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Cowichan Valley Realtor

Market Information

April 1, 2021

We are so fortunate to live in the Cowichan Valley and have been able to enjoy some spectacular spring weather over the last few weeks. We all sure needed it. 

It is hard to believe that we have been in this pandemic for a year now, how it changed our lives overnight. For the most part, I have been conducting my business remotely like so many of us and doing in-person meetings only when necessary while viewing homes. Utilizing digital technology for signing, working remotely from home, using phone, text, e-mail, Facebook Messenger, Zoom, Facetime, and more to eliminate the need for in-person meetings… what a crazy world we are in right now.  

I was very prepared heading into the pandemic as I have been ahead of the game for a few years now by marketing my listings with 3D walkthrough showcase technology, interactive floor plans, professional photography, HD video and more making it very easy for buyers to walk through my listings without stepping in the door. I had already been selling a few properties a year sight unseen with this exceptional technology. To see an example of one of my listings click here  These tools now play an even larger role than ever in selling our properties as we move forward. 

This crazy and unpredictable Real Estate market certainly doesn't seem to be slowing down so far this year. I have had multiple offers or bully offers on everything I have listed this year; bully offers are now becoming more frequent. A bully offer is when the seller says they are waiting to a certain date to review offers and a buyer brings in an offer prior to that date, usually the bully offer is very tempting for the seller and almost always a cash subject free offer. I'm happy to report my marketing strategies on my single-family home sales have achieved a remarkable 11.7% over list price this year to date.  

Last month there were a total of 79 single-family homes sold in the Cowichan Valley, up 49% from the 53 that sold in March of last year, and above the 69 that sold in February. Keep in mind that last March was really the start of the restrictions. 

There were still only 80 active single-family home listings on the market at the end of last month. To put that into perspective, consider that there were 501 homes on the market at the end of March of 2009; that was after the financial crisis of 2008. There is no question that the pandemic is the number one factor keeping the inventory low as people simply didn't sell if they had nowhere to go.

The average price for a single-family residential home for March was $735,450, up 32.87% from $553,523 one year ago. Keep in mind the higher price ranges have been very active with the 700k and up price range accounting for 45.2% of the sales this year. Another indicator of what prices have done over the last year comes from figures in the MLS Home Price Index; that’s a benchmark for Realtors of a group of home sales. That gauge shows single-family homes in the Cowichan Valley going from $502,500 in March 2020 to $578,500 in March 2021; that’s a 15.1% gain. 

Condominium apartment sales were also up in March with 19 sales compared to the 13 sales in February and way up in comparison to the 5 that sold last March. 

Condominium apartments in the valley saw the average prices in March fairly even at $289,185 which is up only .4% compared to last March. This number doesn't seem to tell the real story as the condominium market has been very active with prices rising as well. The benchmark price at the end of March was up to $267,500, a 9.2% gain over last year. 

The inventory of apartments on the market is also low with 15 on the market at the end of March. 

As we head into summer hopefully the active cases slow down, and the restrictions start to ease off. Theoretically more people will then place their homes on the market and the inventory will start rising. If this happens things should start working their way back to balance the market. If your planning to sell, now might be one of the best times in history to sell prior to the potential rise in inventory. 

Take care, be safe, cheers. 

Provincial update

BC Housing Market Continues at a Record Pace

Vancouver, BC – March 11, 2021. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that a total of 10,918 residential unit sales were recorded by the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in February
2021, an increase of 89.1 per cent over February 2020 and over a thousand sales higher than the previous February record, set in 2016. The average MLS® residential price in BC was $889,584, a 17.3 per cent increase from $758,382 recorded in February 2020. Total sales dollar volume was $9.7 billion, a 121.8 per cent increase from last year.

“Near-record sales in Metro Vancouver, combined with unprecedented housing demand outside of Metro Vancouver, continues to drive a blistering pace of home sales in BC,” said BCREA Chief Economist Brendon Ogmundson.

Total active residential listings were down 28.7 per cent to 20,185 units in February, the lowest level of provincial active listings on record, going back to 2000. Fortunately, new listings have increased considerably, but given the pace of sales, total inventory of homes for sale remains severely depleted. 

"There is a drought of resale inventory across the province,” added Ogmundson. "With so few listings, and with so much demand for single-detached homes, average prices have increased dramatically.”

Here is a link to this month’s Graph Stats for the Cowichan Valley, courtesy of the Vancouver Island Real Estate Board: Cowichan Valley Graph Stats.

I hope you find this current market information informative. If you have any questions about the market please feel free to contact me anytime.

Thinking of selling? Please feel free to contact me for advice on preparing your home for the market. What money should you spend if any? When is the best time to list? I am happy to consult with you anytime even if you are not planning on selling for some time.

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