The 2020 Courtenay real estate market has entered its second month. So, what has happened so far? In the downtown area of the city single-family-homes listings were down 39% in January and days to sell were up by 182% over the same time last year. In the eastern part of the city, single-family-home listings were down 21% and days to sell were up by 25%. In the north, listings were down by 50% and there were no sales in this area in the first month of this year. There was one sale in the south and listings were down by 33%. Listing were down by 50% in the west and there were no sales of single-family-homes in that area in January. The average single-family-home sale price was about $569 thousand. The average home sale price this month in Crown Isle was the highest of the areas at $719 thousand.
Condominium (apartments) averaged about $401 thousand, patio homes averaged about $371 thousand and townhomes averaged about $313 thousand dollars. Lots in the City of Courtenay averaged about $285,000. While the overall average sale price in the Comox Valley rose about 2% in January when compared to the same month a year ago, the overall number of sales dropped by 33%. One month is not a long enough period to confirm a trend but early indicators certainly do suggest changes in the Courtenay re-sale housing market.
In the first month of the year, Courtenay accounted for almost 64% of the total home sales so what happens in this city certainly will have an impact on the overall Comox Valley real estate market and where it is headed in 2020. Many of the typical indicators are down for the first part of the year. The next couple of months will be important to watch as the market continues to become active and listings are placed on the market. Indicators such as list to sell price, days on the market, average and median sale prices, price changes, trends in localized parts of the real estate market and inventory will all contribute to form the overall picture.
Will 2020 mark the end of the current cycle and seller’s market conditions? Will sales continue to be down from the same time last year? Will prices correct and reverse the trend of the past couple of years? Will the demand from the mainland remain strong? Will local buyers and sellers jump into the market. These are just a few of the many questions that can be asked about what will happen this year. There are, of course, a few other factors that may come into play. For example, On February 18, Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced changes to Guideline B-20, also known as the mortgage stress test. The new benchmark rate used to determine the minimum qualifying rate for insured mortgages, which takes effect on April 6, 2020, will be the weekly median five-year fixed insured mortgage rate from mortgage insurance applications, plus two per cent. Stay tuned for more on our 2020 real estate picture for the City of Courtenay and the overall Comox Valley region.