While COVID 19 continues to have an impact on real estate activity across Canada, the local market is beginning to show some modest recovery. Sales volume in May through the western district of Southern Georgian Bay Association of REALTORS® (SGBAR) MLS® system totalled $80.4 million. While still down 34% from sales of $131.1 million in May of last year this was nonetheless much better than the 65% drop we experienced in April. The western district of SGBAR runs from Meaford to Wasaaga Beach and south to the Creemore area.
Total MLS® sales in May of 141 units was down from 249 units sold or 43% from units sold in May 2019 yet were almost double the 78 units sold in April.
Year-to-date MLS dollar volume for our area total totals $358.6 million, down $89.2 million (20%) from sales of $447.8 million in 2019 and $50.3 million or 12% less than sales of $408.9 million in the same period in 2018.
New listings that came onto MLS® in May totalled 323 properties. This was 157 listings less than May 2019 but it was 77% more than the number of new listings in April which had dropped significantly with the onset of COVID 19.
Expired MLS® listings in May totalled 73 properties, just 6 more than in April. Year-to-date expired MLS® listings continue to reflect an increase over last year totalling 367 versus 327 a year ago up 12%.
In addition to the number of expired listings, a number of MLS® listings have been suspended, temporarily taken off the market. With the onset of the COVID-19 virus, many sellers do not want their properties being shown and or exposed to the general public. To date, 21 MLS® listings have been suspended from the system whereas this time in 2019 the number of suspended listings was “zero.”
Despite a significant drop in sales the overall MLS® list-to-sale price ratio has remained stable at just over 97%. We have yet to see any downward pressure on prices stemming from the virus & economic downturn. Homes priced accurately to current market value continue to draw buyers willing to pay close to a realistic asking price.
Year-To-Date MLS® single family home sales in May totalled 436 units down 26% from the 590 sales last year. Condo sales have also softened from the first four months of 2020 and now total 129 units versus 157 sales last year a drop of 18%. Vacant land sales are down primarily due to a lack in inventory listed for sale.
Year-to-date single family home sales in area municipalities are lagging behind 2019 as follows: Collingwood -42%%, Clearview Township -30%, Blue Mountains -32%, Wasaga Beach -15%, Municipality of Meaford -39% while sales in the Grey Highlands are 10%.
Single family home sales continue to remain strong from $800,000 to $2 Million. As per the accompanying chart, year-to-date sales from $800,000 to $1,499,999 are equal to 2019 while sales between $1.5 to $2 million are up 36% Sales over $2 Million are down by just 1 unit with 4 sales reported this year versus 5 sales during the first five months of 2019.
In summary, notwithstanding the sharp decline we have experienced in real estate activity which started with the onset of COVID 19 in mid-March, demand for area real estate remains strong. Only time will tell how long it may take for the economy to rebound and for consumer confidence to become restored where making a major purchase such as real estate resumes the pace we experienced at the start of 2020. As in the prior few years, sales in the upper price ranges from $800,000 and up continues to significant drive MLS® dollar volume in our market. Please feel free to Contact Me if you have any questions about the information I have provided herein or for a no obligation response to your specific real estate needs.