Kingston Real Estate: 2021 Market Report and Future Trends
Kingston’s housing market seems to be the most challenging for buyers as it continues to aggressively favour sellers in the first months of 2021. According to RE/MAX and other real estate agencies, housing prices in Kingston are expected to rise by 10%. Low supply and high demand seem to be the main issue, with buyers reportedly having to buy homes with no conditions to seal deals.
In February 2021, the number of units sold in Kingston alone totalled 314 units. This is a sharp increase of 38.9% the same time a year ago. In January and February, a total of 520 units were sold. This is also a 28.1% increase from the same period the previous year.
When it comes to prices, single-detached home prices in Kingston skyrocketed to roughly $464,083 between January and October last year from $417,578 the previous year. The price for condominium properties was $330,768 during the same period, but that was a drastic decline from $339,867. Numbers don’t lie. They explain the massive Canadian migration from the urban areas to the suburbs.
So what more should we expect in 2021 from the Kingston real estate market? Here are a few trends expected to continue, according to real estate experts.
People Will Continue To Sell and Buy Homes
With the light of a vaccine, there is a likelihood that the economy will improve with time. However, life will not remain the same for many Canadians as they seek to move to the rural regions away from the urban centers. The possibility of many employees shifting to permanently working from home could push prices further up.
The only trend likely to change is home buyer preferences. People’s tastes, needs, and lifestyles keep changing. What they might like now may not be appealing to them after a couple of years. For instance, if a four-bedroom mansion with a massive garage and backyard seems to be the perfect home for you, it may not be what you’ll be looking for five years from now.
The trend of people leaving the busy city to settle in the suburbs and rural areas is expected to continue throughout 2021. There hasn’t been any reason to think that this trend won’t continue beyond 2021. Additionally, many Kingston dwellers want homes with luxury features, and new-home construction companies are now working on adding features that satisfy the current market demands.
The Migration of Nearby Big-City Dwellers to Smaller, More Affordable Cities Will Continue
There has been a lot of discussion about residents from larger cities like Toronto moving to Kingston. Many people now work from home and realize that they can actually work from the rural areas and commute to Toronto and other cities where necessary.
In 2019 U-haul migration trends, Kingston topped the list of cities showing high migration rates. In the analysis done based on U-Haul moving truck transactions to determine the fastest growing city in Canada, Kingston had a 9% increase in one-way trucks’ arrivals. Kingston’s proximity to Toronto, Montreal, and Ottawa makes it a better option for many city dwellers looking to leave city life. People can still commute to the big city for different reasons while enjoying a diverse and liveable community in Kingston. In 2021, Kingston remains among the top three well-doing cities regarding population and economic growth, with North Bay and North Vancouver scooping the first and second positions.
Apart from the fact that you can have your dream bedroom and your children play soccer in the compound, life in Kingston is way cheaper than in the larger cities. According to Statistics, Toronto has experienced the pinch of slower population growth as more people move away from the city. Over the course of the year, the big city has lost over 50,375 people who moved to smaller cities such as Kingston and Oshawa. The two small cities have already experienced a population growth of more than 2 percent.
If this trend continues, housing experts expect that life in these cities will become expensive as housing costs will hike. Working remotely, personal health, and the low cost of living in these cities are some of the major reasons people are leaving Toronto.
The Shift in Remote Working Plays a Role in Pushing Sales
Working from home is more than a reality for most Canadians. The global workforce and culture, which was extremely affected by the pandemic, is expected to change as most employees are not ready to go back to the office. The majority of Canadian employees want a work-from-home arrangement created after the pandemic to allow flexible work schedules.
When the pandemic started, employees were not given time to adjust to the new norm. The majority did not have home offices but had to create them quickly and settle down. That’s where the buyer appetite for spacious properties in the suburb areas started. Homeschooling and ‘stay home’ order also catalyzed the desire for homes with extra rooms, ample space, entertainment features, and in-house offices.
Upcoming houses have to accommodate all family members and their needs, comfort, and lifestyle—security, entertainment, privacy, and serenity. According to interviews by Global news about Remote working, many workers moved far from the city with the hope that work-from-home arrangements will continue. Career experts encourage employees to discuss their relocation intentions with their employers before doing so.
Low Interests + High Demand = High Housing Prices
We also cannot ignore the fact that there is a low supply and high demand in the Canadian housing industry. The relatively low-interest rates on mortgages have made homes more affordable, leading to the rising heat in home sales.
Kingston ranks ninth with an average home price increase of 25%, according to Zoocasa. Most of the houses that were listed with average prices are now going over the asking price. Sellers are getting more offers as people fight over the few pieces listed daily.
In the past, the housing market has always been a buyers’ market. Homes would take longer than 60 days to sell. Buyers would view more than eight houses in a day and still not attempt to buy any. Today, a house can appear on the list in the morning and get sold before noon. Kingston is a sellers’ market, and homes are being sold in record times above asking prices, with almost no conditions.
Keep in mind that Kingston is not the only city affected by the crazy sales; other surrounding cities like Niagara Falls, St Catherine’s, and North Bay have also seen skyrocketing prices from mid-2020. Additionally, homebuyers are willing to adjust their wish list due to inventory shortage and accept a few minor defects to secure a home.
Kingston’s condos are not a significant market segment in 2021. However, the market is expected to see new supply streaming in 2021. The biggest driver for condo properties in Kingston Ontario real estate are investors looking to buy units and use them as rentals for students at Queens University.
Technology Will Have Innumerable Benefits in Real Estate Transformation
The real estate industry is being redefined in every way from consumer behaviour changes, market conditions, the pandemic, and now technology. While technology tends to assimilate and replace human abilities and skills, it will not replace real estate agents but improve what they do. Equipped with the right tools, a realtor in Kingston can promote listings and generate leads with ease and reach a wider audience.
Kingston real estate websites attract millions of visitors every month, which helps boost the rental market and property sales. RE/MAX predicts a steady rise from $464,083 to $510,490 for average homes in Kingston by October 2021.
The pandemic has forced technology to take communication systems a notch higher. Apart from the standard phone calls, emails, and instant messages, buyers and sellers can communicate virtually via video calls. Buyers do not need to visit the physical location to see a home, as sellers can use tech to stream the house through virtual video tours for both commercial and residential properties.
That means buyers can get an in-depth overview of the property without having to step out. Upcoming houses in Kingston will also see a smart home trend designed to improve security, comfort, energy, and general convenience.
Canadians are spending most of their time at home than in any other place. Purchasing homes installed with smart home technology is a trend we all expect to continue for a very long time.