As we bid farewell to 2023, it’s time to take a close look at the dynamics that unfolded within the Halifax real estate market over the past year. Here, we’ll dive into the key statistics and trends that shaped the local property landscape.
A year of transition
2023 emerged as a year of transition, as the Halifax real estate market underwent a noticeable shift from the frenetic pace of previous years. The extraordinary circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic had propelled the market to unprecedented heights, with homes flying off the shelves.
However, as the year progressed, we witnessed a change in dynamics, with buyers more willing to make lowball offers against the high expectations of sellers. This was thanks to remaining effects of the COVID-19 market, when many Canadians moved to Nova Scotia for various reasons.
Housing was not only more affordable than in some major urban centers, but the province’s low COVID case counts also made it an appealing place to come. As remote work quickly became common, Nova Scotia offered affordability with the alluring lifestyle and peaceful calm of the ocean.
Halifax’s 2023 real estate market
In 2023, approximately 76 per cent of the inventory in Halifax found new owners. While this percentage is certainly robust, it represents a notable departure from the whirlwind sales we had grown accustomed to during the pandemic.
Comparatively, a glance back at 2019 reveals that 78 per cent of listed homes found eager buyers.
These figures hint at a striking similarity between our current market and the conditions experienced in 2019, a year when the Halifax real estate landscape exhibited strong sales ratios.
Statistics suggest that homes were priced appropriately, leading to relatively quick sales. But, we must consider the properties that are still on the market and have yet to sell:
- Properties listed under $499,999 typically sold within 21 days. Those that sat longer remained on the market for about 90 days.
- Listings in the $500,000-$699,999 range sold, on average, within 28 days. Those that sat longer remained on the market for about 94-100 days.
- Properties in the $700,000-$899,999 range took an average of 42 days to sell. Those that sat longer remained on the market for about 97-107 days.
- Listings from $900,000 and up were on the market for an average of 50 days. Those that sat longer remained on the market for about 118 days.
Statistics based on Nova Scotia Association of Realtors, January 1 to December 31, 2023
The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic
The pandemic’s influence cannot be understated. During the height of the COVID-19 crisis, we saw an extraordinary phenomenon where nearly 101 per cent of single-family homes listed were selling. However, it’s important to remember that these circumstances were unique and unlikely to be sustained over the long term.
Last year, the Halifax real estate market showed signs of returning to a more balanced state. While it may appear that the market is slowing down, it’s essential to view this as a return to a more typical, sustainable pace. The frenzied conditions of the pandemic were exceptional and not reflective of long-term market dynamics.
The statistics tell a story of a market in transition. Our current landscape in Halifax closely resembles the conditions of 2019, where we experienced healthy sales ratios. It’s important to recognize the cyclical nature of real estate and adapt to the evolving market.
As we move forward, these insights should guide both buyers and sellers in making informed decisions in this evolving real estate landscape.
Stay tuned for further updates and analysis as we navigate the exciting world of Halifax real estate in the coming year.