Low interest rates, rising house prices fuel real estate market

Sarnia Lambton Real Estate Board office of Exmouth Street. (BlackburnNews photo)

The Sarnia-Lambton real estate market, fuelled by low interest rates and rising house prices, continues to post new monthly highs for dollar volume.

The average price of a single family home in September was $430,000, up nearly 26 per cent compared to the same month last year.

Through the first three quarters of 2020 the average residential price is $395,000, up 17 percent.

Real Estate Board President Donna Mathewson said 197 properties with a total dollar volume just over $71 million sold last month.

“Because this year is different, I think we need to focus on comparing to this year only when we’re looking at stats currently, and we did have a decrease in September compared to August,” said Mathewson. “I think that’s reflective of people getting back into a routine, kids are back to school. They’re getting back to what’s going to be our new normal. So, we did see a slight decrease, although sales were still really strong in September.”

There were 214 listings, compared to 208 in September 2019.

“We only saw an increase of six listings over what we had last year. So, the amount of listings that are coming on seems to be keeping in line with what we saw last year in 2019.”

Mathewson said the prime price point between $200,000 and $400,000 is still extremely popular.

“The banks are recording historical low interest rates, where you can get five-year mortgages under two per cent, which is something we couldn’t even fathom that we would see. So, it’s making that price range really viable for first time home buyers.”

Mathewson said they’re noticing people becoming more comfortable attending open houses.

“If you’re attending an open house, we certainly welcome you, but please come prepared with a mask and prepared to give your contact details so that we can have them for contact tracing, as well as possibly wait in line if there is too many people in the home. We want to make sure that we can control safe distancing.”

There were 12 houses over $750,000 that sold in September.