Shuswap Buyers' Market Continues as Summer Arrives - August 5, 2011

Sicamous, BC – The Shuswap Zone of the Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board (OMREB) reported July 2011 sales activity of all MLS® property types were down compared to sales reported at this time last year and this June as a buyers’ market continues into the summer months.

In July, overall unit sales dropped 4.62% compared to 2010 (to 62 from 65), but sales volumes improved at $20.8 million compared to $18.0 million last year – down 7.46% from units sold in June (67).   Total residential sales for the month of July dipped 8.77% compared to the same time last year (to 52 from 57 in 2010), and single family unit sales were down 21.88% from 2010 (to 25 from 32).   Last month’s inventory of 1,870 units was down slightly (1.42%) from 1,897 in July 2010, while new listings for July (227) rose 2.71% compared to 2010 (221) – down 31.21% from June’s listings (330).
“July home sales were down in most markets in the province compared to June with sales activity mirroring 2001/2002 pre-recession levels.  Significant inventory, coupled with a lull in overall demand, weak economic performance and negative reports regarding debt loads have cooled consumer confidence despite positive population and job growth in BC,” says Karen Singbeil, OMREB Director and REALTOR® in the ShuswapZone.  “Some market segments are holding their own in the Okanagan-Shuswap while others like the recreation and investment segments are down.  We are hopeful the current warm weather and influx of potential out-of-town buyers will result in modest gains during August.”

Singbeil notes, “Serious buyers are seeking well-priced properties in the Shuswap, recognizing that now is the time to negotiate on that dream recreation or retirement home while there is still a good selection and less competition on offers, and while mortgage rates continue to remain favourable.  They are looking to avoid interest risk, knowing that higher rates anticipated later this year will impact their purchasing power and determine the home they can afford.

Properties with good curb appeal that are priced by vendors with the sharpest pencils are selling quickly in this competitive market if buyers and sellers come together on expectations.  Sellers can benefit from working with a professional REALTOR® to price strategically at current values and make the most of summer buyer activity. “

The results of OMREB’s Board-wide monthly Buyers Survey profiling 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.  First-time buyers and move-up buyers are a driving factor, and stimulate the chain of ownership.

The Shuswap Zone of OMREB includes the areas of Salmon Arm, Sicamous, Sorrento, North Shuswap and east along Highway 1 to Revelstoke.  The Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board (OMREB) is comprised of 1,151 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 and  To find out about the advantages of using a REALTOR®, check out  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:

For more information:

Karen Singbeil, Director - Shuswap Zone  (Shuswap statistical information)        (250) 836-2223

Kent Jorgenson, Director - Central Zone  (Board-wide statistical information)          (250) 717-5000

Cameron Muir, Chief Economist, BCREA  (Province-wide statistical information)                    (604) 742-2780

Click here to download printable PDF of July 2011 releases for the three OMREB Zones.

NOTE:  Current and archived statistics for each Zone are available on this site.  For this month's statistics package, click on the "Market Statistics" tab in the menu at the top of this webpage and choose "Current Year - 2011".


Paige Gregson

Paige Gregson

CENTURY 21 Executives Realty Ltd.
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