Muskoka Real Estate Market Report

Muskoka Chairs on the Indian River in Port Carling, Ontario in Port Carling

The Pandemic Market is Over

August 2022

By: Susan Benson & Mark Benson

The Muskoka waterfront real estate market turned a corner in July and the Pandemic Market is over. While residential numbers remain relatively strong, waterfront sellers should be prepared for:
  • Growing competition
  • Increased time on market
  • The first signs of a change from list price depreciation to actual, albeit modest, sales price depreciation. There are fewer competing offers and this strategy is increasingly risky for Sellers.
What your lakeside neighbour sold for in March is less likely to be matched in the coming months. The window has opened for Buyers to negotiate across all market segments as conditional offers are back and for the first time in months, more properties are available to show.  As in any market, Sellers are not ready to accept low ball offers based only on a Buyer's ability to pay. Market factors still matter.  Keep scrolling below for this month's market update packed with our Muskoka real estate analysis, upcoming events, and helpful tips. 
Led by waterfront properties, July brought the earliest signs of price depreciation in addition to the list price corrections that we have been watching unfold over recent months. This, in the face of accumulating inventory across all segments due primarily to a 34% July drop in unit sales.

While new listings across all market segments declined by 4% in July 2022 as compared with July of 2021 total active listings are up 33% and inventory is at 3.8 months as compared with 1.9 last year – this still contrasts sharply with the 6 to 9 months of inventory in pre-COVID years. 
Waterfront drove overall price depreciation in July with a drop of 13% average price and a 7% median decline as compared with July a year ago.  This contrasts with a median price increase of 11% to $741,000 across all combined market segments and an average 6% price decline month over month to $911,631. Average days on market grew from 13 days to 19 days which is still by any measure, short! The decline in sales activity over the summer is typical of a more normal cottage country market that softens through July and August with new listings coming on as part of the regular fall sales cycle.
Year to date market wide unit sales are down 35%, new listings are down 13% and months of inventory is at 2.2 months. While average price is up 16% at $1,017,381 much of this was driven by Q1, while year to date days on the market has increased ever so slightly year to date from 10 to 11.

What This Means for Buyers and Sellers
Buyers now have expanded opportunity for negotiation within what no longer remains a Seller’s market in Muskoka.

For those thinking about selling – prices remain at or close to historic highs, while interest rates, inventory and days on market are still very low by comparison to a normal, more balanced market.

Muskoka Waterfront:
Year to date, 533 waterfront properties have sold via the Lakelands North Real Estate Board with a median of 2 days more than last year at 12. Driven primarily by the first four months of the year, the average price is up 28% at $1,452,382.00 and the median of $995,000.00 is up 17% over last year at this time.  
Following years of significant appreciation, July numbers saw both an average price drop of 13.6% to $1,109,971 and a 7.3% median decline to $825,000 as compared with July of 2021. 
While year to date inventory at 3.1 months has doubled as compared with a year ago, again, it remains well below pre-Covid levels of 6+ months. Even as we are observing list price corrections, correctly priced properties are selling and the average list to sell ratio remains at 102% as compared with 109% last year at this time.  
There are currently 301 waterfront properties for sale in Muskoka.  165 are listed at or above $1,000,000 including 21 for over $5,000,000 and 7 for over $9,000,000. The highest listed waterfront property available in Muskoka is at 1532 Mortimer’s Point Road, for $14,495,000 down from the original list price of $16,995,000. 
There have been 5 sales of property over $9,000,000 so far this year with the highest for $17,250,000 at 1041 Orgill’s Point Road on Lake Joseph.

