(File photo)

Real estate market steady, but average prices jump 7.4 per cent in Central Okanagan

Residential sales were 11 per cent higher in September compared to this time last year

The residential real estate market is staying the course as the Okanagan enters the fall season.

Residential sales across the region from Revelstoke to Peachland dropped to 652 sales in September compared to 725 sales in August, however September’s sales were 11 per cent higher compared to this time last year, according to the Okanagan Marine Real Estate Board.

In Central Okanagan sales dropped 9.6 per cent last month, but the average price for a residential home increased by 7.4 per cent to $602,285.

Comparing this September’s average price to last year by housing category shows single-family residences cost an average of $552,189, nudging three per cent higher than the same time last year, with the average price for condominiums 11 per cent higher. The average price for townhouses increased by 2.5 per cent compared to September 2018.

Though there were some changes in the real estate market, the report said the fluncations are normal in the fall season.

“The local real estate market is following typical seasonal changes, suggesting normal market conditions are very much in play despite the downturn earlier this year,” said OMREB president Michael Loewen.

The changes are on par across the province, with overall active listings at 4,150 which is just below the numbers at this time last year.

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Loewen said the introduction of the new First-Time HomeBuyer Incentive that was introduced by the government of Canada on Sept. 2 could change things for Okanagan buyers.

“With Kelowna’s robust population of renters it will be interesting to see what, if any, is the potential uptake of the new first-time home-buyer incentive,” he said.

“It’s unlikely that many people will want to share equity – in the biggest purchase of their lives – with the government.”

The incentive gives first-time home-buyers the option to secure a 10 per cent down payment for a new home from the government as an interest-free and payment-free loan.

READ MORE: Spending, ICBC, vaping on agenda as B.C. legislature resumes

More information about the local real estate market can be found at omreb.com.

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