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November Sales: Easing Off?


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The Westmount real estate market might have taken a tiny respite in November, but that hardly makes up for the incredible climb we have seen in both prices and mark-ups this year, spurred by the growth in Montreal’s and North America’s economy. The adjusted value of Westmount’s “typical” house remained close to $1.9 million for the third month in a row and in fact the raw average price of ten sales was over $2 million, though the average mark-up over valuation dipped by 1 percent. The reason for the high average price is very simple: three of the ten sales were for more than $2 million and as high as $4,900,000. Another sale posted last month but negotiated in October was for $5,280,000, and the second-highest price in November was $4,400,000, so it appears that the big prices are becoming more acceptable. Both of the $4 million-plus sales took more than a year to sell, pulling the average time on the market up to 125 days

On the low side were two sales under $1 million with the lowest price at $820,000. Of the ten November sales, only two involved mark-downs as much as 4.4 percent. Biggest mark-up in November was 56.8 percent, which helped boost the average mark-up to 20.9 percent.

Volume is high, too; though the 172 Westmount sales posted so far this year is less than the 187 year-to-date last year, that figure is higher than for any other year since 2007. Going back to 1986, the average annual volume is 170 one- and two-family sales, so already this year’s volume is above average for the year with the December list still to come.

Only one condominium sale was posted in November (along with a co-op apartment at 2 Westmount Square) but along with five sales in October, the average fourth-quarter price topped the $1 million mark and the average mark-up over valuation was almost 17 percent, up from 12.5 percent in the third quarter and 5.1 percent in the second quarter of the year. Of the six fourth-quarter sales, except for one flat in a former triplex on St. Antoine St. ($385,000), the lowest price for a condo was $865,000, and sale prices went up as high as $1,561,000 for a unit in Château Westmount Square, 4175 St. Catherine St. West. So while the average mark-up of 17 percent is not quite as high as the average 21-22 percent for one- and two-family houses in recent months, certainly the condo market is holding its own against the booming home market.

There was one home sale posted in each of the various adjacent-Westmount districts, except two in the Trafalgar-Daulac area where the average price for the year is just under $1.6 million, playing second-fiddle to the $1.837 million average in the “Golden Square Mile” on the east side of Atwater Ave. The Westmount-adjacent section of Côte des Neiges has an average sale price just over $1 million while the similar section of Notre Dame de Grâce is just under $1 million, as is the Shaughnessy Village sector (though there have only been four home sales there so far this year, so the statistic is weak).

At last check there were only 50 houses listed by agents for sale in Westmount, by far the lowest number of listings in the past two years; in January 2016 there were 117 houses on the market. Of the 50, only two are asking less than $1 million while 14 are asking more than $4 million. Two years ago there were 13 properties asking less than $1 million compared to 15 asking more than $4 million, clear proof that the bottom end of the market is pretty much drained now, though there’s still plenty of opportunity at the top end of the range,

The figures show 36 houses have been rented in Westmount this year and another 28 are available for rent. Of the 36, six are for rates of $10,000 and higher per month, while another four are listed at more than that amount.

Posted by andy Posted in: Monthly Analysis No Comments » November 2017