Summer sales activity continues to heat up on Vancouver Island

Sales activity continues to remain strong in the Vancouver Island housing market area, with the Board outperforming its forecasted sales due to a flurry of activity over the summer months.

A total of 456 single-family homes sold on the MLS system in the VIREB coverage area in July 2014. While this figure is slightly lower than the 469 unit sales recorded last month, it represents a six per cent increase over sales activity this time last year.  Inventory levels continue to lag behind last year’s figures, dipping approximately two per cent since last July.

VIREB’s active listings for the month of July were down 5.29 per cent over this time last year.

Currently, the sales-to-active listing ratio is sitting around 12 per cent, which puts the Board in the upper boundaries of balanced market territory across the Island. VIREB President Blair Herbert is encouraged by the slow and steady growth on the Island, however he noted that “with the combination of lower inventory levels and rising unit sales, we may start to see a bit of upward pressure on pricing in the latter half of the year.”

In July 2014, the benchmark price for a single-family home in the VIREB coverage area was $319,400 with an MLS HPI index value of 150.1. (This represents a 50.1 per cent increase since January 2005, when the index was 100).

The average price of a single-family home in the VIREB area was $346,207, which is an increase of four per cent over this time last year.

BCREA economist Brendon Ogmundson, reported that things are looking very positive overall on the Canadian and U.S. economic front.

While healthy economic conditions are likely contributing to our stronger market sales activity, he cautioned that, “We may see mortgage rates start to inch up a bit by the end of the year, as a result.”

The numbers

The benchmark price for a single-family home in the Campbell River area was $271,400, up 2.04 per cent over this time last year; in the Comox Valley the benchmark price was $329,400, marking an increase of 1.48 per cent over last year; Duncan reports a benchmark price of $280,800, which is exactly the same as it was one year ago; Nanaimo’s benchmark price was $335,200 dipping slightly by 0.93 per cent from last year; Parksville/Qualicum has a benchmark price of $356,400, which is relatively unchanged from this time last year, dipping 0.21 per cent; and the price for a benchmark home in Port Alberni is listed at $200,800 dropping 1.32 per cent from last year.

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