Muskoka Non Waterfront Residential

737 residential properties have sold via the Lakelands North Real Estate Board year to date, down 23% as compared with last year.  Active listings have increased by 6% and the list to sell ratio is at 108% up 2% over last year.  Inventory remains very tight in this market segment with 1.6 months of inventory, up by .5 from a year ago and far short of the 4-9 months pre covid. Year to date average price has increased by 16% to $702,787 and the median has increased by 15% to $650,000.
There are 227 non-waterfront single-family properties for sale in Muskoka including 69 above $1,000,000.  2 months ago, there were 55 properties listed above $1,000,000. 
The most expensive property listed is at 160 Rowanwood Lane in Huntsville at $2,595,000 down $300,000 from when was first introduced to the market 44 days ago, and more than twice the price paid for it in January 2022 at $1,240,000. This speaks to the issue of list price depreciation versus actual price decline. 

*PLEASE NOTE: As at January - August  1st, 2022 unless otherwise noted. Ongoing updates to follow as information is verified. Our reports are prepared using a variety of resources, including Royal LePage Canada proprietary research, The Canadian Real Estate Association, The Lakelands Association of Realtors; *Lakelands North (Haliburton, Muskoka, Georgian Bay, Archipelago, Parry Sound, Severn).


The Property Match Maker!

We have some very happy Buyers and Sellers thanks to the response to our property match making efforts over the last few months! 

If you know someone who is thinking about selling, and has who is not already working with a realtor, we would love an opportunity to speak with them about the Muskoka  real estate market and options that are available to them.

Here are what some of our current buyers are looking for:
Lakefront Cottage: This family of 4 comes from Calgary and has deep family connections to  Muskoka. They are ready to buy a three-bedroom cottage on any Muskoka lake that gives them a bit of privacy.

Vacant Muskoka Acreage: This couple loves the outdoors and is keen to build. Looking for 100 acres or enough land to build ATV trails that won't disrupt the neighbourhood! 

Fenelon Falls Home: This couple has deep roots in Fenelon Falls and Sturgeon Point so this area is ideal. Looking for a year-round home with space for inlaws. Must be within walking distance of essentials such as Grr8 Finds Market, Kawartha Lakes Brewery and Henry's!

Bracebridge Home with Character: This couple wishes to leave Caledon for Muskoka with the South Muskoka Golf Club locale their preferred choice. Ideally home with a larger, treed lot and inground pool or space to build one.



Gather the family and head over to Windsor Park to SWS Water Ski Shows. Shows run every Tuesday from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. More details here.

The fun doesn't end after LabourDay! Enjoy great entertainment, fantastic food, exciting attractions and good people at the Bracebridge Fair. Full event schedule and details here.

Another fair full of fun for the whole family. Stay up-to-date with event announcements and find full fair details online.




This month we are featuring three client questions:

  1. Can I put a green roof on my boathouse?
  2. What do I do with my Fireplace Ashes?
  3. How does the Non-Resident Canadian Non-Speculation Tax affect Me?
You won't want to miss the answers so click on the button below!



Check out the Muskoka Lakes Association Good Neighbour Code  

Whether you are new or old to cottaging the Muskoka Lakes Good Neighbour Code is an excellent resource for you! As you may already know, the MLA is the oldest cottage association in Canada.

This highly-qualified volunteer group monitors water quality, Official Plan reviews, By Law updates, and is a powerful lobby group for environmentally responsible development.
Your eyes and ears on Muskoka for just $150.00.

Contact Susan, MLA Board Member, to find out why we have been members for years - and why we recommend that you consider Membership too. 



Royal LePage Home Renovation ROI Report

The just released national Survey of Royal LePage Property Experts, including us, found that a kitchen renovation is the most worthwhile improvement project, with the potential to increase a home’s value by 20%. 

Key highlights from the release include:

  • Royal LePage professionals say, on average, bathroom renovations can increase the value of a home by 16%
  • Finished basements and basement apartments have the potential to increase a home’s value by 15%, according to survey results
  • Outdoor entertaining space and landscaping have the potential to increase a property’s value by an average of 10%, according to respondents.
  • For Canadians looking for general guidance on where to invest in their home renovation projects, 87% of surveyed experts recommend interior renovations.

Thinking about selling and not sure what improvements to make? 


Royal LePage Renovation Survey May 2022