Serious Sellers in the North Okanagan Compete for Home Buyers this Spring

Vernon, BC June 3, 2011 - The North Zone of the Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board (OMREB) reported May 2011 sales activity of all MLS® property types were down compared to sales reported at this time last year but were up from April as serious sellers begin to compete for home buyers moving into Spring.

Overall sales of 123 units for May 2011 saw a 43.02% improvement over the 86 units sold during April – with total unit sales down 28.07% compared to May 2010 (to 123 from 171).  Sales volumes last month were at $48.2 million compared to $54.6 million in May 2010.  Total residential sales for May dipped by 27.45% to 111 compared to 153 in May 2010. Last month’s inventory dipped 3.1%)compared to last May (to 2,627 from 2,711), while new listings dropped 15.82% over the same month in 2010 (to 463 from 550) – down 4.14% from this April (483). 

“The gradual improvement in sales activity is expected to continue and will pick up further as the weather continues to warm up, bringing more buyers out looking at houses.  It is too early to see any consistent trends in the Spring market as many factors have affected consumer confidence and created buyer hesitation to date – from the tightening of mortgage qualifying rules, to HST concerns and referendum uncertainty.  As well, distressed prices in the States have added competition for potential recreation, investment and retirement property buyers,” says Darcy Griffiths, OMREB Director and REALTOR® in the North Zone.
 
“Buyers still enjoy an excellent selection in the North Okanagan.  We are noticing that houses coming onto the market that are priced to reflect today’s values are selling relatively quickly.  To attract buyers in this competitive market, sellers can benefit from working with a professional REALTOR® to price strategically in order to take advantage of increased buyer activity during the Spring months while mortgage rates are expected to remain stable.“

Griffiths notes the results of OMREB’s Board-wide monthly Buyers Survey – launched in September 2010 to profile who the buyers are, what they are buying and where they are from – shows that the majority of buyers are from within the Board area, and indicates that serious buyers are taking advantage of the current market affordability and leveraging their positive purchasing power and low interest rates while they last.  First-time buyers are a driving factor and they stimulate the chain of ownership.

The North Zone of OMREB covers an area from Predator Ridge north to Vernon and Coldstream, and also includes the surrounding areas of Falkland, Enderby, Grindrod, Armstrong, Spallumcheen, Lumby and Cherryville.  The Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board (OMREB) is comprised of 1,144 member REALTORS® and 86 real estate offices in the Southern Interior of BC.

For the most comprehensive source of all real estate listings, home buying and selling information, visit our national websites at www.realtor.ca and www.icx.ca.  To find out about the advantages of using a REALTOR®, check out www.howrealtorshelp.ca. All OMREB listings are published in the MLS® Real Estate Review magazine available at all real estate offices and various locations in the Central Okanagan, North Okanagan, the Shuswap and Revelstoke areas.  For comprehensive Board-wide statistical information, please visit our local public site:  www.omreb.com

For more information:

Darcy Griffiths, Director – North Zone (North Okanagan statistical information)
darcy@redheadrealestate.com           (250) 549-4161

Kent Jorgenson, Director - Central Zone  (Board-wide statistical information)  
kent@kentjorgenson.com                    (250) 717-5000

Cameron Muir, Chief Economist, BCREA  (Province-wide statistical information)
cmuir@bcrea.bc.ca                               (604) 742-2780

Paige Gregson

Paige Gregson

REALTOR®
CENTURY 21 Executives Realty Ltd.
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