Category Archives: Muskoka Real Estate Market

What’s Happening in the Muskoka Real Estate Market July 2022

We have seen some changes in the Muskoka real estate waterfront market since May/June of 2022. Muskoka cottage sales seem more familiar – aka “normal.” There are very few frantic bidding wars.

Days on Market are longer – averaging 14 for June versus 10 for May. It is still a seller’s market.

Overall there are fewer listings on the market, but just slightly. We had 604 new listings in June. May added 702 listings. Compare that to June 2021 with 645 new listings and May 2021 with 674 new listings.

The median price across the board for June 2022 was $715,000.00 compared to a median price of $650,000.00 in June of 2021. May median price was $744,590.00 in 2022 and 656,000.00 in 2021.

Interest rates are expected to rise 75 basis points on July 13. The government wants to control inflation as a priority. Curbing record 7.7% inflation is key to a healthy economy. As important as that is, fewer buyers could qualify for mortgages, thus slowing real estate sales.

Bank of Canada is expected to adjust the size of its hikes to 25 basis point increments or lower in October and December, taking the rate to 3.25% by year-end.

The BoC is expected to pause on rate increases throughout next year even as the Fed carries on raising rates. Bank of Canada predicted inflation would ease to 2.5% in late 2023, putting more money in buyer’s pockets and freeing up cash flow to accommodate cottage purchases, and the gas to get to them.

The housing market, meanwhile, has already shown signs of a rapid slowdown, albeit after eye-watering double-digit rises during the past two years during the pandemic.

“There has been some offset from the large pile of savings accumulated during the pandemic and that’s kind of cushioning the inflation pain,” said Sal Guatieri, director and senior economist at BMO.

“But eventually that will wear off and we will see high inflation curbing spending even more dramatically in the year ahead.”

We are cautiously optimistic that the rise in interest rates will not slow the cottage sales market. There is a very large buyer pool still waiting for their chance on a relatively small amount of inventory.

A recent survey showed a median 35% chance of recession within a year. It is predicted to rise to 40% over the next two years.

We have posted a file of the relevant stats for overall waterfront market activity and waterfront market activity by location below, for our more analytically minded friends. 

If you’re looking for non-waterfront stats or anything else that we haven’t included please email us at cath@cottageinmuskoka.ca or len@cottageinmuskoka.ca. We are able to provide statistics at any level of detail that you like. We’ll be happy to send them to you!

So that’s it – that’s what’s happening in the Muskoka real estate market July 2022.

Wearied Buyers, Your Time Has Arrived – Muskoka Spring Real Estate Report

We are starting to see the Muskoka real estate market shift. From the frantic 2021 cottage market season right up until recently, holding offers until a specific date has been a popular strategy for sellers to drive up competition for listings. Listings were seeing a large number of offers and disappearing from the market quickly. Now we’re seeing more of a mix – some listings are seeing multiple offers, and some are quietly removing their request for offers when the day comes and passes with nothing.

One factor in the shifting market we’re experiencing is the Bank of Canada raising policy interest rates by 0.5% in April, one of the major goals of which was to bring inflation levels back to their target 2% (vs. the 6.7% reported in March). This is the first time it has raised rates by more than 25 basis points in more than two decades. Higher interest rates mean higher borrowing costs, which lowers demand. We expect interest rates will continue to be increased until borrowing costs are back to pre-pandemic levels of 3%. The next announcement is on June 1, 2022.

The 2022 Federal Budget also puts a few factors into play that could effect Muskoka’s real estate market moving forward. It focused heavily on housing initiatives, including (among others):

  • A foreign ban on buyers for two years
  • An anti-flipping tax that removes the principal residence exemption for properties that were purchased and sold within the same 12-month period (with some exceptions). The proposed anti-flipping measure would apply to residential properties sold on or after January 1, 2023.
  • Sales tax on all assignment sales. Starting May 7, 2022, anyone selling their agreement of purchase and sale to a new buyer will be subject to a tax of up to 26%

Does this mean the bottom will fall out and prices will go way down? Highly unlikely. Historically, we still have quite low inventory. It’s gone up from 2021, but properties are limited – especially waterfront. Plus, the already strong desirability of living in Muskoka has only increased after the pandemic. On top of that, there is still a large portion of the population approaching retirement age, who are looking to relocate to somewhere like Muskoka for their golden years.

