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Local Logic expands real estate market data platforms | RENX – Real Estate News EXchange

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Local Logic co-founder and CEO Vincent-Charles Hodder. (Courtesy Local Logic)

Local Logic has compiled more than 85 billion data points which identify lifestyle and location attributes in cities, and the Montreal-based firm is expanding how it puts them to use for real estate firms, investors and developers.

“We strive to use data to quantify cities and see what aspects of those cities drove value to particular real estate properties,” co-founder and chief executive officer Vincent-Charles Hodder told RENX.

“Our background as urban planners really helped us cover the various data sets and elements that we needed to quantify in order to try and predict the future of the real estate market.”

Hodder founded Local Logic with Gabriel Damang-Firois and Colin Stewart in 2015 and they started commercializing the technology in late 2016. The Montreal-based company has received venture capital funding from several partners to help spur its growth.

Local Logic collects data from public sources, including municipal, provincial and federal governments, as well as open data platforms. It also purchases data and builds and assembles some of its own collection processes to round out its knowledge base.

Local Logic services web portals

Local Logic has two categories of products.

The first is geared to large real estate web portals, such as brokerage websites, to help them increase traffic, engagement and conversions.

“We offer a suite of products that we license to these companies or individuals in order to show relevant location characteristic data on their pages,” said Hodder.

In addition to charging a licensing fee, Local Logic uses tiered pricing that’s dependent on the volume of traffic to websites using its information.

Clients in Canada and the U.S. include Realtor.ca, Royal LePage, RE/MAX, Sotheby’s International Realty and Century 21, which use the company’s technology to enable five million monthly consumers to specifically search for what they’re looking for in a place to live.

Local Logic’s platform can present multiple complex layers and scores for more than a dozen factors — including transportation, schools, noise and parks — which make a location unique.

The platform can present its scores and data points for global positioning system coordinates or individual addresses. It can incorporate visuals, maps, heat maps and iconography.

The content is constantly updated to maintain its accuracy.

Local Logic’s analytic product line

Local Logic’s second product line, which was just launched a few months ago, includes analytic tools designed for investors, portfolio managers, developers and other real estate professionals.

“We’re combining all of our proprietary data on location with some more traditional real estate data sets and we’re combining that with a lot of usage data that we’re gathering from our customers and their end-users as to what they’re searching for,” said Hodder.

“We’re really trying to understand and predict what factors of location and what factors of an amenity within a home is driving value today and in the future.

“We’re working with some large firms in Canada to help them think through where they should be investing or how they should be thinking about redevelopment of properties they already hold.”

Local Logic clients for this line include Ivanhoé Cambridge, DevMcGill and Maître Carré.

“Companies are starting to take data science in real estate really seriously and are looking at alternative forms of data in order to de-risk their investment process and be more intelligent in the way they’re looking at the market,” said Hodder.

Current and future growth

Local Logic has 25 employees and is looking to double that number in the next six months with new hires across North America as it transitions to “a remote-first approach” that will still include some physical office space but reduce what it’s using now.

“We’re looking for people who’ve been in the real estate space who want to move to the tech and startup side,” said Hodder.

While Local Logic’s primary focus is currently on the residential real estate market, Hodder envisions opportunities to move seriously into the commercial sector in the future.

“We’re certainly generating revenue.

“The majority of our business is on the portal side, but we’re starting to make pretty good strides on the analytic side of the business and we’re seeing our ability to grow substantially over the next few years, given the traction that we have today.”

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Canada real estate: RBC Economics housing report notes condo prices stuck in a rut – The Georgia Straight

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A recent housing report by RBC Economics states that prices of condo properties haven’t been seeing much action.

“Condo prices, in fact, have already stagnated over the past six months both at the national level…,” bank economist Robert Hogue wrote.

According to Hogue, this is happening as well in “some of Canada’s largest markets (including Vancouver, Toronto and Hamilton)”.

“This contrasted with a solid 7.3% increase for single-detached homes nationwide over that period,” Hogue also noted.

Hogue’s observation about condo prices form part of his October 15, 2020 report about the performance of the real-estate market for September.

Hogue noted that the benchmark price of homes in Canada increased 10.3 percent year-over-year in September.

That was the “first time it’s been in double-digits in three years”.

“The strength was generally concentrated in single-detached homes,” Hogue wrote, adding that the benchmark price for this type of home rose 12 percent year-over-year last month.

“This was almost double the 6.2% rate for condo apartments,” the RBC economist wrote.

In some markets, the picture has not been good.

“Condo prices have flattened in Vancouver, Toronto and Hamilton relative to pre-pandemic levels,” Hogue wrote.

In a previous report on September 30, Hogue wrote that the “impact of COVID-19 on the housing market is complex”.

“The bottom line is we expect condo prices to weaken in larger markets next year…,” Hogue predicted.

In September 2020, the benchmark price of a condo property in areas covered by the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver was $683,500.

This represents a 4.5 percent increase from September 2019, and a 0.3 percent decrease compared to August 2020.

In areas under the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board, the benchmark price of a condo in September was $436,900.

The number represents a 0.1 percent per cent drop compared to August 2020, and an increase of 4.7 percent compared to September 2019.

In Victoria, the benchmark price of a condo in September 2019 was $512,500.

Last September, the value for the same condominium decreased by 0.4 percent to $510,600.

The figure also represents a 0.6 percent drop from the August 2020 value of $513,900.

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Why the London, ON Real Estate Market Continues to Thrive – RE/MAX News

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London was considered by many to be Ontario’s best-kept secret. It was a city with everything you would want: affordable housing, jobs and even lauded as the brain capital of province. With more people desiring to escape the big city and find refuge in an urban locale with a small-town charm, London’s popularity is skyrocketing. This is great news for the London real estate market.

