Windsor’s booming real estate market is expected to cool slightly in 2020, but the average residential sale price is still predicted to increase by nine per cent, according to the annual RE/MAX housing market outlook released this week.
“This past year there was an 11-per-cent increase, but there is still too much good news around here,” said Glen Muir, broker/owner for RE/MAX Preferred Realty Ltd. in Windsor.
“There might be a bit of a slowdown (in sales and prices), but you still have a lack of product out there. Depending on our snowfall (this winter), that might temper prices, as well.”
The average home sales price for the Windsor area has reached $335,548 as of the end of October, according to the report. By the end of next year, it is estimated the average residential sales price will reach $365,747.
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“Housing affordability in the region is a concern to some home buyers as the average home price continues to rise thanks to multiple offer scenarios,” RE/MAX said.
Both investors and buyers relocating from the Greater Toronto Area continue to be “a prevalent force” driving strong sales of homes in Windsor since the average price continues to be among the lowest in the nation despite nearly doubling over the last half-dozen years.
Muir noted that buyers are continuing to cash out in the GTA, where they receive $1 million or more for their home and then purchase a similar or even better home in the Windsor area for $500,000 or less and bank the rest.
“The region was and continues to be an attractive option for retirees and young professionals seeking affordability relative to the high prices in the GTA,” the RE/MAX report said.
The local economy continues to remain fairly strong and should be bolstered further by escalating construction activity over the next few years as the Gordie Howe International Bridge is expected to create thousands of direct construction and spinoff jobs. The steady income is allowing some local residents to secure a larger home.
“Move-up buyers will continue to drive demand in the region in 2020,” the report said.
RE/MAX believes LaSalle will be “one of the hottest communities to watch next year,” because of its close proximity to the bridge project and, eventually, closer access to the new border crossing once it is completed in late 2024.
Muir noted how the local market for homes priced anywhere between $200,000 to $400,000 “remains very hot,” but beyond that range, sales have started to cool slightly.
“At the upper end of the price spectrum, Windsor’s luxury housing market has experienced immense growth over the last couple of years, however, the number of luxury properties sold is expected to decrease through 2020,” the report added.
Muir believes area homes in the $500,000 to $700,000 price range has softened because sellers may be asking too much for a resale home and “need to be more realistic,” plus new home construction in the same price range continues to be “very active.”
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“Some of the (resale) homes might be a little tired and need some work,” he said. “People looking to spend $500,000 or $600,000 decide they can buy a new home instead. New homes in that range are very active.”
Aside from LaSalle, Muir said Lakeshore is expected to see strong growth in new home construction to satisfy that type of buyer demand.
New townhouse construction — attractive to retirees and first-time buyers — also continues to be a preferred option across many price ranges.
“Developers continue to build them because they believe the demand is there,” Muir said. “If you look at our population, it is ageing. They are cheaper to maintain than condos, so we started seeing that shift (to townhouses) a number of years ago.”
Down Highway 401, the average residential sale price for London in 2020 is predicted to see an increase of five per cent, but that comes on the heels of this year’s 10.7-per-cent jump in home sales prices to the end of October.
The average sales price in London is estimated by RE/MAX to reach $428,838 next year. The city continues to benefit from much of the same flow of GTA migration as Windsor.
“Southern Ontario is witnessing some incredibly strong price appreciation, with many regions seeing double-digit gains,” says Christopher Alexander, executive vice president and regional director of RE/MAX Ontario-Atlantic Canada.
“Thanks to the region’s resilient economy, staggering population growth and relentless development, the 2020 market looks very optimistic.”