I seem to be saying the same thing every month about our Real Estate Market; it is still very brisk with many homes selling quickly, often over asking price, despite seeing fewer offers in those situations. The Cowichan Valley housing market has seen a continuous influx of buyers because of our beautiful area and the ability for people to work remotely.
At the end of November, the Cowichan Valley and Duncan real estate inventory for single-family dwellings dropped to only 44 active homes being listed, which is down from 75 homes on the market this time last year. While there is usually a smaller number of homes listed as we head into Christmas, it is the lowest inventory of homes I have seen in my 10+ years as a realtor. In fact, this low real estate inventory extended to condos and townhouses as well.
Our average sale price for single-family dwellings throughout the Cowichan Valley in November 2021 was $830,328 while in November 2020, our average sale price was $588,880.
In the Duncan, BC area more houses sold than were listed on the market – 49 houses were listed and 62 houses sold in November – we call this our sales to list percentage which was 126%.
Homes are selling over listing prices. The average home price sale is 104.98% of list price. This is still a strong seller’s market with houses selling over list price which is expected with low inventory and multiple offers.
The average amount of time a single-family dwelling sits on the market is 34 days. That is up from last month. Last month homes were sitting on the market for an average of 21 days. In November we saw more home contracts with conditions that meant that selling a home took a little longer.
With looming interest rate hikes and increased prices being projected into 2022 I expect affordability and low inventory will remain issues for some time throughout the Cowichan Valley.
See the current house statistics media release information below and for further information, visit the Vancouver real estate board.Download GraphStats PDF
NANAIMO, BC – Active listings in the Vancouver Island Real Estate Board (VIREB) area continue to drop, with demand far outpacing supply. Inventory has hit consecutive historical lows for several months running.
Active listings of single-family homes were 44% lower last month than in November 2020 and dropped by 24% from the previous month. VIREB’s inventory of condo apartments declined by 69% from one year ago and was 23% lower than in October. Row/townhouse inventory dropped by 55% year over year and was 47% lower than the previous month.
By category, 353 single-family homes sold on the MLS® System in November, a 16% decrease from one year ago. There were 110 condo apartment sales last month compared to 107 one year ago and 122 the previous month. In the row/townhouse category, 98 units sold compared to 90 the previous November and 88 in October 2021.
According to the British Columbia Real Estate Association, the supply situation is especially critical in markets outside the Lower Mainland. One of the worst inventory situations is on Vancouver Island. Even if sales were to return to long-run average levels, total listings would need to nearly double to achieve a balanced market, and the road to doubling those listings lies in building more homes.
VIREB welcomes the news that the Government of British Columbia is giving local governments more tools and powers to simplify and speed up their development approvals processes. The changes announced by the government include removing requirements for local governments to hold public hearings for development proposals that already align with Official Community Plans and equipping municipal staff to make decisions for minor development variance permits.
“Increasing housing supply isn’t a simple solution. It requires a coordinated effort from all levels of government and adequate incentives for municipalities to take action,’ says Ian Mackay, 2021 VIREB President. “Homes need to be built in a reasonable time frame at a reasonable cost, and it cannot continue to take years to get a development off the ground. The public also has a role to play in being open to gentle densification in some areas.”
Naturally, the tight housing market is affecting prices in the VIREB area. The board-wide benchmark price of a single-family home reached $769,700 in November, up 33% year over year. In the apartment category, the benchmark price hit $401,100 last month, a 29% increase from November 2020. The benchmark price of a townhouse increased by 35%, reaching $594,400 in November.
In Campbell River, the benchmark price of a single-family home hit $683,500 in November, up by 30% from the previous year. In the Comox Valley, the year-over-year benchmark price rose by 32% to $785,300. The Cowichan Valley reported a benchmark price of $770,000, an increase of 33% from November 2020. Nanaimo’s benchmark price rose by 29%, hitting $768,700, while the Parksville-Qualicum area saw its benchmark price increase by 35% to $903,300. The cost of a benchmark single-family home in Port Alberni reached $509,100, a 40% year-over-year increase. The benchmark price for the North Island rose by 51%, hitting $417,700 in November.
Please note: The Vancouver Island Real Estate Board (VIREB) transitioned to a new MLS® System in July 2020 and now uses a significantly different data model, which has affected our categories and terminology. For the board-supplied graphs, single-family is now referred to as single-family detached, apartment as condo apartment, and townhouse as row/townhouse, which now includes patio homes. However, when reporting HPI numbers, VIREB still refers to single-family, apartment, and townhouse in the media release.
VIREB represents over 1,000 REALTORS® in nearly 90 member offices on Vancouver Island, from the Malahat in the south to the northern tip.
VIREB cautions that average price information can be useful in establishing trends over time but does not indicate the actual prices in centres comprised of widely divergent neighbourhoods or account for price differential between geographic areas.
Trademarks are owned or controlled by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify real estate professionals who are members of CREA (REALTOR®) and/or the quality of services they provide (MLS®).
HPI Note: Areas with insufficient data do not generate statistics and are not included in the HPI graphs.
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David has been a Duncan REALTOR® serving clients throughout the Cowichan Valley at RE/MAX Island Properties (formerly RE/MAX of Duncan) for over 10 years.
If you have any questions, please call him on 250-748-7200.