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October Sales: Shaky but Solid

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Real estate agents in Westmount are worried about the fall market, but in fact the numbers are stronger than the agents might expect, as 11 one- and two-family sales in October were negotiated, compared with 14 in each of the previous two Octobers. Prices held, as well, with the average markup over municipal evaluation at 31 percent and no sales recorded under the tax value.

The only worrying aspect is that only one of the sales was above $1,5 million, and five of the 11 sales were less than $1 million, so the raw average price was just over $1.2 million. Still, the “typical” Westmount house with a valuation of $1,201,709 would be selling for about $1,500,000, basically unchanged since February. The average days-on-market was 64, just about exactly the same as in September and in fact those two statistics are the best since October last year; only three of the 11 houses sold this October were on the market longer than 100 days.

Lowest price in October was $685,000 for a house on Somerville Avenue, while a totally-renovated house on Argyle Avenue brought $2,608,000, but the range within those two extremes was $840,000 to $1,475,000. The lowest markup was 9 percent and the highest was 61 percent; both higher than they had been in any month since June.

More and more houses are coming on the market asking $3 million and higher — there were 38 at last count — while only five have sold this year (through the MLS system), and none since April. So the top of the market is very shaky, even shakier since the provincial election, but the rest of it appears to have maintained its strength.

Only one condominium sold in October, starting the fourth quarter of 2012, so it is virtually impossible to make any statistics around it. The only thing that can be said is that the average price of condos sold this year is only slightly higher than last year, and the average markup for the year is almost exactly the same as last year.

Only one single-family house in adjacent-Westmount — on Grey Avenue — sold in October, along with a triplex on Seymour Street.

Last November recorded 18 transactions in Westmount and the average over the past dozen years is 15, so the volume in the coming month will be a good indication of the strength of the market heading into next year.

Posted by andy Posted in: Monthly Analysis No Comments » October 2012