Hamil­ton home sales dip but list­ings on rise, making for ‘re­bal­anced’ mar­ket, Re­al­tors as­so­ci­a­tion says

Fewer homes selling in Hamil­ton, and at a lower price

The Hamilton Spectator - - FRONT PAGE - JON WELLS

What you see de­pends on where you stand, wrote C.S. Lewis.

While the lay the­olo­gian and novelist probably wasn’t ref­er­enc­ing the lo­cal real es­tate mar­ket, the ax­iom still ap­plies: whether it is trend­ing good or bad de­pends on your sit­u­a­tion.

Fig­ures re­leased Thurs­day show the pro­tracted siz­zling sell­ers’ mar­ket in Hamil­ton-Burling­ton cooled in July com­pared to the same month last year: sales were down 20 per cent, while list­ings were up nearly 18 per cent.

(Taken sep­a­rately, Hamil­ton’s num­bers showed a 26 per cent drop in sales, and a 15 per cent in­crease in list­ings.)

But it’s a pos­i­tive pat­tern for buy­ers, ac­cord­ing to Ge­orge O’Neill, CEO of the Re­al­tors As­so­ci­a­tion of Hamil­ton-Burling­ton.

In fact, he says the mar­ket is reach­ing a health­ier “re­bal­anc­ing” in terms of the ra­tio of sales to list­ings, that had been too heav­ily weighted in favour of sales when the mar­ket was red-hot.

“When we see the num­ber of list­ings go up and sales go down, it just means peo­ple have more choices.

“It’s bet­ter, in the long term for every­one, to have a more bal­anced mar­ket.”

A news re­lease from the re­al­tors as­so­ci­a­tion em­ployed a weather metaphor to couch the shift­ing op­tics: “July 2017 Mar­ket Brings Home Buy­ers Re­lief from the Heat,” read the head­line.

While a strong sell­ers’ mar­ket has its up­side, it can make it tough for pur­chasers to af­ford to buy, O’Neill said.

In keep­ing with the trend, home sale prices have dropped from the highs seen in the spring — down 12 per cent from May.

The av­er­age home listed in Hamil­ton in July sold for $474,179 and in Burling­ton for $699,830.

The av­er­age length of time the homes were listed was sim­i­lar for each mar­ket — 24 and 25 days, re­spec­tively.

THE HAMIL­TON SPEC­TA­TOR

Hamil­ton house sales went down in July com­pared to last year.

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