If you’re a buyer, it’s time to shake off the fatigue of last season and get back to your cottage search – with less competition.

I have posted the relevant stats for overall waterfront market activity and waterfront market activity by location below, for our more analytically minded friends.

If you’re looking for non-waterfront stats or anything else that I haven’t included please email me at len@cottageinmuskoka.ca. I’d be happy to send it to you!

Overall MLS Waterfront Market Activity

Muskoka Real Estate Market information on waterfront properties for all of Lakelands North, which includes Muskoka and surrounding areas. Real estate sales activity, dollar volume, months of inventory both actual and year-to-date.
Source: The Lakelands Association of Realtors
Source: The Lakelands Association of Realtors
Source: The Lakelands Association of Realtors

Muskoka Waterfront Market Activity by Location

Muskoka Lakes

Source: The Lakelands Association of Realtors
Source: The Lakelands Association of Realtors
Source: The Lakelands Association of Realtors

Huntsville

Source: The Lakelands Association of Realtors
Source: The Lakelands Association of Realtors
Source: The Lakelands Association of Realtors

Bracebridge

Source: The Lakelands Association of Realtors
Source: The Lakelands Association of Realtors
Source: The Lakelands Association of Realtors

Gravenhurst

Source: The Lakelands Association of Realtors
Source: The Lakelands Association of Realtors
Source: The Lakelands Association of Realtors

The Year of the fresh start – 2022!

We hope that there were lots of good highlights for you in 2021 and that you were able to enjoy a rich holiday season. 


Winter is historically a slower time in real estate. Comparatively speaking, this has been a strong late fall/winter season so far. Overall sales volume is down somewhat, but that is due to few sales, which we attribute to lack of inventory. Individual sale prices are up from last year and continue to trend upwards.


Please see the individual charts for Muskoka and please feel free to contact me at 705-801-2304 for more details on anything you have a particular interest in. We have the stats at our fingertips and our job is to help you decipher them.

Muskoka Lakes:

Huntsville:

Bracebridge:

Gravenhurst:


Have a wonderful start to what promises to be a wonderful year – Happy 2022 Everybody!

Muskoka Autumn Real Estate Market Report

As the leaves turn colour and slowly fall to the ground, Muskoka turns to the fourth quarter of the year and embraces a strong real estate market. This fall we are comparing statistics from last September to this September and analyzing the activity from July to July, September to September. Despite the traditional slowing of the market as we face the end of the year, average prices are up (over one million), and the real estate market remains strong in Muskoka. The market has made a slight shift to normal, but still leans heavily in the seller camp.

Median sale price overall is up! This is across The Lakelands, which includes Muskoka, Parry Sound, Haliburton and Orillia.

The Gateway to Muskoka is a popular destination for cottaging and year round living.

The Bracebridge median price is slightly lower than Gravenhurst, but up from last year, which set records.

Huntsville median price is close to $700,000.00. Huntsville has a good combination of non waterfront and waterfront properties.

The median sales price in Muskoka Lakes is over one million dollars. There are plenty of lovely homes and cottages here.

RESIDENTIAL SALES IN MUSKOKA

Today’s snapshot –

There are 278 active listings for a total asking price of $406,536,876.00 The average price is $1,462,363.00. Average days on the market is 59, which is longer than we have recently seen.

There are 67 closed listings for a total price of $70,490,210.00. The average price here is $1.052,093.00. Days on market – 24.

Conditional sales total 29 for a total price of $22,346,700.00. The average price is $770,576.00. Days on market – 56.

Pending sales 237 for a total price of $257,328,494.00 with an average price of $1,085,774.00. Days on market – 33

Overall lack of inventory in Muskoka and the Greater Golden Horseshoe is keeping prices strong. There is a shortage of single family homes, cottages and rental properties. Muskoka continues to be a much sought after destination.

