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Market Brief - 2006 In Review (Posted On: Monday, January 15, 2007)

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The Collingwood and Blue Mountains area Real Estate, Rentals & the Future –a review of local area real estate activity brought to you by Jane and Steve Moysey of Tri-W Realty Inc.

BUYING/SELLING: According to the MLS statistical reports provided by our Real Estate Board, Collingwood ended 2006 with 268 sales of listed properties (51% of total), compared to 313 properties in 2005, with an average price increase of 6.4% over all for the year. The worst months to sell a Collingwood property were February, November & December, the rest were steady with a min. of 20 to a high of 30 sales per month (best mths - May & June). Collingwood’s 5 high sales of the year were all between $700,000 & $800,000: 2 townhomes at Mariners Haven, a chalet in The Forest (all 3 sold by Steve Moysey...ahem...) and 2 smallish parcels (4 acres and under) for med to high density development. Average price for a residence in Collingwood is now $233,528.

Town of the Blue Mountains finished its year with 164 sales of listed properties (38% of the total) compared to 138 sales last year, but the average price actually decreased by .003% - compare that to the 16.5% increase of '05 over '04! Since the number of sales of high end expensive homes is growing (see below), we believe that this stabilization is caused by certain Buyers, put off by the high cost of buying new or building, finally picking up the older chalets and cottages at relatively low cost and renovating them, and their low $$ values combined with the high end make the market look more stable. The worst months to sell a TBM property were January, November & December, the rest ranged from a min. 10 to 21 sales per month (best mth - June). TBM’s 5 highest sales were between $1,150,000 and $1,550,000: 2 brand new chalets near Craigleith and Alpine, a 5 acre residence on the edge of The Georgian Bay Golf Club, 47 development acres near the Lora Bay golf course, and 93 development acres on the edge of the Escarpment above Blue Mountain. Average price for a residence in TBM is now $405,909.

Waterfront property sales slipped a bit this year. Not counting Wasaga Beach, nor riverfront, nor condominiums, 22 waterfronts sold in 2006 ranging from $270,000 to $650,000, compared to 31 in '05 up to $985,000. Although waterfront vistas are always beautiful and interesting, the water’s depth and distance from the residence has become an issue. See http://georgianbay.ca for some very interesting information on the loss of water levels in our Bay.

The high sale of the entire area happened in Clearview, not far from Devil's Glen!! After being on the market for 307 days, a 6,000 sf home on 38 acres sold for $2,695,000. That market is growing! In all, 2006 had 20 properties sell over $1,000,000, compared to 13 in 2005 and 9 in 2004.

RENTALS: Winter renters are showing the same preferences as are Buyers….they want new and pristine with all the modern conveniences and many are happy to pay a large rent to have their desire. The older properties, or ones with just one bathroom, are getting more and more difficult to rent or are attracting very low rents. Summer renters mostly are looking for a weekend or 7 night stay in clean, modern, air conditioned surroundings with easy, free access to an outdoor pool. It is a renters’ market as competition for both seasons’ renters is fierce! 3 bedroom, or larger, properties are more in demand than 2 bedrooms or smaller.

THE FUTURE: The Developers' new residential projects are selling like hot-cakes, new commercial development continues apace, both of which is mostly happening on the west side of Collingwood and out towards Christie Beach. The Collingwood area is still a major retirement destination for the active crowd but we are attracting young entrepreneurs as well. All in all, Collingwood & The Blue Mountains continues to be an exciting place to live, work, and play year round!

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