First-time home buyers are a rare bird in the District of Oak Bay. We’re more likely to see first time single family homeowners, or retirees looking for the ultimate lifestyle heading across our borders, says Miles Takacs of Re/Max Camosun on Oak Bay Ave.
Oak Bay isn’t a first time buyer’s market place
“That’s what’s driving the whole Langford boom,” he said. “It is a part of the city where people hope to finally end up. “There’s so many great things going on for it … with that comes really expensive real estate.”
First time home buyers tend to go for the small inexpensive homes designed specifically for that market in the West Shore communities.
“Would I love to find someone a home here? Absolutely. It’s a super safe part of the city.”
However, you need the cash to make that work in this market. “It is almost unheard of in Oak Bay to find a house for under a half-million. Many first time buyers need the boost of having a suite or a renter,” he said.
Takacs can identify a couple of listings that went recently for under the half-million-dollar mark.
And those were homes in need of a little sweat equity.
“Is sweat equity involved in living in those homes? Highly probable, but if you’re looking at living in those homes for eight, 10, 12 years, who cares?” he said.
The pricing though, does make purchasing in Oak Bay a difficult task.
“First time buyers are just trying to scrape down even a five per cent down payment,” he said. “This is probably another reason why (Oak Bay) is yet another community having that secondary suite conversation,”
While the inventory and value is a bit of a challenge, a border town mentality brings in new residents.
“We see a lot of retirees coming to Oak Bay because they can walk to the post office, the pub,” Takacs said.
“As we’ve seen the market calming in terms of pricing and some compression there are some opportunities in Oak Bay.”
One way to live in Oak Bay, without actually paying the hefty values in our real estate, is to live Oak Bay adjacent.
Families can live their lives in Oak Bay while making homes in Fairfield and the Jubilee area.
“Technically you’re no longer in Oak Bay. You’re in Victoria but I guarantee you they’re hanging out at the Penny Farthing Pub,” Takacs said.