Victoria real estate market needs better mix of housing supply to help restore balance
September 1, 2023
A total of 544 properties sold in the Victoria Real Estate Board region this August, 13.8 per cent more than the 478 properties sold in August 2022 and an 8.6 per cent decrease from July 2023. Sales of condominiums were up 10.8 per cent from August 2022 with 164 units sold. Sales of single family homes increased 9.6 per cent from August 2022 with 273 sold.
"Real estate activity this month reflected what we'd expect to see in an average late summer housing market," said Victoria Real Estate Board Chair Graden Sol. "The beginning of the month was reasonably slow, and sales ramped up through the last half of the month. The brisk sales pace leading up to the end of August may very well continue into September."
There were 2,490 active listings for sale on the Victoria Real Estate Board Multiple Listing Service(r) at the end of August 2023, an increase of 2.9 per cent compared to the previous month of July and a 16.5 per cent increase from the 2,137 active listings for sale at the end of August 2022.
"The focus in our market and by all levels of government needs to be on opening up more supply," Sol notes. "Our inventory levels, though up from last year, are still too low to support a well-balanced market. A decade ago, we saw over 5,000 active listings in August. Another important piece of supply is the housing mix that is available. Most residential properties for sale in our market last month were single family homes - this type of property is generally at the top price point. Missing middle homes, such as townhomes and condos represented only 37.1% of listings for sale. Townhomes, which in my experience are what a lot of families hope to purchase, represented only 9.8% of the residential properties for sale. This imbalance in the mix of housing options means there is the potential for more price pressure on these types of properties because demand is concentrated at more attainable price points."
The Multiple Listing Service(r) Home Price Index benchmark value for a single family home in the Victoria Core in August 2022 was $1,327,700. The benchmark value for the same home in August 2023 decreased by 0.3 per cent to $1,323,900, which is up from July's value of $1,318,800. The MLS(r) HPI benchmark value for a condominium in the Victoria Core area in August 2022 was $583,700, while the benchmark value for the same condominium in August 2023 decreased by 0.3 per cent to $582,000, which is up from the July value of $578,000.