February Market Update
The new year typically brings about a dramatic change in market conditions and January this year did not disappoint. As usual, let’s begin with the inventory numbers.
The numbers presented below are a ratio of the number of active listings (at end of month) over the number of sales in that month. Numbers above 7 are considered to be buyers’ markets, below 5 are sellers’ and in-between are considered balanced. Beside the number, I’ve indicated the direction the market moved when compared to the previous month.
In The Buyer’s Favour
In reviewing the data, it’s fairly clear that the overall market moved in one direction (fairly strongly in some cases). While the tail end of the Fall had seemed to bring some balance to the market, January seems to have moved almost all our markets towards the buyer’s favour (very strongly in some cases). Sales volume is down considerably in month-over-month or in year-over-year comparisons (15% and 40%respectively) and inventory is up by 15% in both comparisons.
More Data Needed
It should be noted the weather in January was particularly snowy, so it is not unreasonable to assume that some buyers simply didn’t want to go house shopping in the snow. Another couple of weeks of data will be necessary to see which direction the market will take over the next few months. However, the reality of the current market conditions is such that a detached home seller isn’t going to have a particularly easy time given the market conditions and buyers should be able to take advantage of these current conditions.
Strata Gone Rogue
I’d be negligent not to mention that while the strata market has slowed a bit, conditions are still very brisk due in large part to buyers simply not having a lot of options. As we’ve been saying for 6 months, the two markets seem to be operating in almost complete isolation from each other with detached now posting its 6th consecutive month of decreasing prices and strata seemingly holding firm and not moving at all on its pricing.