Dollar Volume of Sales Down 20.4% in Bracebridge from this time last year.
Inventory Report July 20
Inventory Report July 2020

August 2021 Muskoka Real Estate Market Update

Muskoka is a unique, highly sought after and magical place. There are many different kinds of buyers and sellers here. Some merely want a little piece of paradise to escape and camp out in the woods. Others want a mansion on one of the ‘Big Three’, or one of the 2200+ lakes in the district.

And the rest of us are somewhere in between. Waterfront or not, permanent residence or not, we all appreciate being surrounded by water and granite and pine and to do a little swimming, boating, hiking and star gazing.

The privilege can be costly, especially since the pandemic.

Overall prices are up year over year, and have gone up a median value of about $350,000 for waterfront properties since the beginning of 2020.

There were 499 new listings in July and 377 sales. The average DOM (days on market from listing to sale) is 14. Last year the average DOM for July was 23. July 2019 24. July 2018 was 30. We are seeing a trend here.

In terms of dollar volume:

There were 44 sales in Muskoka Lakes. 37 were waterfront and 7 non waterfront. The total dollar volume was $95,220,518.


There were 57 sales in Huntsville. 19 were waterfront and 38 non waterfront. The total dollar volume was $41,870,436.


There were 31 sales in Bracebridge. 10 were waterfront and 21 non waterfront. The total dollar volume was $21,252,027.00.


There were 29 sales in Gravenhurst. 7 were waterfront and 22 non waterfront. The total dollar volume was $19,314,650.00.

There is only a 2.5 month supply of residential properties available currently. The definition of supply refers to the number of months it would take for the current inventory of homes or cottages on the market to sell. Historically, six months of supply is associated with a balanced market between buyers and sellers and a lower level of months’ supply is considered a seller’s market and therefore they can expect to sell faster at a better price. In any market a substantially overpriced property will linger. The key to proper pricing is listing at a reasonable price and encouraging competition. Buyers will only compete when a property is appealing both in terms of features and price.

The trend has been toward less inventory for the last few years – with the exception of a small spike this year due to sellers wanting to cash in on this crazy market.


We do not see the ‘bubble’ bursting. We do not think that there is a bubble. It is a case of supply and demand. And those demanding having a lot of liquidity right now, due to many months of not spending in restaurants, on travel, services like spas, house cleaners, clothing, commuting etc. Interest rates remain low. Cottage buyers for the most part have not been negatively impacted financially by the pandemic.

Inventory has been relatively low for the past several years and we can see why when we look at the relatively low total number of cottages versus the potential buying pool. The Golden Horseshoe has a population of over 7.8 million. Say you considered just one percent of that number – that is 78,000 people in the market for a cottage. And that doesn’t count international buyers or buyers in the rest of Canada.

Some buyers are interested in purchasing to rent their places out. There is a lot of money to be made, but buyers should beware. For those who are perking up their ears, these purchases tighten off an already limited supply. Carefully vet your renters. Property damage is a real risk, as is annoying the neighbours with loud and boisterous behaviour. Enough of that, and the townships may decide to ban rentals.

I Wouldn’t Sell a House in Oakville

It’s not that there is anything wrong with Oakville. There isn’t. At least in my opinion there isn’t. I grew up there. I made lots of friends there. I have great memories there. I have family and friends still there.

I am, however, not qualified to sell real estate there. It is legal for me to do so, because I am licenced for all of Ontario. I don’t think it is ethical though.

My message, as the current President of the Lakelands Association of Realtors is to use a local agent. It is definitely in the best interests of the buyers and sellers. A Muskoka agent knows Muskoka. A Muskoka agent will make the process look easy, but be working hard in the background to make sure that all of the details are taken care of. Aspects that an agent from out of the area would not be aware of.

Does the land flood every spring? Water in the basement? Is the shore road allowance owned? Can the owner legally access the property. How about water quality? And weeds. Are there weeds? A few or a lot. Is the bottom firm and sandy, rocky or squishy? Fishing, boating. Can one navigate from this lake to another.

Help us to help you and please, choose a local realtor.

