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October MLS Sales Down Less Than 3%


With two months to go, it is too close to call whether this year's sales activity can eke out a victory over 2015.  The lead has changed a few times when comparing sales activity between 2015 and 2014.  At present, 2014 regains the lead with a total of 11,391 versus 11,382 sales this year.  Last year was Winnipeg Realtors fifth highest sales year recorded at over 12,800 sales.  It was a good year and only less than 2% off the best year in 2007.


On the other hand, MLS dollar volume continues to set new records every year even if sales fall short of previous years.  2015 is no different.  Its $3.1 billion in MLS sales transactions activity is up 2% over 2014.  Listings entered on the MLS for the first ten months are 22,400, an 8% increase over 2014.


October MLS sales of 1,084 represent a decrease of less than 3% from October 2014 while dollar volume of $283 million dropped a similar percentage to last October.  New listings of over 1,800 in October were slightly more than what came on the market in October 2014.


"When you see some of the mixed sales results across the country, such as Calgary's sales being well off last year's activity, I am pleased to say Winnipeg is holding its own," said David MacKenzie, president of Winnipeg Realtors.  "We should appreciate our economic fundamentals remain solid and this should give us reason to see us finish off well this year and feel confident going into 2016.  Both Manitoba's employment and population have increased in the first nine months."


In CMHC's most recent Fall 2015 Housing Outlook for Winnipeg and its surrounding rural municipalities, it indicated:


"Elevated levels of net migration will continue to have a positive impact on housing demand as new immigrants make their way into homeownership.  Adding to demand is a turnaround in employment in 2015 after the losses experienced in 2014.  Gains in full time jobs, particularly among workers aged 25 to 44 who tend to be first time buyers and favour housing at the lower price points, will support resale growth."


One area Winnipeg Realtors will need to keep monitoring is the higher than usual supply of listings as it moves into slower months of sales activity.  Heading into November there are over 2,700 residential-detached properties and around 800 condos available for sale.  In the second quarter where more brisk sales activity occurs, residential-detached active listings were as high as 3,301 while condos peaked at 983.


"Buyers are in an enviable position to take advantage of plentiful choice of listings in all of our MLS property types," said MacKenzie.  "You need to be talking to a Realtor, the MLS market expert, on what will best fit your needs according to your particular preferences and qualifications to meet financial obligations for the property you desire."


A sign of a far more balanced market with healthy competition for buyers is only 6% of all residential-detached or single family homes sold at list price in October while 82% went for below and 12% went for above list price.  Nevertheless, the total residential-detached sales dollar volume in October represented 97% of the total dollar volume worth of listings sold.


The most active priced range in October for residential-detached sales was $250,000-$299,999 followed by the $200,000-$249,999 and $150,000-$199,999.  Average days on market for residential-detached sales was 35 days, one day faster than October 2014.  The highest priced residential-detached sale was $1,125,000.  The least expensive sale was $18,000.


The busiest condo price ranges were the $250,000-$299,999 and the $150,000-$199,999 followed by the $200,000-$249,999.  Average days on market for condo sales was 47 days, a week off pace set in October 2014.  The highest priced condo sale was $599,900 and the lowest priced sale was $88,000. 


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