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March Sales: Ready for Spring

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The Westmount real estate market in March consolidated the gains made in the previous month and volume remained very strong for the second month in a row, showing that buyers are in a hurry to snap up local properties before the market gets too strong.

News out of Vancouver and Toronto that real estate prices have become saturated and the bubble, which the Harper government had tried so hard to deflate, continued unabated, apparently has buyers voraciously grabbing up whatever they can before the spring market pushes Westmount prices into the stratosphere.

Only one of the 14 sales reported (so far) for March was over $2 million, but then again only one was less than $1 million. We noted recently that the number of sales $3 million and higher was increasing last year; so far this year only one sale has been posted in that category (in January), but that doesn’t mean there is no interest in the $3 million-plus houses; there is plenty of talk among agents of deals brewing now.

The 14 one- and two-family sales in the March list include six which went below valuation (of interest, those six had been on the market an average 280 days or more than nine months, while the other eight took an average 94 days to sell). While prices slid slightly, the sharp rise in the February market was reinforced by March’s prices. We also found five new sales posted for February, bringing that month’s volume to 21, the same as it was in 2012 but otherwise the highest volume for February since 1999.

Only two new condo sales were posted in March, bringing the total for the first quarter of 2016 to eight with an average markup of only two percent, four above valuation and four below valuation and a range from $295,000 to $1,150,000. It is safe to say the condo market is not as hot as the single-family market, though it may catch up eventually.

And while Westmount absorbed 14 sales in March to kick off the spring season, adjacent-Westmount was almost as busy with nine sales: three just north of Westmount, two just to the west, two just to the east and two more downtown. Five of the nine went for more than $1 million and the rest were all over $800,000, an indication those prices are beginning to catch up to Westmount levels.

Posted by andy March 2016

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