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Record low real-estate inventory, stabilized pricing and bidding wars in store for Victoria

Home re-sale inventory throughout southern Vancouver Island is stretched thin as high demand for Victoria real-estate keeps buyers hunting.

Record low real-estate inventory, stabilized pricing and bidding wars in store for Victoria

Re-sale housing inventory on southern Vancouver Island is at its lowest level since record-keeping began some 20 years ago, according to the latest figures released by the Victoria Real-Estate Board.

A total of 1,948 properties are currently listed on the Multiple Listings Service, a drop of nearly 40% from this time last year.

“We’re currently seeing the lowest re-sale inventory in decades, and for sure the lowest since the real-estate board started tracking the data in 1996,” says REALTOR® Marko Juras of Victorias’ Fair Realty.

Last October some 3,200 properties were on the market. In 2014 inventory stood at around 4,000 properties, and a year earlier over 4,300 homes were available.

The relatively sudden decrease in listings has created a perfect storm for bidding wars pitting buyers-versus-buyers with fortunate homeowners walking away with fuller pockets.

“With inventory being as tight as it is, in fact I would call it extremely tight, we’re going to continue seeing multiple bid situations that have the potential to really drive up prices on sought after properties,” Juras said, adding that a recent sale of a Scott Street home in Victoria’s Oaklands neighbourhood shot past the original asking price of $460,000 to well in excess of $600,000.

Yet as limited inventory props up real-estate values and fuels competition among buyers, average and median prices appear to have reached their ceiling, Juras says.

“We’re no longer seeing these region-wide month-over-month jumps in prices like we were earlier this year. Yes, we have bidding wars on key properties, but the upswing in average values has calmed and family home pricing appears fairly stable at around $650,000. This is an indicator that that market has reached a point where affordability has finally come into play and price-wise buyers have dug in their heels."

Juras believes inventory throughout the remainder of the year is expected to fall even further, with some estimates indicating 1,600 properties or lower, while prices will remain stable as a new valuation plateau is established throughout the region. C

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