For Immediate Release: September 4, 2015
Sales Activity in Okanagan-Shuswap Housing Market Driven by Strong Consumer Confidence
Kelowna, BC – The Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board (OMREB) reported sales activity of all MLS® property types in August 2015 remained steady through a typically slow summer month and despite smoky conditions -- posting the strongest month for August since 2007.
While the housing market is being underpinned by rock bottom mortgage interest rates , a noticeable lift in consumer confidence in our province has propelled the market to elevated activity. Smoky conditions due to wild fires may have had some impact on viewings but have not deterred purchases by people who are choosing to buy now.
“Bolstered by high consumer confidence as local employment and economic conditions improve, demand for homes in the Okanagan-Shuswap is strong and keeping pace with other markets in BC,” says Christopher Miller, OMREB President and active REALTOR® in the Central Okanagan.
“Most sectors in our Board area saw a very active summer and we are optimistic this upward trend will continue into the fall with solid sales activity in September and October,” Miller notes.
“Now is the time to list as inventory continues to decline. Single family homes within our Board area are selling within 88 days compared to 104 days on market year-to-date during the same eight-month period in 2014.”
Within OMREB’s three diverse markets – Central Okanagan, North Okanagan, and Shuswap-Revelstoke areas – sales activity and prices, and supply and demand tends to vary among property types at different times and locations, with ups and downs experienced zone-by-zone and month-by-month.
Some segments in the Central Okanagan are experiencing shortages and moving into sellers’ market conditions. Single family residential sales improved by 12% over last August while year-to-date totals improved by 11% over the same time period in 2014 (January through August).
“In order to fully understand the current residential market, and to look at trends within property types and varying price points in different neighbourhoods, it is important to consult with a REALTOR®,” Miller explains.
Central Zone (Peachland to Lake Country): During August, overall sales of all property types in the Central Zone were up 8.2% with 591 units compared to 546 in 2014. However, year-to-date sales activity improved by 9.3% compared to the same period last year (January through August) to 4,088 units from 3,741 in 2014.
Total residential sales for the month improved by 8.4% at 545 units compared to 503 in 2014, and by 11.6% year-to-date (to 3,820 from 3,424). The sale of 267 single family homes rose 12.2% over last August (238) and improved 11.0% year-to-date (to 1,961 from 1,766).
Average days to sell a single family home in the Central Okanagan in August was down to 64 days compared to 66 in 2014, while days to sell year-to-date (January through August) averaged 64 days compared to 74 last year at this time.
The 831 new listings taken in the Central Okanagan during the month rose slightly (0.7%) compared to 825 in 2014, while total inventory was reduced by 7.0% to 3,555 units from 3,822 last August.
Total residential unit sales for the month were the same as August 2014 at 105 units, and up 9.3% year-to-date (to 670 from 613). The sale of single family homes improved 19.6% (to 61 units from 51 last year) and by 16.3% year-to-date (to 379 from 326) compared to August 2014.
The average of 113 days to sell a single family home in the Shuswap was up compared to 107 in 2014, while homes have sold in 116 days on average year-to-date compared to 137 during the same time period last year.
The 191 new listings taken in the Zone dipped marginally (1.6%) compared to 194 in August 2014. Overall inventory was down 10.0% to 1,543 from 1,715 last year at this time.
Whether you are selling or buying a home, a professional REALTOR® who is familiar with the area and your particular neighbourhood can assist with searching, listing, negotiating and closing. The key to a successful sale is being realistic about the market value of your home and willing to negotiate for the best offer.
How REALTORS® can help when buying or selling a home in the Okanagan-Shuswap:
• BUYING OR SELLING – Home values vary based on type and location: Talk to a REALTOR® about how your property type is currently faring locally, and how it compares to similar listings in your particular neighbourhood.
• SELLING – Pricing is crucial when listing your home: Serious sellers recognize that their properties must be priced within the current market conditions. Homes that are priced well are the ones that are selling, as has been evident this year.
• NEGOTIATING – For a successful purchase and sale: The professional negotiation skills of a REALTOR® bring buyers and sellers together for a successful sale
New Listings 163
Current Inventory 614
Sell/Inv. Ratio 21.50%
Days to Sell 99
Average Price $256,270
Median Price $232,750
New Listings 128
Sell/Inv. Ratio 24.71%
Days to Sell 70
Average Price $380,991
Median Price $358,500
New Listings 46
Current Inventory 485
Sell/Inv. Ratio 5.77%
Days to Sell 219
Average Price $239,275
Median Price $217,500
New Listings 343
Sell/Inv. Ratio 24.25%
Days to Sell 64
Average Price $531,199
Median Price $490,000
Ratio of Sales vs Inventory 23.79%
Totals include variables in any given, due to preceding month's collapsed sales and deleted listings. e & oe