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Sunshine Coast's Million Dollar Babies: Hush now, don't you cry!
06-29-2013, 10:31 AM, (This post was last modified: 06-29-2013, 11:28 AM by Skook.)
Sunshine Coast's Million Dollar Babies: Hush now, don't you cry!
I said in my May sales update post that single detached million dollar properties on the Sunshine Coast weren’t moving. The REBGV ‘sales by type and price’ table indicated there had been one sale in May and for the year-to-date the total was 4.

I decided a few days back to look at that REBGV table for all of last year and see how 2012 faired in comparison and perhaps get an overall picture of the market direction now facing those trying to sell their million dollar plus properties. Here is the result…

[Image: attachment.php?aid=243]

Well, isn’t this bleak. As you can see from Jan-May 2012, 8 properties at $1 mill+ sold and we’re at only half that number for the same period this year. You can see that in June last year there were 5 sales and I doubt very much sales this month will get beyond 2 (there was one property on Keats Island that sold for $1,025,000 that was listed at $1,149,000). The total for 2012 was 20 - “Wow!” (To quote the BC Oracle).

Of course, if there are only a couple dozen of these properties listed then these figures above might look pretty good; however, we know better than that, don’t we. As of today, June 29th, there are 92 Sunshine Coast million dollar plus properties currently on the market. If any of those 92 is desperate to sell, then they have to feel sick looking at what is happening with sales this year let alone at the awe inspiring total for last year.

Where are these million dollar plus babies located? Let's take a look at the composite map image below...

[Image: attachment.php?aid=244]

Well, look at that - all but a very few are following the coast line. Yes, we are talking waterfront - waterfront on islands, waterfront on lakes, waterfront on inlets, waterfront on the ocean, all waterfront from Gibsons to Egmont Point.

Now, let’s go back in time to 2004. That was the year the BC Oracle, Ozzie Jurock, who no doubt studied the entrails of fish and fowl, made a grand pronouncement: “Buy Waterfront!!!” He said it was the best investment you could make because they weren’t making it anymore. He said buy it no matter where it is: ocean, lakes, and rivers. And, what about creeks would they have been included in his advice to eager followers?

Rivers and creeks, eh? I guess the entrails glossed over one small problem that the denizens of Alberta discovered last weekend. This is that the low lying area along a river and a creek is called a 'floodplain' and for a very good reason because every now and then - it floods. Yes, that innocuous little creek in Canmore lived up to its name - Cougar - a silent and deadly killer. That raging creek not only washed away the soil under the homes along its banks but also the hopes and dreams of those living in those homes since no home insurance in Canada covers such an ‘act of god.’ Imagine having to pay the mortgage on a house that is no longer inhabitable.

However, as sad as it is that is there, we are here and ocean waterfront properties likely won’t have to worry about rising ocean levels - yet. And, except for those few poor sods who bought into Seawatch at the Shores and have to contend with springs popping up here and there, every other waterfront property owner on the coast knows that their borrowed money has been invested wisely. After all, they don’t make waterfront property any more; everyone wants to own waterfront property; and, therefore, waterfront land will never lose its value - so said The Oracle.

[Image: attachment.php?aid=245]


To hear The Oracle speak (courtesy the RE Temple’s high priests and priestesses at then BCTV (now Global BC): view the video ‘Recreational Real Estate’ for Thursday, June 23, 2005 (you will need to install RealPlayer).

To read The Oracle’s own words: I suggest the February, 2005, article in Vancouver Lifestyles: “Duck Hunting and the Economic Boom - Ozzie Jurock’s Outlook for 2005”.

Quack! Quack!


Fast forward to May 27, 2013 and Global BC offers the latest on ‘Recreational Real Estate’ in BC - new ‘expert’, same message - buy waterfront on the Sunshine Coast. Now, if only those retirees living in West Van could find buyers for their multi-million dollar properties and cash out all that pent up equity what a wonderful world it would be.

The merry-go-round goes 'round and 'round,
The children laughed and laughed and laughed,
So many were going 'round and 'round,
That the merry-go-round collapsed.

(sung to the tune of ‘Here we go round the Mulberry Bush’)

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07-23-2013, 03:54 PM, (This post was last modified: 07-23-2013, 06:41 PM by Skook.)
RE: Sunshine Coast's Million Dollar Babies: Hush now, don't you cry!
July 23, 2013 - A look at recent listings...

I mentioned in my July 20th SC Total Active Listings post that I had begun checking to see how many million dollar plus listings there were on a daily basis. I also added some words about new property listing…

Quote:The other day I noticed a new listing in the Gibson’s area and guess what? This property has been listed below assessment! The 'Asking Price Premium' for this home at 1238 Sunnyside Rd, Gibsons is -4%. I decided to go through all the million + listings and see if any others were below assessment and I found only one at 4588 Cameron Rd, Pender Harbour. This empty property has been listed for 185 days and counting (bet it’s already been relisted more than once) and likewise the APP stands at -4%. I found one other property with an APP of only +1% but on average the APP for the million dollar listings on the SC is around +60% with some as high as +170% and beyond.

