If you’re a home seller in Kingston, you’re facing a lot of competition, but sales are up somewhat from last year and prices are at least holding.
Average prices in the city are about one per cent higher than the first five months of last year – nothing really after factoring in inflation but at staying out of negative territory.
It’s the sedate pace of sales that makes it tough to sell. The bigger issue is that so far only 43 per cent of single family properties listed this year have sold, and this number has been dropping steadily for the past five years.
High listing numbers are expected to continue to be an issue for the Kingston market for some time, driven in part by a demographic bulge of older folks giving up housekeeping.
The average sale in Kingston brings about 97.5 per cent of list price. But the average list price of listings that end up not selling is close to 14 per cent higher than successful listing prices which tells you just how significant the problem of overpricing is in the market.
Homes are selling faster in the Williamsville/Inner Harbour/Kingscourt neighborhoods this spring than anywhere else in Kingston. Average number of days on the market is 29, well under the average of 44 for the city.
The MICROMARKET BREAKDOWN
East Kingston – Always a reliably appreciating neighborhood until last year. It’s a familiar story here and in many neighborhoods – numerous listings are holding prices down. Twelve month average hasn’t moved. Fewer military postings also a factor this year. Average sale price is $340,000
Downtown/Queen’s Area – Single family home prices are down two per cent in the past 12 months. This area can be volatile depending on what mood the investors are in. And with hundreds of new student apartment units being built in the next few years, investor demand for houses may be cooling.
Williamsville/Inner Harbour – Quirky mixed old housing stock alternately charming and challenging for buyers, but people love the walkable downtown locations, and steadily invest in their homes here. Average prices have gone up steadily here despite the slow market, in part due to many substantial renovations. Current average price is just under $242,000 - up 4.5 per cent in the past two years.
North Kingston – More pleasant streets in this central neighborhood than it gets credit for. Quick transit to downtown and walk to many stores. Prices inching up slightly over past 12 months, and this trend will likely hold or increase as major new projects come to the neighborhood – the new high school complex and the community centre.
Midtown – Strathcona Park, Polson Park, Calvin Park, Portsmouth
Demographic bulge is a big factor in these mid-town 1960s neighborhoods with many longtime homeowners moving on. Many homes are very dated and this keeps prices reasonable. Especially strong demand and rising prices in central and pleasantly self-contained Strathcona Park with sales and listings up. A good area for flippers. People starting to pay a premium for renovated homes here. The area had its first sale over $500,000 this spring. Average price currently sits at $298,000.
Southwest (South of Bath Rd, West of Days Rd, including Reddendale) – Varied housing stock in this area, from modest post-war builds to larger newer homes further west. Listings have increased significantly, and put downward pressure on sale prices. Current average price $315,000
East of Gardiners Rd (Neighborhoods Accessed by Centennial Drive south of Princess)
Many pleasant neighborhoods and a wide price range in these neighborhoods. Somewhat overlooked by many buyers this year with sales and prices down. Worth watching for good buys this year. Average price is currently $259,000
South of Taylor Kidd
Substantial jump in listing numbers has brought sale prices down by more than three per cent in the past 12 months. Always good deals here. Rolling terrain creates so many pleasant streets. Mostly late 60s-70s builds, mostly moderate sizes. Some streets with larger homes. Steady prices. Good value for money here. Average price $268,000
North of Taylor Kidd
Generally larger housing stock here, in the midst of successful schools, but a big jump in sale listings has brought prices down four per cent in the past 12 months. Current average price $316,000
City North West
A blend of housing mostly under 20 years old, plus new and newer builds, and ongoing residential development. Average price here is $334,000, with buoyancy in prices due to the new home industry. Prices can flatten here, and did last year – but builders’ prices never go down. The increases just slow down. And they’re increasing again in recent months.
Amherstview is a popular choice for Kingston commuters.
In its still-growing new neighborhoods, many young families have been attracted by Amherstview’s roomier lots and hillside lake views. New home prices look pretty much the same in Amherstview as Kingston, but the lot is 40 feet instead of the 32 you would usually get in Kingston. Average price is $315,000 and market remains stable.
Always lots more to say, but those are the highlights.
Questions always welcome!