3% shy of the best July on record in 2014.

Year-to-date sales activity of 8,263 sales shows a 4% gain over the same period last year while dollar volume of close to $2.5 billion is up more than 5% in comparison to 2018. This is the highest dollar volume reached for WinnipegREALTORS® in the first 7 months of 2019.

Helping explain the higher percentage increase in dollar volume this July are some notable increases in sales in some of the higher price ranges in condominiums and to a lesser extent, single family homes. For example, in condominiums, there were 20 sales compared to 10 last July in the $275,000 to $299,999 price range. There were 9 sales compared to 3 last July in the $375,000 to $399,999 price range and twice as many sales over $600,000 this year with one selling for $1 million. A good example in single family homes with 60 sales in the $400,000 to $424,999 price range compared to 34 in 2018 in this same price range.

One of the results of having higher-priced condominium sales the last few months is the average year-to-date sale price drawing even with 2018 at $240,000. The single family home year-to- date average sales price of $328,718 is up less than 2% compared to the same period last year.

Listings continue to exhibit strong increases on a monthly basis over last year with over a 10% jump in new listings coming on the market in July or a 15% growth in inventory with 6,083 listings available for sale going into August.

“The strong numbers in both sales, dollar volume and listings in July is a reflection of buyers taking advantage of lower mortgage rates, a fabulous choice of an abundant supply of listings, and some very attractive affordable housing options beyond just single family homes and condominiums,” said Ken Clark, president of WinnipegREALTORS®. ‘”It is also worth noting, in July the Bank of Canada lowered the rate used by the mortgage stress test to qualify for a mortgage from 5.34 per cent to 5.19 per cent.”

And in addition to single family homes and condominiums which offer alternative housing choices for buyers, the attached housing category performed very well in July with over 100 sales with an average sale price of just under $257,000.

The most active of the attached property type category, which includes duplexes, townhouses and single-attached, was the latter one with 72 sales – a 22% increases over the same month last year. Year-to-date nearly 400 single-attached properties have been sold and increased 22% over the same period last year.

Single-attached is the third busiest property type with 5% of total MLS® market share. Leading the way after seven months is single family homes with close to 73% and then condominiums with a 12% market share.

“ We have reason to be optimistic of achieving a good MLS® result in August given the positive trend over 2018 and the wide array and diversity of listings on the market,” said Clark. “All provincial election volunteers on the campaign trail will certainly notice all of our MLS® listings available for sale.”

“Get out and take advantage of our spectacular summer weather to see all of our listings for sale throughout the Winnipeg Metro Region,” said Marina R. James, CEO of WinnipegREALTORS®. “Our REALTORS® know the local market and will apply their skills and abilities to help find the right home for you.”

Read full post

WINNIPEG -   June sales of 1,528 fell short of June 2018 market activity by 1% and 3% from the 5-year average for this month. What really stood out in June is extensive inventory which offers buyers record levels of choice in one of the most affordable housing markets in the country.

June dollar volume of nearly $463 million declined 2% from June 2018 yet is equal to the 5-year June average. New listings are strong again in June with 2,698 entered on the MLS®, an 8% increase over June 2018. Current inventory going into summer is approaching 6,000 listings, 14% higher than 2018.

“Despite a slight decline in June sales activity the record -setting May helped propel second quarter results to match the 5-year average," said Ken Clark, president of WinnipegREALTORS®.  “This year's second quarter is just 4% behind our best quarter on record in 2016."

In terms of June single family home sales activity, sales were neck and neck between the two most active price ranges of $250,000 to $299,999 and the $300,000 to $349,999. Together they represent 35% of total sales.  If you add the two next similarly paced price ranges of $200,000 to $249,999 and $350,000 to $399,999 you reach 60% total sales activity. Condominium sales were most active in the $150,000 to $199,999 at 29%. The next most active price range was from $200,000 to $249,999 at 19%.

