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Okanagan’s February residential sales lower than last year

Home sales in the Okanagan picked up from January, but they are still lower than last year at this time.

In the region spanning from Revelstoke to Peachland, there were 407 homes sold this February, compared with only 310 in January, according to the latest report from the Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board. However, that’s still 19 per cent lower than in February 2018.

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“Despite a cold, snowy February, the market behaved true to form for the time of year, picking up from the last couple of months,” Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board president Marv Beer said in a news release.

“Other indicators further signifying a shift away from the strong sellers’ market of the past several years include an increase in new listings, a growing inventory of homes for sale and lower average pricing.”

There were 965 new listings in February, up slightly from 912 at this time last year.

In addition, the supply of homes for sale has jumped considerably compared to last year. There are currently 3,201 residences on the market, compared with about 2,300 a year ago.

The average price of a home has dropped by about four per cent since February 2018, coming in around $490,760.

However, when those numbers are broken down into categories, it shows that single-family residences are one per cent lower, condominiums are 10 per cent lower, and townhouses are four per cent higher.

“It’s not really surprising to see the largest price movement in the condominium category, given the volume of new condos that continue to come available and the shift towards construction of smaller, more affordable condo units,” Beer said.

“The increase in townhome pricing could be due to sales of new, more upscale units or competition for relatively scarce units of this type, or a combination of both factors.”

“Despite two-parent families with children consistently [being] the largest group of home buyers in the region, we’re still lacking a supply of affordable single-home units to meet their needs — a need that won’t be met through more government housing-related tax and stricter mortgage rules,” Beer added.

On average, it took 88 days to sell a home in February. That’s only one day more than this time last year.

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