Check out what I said on CTV Barrie, here

Royal LePage Port Carling Rebrand as Luxury Brokerage, Johnston & Daniel

Royal LePage Lakes of Muskoka Realty’s Port Carling and Bala Offices Rebrand as Luxury Brokerage, Johnston & Daniel

Royal LePage Lakes of Muskoka Realty is excited to announce that as of December 6th, 2017, our Port Carling and Bala offices are rebranding as the newest offices of established luxury real estate brand, Johnston & Daniel.

Meeting the growing demand for luxury real estate in Muskoka

With the significant increase in demand for luxury real estate services in the region, Johnston & Daniel is the perfect offering for Muskoka’s real estate market. As a division of Royal LePage, Johnston & Daniel offers the service of a luxury boutique brokerage backed by the scale, synergy and credentials of Canada’s largest and oldest real estate company.

Clients will have access to an intuitive and custom-tailored experience and will benefit from a robust and collaborative real estate network, a hallmark of Johnston & Daniel’s culture.

Active clients can rest assured that we have taken great measures to plan and prepare for a seamless transition while remaining focused on their needs. Outside of re-signing documents under the new brand, current clients will not be affected.

We look forward to this exciting new chapter and the opportunity to serve Muskoka’s growing luxury real estate market proudly under the prestigious Johnston & Daniel brand.

About Johnston & Daniel

Since 1950, Johnston & Daniel has been representing the distinctive properties in Southern Ontario’s most affluent neighbourhoods. Offering caring, intuitive service and building long-term relationships, Johnston & Daniel is the standard of excellence in real estate.

Sales of cottage properties rose 18% in March 2014 compared to March 2013.

Residential and cottage activity both up year-over-year in March

Residential sales activity recorded through the MLS® system of Muskoka Haliburton Orillia – The Lakelands Association of REALTORS® numbered 204 units in March 2014. This was up 19 per cent from March 2013. Sales of cottage properties rose 18 per cent from a year earlier to 39 units in March 2014.

“While the year-over-year increases for March 2014 look about the same, residential sales surged above 200 units in the month of March for just the fourth time in history, while cottage sales were still running below the historical average for the month,” Mike Stahls, President of Muskoka Haliburton Orillia – The Lakelands Association of REALTORS®. “In fact, the 77 per cent month-over-month increase in residential transactions from still subdued levels in February to very strong levels in March was the largest on record. This likely reflects, at least in part, the release of some pent-up demand following an unusually harsh winter.”

The median price for residential property sales was a record $225,000 in March 2014, up 13 per cent from a low reading a year earlier.

The median price for cottage sales was $385,000 in March 2014, a decline of eight per cent compared to March 2013.

The dollar value of all residential sales in March 2014 totalled $48.9 million, an increase of 35 per cent on a year-over-year basis and the highest level for this month on record.

The total value of cottage sales was $15.4 million. This was up 20 per cent from a year earlier.

Detailed – Cottage Sales and Median Price by Area
Cottage
By Area Unit Sales Median Sale Price
March 2014 March 2013 Year-over-year
percentage
change
March 2014 March 2013 Year-over-year
percentage
change
Muskoka 15 10 50.0 $400,000 $420,750 -4.9
Haliburton 4 6 -33.3 $121,000 $421,250 -71.3

 

Important information

The average price information quoted can be useful in establishing trends over time, but does not indicate actual prices in centres comprised of widely divergent neighbourhoods, or account for price differentials between geographical areas and property types.

The area served by the more than 670 REALTORS® who belong to Muskoka Haliburton Orillia – The Lakelands Association of REALTORS®, is located less than a two-hour drive north of Toronto, in the heart of Canada’s Cottage Country. There are several major geographical areas within the Association’s boundaries, including the City of Orillia, Gravenhurst, Bracebridge, Muskoka Lakes, Huntsville, Almaguin Highlands, Lake of Bays and Haliburton. Each of these areas has a unique blend of properties ranging from residential homes located in the City of Orillia and smaller towns located throughout the remaining areas and the prestigious year-round recreational properties on large lakes, and lower and mid-range priced cottage properties on the smaller serene lakes.