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First Quarter MLS Sales Up 8%

Winnipeg Realtors MLS market got off to a good start in 2016 with the first three months showing an 8% increase in sales over the same period a year ago.  Helping make this result possible was a stellar March 2016 performance in which sales went up 5% over last March.  There were 1,058 sales in March and 2,445 in the first quarter.


Owing to a new listings drop of nearly 9% in combination with strong sales, the active inventory at the end of March experienced a slight decrease from 2015.  This is the exact opposite of what has been happening the last few years as the number of active listings has been spiking upward significantly.  The overall MLS market, as a result, is in balanced market conditions with four months of inventory.


When you breakdown the two main property types of residential-detached and condos, a clear difference emerges.  Based on March sales activity, the 2,259 residential-detached listings existing at the end of March would last three months if no other listings were to come onto the market while the 813 condo listings would be closer to five months.


"It is really important for buyers and sellers in any local market to understand one size does not fit all," said Stewart Elston, president of Winnipeg Realtors.


"You can have varying degrees of competitive market forces (eg. supply and demand) at play between and within the many MLS property types.  In evaluating your property's salability, some questions need to be asked.  What price range does the property fall in?  What city neighbourhood or rural municipality is it located?  What attributes does it have in comparison to similar sized properties?  Are they well maintained and upgraded if necessary?


"This is why we always strongly advise and even insist you consult with a Realtor -- a real estate expert -- to give you the proper advice and counsel on how the current market applies to your own particular situation."


Another good example of markets performing differently within the region it encompasses is with regard to residential-detached property inventory.   After three months of sales activity the results show neighbourhoods, such as St Boniface, Norwood, River Heights, East Fort Garry and Richmond West, have either sold out or nearly sold all of the listings which have come onto the market this year.  Close behind with some very high conversions of listings to sales are Crestview, Fort Rouge, Fort Richmond and Linden Woods.


With the entire market region averaging 51% of residential-detached listings being sold by the end of March the rest tend to be all over the map.  This means many neighbourhoods still have a higher percentage of conversions of listings to sales but lots of them, including rural municipalities, fall under the market region average.


"Just like Vanoucver is not the same as Calgary or Toronto, neither do our local neighbourhoods behave the same way," said Elston.


There are two market developments worth noting as we head into the busiest quarter of our real estate market.


Condo sales have rebounded from a poor first quarter last year.  The 328 sales recorded so far are up 15% over the same period in 2015 and 8% over the 10 year average.  March condo sales of 167 increased 25% over March 2015 and 20% over the 10 year monthly average.


The other one is the 19% increase in residential-detached sales over $300,000 this first quarter compared to the same period in 2015.  As a result, the year to date average residential-detached sales price is $300,844, a 6% increase in comparison to first quarter 2015.


The most active price range for residential-detached sales in March was from $250,000 to $299,999 with 22% of total sales.  Deadlocked in second place at 15% each were the $200,000 to $249,999 and the $300,000 to $349,999 price ranges.  The $400,000 to $449,999 price  range equalled the more active $200,000-$249,999 price range for having the lowest number of days to sell on the market at only 21 days.  the average number of days on market to sell a home in March was 31 days, 3 days slower than March 2015.


The most active price range for condos in March was from $150,000-$199,999 at 34%.  Second most active was from $200,000-$249,999 at 20%.  Another 14% sold from $100,000-$149,999.  The average days on market to sell a condo in March was 46 days, one day slower than March 2015. 


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