Plus 900k Salt Spring Real Estate

The plus $900k (high end) range of Salt Spring real estate had an abundance of homes on the market (approx 80 or so) from 2008 until about 2015.  In 2015 30 high end homes sold and then in 2016 33 sold.   Most of this movement in the high end has been a result of the Vancouver market taking off from buyers from China buying up homes there.   Most of the sales on Salt Spring were from people moving from Vancouver to Salt Spring.  The supply of higher end homes has been reduced to 30 or so homes for sale at any given time.  Stylish homes in pristine shape are usually selling within a few weeks of being listed.


Let’s look at what has happened over the last decade.  Note: Numbers are approximate and don’t include private sales.

900k plus sales

From 1993 – 2000 there were only 7 homes that sold for over 1 million on Salt Spring.

At the present time there is about a year or two worth of inventory in the plus $900k (high end) of the Salt Spring real estate market, assuming no other homes come on the market and sales stay at the same level.

900k plus listing number history

kitchen shot

Some homes in this price range are of a high standard. We could probably count the Sub-Zero/Wolf high-end kitchens on one hand.  Some of the inventory has good bones but requires some upgrading.  There are a few good homes to be had by keen shoppers.  Some sellers are motivated to sell quickly and have dropped their asking prices and made their home the value leader in high end market.  With a good eye, one can find a real bargain in this range.  The house might need some updating, but if it is priced right (at less than $1.4 mil) it may be a deal.

Prices have come down and the inventory in the high end price range is selling.  If a home is very sharp, with stunning views (preferably low bank waterfront), hardwood floors, a high end kitchen, great open design and priced at $1.5 mil or less, it will probably sell in 2016.  However, a few houses in this range are old, poorly designed homes and are, at best, tear-downs.  Who is going to buy a $1.6 mil tear-down when there is the odd perfect home at the $1.5 mil range?  I have heard it so many times, “Money is not the issue.”   Some people “Just have to have the house.”  However, it has been my experience that when people sell their home, money is an issue.  Money becomes the only issue.  Now that may not be true for all people, but anyone can turn a large fortune into a small one by buying the wrong place for the wrong price.

As you can see there was also an increase in sales high end homes in 2015/6.  Most homes that sold were all very sharp and crisp.  There weren’t many outdated homes in the mix.   Homes that are undervalued and or below replacement cost are rare and harder to find in this market.  One has to be an astute buyer.

Average list price for 2016 – $1,576k

Average selling price $1,489k

Average size of home 3231 sq ft

Average size of lot 291,193 sq ft

Average home had 3 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms

Average “Days on the Market” as posted 117.   aggregate days on the market  – Approx 2 plus years in total, including all the time the homes were re-listed but not sold.)

There were some great deals to be had in 2016 on High end homes.  I had the fortune of shopping for many in this price range and finding incredible deals on homes that were sold well below replacement price.   Some of them needed basic upgrades but were architecturally stunning homes that will stand the test of time.  They all had great location either on the water or with large lots.

Scott Simmons

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