“ It is important to keep in mind that sales activity varies between different  price ranges and drops off significantly as you climb up the price ladder," said Clark. “In June the price ranges from $500,000 and above made up just 10% of total single family home sales. “

Year-to-date sales of 6,823 are up nearly 4% over the first six months of 2018. The only two years they trail are the record-setting years of 2016 and 2017 where both had over 7,000 sales at this time.  Dollar volume after six months is over $2 billion and slightly lower than the highest total recorded in 2017 and nearly ahead by 5% over 2018.

“A true sign of a strong market is when the sales and dollar volume increase at a reasonable but steady pace, and the first 6 months of 2019 certainly make that evident", said Clark.

At the end of the first half of every year WinnipegREALTORS® likes to see how average single family home prices are tracking in the 5 MLS® zones within Winnipeg and the rural zone encompassing the market region outside Winnipeg.  As you can see from the chart below, all zones show prices are slightly ahead or even with last year with the exception of the North zone which is down by a small margin.

The highest average priced MLS® zone is the Southwest at $435,430 while the lowest are the North and West zones at $263,117 and $263,852 respectively. The overall average single family sales price is $329,841, a very modest gain over the $325,314 recorded for first six months in 2018.

“A healthy supply of listings is keeping our house prices in check and very affordable," said Clark.

The June 2019 RBC Housing Trends and Affordability Report highlights Winnipeg as being just above its long-term average level of affordability since 1985. It comments that “slow-rising prices keep ownership costs very manageable".

Looking ahead to the second half of 2019, CREA revised its 2019 forecast to indicate a recovery in home sales is underway across a number of market regions.  This is certainly the case in the Winnipeg Metro Region with sales improving over 2018. CREA is calling for an increase in sales of over 4% for Manitoba.

“Not every market is the same nor house within a market," said Marina R.  James, CEO of WinnipegREALTORS®. “There are many factors at play so you need to be calling a professional REALTOR® - a market expert – to help you meet your home buying and home selling needs."

Read full post

WINNIPEG - While Manitobans welcomed spring with open arms given a long winter they also were relieved to know potential flooding threats did not come to fruition. Thanks to major engineering flood mitigating projects such as The Winnipeg Floodway or Duff's Ditch, as it is commonly referred to as, thousands of properties have been saved over many years from the ravages of water damage.

April sales of 1,223 were down less than 5% from April 2018 while dollar volume decreased 3%.  It is a 60 sales difference from 2018.

Single family dwellings and condominiums remain close to last year's results with six fewer sales in single family and eight in condominiums.

2,711 new listings were added to the market in April to create a healthy supply of nearly 5,000 listings available for sale in May. Current inventory sits at 4 months of supply. This is considered balanced from an overall market perspective.

“The strong influx of new listings this year bodes well for an uptick in increased sales as we head into our busiest months of the year," said Ken Clark, president of WinnipegREALTORS®. “The wide choice and affordable options available for buyers will help make this a reality."

 Year-to-date sales are up 2% while dollar volume is 3% higher with over $1 billion worth of sales activity. Listings entered for the year are tracking 5% ahead of last year for the first four months.

The average sales price for single family homes or residential-detached in April was $332,185. Helping raise the average sale price up to this level were 7 sales over $1 million including one for $2,100,000 in Tuxedo. The condominium average sale price as well saw it rise well above its previous month average to $248,284. There were some higher priced sales of which one went for just under $1 million on Waterfront Drive.

The most active price ranges in percentage terms of total sales for single family homes in April where from $200,000 to $399,999. The $250,000 to $299,999 price range realized the most sales at 18% of all sales.

For condominiums, the $250,000 to $299,999 price range was just edged out by the $150,000 to $199,999 price range. The latter represented 25% of total sales with the former having 23%.

In April the Bank of Canada maintained the overnight lending rate at 1.75%. This did not come as a surprise as many economists state we will not see a rate increase in 2019 due to uncertainty around trade including ratification of the Canada-United States- Mexico Agreement.  Even an interest rate cut may be a possibility.

The Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz spoke to the April monetary policy report and in addressing the housing market he said markets such as Halifax, Montreal, Ottawa and Winnipeg are seeing solid activity.

It is interesting to note Governor Poloz was in Winnipeg on May 6, 2019 as part of the Canadian Credit Union Association national conference. The Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce hosted a luncheon featuring a conversation with him.