[Image: attachment.php?aid=314]

I ended by saying, “I don’t know if this Sunnyside Rd property is a relist but the owner has realized that the days of making money on these million dollar properties is now over on the Sunshine Coast. It will be interesting to see if this message gets through to the other 90 or so property owners who have placed their ‘million dollar babies’ on the market.”

Today, the number of $1mill+ currently listed stands at 97 - and increase of 4 since yesterday. I thought it might be interesting to compare of few of this recent listings to see what is happening with pricing.

A property in Hopkins Landing not far from the Langdale ferry terminal at 1230 St. Andrew's Road was relisted two days ago. The asking price is $1,895,000 and the 'Asking Price Premium' is +188%. It is a 3 bed/4bath 4637sf 15-year-old described as an “Executive View Home” (perhaps because the current owner is a retired excutive?) sitting on 1 acre - I don’t know if the price changed with the relist but I don’t think so.

Just up the road in Grantham’s Landing is another relist at 888 Ruffum Rd. It is a 17 years old 3 bed/1½ bath 4500 sf home sitting on 2.2 acres. There is also a 1600 sf cottage on the property and both the main house and cottage have oceanviews. The original asking price was $1,999,000 and with the relist it has dropped an incredible $800,000 to $1,199,000 which I suspect brings it very close to its Assessment.

[Image: attachment.php?aid=315]

Is one more desperate than the other to sale? Perhaps, although it could be that the owners of the St. Andrew’s Rd property purchased it as a resale and paid a much higher APP themselves and are now trying to recoup that purchase price as well as expenses paid since then. If either of these two were to sell, my guess is it won’t be the one on St. Andrew’s.

As high as the +188% APP above seems, I found one even more ridiculous especially given its location. This property is at 13825 Lee Road located on Sakinaw Lake in Garden Bay (Pender Harbour). It is a 37 year old 4 bed/2bath 1,955 sf 2 storey waterfront home sitting on less than half an acre. It comes with this listing description: “Perfect family cottage complete with flag pole & waterside dock w/slide.” It also points out the property has “rare road access.” That latter point is true for Sakinaw but that is one looooooong drive in from the highway. The property was listed 4 days ago and the asking price is $1,490,000 - the APP is +230% which gives you a good idea of what BC Assessment thinks of its value as a waterfront property in Pender Harbour despite its rare road access, dock, water slide and flag pole.

Now let’s take these three properties above, two with oceanviews and one lake waterfront, and compare them to a property listed 11 days ago. DL 4444 is water access only and located in Sechelt Inlet. It has been operating as a retreat and comes with 2 homes (one is 9 years old) and 10 “luxurious” tent cabins. I can tell you now it would be quicker to get to this property by boat from Sechelt then it would be to drive to that Lee Rd property on Sakinaw. It is a 124 acre property with 1 mile of oceanfront. Its list price is $1,298,000 and the APP is +65%.

[Image: attachment.php?aid=316]

It’s an interesting comparison, isn’t it? And, it illustrates perfectly how differently property can be priced depending on the values (or perceived values) held by the owner and, of course, whether the property sells at that price is dependent on the values (or perceived values) of the purchaser. Ten or more years ago at the height of the RE frenzy all of these properties would have sold quickly regardless, but not now. I wonder how long it will take for these four owners to find buyers that think like they do; if not, what will they do?

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07-29-2013, 09:23 AM, (This post was last modified: 07-29-2013, 09:25 AM by Skook.)
RE: Sunshine Coast's Million Dollar Babies: Hush now, don't you cry!
June, 2013 Sales:

I finally have the complete REBGV sales data charts for June. Last year (2012), June was the peak for million dollar plus property sales on the SC - there were 5 sales. This June the total was only 3 - which is a drop of 40% (-40%).

The table showing June sales by 'Type' and 'Price Range' can be viewed at this post.

YTD (Jan-June) sales in 2013 now total 7 versus 13 in 2012 - this is a drop of 46.2% (-46.2%). As of today, there are 96 properties valued at $1 million+ listed for sale on the SC. At this pace, if any of these property owners are desperate to sale, they had better start lowering their expectations and re-evaluate their list price.

[Image: attachment.php?aid=322]

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08-12-2013, 11:58 AM, (This post was last modified: 08-12-2013, 11:59 AM by Skook.)
RE: Sunshine Coast's Million Dollar Babies: Hush now, don't you cry!
August 12, 2013 Update:

Here are the SC's million dollar plus SFD sales for July, 2013. I have also included a price table indicating the range were they occurred...

[Image: attachment.php?aid=336]

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09-02-2013, 11:29 AM, (This post was last modified: 09-02-2013, 03:22 PM by Skook.)
RE: Sunshine Coast's Million Dollar Babies: Hush now, don't you cry!
August 2013 Sales:

In August, only 1 million dollar plus valued single detached home sold on the Sunshine Coast and it was in the price range of $1,700,000 - $1,799,000. August ended with 95 of these million dollar plus valued homes actively listed.

