While the mainstream media speculated about a Canadian real estate bubble, it was business as usual in Kitchener Waterloo in February. Preliminary results from the Kitchener Waterloo MLS show 344 residential sales in February 2012 versus 377 in February 2011. Continuing a trend seen last fall, a decline in new home sales in the Twin Cities was the culprit. In February 2012, we had just 14 new home sales while February 2011 saw a robust total of 61. Resale homes rose in February 2012 to 330, up more than 4% year-over-year. Prices continued to rise as the average price of a resale home sold this February was $300,510, also up more than 4% over last February. Successful sellers received, on average, 98% of the the asking price and resale homes took an average of just 38 days to sell. Both these numbers are consistent with February 2011.
So where do we go from here? Active MLS listings currently sit at exactly 1300 comprised of 420 new or to-be-built homes and 880 resales. The lack of homes for sale can be explained as follows. Many move up buyers are seeking to take advantage of historically low interest rates. However, they are reluctant, in the current market, to put their home for sale without having found one. This increases the demand for those on the market and prices continue to rise. For those downsizing or selling their last home, now is the perfect time given the number of move up buyers currently searching.
For those awaiting a buyers market, what should you keep an eye on? I would watch the number of active resale homes. As that number climbs, there are fewer buyers for more homes and the resulting competition should moderate prices. Note, in these maket conditions, it makes more sense to sell your current home first.
As always, markets are local and change is constant. For sound advice on selling your home or buying another, feel free to call or email firstname.lastname@example.org 519-505-4488.
Century 21 Home Realty inc. Brokerage
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