“I appreciate the governor expressing a vote of confidence in our housing market," said Clark. “We know Winnipeg's market is a resilient and steady one and should continue to perform well this year."

Read full post

WINNIPEG – Spring is a time of optimism, when we cast off winter's gloomy grip and walk cheerfully into the warm sunshine. This renewal of energy is apparently being reflected in local housing sales for the beginning of 2019 in the Winnipeg METRO Region.

First quarter sales are off to a good start. The 2,367 sales transacted in the first three months show a 6% increase over the same period in 2018, and only a 3% dip from the record-setting years of 2016 and 2017.  Similar to sales, there is a 6% rise in year-to-date listings with more than 5,400 entered on the MLS®. Dollar volume of close to $700 million is up 7% from 2018.

March sales of 1,009 resulted in nearly a 4% gain in comparison to March 2018, while dollar volume of just under $300 million edged out last March by less than 3%. The 4,212 active listings sitting in inventory at the end of March are 8% higher than they were at the same time last year.

 “The solid first quarter sales activity is a positive momentum builder going into the busier springmarket," said Kenneth Clark, president of WinnipegREALTORS®. “No interest rate hikes are on the horizon, and buyers know PST relief is coming July 1 with all of the ancillary purchases that go with the purchase of a home."

 March single-family home sales activity was most active in the $300,000 to $349,999 price range and therefore supplanted the next lower price range of $250,000 to $299,999. March 2018 was the exact opposite and by a 45 sales margin. Now more than one in two single-family home sales occur over $300,000. It will be interesting to see if this will become the norm as the year progresses.

The shift in sales activity to higher price ranges is a gradual process in a stable market such as Winnipeg's.  Of note in March - when you compare it to last March - are the rural MLS® areas as a whole, which represented 26% of total single-family home sales, and saw its average sale price increase from $315,595 to $323,873. The northeast area of Winnipeg also saw a small bump up in its average sale price to $289,857, and a 17% increase in sales activity. These two developments alone help explain the upward movement in sales activity.

Condominiums sales were virtually the same as March 2018 with price range activity nearly a repeat of last year with percentage of sales under $300,000 being at 87% and 86% respectively. The most active price range was from $150,000 to $199,999 though this March captured 35% of total condo sales while March 2018 was less at 27%, owing to more activity in the lower price range from $100,000 to $149,999.

The average single family home sales price in March was $326,433, whereas the condominiumaverage sale price recorded was $227,538.

“All markets are local and vary within, as illustrated by the difference in property type price range activity such as in single-family homes and condominiums," said Clark. “The strength of our market is the many affordable choices and options available to buyers, and that will continue in 2019."

Speaking of affordability, RBC's March 2019 Housing Trends and Affordability Report shows that in both Saskatoon and Winnipeg you are better off owning an average-priced condo apartment than renting a two-bedroom apartment. 

The report also indicates Winnipeg's market is very close to its long-term average aggregate measure of 29.6%, which is the proportion of median pre-tax household income that is required to service the cost of mortgage payments (principal and interest), property taxes, and utilities based on the average market price of all housing types in any given market.  

This year's federal budget increased the Home Buyers' Plan (HBP) withdrawal limit from $25,000 to $35,000, and extended the HBP to those going through a marital breakdown so they can use their RRSPs to put towards a down payment on a home. These changes are effective immediately.

The federal government will also carefully monitor the federal mortgage stress test, given industry concerns over how these new regulations are unnecessarily creating unintended consequences on housing markets which are in balance - or even struggling - compared to overheated ones. 

“Be it changing market conditions within the various property types or new budget measures affecting housing,  you should be calling your Realtor to keep abreast of what these changes mean as you try to better understand and navigate the housing market," said Marina R. James, CEO of WinnipegREALTORS®.

Winnipeg's housing market remains one of the more affordable in Canada, and along with therecent changes to the HBP and PST, we have much to be optimistic about.​

Since 1903, WinnipegREALTORS® has assisted its members in achieving high levels of excellence in organized real estate by providing superior tools and services that enhance and build a vibrant real estate industry. Representing over 1,975 REALTORS® and other industry related professions active in the Winnipeg metropolitan area, WinnipegREALTORS® promotes the value of a REALTOR® and organized real estate. WinnipegREALTORS® provides its members with essential market information, professional development sessions, networking opportunities, marketing products, an effective industry voice and strong leadership to further their professional success.

