For Immediate Release: March 4, 2015
Okanagan-Shuswap Housing Market Rallies in February
Kelowna, BC – The Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board (OMREB) reported February 2015 sales activity of all MLS® property types improved 34% compared to the same month in 2014 – bouncing back 53% from sluggish results in January.
“After a more than usual slowdown in January, Okanagan-Shuswap home sales rallied along with consumer confidence during February despite weaker economic conditions in Alberta. While not at the record pace seen at the close of 2014, the year has started off at a much stronger level than we saw during the first six months last year. However, days on market in our Board area is now at 95 days on average compared to 141 last year at this time,” says Darcy Griffiths, OMREB President and active REALTOR® in the North Okanagan.
“The Shuswap lead the way in February with single family residential sales improving 71% compared to 2014,” Griffiths reports. “In the Central Okanagan, single family residential sales were up 68% while the North Okanagan saw an 18% increase over this time last year.”
An increase in demand and fewer homes for sale has edged the OMREB market from balanced into seller’s market conditions for some segments where demand outpaces supply. While the selection of single family homes has been reduced with the ongoing decline in inventory and fewer new listings -- especially for entry-level homes -- the price of single family homes is steady and strong in most areas with modest gains seen in some locations where supply has tightened.
“Desirable, well-positioned and well-presented units are selling quickly,” Griffiths notes. “Home sellers listing early this year will have the edge and see results.”
Experiencing ups and downs at different times and locations, sales activity and prices within OMREB’s three diverse market areas tends to vary among property types -- zone-by-zone and month-by-month, Griffiths explains.
“In order to fully understand the overall picture of the current residential market, it is important to consult with a professional REALTOR® to look at trends within property types and different price points.”
Central Zone (Peachland to Lake Country): During February, overall sales in the Central Zone were up 43.0% -- to 379 units from 265 in 2014. Total residential sales for the month jumped by 45.2% to 347 units compared to 239 in 2014. The sale of 181 single family homes saw a 67.6 % improvement over the 108 in February 2014, while townhouse sales improved by 66.7% (to 50 from 30).
The 932 new listings taken in the Central Okanagan during the month saw an 11.1% increase compared to 839 in 2014, and total inventory was reduced by 13.2% to 3,211 units from 3,698.
”The competition for buyers can still be a challenge for sellers if properties are not priced well and presented attractively from the start,” Griffiths warns. “The key to a successful sale is being realistic about the market value of your home and willing to negotiate for the best offer.”
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.
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 156
Current Inventory 507
Sell/Inv. Ratio 14.20%
Days to Sell 107
Average Price $262,149
Median Price $228,438
New Listings 100
Sell/Inv. Ratio 14.71%
Days to Sell 852
Average Price $342,116
Median Price $332,450
New Listings 67
Current Inventory 413
Sell/Inv. Ratio 4.84%
Days to Sell 36
Average Price $398,839
Median Price $448,690
New Listings 407
Sell/Inv. Ratio 18.19%
Days to Sell 85
Average Price $481,333
Median Price $455,000
Ratio of Sales vs Inventory 15.14%
Totals include variables in any given, due to preceding month's collapsed sales and deleted listings. e & oe