Highest dollar volume on record while the market continues to offer buyers more choice

Dollar volume topped the $3 billion mark in October, the highest volume of MLS® sales reached with two months still to go in the year, according to a recently-released statistical report by WinnipegREALTORS®.
In 2013, dollar volume by the end of October was $2.95 billion.
“Given all the additional listings we have on the MLS® market this year,” said David Powell, the president of WinnipegREALTORS®, “it may appear and feel like we are not doing as well in terms of sales, but this is not the case at all.
“We are less than three per cent off our best year to this date and have the highest dollar volume on record at over $3 billion.
“Buyers are realizing that good opportunities exist to take advantage of all the choices and supply of listings in our current market,” added Powell.
Year-to-date dollar volume by the end of October was up three per cent when compared to the same period last year.
New listings entered on MLS® in October were up seven per cent, while the active listings, or current inventory, heading into November rose 21 per cent over last year, although the three-month streak of 5,000 MLS® listings going into the next month came to an end.
At present, there are 4,600 MLS® listings available to home buyers, according to WinnipegREALTORS®.
There were over 1,100 MLS® sales in October, which is five per cent higher than the 10-year average for the month. 
The number of sales was just seven per cent off the records set for October in 2007 and 2013.
“One of the impacts of higher inventory over the last few months has been on condominium activity,” said Peter Squire, the market analyst for WinnipegREALTORS®. “Some of the empty-nesters wanting to sell a bigger home and get into a condominium have experienced increased difficulty due to more competition in the marketplace. This has resulted in a decline in condominium sales.”
Of the 114 condominium sales in October, only five sold for above list price, while four out of five sold for below list price, added Squire.
Still, condominium sales for the year were up four per cent by the end of October.
The most active condo price range was between $150,000 and $199,999, which accounted for 37 per cent of all sales. Well back at 21 per cent was the price range between $200,000 and $249,999.
The highest price paid for a condo in October was $740,000.
Residential-attached, or single-family, home sales were up two per cent for the year by the end of last month.
The two most active price categories for residential-detached sales were between $250,000 and $299,999 and $200,000 and $249,999, with each accounting for 21 per cent of all home purchases during October.
The price range between $150,000 and $199,999 had 13 per cent of all residential-detached sales.
WinnipegREALTORS® reported that one house sold for $1.625 million in October, while the lowest price paid for a house was just $35,000.
Vacant land sales to the end of last month were down 31 per cent, which adversely affected overall MLS® sales, according to the association.
Throughout Manitoba, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation is predicting balanced market conditions for the period between 2014 and 2016.
According to CMHC’s Housing Market Outlook, Fourth Quarter 2014, there will be a modest increase in resale transactions from 13,900 in 2014 to 14,100 in 2015 and 14,200 in 2016. 
“After rising to a projected $266,500 in 2014, the average residential MLS® price in Manitoba is forecast to increase to $272,600 in 2015 and to $278,800 in 2016,” according to CMHC.
The federal agency said construction of new single-detached homes across the province is expected to finish 2014 down 13.6 per cent from the previous year with 3,300 units, before increasing slightly to 3,500 units in 2015.
“Builders will keep inventories in check in 2015, while migration and employment will remain steady, resulting in the same number of starts in 2016,” the outlook forecasts.
According to CMHC, new home inventories are being “drawn down,” and competition from the resale market will limit the increase in new home sales over the next two years.