January called sign of things to come: brisk demand for housing continues

Early inclement weather slowed MLS® sales in January, but quickly rebounded as winter’s grip loosened.

Demand for MLS® listings was strong in January with over one-third of inventory turning over. Last month, just over 37 per cent of the MLS® properties sold at or above their list price.

“If January is a sign — an MLS® sign that is — of things to come,” said Winnipeg Real Estate Board president Ruthe Penner, “the local real estate market is shaping up to be quite similar to our record-breaking 2004 year when brisk demand for housing continued unabated.

“Besides the usual indicators that drive our existing MLS® market — historically low interest rates, high consumer confidence and solid employment numbers — the lack of serviced lots throughout the city for new homes and an extremely tight rental market are creating more pressures than usual on our existing resale market inventory.”

Penner said there are still a number of multiple-offer situations occurring in select neighbourhoods due to the tight market conditions.

And, no one is expecting multiple offers to end any time soon without an increase in new listings, she added.

January MLS® sales were two per cent higher than the same month last year while dollar volume sales were 18 per cent higher.

Residential-detached sales were most active in the $100,000 to $129,999 price range which accounted for 21 per cent of the total. A close second was the $130,000 to $159,999 price range which recorded 19 per cent of all sales.

The average days on the market was 35, one day off December’s pace and a week slower than January 2004.