Winnipeg’s House Market Bounces Back
Winnipeg’s House Market Bounces Back

Winnipeg’s House Market Bounces Back

City’s house market bounces back
Average April price $250K as increases hit 10% again

May 11, 2010  Martin Cash, Winnipeg Free Press

The Winnipeg real estate market — both resale volumes and values as well as new home construction — is back on a healthy trend line.

April home sales in Winnipeg topped $300 million, only the fourth month that has ever happened. And April is not the busy month.

“I think people in the industry would be surprised if we don’t hit $300 million in May and June,” said Peter Squire, WinnipegREALTORS residential market analyst.

There are larger numbers of higher-priced houses being sold — more houses sold for more than $550,000 than under $75,000 — and in April the segment below $100,000 accounted for less than six per cent of sales.

After close to a decade of annual double-digit price increases in Winnipeg home prices, in 2009 prices were up only five per cent.

But since the beginning of this year, price increases are back up to 10 per cent and the average price of homes sold in April hit $250,000 — the first time a monthly average hit the quarter-million-dollar mark.

“People want to live here. They want to stay here and settle in,” said Claude Davis, president of WinnipegREALTORS. “Immigration is growing, there are good prospects for employment. There is lots of confidence in the economy and the environment here.”

And homebuilders are getting busier. On Monday, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. (CMHC) reported single detached urban housing starts in Manitoba were up 15 per cent in April (170 new homes) compared to last April, and up 18 per cent province-wide.

“We’re back on track to normal numbers in Winnipeg,” said Mike Moore of the Manitoba Home Builders Association.

Those “normal numbers” for the Winnipeg real estate market in general are starting to attract more interest from outside the city. Last month’s first-ever Winnipeg Real Estate Forum was an indication that Winnipeg is no longer a well-kept secret.

Later this month, Squire and Don White, head of Winnipeg REALTORS’ commercial division, will speak to about 300 members of the Real Estate Investment Network in Vancouver. Many of the 3,500 national members of the organization are mom-and-pop investors.

Don Campbell, president of the group, said his members are finding it harder to find opportunities in the larger western cities. “There is a lot of interest across the country in the Winnipeg real estate market,” he said. “It does not go through the gyrations the majority of other major centres go through. After this last roller-coaster ride that occurred in Calgary and Vancouver, many of our members are saying, ‘Maybe I don’t need this much excitement.’ ”

Winnipeg’s housing market

Resale

  • $300 million — Winnipeg sales total in April, only the fourth month in the 107-year history of WinnipegREALTORS to hit $300 million
  • 14 per cent — increase in unit sales in April vs. April 2009
  • 26 per cent — dollar-volume increase in sales in April over last year
  • 21 days — average number of days on the market in April for residential detached homes
  • 26 days — average number of days on the market in March
  • 31 — average number of days on the market in April 2009

    New housing starts

    • 170 — single detached urban starts in Manitoba in April
    • 148 — single detached urban starts in Manitoba in April 2009
    • 199 — total housing starts in Manitoba in April
    • 169 — total housing starts in Manitoba in April 2009

      Mortgage rates lowered

      Several Canadian banks lowered their residential home lending rates slightly on Monday, dropping the posted rate on a benchmark five-year, fixed-rate mortgage by 0.15 percentage points to 6.1 per cent.

      Royal Bank, National Bank, Scotiabank and CIBC announced the same decrease Monday after similar moves Friday by Bank of Montreal and TD Bank.

      Homeowners on the edge

      A new report from the country’s mortgage brokers suggest that up to 375,000 Canadians with home loans are “challenged” by current rates and that figure would more than double if interest rates climb to 5.25 per cent.

      The Canadian Association of Accredited Mortgage Professionals found a further 475,000 mortgage holders would have trouble making payments if rates rose to 5.25 per cent. Of particular concern is the number of consumers with variable-rate mortgages.

      Winnipeg’s House Market Bounces Back was last modified: May 21st, 2010 by admin
       

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