Sales in April were well below last year’s figures as just 824 properties changed hands, versus 1,116 in April 2021.
Greater Victoria’s real estate market, held back by low inventory, increasing interest rates and some buyer fatigue, is off to a slow start at what is usually its busiest time of year.
Numbers released Monday by the Victoria Real Estate Board showed sales in April were well below last year’s figures as just 824 properties changed hands, versus 1,116 in April 2021.
Board president Karen Dinnie-Smyth said there’s nothing surprising in the statistics given the headwinds facing the market.
“Borrowing costs, affordability erosion, construction constraints, general economic uncertainty, all of it comes into play,” she said. “It’s a combination of everything. I mean, we’re often used to seeing interest rates just go up and that’s one thing on its own, but when you add all of those compounding factors, plus the lack of inventory, it’s at a point where it’s getting more difficult for people to qualify.”
Dinnie-Smyth said it’s a little surprising that it happened in April. “Activity traditionally peaks over the course of the spring, and this year we have seen a gradual softening of the market,” she said.
But there’s nothing soft about home prices. They continued to rise in April.
The benchmark value for a single-family home in the region was $1.18 million in April, up from $1.14 million in March and well above the $903,600 mark set in April 2021.
The benchmark value for a condominium in the region last month was $643,000, up from $631,100 in March and $508,900 at the same time last year.
The benchmark value for a townhouse in April hit $808,600, up from $791,700 in March and $653,300 last year.
There was some positive movement when it comes to adding inventory to the marketplace, as the board’s figures show there were 1,365 active listings available at the end of April, up from 1,063 in March but still below last April’s 1,454