Despite the Bank of Canada (BoC) raising interest rates to their highest level since before the global financial crisis in 2008, the impact on the Canadian real estate market has not been equal. Some areas of the country are performing well, while others are struggling to revive sales activity.
In July, the Canadian housing market saw national home sales tumble by 0.7 per cent month-over-month, and prices advanced 1.1 per cent month-over-month and slipped by 1.5 per cent year-over-year.
By comparison, Manitoba’s housing industry has been strong, with properties sold up more than six per cent in May, data from the Manitoba Real Estate Association (MREA) show. However, the provincial capital has struggled to emulate these numbers, as the Winnipeg real estate market reported an 11 per cent year-over-year decline in home sales in July, according to the Winnipeg Regional Real Estate Board (WRREB).
At the same time, home sales have generally been on an upward trajectory since the beginning of the year. The WRREB wrote in a recent report: “MLS® sales in May were 160% higher than January, 130% higher than February, 49% higher than March and 37% higher than April.”
Although sales activity has slowed in the dog days of summer, there have been more listings compared to the same time a year ago. The Winnipeg association reported that active residential listings surged 16 per cent to 4,298 units and are roughly flat compared to the five-year average of 4,281 units.
“The last 3 Julys were the top three Julys on record, but when taking the 5-year average of Julys from 2015 to 2019 before the pandemic began, we see July 2023 MLS® sales tracking similarly,” said Rena Prefontaine, 2023-2024 President of the Winnipeg Regional Real Estate Board, in a statement. “The depleted housing availability seen over the last 3 years has balanced out with gains to active listings that are encouraging to see. A healthy housing inventory that spans all different price ranges is important for a balanced market.”
How Much is a House in Winnipeg?
The Winnipeg housing market enjoys a level of housing affordability that other major urban centres, like Toronto, Vancouver, and even Halifax, do not enjoy.
The national average home price is $668,754, up 6.3 per cent from July 2022, according to the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA). By comparison, the average price for an attached home is $325,883, up one per cent from a year ago. Condominium prices fell at an annualized pace of six per cent to $255,206.
What is the Typical Down Payment in the Winnipeg Real Estate Market?
The Canadian government maintains a series of down payment rules.
For a home that costs less than $500,000, the minimum down payment is five per cent of the purchase price. For a residential property that costs between $500,000 and $999,999, five per cent of the first $500,000 is required and then ten per cent of the amount above $500,000. For anything that costs $1 million or more, a 20 per cent down payment is mandated.
That said, for the most part, many mortgage lenders require a 20 per cent down payment for home purchases.
So, by using this standard percentage, the typical down payment (20 per cent) for the average detached residential property in the Winnipeg housing market is around $65,000.
Best Areas to Buy a House in Winnipeg
In today’s Winnipeg real estate market, there are three places that many would consider to be the best areas of the city to reside:
The neighbourhood is located south of Winnipeg’s downtown core and possesses a suite of residential properties constructed before the 1960s. Many households enjoy this part of Winnipeg because it sits just outside of the city while also maintaining a fair distance. In addition, Norwood Flats has an abundance of entertainment options, schools, and hospitals.
While Winnipeg is considered affordable compared to the rest of the country, Wolseley is also identified as the most affordable area of the Winnipeg housing sector. Moreover, experts say it maintains a terrific character, with a neighbourhood described as fun and one of a kind.
Whether you are into fine dining or bookstores, Osborne Village has many amenities that make a living in this part of Winnipeg an energetic and exciting experience. It makes sense why young professionals target Osborne Village to live.
Is Winnipeg a Seller’s or Buyer’s Market?
So, is Winnipeg a seller’s or a buyer’s market? Within the context of the local housing sector, many say it is a seller’s arena. However, for those outside the province looking in, this could be a terrific buyer’s market. Ultimately, like in other Canadian cities, supply is trailing demand, and this is supporting prices.