A look at the Barrie housing market – June 2019 

The question “Which community should I buy a house in?” is arguably as important as the question “Which specific house should I purchase?” The needs of those looking to buy a house, where they will raise their family, are very different than the needs of those looking to invest in an income property. Families looking to plant their roots in a community might look for the best elementary school or high school, or what the median age is of families who live in the area. On the other side of the spectrum, real estate investors are more interested in metrics, like population growth, new housing developments, and the ratio of renters to homeowners in an area. 

We believe there are advantages of reviewing current market trends for Barrie. The data will provide valuable information for those looking to move to the community. So, that’s what we have done. Here, we introduce and explain some data and recent developments that are set to impact the Barrie housing market. All the stats and figures cited were retrieved from the BDAR (Barrie & District Association of Realtors). So without further ado, let’s take a look at what’s going on in Barrie and the surrounding district.

Median housing prices (residential) 

The 2018 Barrie housing market saw some slight fluctuations in the median house price. The overall median price fell around the $450,000 to $470,000 mark. This is up roughly 50+ per cent from the 2013/14 median price level of approximately $300,000. The most recent data published by BDAR (April 2019) outlines a median price of $485,860 with 223 units being sold throughout the month. The surrounding areas of Simcoe County had varying median prices— the highest of which was the township of Springwater with a median price of $713,841. The lowest median price, $389,138, was cited for the town of Midland. 

Months of inventory

The metric months of inventory determine whether the current state of a real estate market is a “seller’s market” or a “buyer’s market.” This illustrates how long it would take to sell all of the current inventory of housing at the current rate of sales. For April 2019, the Town of Barrie boasted months in inventory of 2.8. This figure is right around the 10-year April average of 2.6. Months in inventory of less than 4 is considered a seller’s market, while over 6 is considered a buyer’s market. These distinctions correspond to the idea that when inventories are selling quicker (a seller’s market) prices increase due do the demand outweighing supply. However, the opposite is true in a buyer’s market.

Economic outlook

Interest rates are one of the key factors in housing demand. This rate is critical to those making the decision to buy a house because of the effect it has on the overall cost of the mortgage. However, mortgage rates largely depend on the overnight rate charged to charter banks by the Bank of Canada. The Bank of Canada’s most recent interest rate decision culminated in the choice to leave rates unchanged. The general consensus moving forward is the Bank of Canada will leave rates unchanged for the remainder of 2019 before looking to raise rates in 2020. For home buyers, this should mean mortgage rates should remain relatively low for the remainder of the year but should see increases in the future.

Rapid fire statistics 

Here are some statistics to give you a better understanding of Barrie and those who reside there. All of these statistics are from barrie.ca and rentboard.ca

  • Population 2016 (most recent census): 141,434
  • Change in the population (2011-2016): 3.9% 
  • Average age: 38.9
  • Population density per sq/km: 1,428
  • Average household income: $97,290 
  • Dominant housing type: single detached
  • Unemployment rate (June 2018): 6.9%
  • Average 1-bedroom rental rate: $1,556
  • Average 3-bedroom rental rate: $1,773
  • Largest employers: Wolf Steel / Napoleon Appliances, Georgian International Ltd., and Sinton Transportation

I hope our discussion helps you better understand the current Barrie housing market and will help you make a more informed decision on whether you feel now is the time for you to buy in Barrie. Reach out using one of the following links or get in touch with me here