Well the US election is over and with that distraction behind us, we see our local real estate market recovering. December sales of 60 single family residential units was 39.5% higher than last December’s 43 units. It’s also the highest December sales in over 10 years since 2005. The provincial real estate market news tells us that the market is softening but that is largely impacted by the slower sales in the lower mainland caused by the provincial governments change in rules for foreign investors. People still want to live in the Okanagan Valley and that continues to drive our market. Some local industry leaders are saying to expect a slightly slower more balanced market this year. That’s good news for Buyers and Sellers.
Sales - Sales of single family residential homes for the 12 months ending December 2016 was at 1,328 ending the year on a strong note with the highest number of sales for one year ever recorded in our local market. That is a strong 41% increase over last year in 2015. Last months slight slow down can now be attributed to a combination of the uncertainty caused by the US federal election and the changes made to the lending rules for young Buyers. It will be interesting to see what happens in 2017.
Inventory - The 12 month average monthly inventory of single family homes is now the lowest since 2007. The 12 month average monthly inventory dropped 124 units to 430 for the last 12 months ending in December 2016 compared to 554 for the same period in 2015. This partly due to the slower market at this holiday time of year but it is mostly due to the continued inflow of Buyers to our community.
Prices - Average median prices held steady at $381,679 for the last 12 months ending in December 2016. Prices continue to be above the highest level in the history of real estate in the North Okanagan Valley! Average median prices rose 7.5% for the 12 months ending in December 2016 over last year and are up 15.5% from 2012 when we saw the lowest average median price of the last 10 years. This is 2.4% higher than the previously highest prices of 2008.
Absorption Rate - The rate at which our inventory is being absorbed by Buyers continues to climb. The average absorption rate of 25.5% over the 12 month period ending December 2016 is up from the 13.73% for the same period last year. Also, at the end of December 2016, there were 4 months of available homes on the market, the same as last month. That is the lowest available inventory for December since 2005 but we are starting to see that ease up as we head towards a more balanced market.
In the news, we heard about the new interest-free loan program touted by the BC government as a boon to first-time homebuyers who are struggling to save for a down payment. It’s getting mixed reviews which you can read about in the article attached to this link. From this and other articles I have read, it is largely seen as a political maneuver in this year leading up to the next provincial election which is tentatively scheduled for May 9, 2017.
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If you have any questions about the market, please feel free to contact me at any time. You can go to my stats page at If you have any questions about the market, please feel free to contact me at any time. You can go to my stats page here to view the graphs and full detailed data.