Last update Sep 6, 2023, at 11:15 a.m.
The real estate market in Durham Region is starting September with conditions that still favour sellers in most (but not all) price points and locations, even though there are signs that the market has relaxed. Inventory levels have reached a high point for the past year, and multiple offer situations are receding.
Inventory has risen over the last several weeks, and sales volume that had tapered off for the summer shows signs of rebounding. We are starting to see stats that show things improving for buyers, though an increase in sales volume may put things back in seller territory.
Mortgage rates are back on the rise recently, making pre-approval (and rate lock) very important for buyers who haven’t purchased yet.
Multiple offer situations are still commonplace in low to mid-price ranges, as buyers scramble to compete for homes within their budgets.
Supply is low to moderate, with 2.0 months of inventory (MOI) for the entire region, with higher levels in some north Durham communities. (This means that at the current pace of sales, with no new listings, all inventory would be sold within this time frame).
We haven't seen a true buyer's market across Durham Region since 2008, as shown in the chart below. In December of that year, months of inventory spiked to 9.
In August, transactions reported had selling prices averaging 930,852 in Durham Region, with the average property selling at 103.0% of list price (SP/LP). This is a 3.2% decrease from last month and a 1.1% increase from last year's period.
Durham home prices are still the most affordable in the entire GTA.
Here is a look at average detached home selling prices each day over the past 3 months: The trend was showing prices climbing at a healthy pace over the first several months of the year, and now is turning lower.
The average selling price of detached homes is summarized in the following map.
Townhouse sale prices averaged close to 850,000 across the region.
Condo prices varied widely across the GTA, as shown in the following map:
Sale prices are still averaging above list prices in Durham. The following chart shows the trend - another key indicator of why the market had slowed over the last year and had picked up in early 2023.
As of late, many listings at low to middle price points are posted with offer dates, where no offers will be considered until that date. This is intended to put pressure on buyers (given the shortage of listings) and generate multiple offers.
Also, SPLP has averaged above the 100% mark, indicating that most homes sell above their list price. This shows that a common scenario is for there to be more than one offer on properties, signalling that bidding situations are still in the mix - just not with the same intensity as earlier in the year.
Days on market (DOM) averaged 15 days. DOM is the number of days it takes for a property to be sold firm, or without any remaining conditions.
This figure had dropped substantially in the spring and has been higher over the summer.
Should new listings rise at a pace that is faster than current sales, then there would be more inventory for the pool of buyers to choose from, which will have the effect of reducing the sale price to list price ratio, then months of inventory stat, which leans the market closer to a balanced market.
Active listings had dropped in the winter months. They have risen to the highest levels since 2020, though sales have been strong enough to keep inventory levels low compared to the pace of sales.
It also makes all the steps taken to compete among selling properties more critical. When listings were more scarce, (including now but at lower price points) buyers were compelled to reduce expectations on location, property condition, etc. They also will have pressure in competitive situations to remove conditions on their offers.
The sales rate has increased by 2.2% compared to last month and is down 1.6% compared to last year, with a current pace of 25.4 units sold per day. There were 776 units sold in August.
The following chart shows the daily sales volume for the past 3 months.
Here are the figures for each community in Durham Region:
Buyers will still find multiple offer situations in many locations and price ranges, particularly at lower price points. They are highly advised to get prepared - have their mortgage preapproval ready before looking at homes, and be prepared to view homes via photos and virtual tours as soon as they reach the market. With interest rates being volatile, and mortgage qualification rules under review, locking in a rate is more important than ever. Speak with your agent to discuss the process to move forward.
Sellers should be considering getting on the market now or soon, and working with their agent to set their home apart from competitive listings while reaching the widest possible audience.
If you are interested in seeing values for an area not shown or are interested in other figures, please comment below or contact me. As always, give me a call anytime if you would like to discuss this further without any obligation.
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About the Author
John Owen, Broker, RE/MAX Impact
John is an award-winning broker with RE/MAX Impact Realty in Courtice, ON, and was their number one agent in GCI for 2022.
Office - 905-240-6777
Email - email@example.com