Read full post

WINNIPEG -  February sales of 724 show a 6% increase over February 2018 and a 10% rise in dollar volume at over $215 million.  1,447 new listings were added to the market in February which resulted in 3,735 active listings available for sale at the end of February. This healthy supply of listings represents a 10% increase over last year.

Year-to-date sales are up 8% over the same period in 2018 and 3% over the 5-year average. They are only 2% behind the record- setting pace of 2016.

“We have now had two back to back months of improvement in sales and listing gains over 2018," said Kenneth Clark, president of WinnipegREALTORS®.  “While early in the year and a cold one at that, it does show buyers are making necessary adjustments to mortgage regulation rules to complete a transaction.  Some of the increase in listings, most notable in January with a 19% increase in new listings coming on the market, is that sellers are feeling more confident about taking their next step in the local housing market."

 Helping set the stage in 2019 for continued recovery from a slow start in 2018 is the fact mortgage rates are remaining historically low with no expectation of another interest rate increase in the next few months and possibly later in the year. Affordable prices remain intact with more than half of all condo sales in February selling for under $200,000 and nearly half of single family homes selling for under $300,000.

A highlight of February was the strength of residential -detached or single family home sales happening outside the city of Winnipeg. The 152 sales represented 30% of the total amount sold in February. While the Steinbach MLS® area led the way with 28 sales, it is worth noting WinnipegREALTORS® has recently welcomed rural real estate offices to its membership from Winkler, Gimli and Lac du Bonnet.

Single family home sales of 505 increased 6.5% in February when compared to February 2018.  Condominium sales were up as well with 107 sales, a 5% increase over February 2018 and 10% greater than the 5-year average of 97 sales.

Other MLS® property types which outperformed February 2018 with double-digit percentage increases were commercial, single- attached and duplexes.  The 34 single-attached sales represented close to 5% of total MLS® sales in February where residential-detached and condominium sales captured 70% and 15% respectively.

Looking ahead to March, all three levels of government are releasing their annual budgets. The City of Winnipeg unveiled their operating and capital budget on March 1, 2019 with a proposed 2.33% property tax increase. The provincial budget comes down on March 7th while the federal government will release theirs on March 19th.

Noteworthy this year is there has been a strong push from the real estate industry to urge the federal government to provide relief to millennials who were disproportionately affected last year by the mortgage stress test.

Federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau has already acknowledged this reality and has indicated he is looking to provide young homebuyers with better means to own a home. A national survey conducted last year by Abacus Research for the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) on housing affordability showed 85 per cent of millennials and new Canadians want to own their own homes. CREA CEO Michael Bourque says, “The idea of renting for life does not appeal to either group."

“The combination of a wide choice of affordable properties to purchase in our local market gives us an advantage over more expensive housing markets in the country," said Clark. “However our first-time buyer market in 2018 did experience a noticeable drop off in sales activity so any relief from the federal government's budget would be welcome here too."

“Our REALTORS® are professional and informed," said Marina R. James, CEO of WinnipegREALTORS®.  “They make it their business to keep on top of any new developments that affect the housing market."

Read full post

WINNIPEG  - January MLS® sales of 634 increased 11% over the same month last year and 8% over the 5-year average for January.  Dollar volume rose 12% to $175 million. The 1,783 new listings entered on the MLS® in January also resulted in a double-digit gain of 19% compared to January 2018.

“This is our best start on record for January so pleased to see Winnipeggers engaged in our local real estate market right off the hop," said Kenneth Clark, president of WinnipegREALTORS®. “However, as they say, one month does not make a year so we are cautiously optimistic.

On a  positive note, mortgage rates are remaining historically low with the Bank of Canada signaling a wait and see approach on any interest rate increases this year. Buyers have also had over a year to adjust to the B-20 mortgage regulation rules which came in to effect on January 1, 2018.

