A real estate sold sign hangs in front of a Canadian property Friday, Nov. 4, 2016. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graeme Roy)

A real estate sold sign hangs in front of a Canadian property Friday, Nov. 4, 2016. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graeme Roy)

Okanagan home prices jump as real estate market heats up in January

Association of Interior Realtors reports 60 per cent sales spike last month compared to January 2020

The Interior residential real estate market is off to a hot start in 2021.

Residential sales hit a record high in the first month of 2021 from Revelstoke to Eastgate Manning Park and into the South Peace River region, according to the Association of Interior Realtors.

The association was formed Jan. 1 when the South Okanagan and Okanagan Mainline real estate boards officially merged.

Members of the association sold 796 units in January, up 60 per cent compared to the same time last year.

In the Shuswap and Revelstoke region, property sales were up 50 per cent from 40 units in January 2020 to 60 last month.

The South Okanagan region (Summerland to Eastgate Manning Park) took the crown for highest dollar volume increase with a 136 per cent spike compared to January 2020.

“Hikes in sale dollar volume is another impact of COVID-19 as buyers are seeking out larger spaces to improve their living conditions,” said the association’s president Kim Heizmann in a Feb. 3 news release.

READ MORE: 16% boom predicted for B.C. real estate sales in 2021: experts

Heizmann added that while larger homes naturally come with a larger price tag, the association is still seeing an upward pressure on pricing driven by a shortage of inventory on the market.

Active residential listings for January 2021 from Revelstoke to Peachland remained on par with December 2020’s listings but came up short 37 per cent compared to January 2020.

In the Central Okanagan, North Okanagan and Shuswap/Revelstoke regions, the benchmark price went up most sharply in the single-family category, which increased by 14 per cent.

In the South Okanagan, where benchmark pricing is not yet available, average sale prices showed double-digit increases year-over-year. Average sale prices for condominiums in the South Peace River rose 69 per cent over January 2020 prices, according to the association.

In the South Okanagan, overall listings remained low as decreases were noted in all housing categories. Inventory for condominiums remains low in the South Peace River region, 27 per cent below last January’s numbers.

“A chronic shortage of new condominium developments in areas such as the South Peace River region or Revelstoke makes it even harder for inventory to meet demand, particularly when such areas are driven by recreational property purchases,” Heizmann said.

READ MORE: W-shaped recovery would be ‘very severe’ without government assistance: CMHC


Brendan Shykora
Reporter, Vernon Morning Star
Email me at Brendan.Shykora@vernonmorningstar.com
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