The latest trends on Vancouver Island
Finally, we can say that inventory is increasing! It’s still not even close to satisfying demand, but it’s something…
Unless you’ve been living under a rock (which, with the recent weather, I don’t blame you), you’ll know that record-low supply in the Valley and across the Island in the past year has resulted in record-high, above-asking-price sales figures. And while prices, in general, are still increasing, the past month has seen a slight slowdown in the number of multiple-offer situations.
Some Island real state agents are getting more conditional offers with fewer people buying sight unseen and skipping home inspections. All of which suggests the recent flurry could be slightly subsiding. Increases in interest rates may be moderating the amount that buyers are prepared to pay out. While it is too soon to know if conditions will be moving to a stabler and more neutral market, the past month’s numbers show that, at least for now, things have balanced ever so slightly.
Of course, a significant decrease in demand will have to occur to get active listings somewhat normalized again. And with lingering Covid-19 effects, still-low mortgage rates and increasing inflation, prices are staying high.
Check out the recent stats from the Vancouver Island Realty Board (VIREB) for April 2022.
The Comox Valley real estate market
As noted, low inventory has resulted in continued increases in home prices. However, the number of listings is slightly increasing, so hopefully buyers will be able to have a little more to choose from and a little more time to make those choices.
For single-family homes in the Valley, the average sell price for April 2022 hit $910,178; that’s up 16 percent from $783,458 in April of 2021. The number of homes listed in April 2022 was 126 compared to 114 the previous year. And the average number of days on the market increased to 18 from 14, year over year. Condominium sell prices increased 31 percent over this time last year, and townhouses went up 20 percent compared to last April.
Other Island markets so far this spring
For the Island as a whole, single-family home active listings rose by 34 percent, compared to last April. And, in fact, it increased by 32 percent from March of 2022. Inventory of condos decreased 13 percent, year over year but did increase from March. And townhouse/row house inventory rose by 39 percent compared to April 2022, and by 52 compared to the previous month.
In terms of benchmark sales prices, all regions of the Island saw increases. Year over year, Campbell River went up 31 percent; Cowichan Valley increased 36 percent; Nanaimo prices climbed 33 percent; Parksville-Qualicum rose 38 percent; and Port Alberni increased a whopping 46 percent over April 2021!
New legislation may come along to protect buyers
On March 28, 2022, the BC provincial government announced changes to legislation to allow for a Homebuyer Protection Period; this new plan would introduce a five-day “cooling-off” period for real estate transactions as a way to protect consumers.
In a press release from the BC government, Selina Robinson, Minister of Finance explained, “In our overheated housing market, we have seen buyers feeling pressure to waive conditions just to be considered, and new homeowners discovering costly problems only after a deal has closed. We want to make sure people buying a home have time to get the information they need to make a sound decision within limits that still give sellers the certainty they need to close sales.”
As of early May, implementation of the plan has not yet occurred.
If you are thinking about buying or selling in or out of the Comox Valley, working with an experienced local realtor is crucial in these interesting and ever-evolving times.