“The noticeable bump up in new listings includes some of those move –up buyers last year that decided to remain on the sidelines to figure out what they could afford to buy based on the new mortgage regulations," said Clark. “Helping make it easier for them to enter our housing market this year is a combination of a healthy supply of available listings to choose from at affordable prices." 

No better example of affordable prices came by way of the condo sales activity in January 2019. In what is more the exception than the rule in our local market, there were 34 sales under $150,000 compared to 12 in January 2018. A number of these units sold for as low as $31,500 with total square footage of less than 500 square feet.  56% of total condo sales went for less than $200,000.

For comparison purposes, 22% of residential-detached or single family homes sold for less than $200,000. On the other end of the price spectrum, the highest-priced single family home sold for $910,000 while a condominium sold for $832,229.

 WinnipegREALTORS® just held its annual forecast breakfast and indicated that sales should outpace 2018 while prices will remain stable. The condo property type in particular is experiencing an elevated supply of listings going into 2019 so will be one to watch closely.

“Knowing which questions to ask with a myriad of terms and conditions to consider is best left to a REALTOR®- an experienced negotiator who can be objective about the buying process," said Marina R. James, CEO of WinnipegREALTORS®. “Our REALTORS® are there to serve your interest in achieving the  best outcome for you."

Read full post

WINNIPEG  - In comparison to a near record year in 2017, 2018 held its own with sales down 5% from 2017 and 6% from the best year on record in 2016. Sales of 12,773 are down less than 3% from the five – year average and 1% lower than the 10-year average.

Annual dollar volume on the other hand of $3.77 billion decreased less than 4% from 2017 and is up nearly 3% from the five-year average.

The 23,834 listings entered on the MLS® in 2018 rose 2% over 2017. There are 3,235 listings available for sale at the end of 2018.

“Keeping things in perspective, with some of the headwinds we faced in 2018 with higher interest rates and  more stringent mortgage qualification requirements, it should be no surprise that 2018 fell short of our best years on record," said Chris Dudeck, outgoing president of WinnipegREALTORS®.  “Simply put, we believe fewer buyers were able to qualify and successfully complete a purchase they wished to make in 2018."

Dudeck added, “I see 2018 as more policy-induced retraction, albeit a modest one, than changes in key market factors from 2017." Market metrics are closely aligned between the two years.  For example, in terms of achieving a total sales price dollar value ratio close to total list price dollar value in 2018 for single family homes which sold, the annual ratio compares very favourably – 98.48% versus 98.59% in 2017. Another metric to note is average days to sell a home or condo in 2018 only took one day longer than 2017."

Sales transacted in both single-family homes and condominiums were only one day off the number of days on average it took to sell them in 2017. One of the main reasons the WinnipegREALTORS® market region was less affected in comparison to some other housing markets is its favourable housing affordability.

The December 2018 RBC Housing Trends and Affordability Report indicates “ownership costs remain well under control". The measure of 31% for the third quarter (the percentage of median pre-tax household income required to service the cost of mortgage payments, property taxes and utilities based on the average market price of the aggregate of all housing types) is very close to the long-run average of 29.5%. The RBC Report states: “The slowdown in activity in 2018 has been orderly with demand and supply remaining in balance overall, although the condo segment showed more visible signs of weakness."

Speaking of prices, the average residential-detached or single family home sales price in 2018 was $321,945, a very modest increase of 2% over 2017.

Two MLS® areas least impacted by buyer challenges were the southwest zone of Winnipeg and the rural municipalities surrounding Winnipeg.  The former saw sales decline under 1%, while the latter rural zone decreased 1% in comparison to sales generated in 2017. The rural zone continues to represent the highest percentage of sales of all MLS® areas at over 26%.

Over half of the residential-detached sales in 2018 occurred under $300,000 with another 28% selling from $300,000 to $399,999. The 9,287 sales represented nearly $3 billion in dollar volume with the most expensive home selling for $2.6 million.

Nearly 90 % of all condominium sales in 2018 were under $350,000 with the $150,000 to $199,999 price range the most active with 27% of total condominium sales. There were 1,638 transactions worth $391 million. The highest-priced condominium sold for $1,200,000.

Read full post