Monday May 2, 2022 | LANGFORD, BC
by Mary P Brooke | Island Social Trends
The fast-growing areas of Langford, Colwood and Sooke saw robust housing sales in April. Collectively, those three municipal areas can be viewed as ‘the west shore’ for real estate purposes (with a broader view to include View Royal, Highlands and Metchosin).
The average sale prices of single-family homes in Langford, Colwood and Sooke in April 2022 together blend to an average sale price of $1,149,050. For townhomes/row houses the blended average is $856,674. The blended average for condos is $599,374.
There is much mention of affordability when it comes to home-buying anymore. Clearly, ownership of a home has become an investment tool beyond any relevance to actual earning ability. The dream of home-ownership is reportedly being left behind by especially younger Canadians who are choosing instead to rent and put their investments elsewhere.
Sales possibly impacted by interest rates:
Even though the Victoria Real Estate Board (VREB) shows 26.2 percent fewer overall property types having sold this April (824 units) compared to in April 2021 (and a 1.1 percent decrease from the month before, i.e. March 2022), the comparison requires context. Sales of condominiums were down 20.8 percent from April 2021 (262 units sold). Sales of single family homes decreased 28.5 percent from April 2021 (403 sold).
The spring of 2021 was still within the COVID house-buying wave (from spring 2020 to summer 2021) and interest rates were still near rock-bottom. This year interest rates have increased; the Bank of Canada doubled their benchmark rate to 0.50 last month, and several more increases have been hinted at for the next year as a way to deal with inflationary impacts on the economy.
Arguably, the housing sales profile is stable and on par with the trends of non-pandemic years, and not reflecting quite so much the frenzy that was fueled by ease of borrowing and a fear of not getting into the market at all.
Still very much a seller’s market:
While the sales-to-active-listings ratio at about 75 percent in April 2022 shows a drop back to levels at February 2021, it’s still very much a seller’s market. The last buyer’s market was seen in April 2020.
VREB says a ratio over 20 percent is a seller’s market, while below 14 percent is a buyer’s market.
West shore focus:
VREB statistics for April 2022 show 61 single-family homes sold in Langford, 35 in Sooke, and 26 in Colwood. For condos the sales volume were brisk in Langford at 46 units, with five sold in Colwood and four sold in Sooke; View Royal saw seven condo sales. townhome/row properties saw 28 sales in Langford in April, with eight in Sooke and four in Colwood; View Royal saw 12 townhome sales.
Langford, Colwood and Sooke offer the most new construction and are situated clearly beyond the core; they are creating the typical burgeoning suburban Canadian urban landscape. View Royal straddles core-area housing style and infill challenges, and are closer to the core Victoria area. Highlands and Metchosin are rural.
These are the April 2022 sale price averages in the west shore (including waterfront):
|Map Area||Single Family Homes (# sales)||Row/Townhouses (# sales)||Condominiums (# sales)|
|Langford||$1,114,926 (61)||$866,961 (28)||$589,273 (46)|
|Colwood||$1,275,474 (26)||$966,250 (4)||$671,400 (5)|
|Sooke||$1,056,740 (25)||$736,811 (8)||$537,450 (4)|
|View Royal||$1,418,875 (8)||$960,225 (12)||$593,129 (7)|
|Greater Victoria||$1,434,415 (393)||$946,319 (102)||$666,733 (262)|
Lower prices in Langford and Sooke than two months ago:
Pricing month-by-month varies based on the type of product for sale, as well as market forces. Notably with interest rates on the rise, sellers might be capping their expectations in order to stay within the range of buyer affordability.
- Higher: The Greater Victoria single-family home sale price average just two months ago (in February 2022) was $1,429,618 and it’s higher still in April 2022 at 1,434,415. The Colwood average two months ago was $1,174,724 but this month is higher at $1,275,474. View Royal has also seen higher prices in the last two months, with February at $1,115,000 and now April at $1,418,875.
- Lower: The Langford average was $1,319,027 two months ago, while this month is a bit lower at $1,114,926. The Sooke average house price two months ago was $1,231,188 and this month is lower at $1,056,740.
===== ABOUT THE WRITER:
Island Social Trends Editor Mary P Brooke has been following the real estate trends of the Greater Victoria area since she herself was a Realtor in the early 1990s.
Island Social Trends (previously West Shore Voice News, Sooke Voice News, and MapleLine Magazine) has been reporting on real estate trends in the west shore since 2008.