Since 2008 predicting the Barrie real estate market has been somewhat challenging. It’s been challenging from several angles, as events both close to home and far away have had effects on the housing situation. So far this year we saw a very busy January and February followed by a slightly slower selling season in March and a pretty quiet April.

There could be many reasons for this, but here are a few that we have been focusing on.

1. Gas prices have increased by approx 40% since last fall. Filling up the car this morning I was paying $1.44 for the mid range fuel.

2. The govt. changed the mortgage rules a few months back and the lead up to that caused buyers to want to move earlier just in case the new rules affected them.

3. Interest rates have moved up a small amount. 5 year fixed rates are currently hovering around 4 – 4.25%, which by historical standards is still very low, however, that’s a 15% increase from the low levels of 3.5%.

So specifically what’s been happening in prices?

There are two interesting trends, we are using Barrie as a proxy for this analysis as the number of homes sold is large enough to give us a good data sample. This analysis is also based comparing year to date numbers for 2011 vs year to date for 2010.

We are going to divide the price bands in to roughly two area, those Barrie homes priced over $300,000 and those priced under $300,000.

For Barrie homes price over $300,000 there were 223 hones sold in 2011. And comparing with 2010 year to date there were 231 homes sold, almost the same number. However, when we look at the prices for homes we see that the average list prices in 2011 have so far been $5,000 to $10,000 lower than those for the same period in 2010. The average sold prices have been between $5,000 – $15,000 lower.

For Barrie homes priced between $150,000 and $300,000 however, we see a different pattern. Here the number of homes sold in 2010 was 628 while in 2011 the number has dropped significantly to 507 an approx 25% decrease. The price on the homes sold though has stayed almost unchanged from last year with just a $2-3,000 difference.

Thinking this through it seems to us that those people who own homes over the $300,000 mark are likely to be second or third time buyers and have some equity built into their homes. This means that if they need to move they may have some room to move on price to make a deal happen. Hence the number of sales is about the same as last year but the prices are lower.

At he $200,000-$300,000 price range, these are more likely first or second time movers and the equity may be less, meaning that the price is the price or we don’t move! the almost 25% drop in volume of sales suggests that the ‘we don’t move’ camp is so far the most popular decision. The number of expired listings has of course risen a lot in this area.

If you would like to know the exact stats for your area, please give the Hocking Homes team a call and we’ll be pleased to send you a copy of the region and the breakdowns.


Ian Hocking

705 252 7939

Filed under: BarrieBarrie Real EstateStatistics

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