Residential real estate sales for the month of July in the Okanagan region slid to pre-pandemic activity in 2022.
But, according to the Association of Interior Realtors, the benchmark price for homes in the Okanagan and Shuswap/Revelstoke regions saw increases in year-over-year comparisons across all home categories, with the most noticeable increase seen in the North Okanagan, for condominiums .
The benchmark price for condos in the North Okanagan increased 29.2 per cent compared to June 2021, clocking in at $325,900.
The North Okanagan’s benchmark price for single-family homes was up 12.3 per cent as well.
The benchmark price represents a typical property within a market.
There has also been an increase in inventory on the market, and that is good news for prospective buyers.
The association reported 1,196 residential unit sales were recorded across the region last July, marking a 33.3 percent decrease compared to the number of units sold during the hot market of July 2021.
“Seasonally, it is not out of the ordinary to see a dip in sales in the summer, although real estate market activity across most regions in the province was below average last month, not just within the Interior,” says association president Lyndi Cruickshank.
“A number of factors, or even a combination of factors such as the interest rate hikes, resumption of travel and the school break could all be reasons consumers pushed pause on their real estate plans as they focused on enjoying the hot summer days.”
New residential listings saw an upswing of 8.1 percent within the region compared to the same period last year, with 2,488 new listings recorded.
Overall active listings also saw a healthy injection with an increase of 56.8 percent compared to July 2021, totaling 7,698 listings currently on the market.
“We are seeing inventory starting to accumulate, slowly moving upwards to healthier levels of inventory, which is a welcome relief for prospective buyers. However, the higher mortgage interest rates are still impacting the real estate market with some home buyers finding it more difficult to qualify for mortgages,” says Cruickshank.
“We will have to see what the Bank of Canada does come September. Hopefully, we will see fixed mortgage rates come down and bring some relief for buyers, particularly first-time buyers. Any interest rate relief may see an increase in sales activity returning to the market over the fall months,” adds Cruickshank.
The average number of days to sell a home, always a good barometer to watch, increased from 45 days in June to 47 days in July. The average of days on market is for the entire Okanagan region and that the indicator will vary depending on home type and sub-region.