MLS Stats 2008: The Economies impact on the NOTL Housing Market

The following figures are for the Region of Niagara,provided by the MLS operated by the Niagara Association of REALTORS. I appologize for the poor quality image I would be pleased to email a copy to you.

ListingsSalesSales/Listings RatioAverage Sale PriceListingsSalesSales/Listings RatioAverage Sale Price
AreaMonthYTDMonthYTDMonthYTDMonth12 MonthMonthYTDMonthYTDMonthYTDMonth12 Month
01 19 569 5 207 26% 36% $380,200 $415,856 29 635 6 261 21% 41% $366,333 $389,507


The chart above depicts Area 01 -Niagara-on-the-Lake for December 2008 and 2007.

For the Niagara Region the Niagara Association of REALTORS is reporting a 25% decline in residential unit sales for the month of December compared to 2007. Unit sales year to date are down 11%. With 2008 average sales price of $211,000 just above the 2007 level. The number of active listings that came to market was up 5% from 2007 levels. This created increased levels of supply across Niagara.

Locally, in December 2008 NOTL had residential unit sales 1.6% below figures in 2007. Unit sales in NOTL year to date are down 20% from levels in 2007.  The average sale price for 2008 was $415,000 up 6.6% from 2007's figure of $389,000. Listings available in the market in 2008 where 569 units while in 2007 there was 635. This equates to 10% less homes available in the resale market in 2008. Less homes available for sale means less sales. Some of the decline in sales can be  attributed to reduced supply the remainder is the economic situation. Credit tightening, nervous buyers, employment levels etc.

As a contrast to the rest of the Region, NOTL had a decrease in the resale homes supply from 2007. This fueled a healthy rise in average prices and kept the sale to list price sticky at 95%. Meaning homes sold on average for 95% of asking price in 2008. One clear change in 2008 was that homes are taking longer to sell. This is probably why the resale inventory is down. Sellers have left the market waiting for more productive times. The average days on market almost doubled from 76 days in 2007 to 146 days in 2008. Primarly this is the effect that the current economy is having on NOTL housing. Houses are selling it just takes longer than we have been accustomed. Local prices are not being negatively impacted.

Average sales price does not always convey a clear sense of the health of a market. To acquire more evidence and a better understanding look at homes that sold both recently and within the last couple of years. This allows for better insight into how the market is performing in that time frame. This will demonstrate the health of the local real estate market and show that this current economic slump has caused NOTL home prices to remain level as opposed to continuing on a steady upward trend.

1383 Creek Rd. Virgil. Recently sold Jan 2009 for $246,000. This home also sold in 2005 for $215,000. This is an annual increase in value of 4.8% per year.


9 Harmony NOTL (Old Town). This home sold in 2008 for $480,000. This home also sold in 2002 for $420,000. This is an annual increase of 2.4%.

These examples are representative of other sales in the market and demonstrate the following facts. Prices are remaining steady, it is taking longer to sell your home and as a buyer the supply is limited.  These factors coupled with the best interest rates in generations make for a pretty balanced marketplace.