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Blog Entries in Market Overview

There is a lot going on right now. The COVID-19 Pandemic, which has been front and centre in the news and in all our lives for over a year and a half now, just won’t go away. New infection numbers are on the rise, alarmingly so when you consider the number of people who have been vaccinated. And this spike in infections holds true across the country and around the globe, giving rise to talk about a fourth wave and a possible renewed lockdown.

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We’ve been tracking the market pretty closely month by month, especially since the brisk run we saw in 2017, the impact of the Government imposed foreign buyers spec. tax and mortgage stress test in the Spring of 2017, then the unprecedented world-wide pandemic commencing in the Spring of 2020. All these have had an impact to be sure. What we want to do, if we can, is try to examine market fluctuations in the light of these events, factoring in normal seasonal changes and see if we can see patterns and trends. The idea is to get an overview as to how the market has responded to date and see if we can get a handle perhaps on where it is going in the future.

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Statistics show a slight decrease in both sales numbers and in average prices in May as compared to April, across Niagara.

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It’s an interesting market at the moment. For the first couple months of this year we were extremely short on inventory. That coupled with a substantial rise in prices almost daily meant that there was very much a feeding frenzy among buyers.

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Well, it’s been exactly one year now that we have been living under the cloud of COVID-19. What kind of a year has it been? Early in the year with the shadow of a pandemic on the horizon the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) predicted a dismal year ahead for real estate in Canada with sales drastically reduced and prices dropping by 10% - 15%. I am happy to report that they were wrong!

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If there were any questions or doubts about whether the market would regain its hectic pace after the Christmas break, those doubts were quickly dissolved with the arrival of the sales figures for the month of January 2021.

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The sales figures are in for December and they are truly remarkable, both in number of units sold and also in average sale price across Niagara. Normally we would see a significant slowdown in sales activity over the month of December. Things really slow by mid December and then pretty well shut down over the Christmas season. And while sales did definitely slow in December when compared to the previous month, that slowdown was not nearly as drastic as one might expect. Across the region we saw a total of 591 sales recorded in December. When compared to the 739 registered in November, that represents a reduction of 148 units or 20.03%. However, when we compare it to December 2019 where 375 sales were recorded, we see this years December sales are actually up by 57.6% year over year. That is truly remarkable. And it speaks to the underlying strength in the marketplace and the pent up demand that continues to drive the market upward.

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