The Victoria Real Estate Board MLS stats are out for December. The news is mixed.
The prices show a spike upwards for single family houses but a large drop for condos. The median price for houses rose dramatically, which means the bottom end of the market is moving less than the top end of the market. The relatively low number of sales in December means the data can be moved a lot be a few sales.
Overall the sales volumes for December were low for December. In the last seven years one would normally expect 195 sales of single family homes in December, last December it was 162 or 83% of an average year.
11.1% of the single family homes sold in the region in December sold in Oak Bay, in November this was 4.3% of all single family home sales. Of the total value of sales, Oak Bay was 16.5% in December and 5.2% in November. This means that Oak Bay was a much bigger factor in Decembers numbers than it normally is. Factoring out Oak Bay in December reduces the average price to $607,500, a drop of close to $40,000. Doing the same in November has a much smaller impact with the average going from $636,600 to $632,800. Factoring out the Oak Bay numbers means the region had an almost 5% drop in prices in December for single family homes.
Even with the low number of sales, twice as many properties came onto the market as sold. The December 2010 inventory is just under 3300, about 750 more than December 2009. This is the second highest inventory for a December in the last decade. Total sales in 2010 were below 2009 and 2008 numbers.
All in all there is no evidence I can see of a crash in the market, but on the other hand there is nothing in the numbers that tell me I should be optimistic about prices in 2011