Although 2020 was an unusual and challenging year, the Hamilton-Burlington real estate market came out of it stronger than ever.
When we entered 2020, our team was on track to have our best year ever, with record sales and results in January and February.
By the beginning of March, we were poised to have the strongest spring market on record, but when COVID-19 and the lockdowns hit, it caused a slight slowdown and delayed the busy spring market.
Gearing Back Up
April was the first full month of our province-wide state of emergency, but sellers weren’t rushing to list their homes, and buyers didn’t hold off on their purchases. Homes were still selling for close to their list price or well over.
When the economy reopened, government stimulus packages, record-low interest rates, and remote working led to a major shift in homeowners’ needs, with many sellers moving up and many buyers relocating to the Hamilton-Burlington region.
By May, consumer confidence was growing in Canada. We were already seeing an increase in sales activity and home values were continuing to rise.
The market was back in full swing by June with a momentum that was carried through to July and August, when homes were selling quickly and for top dollar.
A Record-Breaking Fall
September was our busiest month ever for re-sale sales and was incredibly busy for the market overall. Sales hit record highs in Hamilton-Burlington while the low inventory drove prices higher.
This trend continued throughout October until a slight slowdown in November and December, which is typical for the winter market.
A Strong End To The Year
By the end of the year, the real estate market was rebounding quickly with record-breaking sales numbers and sold prices.
We ended 2020 with solid year-over-year price growth throughout the area. In fact, the amount of growth Hamilton-Burlington experienced in 2020 was equivalent to what we would typically see over two to three years.
Here’s a closer look at what happened in the market in 2020:
Hamilton Market Activity
|Months of Inventory||1.2||2.1||-0.9|
|Median Days on Market||12.0||19.0||-7.0|
|Average Days on Market||22.7||31.2||-8.6|
Burlington Market Activity
|Months of Inventory||1.1||1.7||-0.6|
|Median Days on Market||11.0||17.0||-6.0|
|Average Days on Market||19.8||27.9||-8.1|
The market shifted drastically in 2020 as more people began working and learning remotely. Many people relocated out of urban areas like Toronto to cottage country, Hamilton, and the surrounding area to get more for their money and more access to nature.
Overall, there were 14,863 sales of residential properties in 2020, which is an 8.4% increase from 2019.
Hamilton Mountain saw the highest total number of sales at 2,113, while Ancaster and Dunnville experienced the highest increase in sales at 26.7% and 22.4%.
Dundas had the largest year-over-year drop in sales, down from 323 in 2019 to 304 in 2020.
There was significant demand for real estate in the Hamilton-Burlington area in 2020, driven by the desire for more space. The problem was, there weren’t enough homes hitting the market to meet that demand.
New residential listings in Hamilton-Burlington were down 7.6% compared to 2019. In Hamilton, new listings fell 9% from 12,374 to 11,307. In Burlington, new listings fell 4% from 4,376 to 4,207.
This lack of inventory often led to multiple offer scenarios and homes selling over asking in just a few days.
Hamilton and Burlington both experienced a drop in active listings in 2020. Hamilton saw a 38% decrease and Burlington a 31% decrease.
Months of Inventory
That limited supply resulted in months of inventory dropping across the region.
Hamilton’s months of inventory fell 0.9% year-over-year, from 2.1 in 2019 to 1.2 in 2020.
Burlington also experienced a drop, with their months of inventory falling 0.6% from 1.7 to 1.1.
Average Days on Market
As soon as the economy ramped back up, so did home sales. Many of our listings sold in less than a week.
In Hamilton, the average days on market fell 8.6% from 31.2 in 2019 to 22.7 in 2020.
Burlington’s days on market fell 8.1%, from 27.9 in 2019 to 19.8 in 2020.
Competition was tight in 2020. Homes were not only selling at a rapid speed but for well over the list price, too.
In 2020, the average price of a residential property in Hamilton-Burlington was $690,002, up 16.8% from 2019.
When we look at the results community-by-community, a few areas stand out for their impressive price growth and results.
Hamilton saw an 18% year-over-year price increase, from $535,874 to $629,961.
In Burlington, the average home price rose 16% from $754,842 to $878,372.
Flamborough had the highest average sale price at $969,322, while Seneca saw the largest percentage increase: 29.7% from $631,242 in 2019 to $819,178 in 2020.
There was no drop in average price in any Hamilton-Burlington community — all communities in the area saw double-digit increases.
A Look at What’s to Come
At the beginning of 2020, it was difficult for buyers and sellers to discern what would happen in the real estate market. But through it all, we were confident that the Hamilton-Burlington region would come out thriving.
Our team is busier than ever in 2021. We continue to hit new records each month in terms of sales and expect the rest of the year to follow suit, especially as we enter into the spring market with lockdowns easing and the vaccine rollout ramping up.
No matter what comes our way this year, our team is more than prepared to adapt and adjust accordingly to ensure our clients reach above and beyond their real estate goals.