/* include custom styles for headings, etc. */ /* custom styles start here */ testing

Real Estate Activity Continues Ahead of Spring Market


Victoria Real Estate Board


VICTORIA BC - Real estate market activity in the first two months of 2014 remained slightly ahead of the same period in 2013.

Total MLS® sales in February were 412, a 4.6 per cent increase over February 2013 when 394 units sold and a 20.5 per cent increase over the 342 sales reported to the Victoria Real Estate Board (VREB) in January 2014.

"It's encouraging that sales activity continues to increase as we move towards a healthy spring market," noted VREB President, Tim Ayres. "2013 spring sales were quite strong and we're hoping for a similar level of activity this year."

The MLS® HPI single-family home benchmark price for the entire Greater Victoria region was $483,400 in February, a 1.4 per cent decrease when compared to the February 2013 value of $490,100.

"With a $5 million condominium sale in February, it was no surprise to see average prices for condos rise last month from $328,130 to $373,749," said Ayres. "Since the introduction of the MLS® Housing Price Index (HPI) in November 2013, we've been saying the HPI is a much more reliable measure of price trend data than average prices. Our February MLS® HPI numbers prove it; even with the $5 million sale, February MLS® HPI benchmark pricing for condos in Victoria remained virtually unchanged with an increase of only $400."

At the regional level, the MLS® HPI benchmark price for the single family benchmark home in the Core municipalities was $547,800. This benchmark price is virtually unchanged when compared to both the previous month and February 2013. In Westshore, the MLS® HPI benchmark price for the single family benchmark home was $408,500, up 0.9 per cent from January 2014 and a 1.0 per cent decrease compared with last February. The MLS® HPI benchmark price for the single family benchmark home on the Peninsula was $502,600 for February, an increase of 1.1 per cent over the previous month and a 4.1 per cent decrease year-over-year.

There were 3,770 active listings at the end of February. While this is an increase from 3489 at the end of January, it is 7.4 per cent less than the 4072 listing that were available in February 2013. Inventory has been on a slow decline for most of 2013 but our normal cycle should result in more inventory as we move into Spring.

There were 107 condominium sales in February 2014, up from 92 in January and down from the 112 in February 2013. The region-wide MLS® HPI benchmark price in February for condos was $277,200, down 1.3 per cent from $280,800 from one year ago.

For townhomes, 42 sold in February compared to 30 in January and 43 in February 2013. The region-wide MLS® HPI benchmark price for townhomes was $401,500, up 1.4 per cent from $396,000 in February 2013.

Total Waterfront Single Family Dwellings sold: 8
Total Non-waterfront Single Family Dwellings sold: 219
Single Family Dwellings sold over $1 million: 15 (4 over $1.5 Million)

At the heart of the MLS® HPI is the concept of the "benchmark" home, a notional home that has the most common features of a typical home in a given area. The benchmark home does not represent any actual house, condo or townhouse, but merely provides an identical example to track changes in market value. There are separate benchmark houses, condos and townhouses in each distinct area of Greater Victoria, enabling the tracking of values on a variety of geographic levels.

For more information on the MLS® HPI benchmark prices and index values, visit www.vreb.org. Those requiring specific information on property values in their area should contact a REALTOR®. The Victoria Real Estate Board has more than 1,225 Members working more than 80 Brokerages.

MLS® property information is provided under copyright© by the Vancouver Island Real Estate Board and Victoria Real Estate Board. The information is from sources deemed reliable, but should not be relied upon without independent verification.