Home sales in urban Kingston are down over 23 per cent in the first quarter of 2012 compared to the same period last year, while the number of listings that failed to sell is up 40 per cent.
This sluggish start to the city's real estate market might be a sign that a predicted 10 per cent decline in home values has begun, but the cold spring, and the federal government's tightening of mortgage requirements, hasn’t helped either.
Average prices in urban Kingston have retreated two per cent in the first three months of this year, compared to the first quarter of 2012. Only 38 per cent of listings have sold, compared to a more normal level of 48 per cent last year at this time.
Last spring a TD economist’s report said Ontario real estate was overvalued by 10 per cent, and due for a correction. Is it coming?
But take heart, home sellers. The market is still picking up steam. You just have to price smartly according to market conditions, and you can still sell for a good price.
Some areas of Kingston have slowed considerably more than the average, but there have also been a few hot spots.
The Williamsville/Inner Harbour/Kingscourt area north of Princess, in part due to fewer listings so far this year, has seen an 18 per cent bounce in prices compared to 2012’s first quarter. Average home price there currently sits at $259,000.
Prices in Strathcona Park, which also traditionally has few listings, have risen 13 per cent based on just seven sales so far.
Northeast Kingston - the Rideau Heights/Markers Acres area - with just over one per cent rise in prices, was the only other area of urban Kingston that avoided a price drop.
The highest drops ranged from 12 per cent in Westwoods, 10 per cent in southwest Kingston, eight per cent in Portsmouth District, and six to seven per cent in most other areas of west-central Kingston. East Kingston dropped almost five per cent.
Prices faired a little better in Cat Woods and up behind Rona (down two points), due mainly to pricier new builds, while the prime south-of-Princess Queen’s area retreated 3.5 per cent. Amherstview prices also came down three per cent.
For more specifics or questions about how the market is faring in your neighborhood, please give me a call.
Note: Figures are based are sales and listing data for single family homes in the built-up urban areas of Kingston south of 401, including Amherstview. Properties east of the Cataraqui River flanking Highway 2 are excluded due to historical volatility.