Kitchener-Waterloo Real Estate Market Update July 2018

Kitchener-Waterloo Real Estate Market Update 
Home sales down Home sales down in June but prices were up.

June home sales through the Multiple Listing System (MLS® System) of the Kitchener-Waterloo Association of REALTORS® (KWAR) were down 12.8 per cent compared to last month and down 15.6 per cent compared to last year’s June which was the second highest on record.

A total of 604 residential properties sold in June compared to 716 the same time last year. On a year-to-date basis there have been 3,096 home sales during the first half of the year, a decrease of 19.1 per cent.

“After two consecutive years of extraordinary activity where we saw home sales exceeding 700 units in June, some normality has returned to the market,” says Tony Schmidt, KWAR President. “The approximately 600 units that sold last month is in line with the ten-year average for June.”

Residential sales in June included 365 detached (down 21.2 per cent compared to June 2017), and 151 condominium units (up 6.3 per cent) which includes any property regardless of style (i.e. semis, townhomes, apartment, detached etc.). Sales also included 38 semi-detached homes (down 29.6 per cent) and 43 freehold townhouses (down 15.7 per cent).

The average sale price of all residential properties sold in June increased 5.2 per cent to $489,584 compared to the same month a year ago. Detached homes sold for an average price of $575,003 an increase of 7 per cent compared to June of last year. During this same period, the average sale price for an apartment style condominium was $314,180, an increase of 13.2 per cent. Townhomes and semis sold for an average of $378,562 (up 10.8 per cent) and $391,830 (up 2.9 per cent) respectively.

The median price of all residential properties sold last month was up 5.9 per cent compared to June of last year at $450,000, and the median price of a detached home during the same period increased 9.5 per cent to $520,000. The average days it took to sell a home in June was 22 days, compared to 16 days in June 2017.

REALTORS® listed 850 residential properties in K-W and area last month, down 21.5 per cent compared to June of 2017, but fairly close to the historical (2007-2016) average of 859. The number of active residential listings on the KWAR’s MLS® System to the end of June totalled 1,030, which is 11 per cent higher than June of last year but still significantly below the historical (2007-2016) ten-year average of 1,728 listings for June.

“This is a good time to sell as demand remains strong and very competitive within some price ranges,” reports Schmidt. “The mortgage stress-test is certainly impacting some buyers which has made some price ranges of homes even more competitive.”

“Of course, this is also a great time to buy in Waterloo Region. I think we’ve been traditionally a little undervalued and even with the past two years of feverish activity, Waterloo Region remains an attractive area to live and homes here will remain a good investment over the long-haul. Either way, Buyers are wise to avail themselves of a REALTOR® to help them navigate local market conditions and ensure the most successful outcome.”
TD Kitchener Blues Festival 
Blues festival Don’t miss the incredible lineup at the Kitchener Blues Festival!

Our region hosts the largest Blues festival of its kind in Canada, and it’s returning to downtown Kitchener this August to celebrate its 18th year!

The Kitchener Blues Festival features multiple acts throughout the downtown core between Thursday, August 9th and Sunday, August 12th.

This family-friendly, non-profit festival presents a blend of local, provincial, national and international blues artists including great names such as Sass Jordan, Ruthie Foster, Lee Aaron, Cecille Doo-Kingue, Chris Robinson Brotherhood, Robert Gordon with Chris Spedding, and Jack de Keyzer, to name just a few.

The only ticketed event is a fundraising concert that kicks off the festival on Thursday, August 9th which features Rik Emmett and Resolution9 along with Jonny Lang. Hope to see you there!
How to Avoid Buyer's Remorse 
A bit of advanced planning will help you avoid buyer’s remorse.

Buying a home can be an emotional roller coaster which is why it's so easy to make mistakes. Here are a few common buyer blunders to be aware of:

  1. Not Thinking Ahead - If you’re hoping to start a family in your new home one day, it pays to consider features like local parks and school zones.

  2. Buying a Home that's too Expensive - Buyers who overextend themselves are often forced to sell at a loss. Avoid temptation by only viewing homes that are in your price range.

  3. Bad Location, Bad Location, Bad Location - Determining the location that best suits your lifestyle is critical so consider proximity to public transit, schools and other amenities.

  4. Choosing the Wrong Home - Make a list of all the features that are essential to you. It's easy to be taken in by curb appeal, but walk away if it lacks anything that you’re unable to live without.

  5. Uninspected Circumstances - Just because a house looks solid doesn't mean all is well behind the scenes. Making an offer conditional on a home inspection will help eliminate any regrets.

  6. Acting too Slowly - The home you fall in love with could be gone tomorrow if you wait too long. Do your research ahead of time so you'll have the confidence to act swiftly when the time comes.

  7. Not Using an Agent - It's important to have an agent to help you make crucial decisions, negotiate the offer and explain the conditions in order to have a positive experience and avoid buyer’s remorse.

Buying a home can be an extremely emotional process so it's important to stay grounded in order to avoid errors that could cause regret. If you conduct your research ahead of time and are well aware of your wants and needs you'll be able to move forward with confidence and peace of mind. If you ever have any questions about real estate, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.
There's No Place Like Home 
Exploring your local area can be just as much fun as going away!

When you go on vacation, not only do you have to pack and plan but you also have to arrange for someone to collect your mail and look after your pets.

Gas prices also take a huge toll on vacation budgets so this year, consider unwinding locally with a staycation! Here are a few ideas:

  1. Be a Tourist - Contact your local tourist board so you can plan a trip as if you were visiting your area for the very first time.

  2. Take a Hike - Check out a couple of local community trails that you’ve never been on before.  Enjoy a hike, bike ride, picnic or geocaching experience.

  3. Overnighter - Head out to an unfamiliar place an hour or so from home to experience a true getaway.  Book a night at a campground to really get into the spirit!

  4. Dine Out - Visit a few restaurants that you've been meaning to check out and research  specials such as happy hours or 2 for 1 promotions so you can plan around the deals!

  5. Kids Stuff - Involve your kids by letting them each pick a new attraction to visit. Nearby amusement parks, museums and summer festivals offer endless hours of fun.

Staying home and seeing your area through the eyes of a tourist will give you a new appreciation of where you live. Not only will you save money but you'll also reduce your carbon footprint while supporting the local economy. Best of all, you won't need a vacation after your vacation!
Natural Mosquito Repellents 
A few natural alternatives for all you mosquito magnets out there!

It’s so unfair :(  Whenever the weather turns nice, we have to lather ourselves in chemicals so we don’t get chased inside by swarms of mosquitoes. Here are a few natural solutions to consider:

  1. Go Natural - Make homemade sprays and lotions with essential oils such as lemon eucalyptus, lavender, mint or tea tree oils.

  2. Not on My Watch - Eliminate breeding places by covering or flipping over backyard bowls, buckets, bird baths or any other spot where there’s stagnant water.

  3. Get your Garden On - Plant citronella, geranium, eucalyptus, rosemary, catnip and lavender in both your garden and in pots as they all help repel the little bloodsuckers.

  4. Gone Batty - Bats eat thousands of mosquitoes each night so attracting them to your yard by installing a few bat boxes is a great way to defend against skeeters.

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