[Image: attachment.php?aid=375]

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10-01-2013, 09:23 AM, (This post was last modified: 10-01-2013, 09:25 AM by Skook.)
RE: Sunshine Coast's Million Dollar Babies: Hush now, don't you cry!
Sept 2013 Sales:

Like August, there was only one sale of a single detached home valued at a million plus. This single $1,625,000 sale occurred in the Gibsons area. On a year to date basis, 2013 sales of these $mill+ properties are down 31.6% (-31.6%) compared to 2012.

[Image: attachment.php?aid=444]

As of today, Oct 1st, there are 94 $mill+ properties listed on the Sunshine Coast.

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11-01-2013, 04:59 PM, (This post was last modified: 11-01-2013, 05:00 PM by Skook.)
RE: Sunshine Coast's Million Dollar Babies: Hush now, don't you cry!
October 2013 Sales

There were two million dollar plus properties sold on the Sunshine Coast in October. One was in Gibsons and the other in Roberts Creek with the latter just squeaking in at exactly 1 million.

[Image: attachment.php?aid=508]

Both properties took substantial drops from their original asking prices before finally attracting a buyer. The Gibsons property was originally listed in 2011 at $1,495,000 and after numerous price drops and one relisting it sold for $1,150,000 - a decrease of 23.0% (-23%) from that original 2011 list price.

The Roberts Creek property was listed May, 2012 at $1,290,000. It took 17 months and a 22.5 % (-22.5%) price drop before it finally moved.

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12-05-2013, 08:56 AM, (This post was last modified: 12-05-2013, 08:58 AM by Skook.)
RE: Sunshine Coast's Million Dollar Babies: Hush now, don't you cry!
December 5, 2013 Update:

After October's big, fat two sales, not one $1mill+ property sold in November; so, the year-to-date sales total remains unchanged at 15 and since there were no sales in November 2012 the sales comparison between this year and last year also remains unchanged at -25%.

[Image: attachment.php?aid=575]

The number of Active Listings for these dream digs has dropped significantly over the last few months. October opened at 94 and ended at 88; November opened at 85 and ended at 76; and December opened at 69 and remains at the level today. I have noticed when I check the daily stats, that it is rare to see price drops for these properties. I just went through the listings and only about a half dozen have dropped their prices at some point.

I did a random sampling and some the 'Asking Price Premiums' (List price vs Assessment) are in the stratosphere which likely means they paid a stupid price for the property to begin with. A few are very close to assessemnt which likely means they really want to sale. However, I don't think any of these sellers want to face the fact the day may come when they will have to accept a negative APP to unload. Unless, of course, they're all waiting for the dollar to drop to 70 cents vs the USD then they can sell to an American looking for a 5000sf waterfront "cottage." Of course, if the stock market is now a bubble....well, this could get interesting.

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01-01-2014, 04:54 PM, (This post was last modified: 02-01-2014, 09:50 AM by Skook.)
RE: Sunshine Coast's Million Dollar Babies: Hush now, don't you cry!
January 1, 2013 Update:

Only 1 property in the $1million+ range sold in December. This brings the total for 2013 to 15 sales which is a drop of -25% from 2012 (20 sales).

[Image: attachment.php?aid=735]

The single sale occurred in Roberts Creek. The 7-yr old, 4bd/3½ba, 2897sf waterfront home on 0.25ac was originally listed in September, 2012 at $1,800,000. It was relisted in late November, 2013 at $1,700,000. It sold two weeks later for $1,500,000 a drop of -16.7% from the initial asking price. At the time the sellers bought the property (between mid-2009 to mid-2011), it had been listed for $1,750,000. Safe to say, it wasn’t a lucrative real estate investment.

January 4, 2013 add-on:

I thought I would polish off the crystal ball and try predicting sales for 2014. I think the CMHC 2012 rule change to stop insuring mortgages valued at $1 mill plus will continue to impact sales on the coast. Having to come up with a 20% deposit (a minimum $200,000 down), is a bit too rich for buyers who thought they could buy, hold for a year or two, and flip for a little profit. Any sellers hovering just above that million dollar mark will have to drop their list prices or be willing to negotiate if they want to attract a buyer.

There is talk more mortgage changes could be in the offing sometime this year. One thought is that the amortization period could be lowered to 25 years. Such a drop would truly impact this SC niche market.

Whatever happens, I can’t see sales exceeding the 2013 level by much if at all. If they were to reach the 20 sales of 2012, I would be shocked.

February 1, 2014 Update:

I have discovered that total sales of $1mill+ properties in 2013 were actually 15 and not 16 as previously reported. I went back and reviewed the monthly sales and one of the three sales recorded in June had disappeared; so, for whatever reason one sale fell through. Therefore, 2013 sales were -25% lower that 2012 and not -20% as I initially indicated on January 1. I have replaced the graph to reflect this updated information.

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02-01-2014, 09:53 AM,
RE: Sunshine Coast's Million Dollar Babies: Hush now, don't you cry!
A correction has been made to last month's sales report directly above. Please see note added to bottom of post.

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