We regularly discuss the Parry Sound cottage market with our friends and family in cottage country. It is something that interests Karen & I, and is of importance to our group of peers. What we recognize however, is that the cottage country market is certainly unique and specialized. Many cottage owners own a principle residence in an urban setting, and their understanding of this market tends to be quite knowledgable. Homes are generally similar in nature (although not always), and/or neighbourhoods tend to hold a certain market value. In cottage country, each cottage is unique, each neighbourhood is unique, and each lake/body of water is unique. This impacts significantly on how market value is determined.
The dynamics of Ontario marketplaces (and Canadian marketplaces), determines price through the
interaction of supply and demand, however the forces of supply and demand in our economy is encumbered by much more interconnected and complicated structures. Real Estate is only one of numerous interconnected markets comprising the Ontario marketplace . Demand is determined in the cottage country marketplace by a number of factors and by the quantity of properties that buyers are capable of acquiring at various prices.
The 2015 Parry Sound cottage market has been active. It has been stable and product has been moving. Having said this, price is a huge factor. Let’s face it, cottages are a luxury and many families are not able to afford to purchase and maintain a second property (or a first home for that matter). Therefore, the price that the average cottage buyer is willing and able to spend is a big factor in determining the market value of cottage properties around the Parry Sound district.
Since the credit crunch in 2008/2009, there has been a change in the price of cottages. For a number of years, we witnessed the price of cottages staying relatively high, and the Parry Sound cottage market was soft. Product was staying on the market for years and fewer buyers were able to afford the high prices of cottages. During the past couple of years, prices have come down and the marketplace seems to have become a fairer market for cottage buyers. This, of course is a bit of a double-edged sword. Cottage owners are not realizing the higher values that they once would have for their cottage properties, but the other side of this is that cottages that are priced at market value are moving – they are being traded. This is good news if it is time for you to sell your cottage. Yes, you may not get the price that you may have got pre- 2007, but there is now a market for cottages.
The Parry Sound market has seen a 3% increase in the total number of sales for June 2015, with a 20% increase in year-to-date sales over 2014. Subjectively, Realtors are reporting a more active market with Listings up 4% and buyers actively seeking to purchase properties. One market segment that we have also been observing is the retirement or close-to-retirement crowd. With record breaking prices in the GTA housing market, those close to retirement definitely have the Parry Sound district on their minds. With its easy access to larger urban centres such as Barrie & Sudbury, regional hospital and healthcare, more affordable housing, and the amenities and lifestyle that the Parry Sound district provides, those contemplating what they want to do in their retirement have some great options. Selling a home in the GTA and buying in the Parry Sound district can put money in the bank, reduce expenses, and create a great lifestyle on the water, a large piece of rural property,in the town of Parry Sound, or in a smaller rural community.
How people are choosing to enjoy cottage country continues to evolve. There are many conversations worth having and we just love having them!