Recent data point to an incredible recovery in the housing industry in the wake of the COVID-19 public health crisis. With tight supply and growing demand, the Canadian real estate market is enjoying record-setting numbers in every possible category. All the early forecasts suggest that London can sustain this trend to finish the year and head into 2021.

Although the coronavirus pandemic continues to threaten the broader national recovery, accommodative monetary policy and pent-up demand are driving the country’s real estate industry. So, what is going on in London, Ontario?

Why the London, ON Real Estate Market Continues to Thrive

London is witnessing some strong Fall market activity as the city basks in the afterglow of the best performance for the month of August in more than 40 years, followed by a record-breaking September. According to the London and St Thomas Association of REALTORS® (LSTAR), 960 homes were sold in September, the best September since 1978! Local headlines also spotlighted that the average home sales price reached $521,883, up a whopping 98 per cent compared to the same time five years ago.

Industry observers also point out that homes are being exchanged at a faster pace. In London, the median number of days that a home sat on the market fell from 12.5 in July 2020 to just 10 days in August and a mere eight days in September.

Demand is gaining steam, with interest booming in the market for condominiums, single-detached homes and everything in between. This has sparked interested prospects to submit bids over the asking price, and this could continue to be the norm if demand remains strong and inventories remain low.

“The strong momentum experienced during the summer months continued through September,” said 2020 LSTAR President Blair Campbell. “Similar to many other housing markets across Canada, many are still playing catch up from the COVID-19 lockdown we had during the spring.”

Campbell noted that “Each of the five major areas in LSTAR’s jurisdiction posted gains, led by Middlesex with average sales price of $575,785. Again, it’s important to note this figure encompasses all housing types, from a two-storey single-detached home to a high-rise apartment condominium.”

Campbell said in a recent interview with CTV News, that nobody is really surprised by the developments. Instead, real estate agents and the broader market are surprised by how quickly it occurred. But what is driving this surge in London real estate?

What is Driving London’s Real Estate Market?

After experiencing a brief “pandemic pause” at the height of the coronavirus outbreak in March, the wait-and-see approach was abandoned, and now the pent-up demand is stimulating London’s housing market. Like other cities across Canada, buyers and sellers have returned from the sidelines to take advantage of current conditions and trends.

Since Queen’s Park reopened the province, buyer confidence has swelled, which has been reflected in the latest housing data. Of course, real estate agents are still diligently adhering to public health guidelines. This includes social distancing, wearing face masks, showcasing listing via virtual open houses and facilitating digital paperwork completely online by means of technology.

That said, the second wave is already prompting some local governments to reimpose COVID-19 restrictions, and industry experts say that people on both sides of real estate transactions are looking to get some deals done before any drastic measures transpire. Plus, as market observers understand, cool temperatures and the flu season can impact real estate. With so much uncertainly on the horizon, the market remains hot as buyers and sellers fight to “get in while they can.”

London, like other smaller towns across the province, is witnessing an influx of buyers from the Greater Toronto Area. Although London area home prices have gone up, they remain more affordable than what you can purchase within downtown Toronto, or even other municipalities within the Greater Toronto Area.

Homebuyers are ostensibly using the work-from-home trend to their advantage, no longer tied to live close to their workplace. Plus, with greater investment in public transit within cities province-wide, if professionals needed to travel into the nearest urban centre, there are a greater number of transportation options at their disposal.

Moreover, since more people are spending significantly more time at home amid social distancing measures and remote working environments, a lot of buyers are reconsidering their living space. For example, some seek to upsize to properties that have room for an office, a learning centre for kids, and other features that may not have been important even just a year ago.

As the list of priorities for homebuyers changes, real estate trends are shifting across the country and municipalities like London, Ontario are projected to continue this trend of strong housing demand, tight supply, and swelling real estate prices into 2021!

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Canada real estate: TD Economics sees high home prices holding up in fourth quarter before dropping in 2021 – The Georgia Straight

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Home buyers looking for a bit of a discount may want to wait a little.

A housing report by TD Economics predicts that high home prices will persist for the rest of 2021.

“Regarding prices, we think they’ll hold up at these record levels in the fourth quarter…,” economist Rishi Sondhi wrote.

Then things will start to ease in 2021.

Sondhi explained that tight supply is driving high home prices.

According to the TD Bank economist, the real-estate market is currently in seller’s territory.

The economist noted that the national sales-to-new listings ratio in September “registered a drum-tight reading” of 77.2 percent.

He noted that “markets were the tightest they’ve been in nearly 20 years in September”.

Sales-to-new listings ratio is the number of sales divided by listings.

A seller’s market means that the sales-to-listing ratio is 60 percent or more, or six sales out of 10 listings.

A balanced market features a ratio between 40 percent and 60 percent.

A buyer’s market happens when the ratio is less than 40 percent, which means fewer than four sales for 10 listings.

In a report on October 15, the Canadian Real Estate Association noted that the national average price of a home set a new record in September.

The average price topped the $600,000 mark for the first time at more than $604,000.

In his report on October 15, Sondhi predicted “some easing is anticipated” for prices after the fourth quarter of 2020.

This is consistent with Sondhi’s previous report on October 8.

The bank economist noted in that earlier report that “unlike sales, an immediate fourth quarter pullback is unlikely” for prices.

 “In fact, another (modest) gain could be in the cards,” Sondhi wrote.

“After the fourth quarter,” Sondhi predicted on October 8, “Canadian prices will likely drop through the first half of 2021 by around 7%, before regaining some traction later next year.”

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