Island Housing Sales on the Rebound

It’s not ‘business as usual’, but Vancouver Island REALTORS® have certainly learned how to work effectively in a pandemic-impacted marketplace. In its latest statistical report the Vancouver Island Real Estate Board (VIREB) showed that the ongoing effort has paid off in a big way, with June housing sales up sharply from May in all residential categories, while posting numbers that were actually higher than those recorded a year ago.

The VIREB stats showed that during June 479 single family homes were sold on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) System, up sharply from the 246 sold in May, and even higher than the 406 homes that traded hands during June 2019. In addition the sale of apartments across the Island during June was up 59 percent from May, and three percent higher than from the same month last year. Townhouse sales were up a whopping 118 percent from May, while being three percent higher than June 2019’s townhouse sales.

The inventory of available properties within VIREB’s coverage area, which extends from the northernmost tip of Vancouver Island to the Malahat in the south, dropped a full 23 percent last month when compared to the same month last year. During June there were 1,224 single family homes on the market, a year ago there were 1,598.

The number of townhouses for sale on Vancouver Island also dipped, by three percent year-over-year to 183. In June 2019 a total of 189 townhouses were on the market. Apartment listings however were actually up by a full 22 percent last month. In June 2019 there were 353 apartments listed for sale while last month that number had risen to 431.

VIREB also reported that housing prices continued to rise last month in all categories. The real estate board uses benchmark pricing to track the value of typical homes in each of its individual zones, with the board-wide benchmark price of a single family home rising four percent during June, to close the month at $534,800.

The board-wide benchmark price of apartments sold on the MLS® System last month was up three percent from a year ago, hitting $312,600, which is actually down two percent from May’s price. In the townhouse category the June benchmark price was up two percent year-over-year at $419,700 – an incremental drop from May.

Benchmark price increases were recorded in each of VIREB’s individual zones, such as in Nanaimo where the price of a single family home rose three percent from last year to reach $576,000. In the Parksville / Qualicum Beach area the benchmark price was up slightly to $597,800, while in the Cowichan Valley the price was up three percent from June 2019 to hit $486,400.

In the Comox Valley the benchmark price of a single family home was up six percent from last year, reaching $552,200. Further north in Campbell River the price was $449,200, a three percent year-over-year increase, while in the Alberni Valley the benchmark price was up seven percent to close the month at $337,000.

Last month’s renewed real estate activity demonstrates the resiliency and adaptability of the Island’s REALTORS®, who were able to function effectively, even during these unprecedented times. It’s crucial to have an experienced professional on your side in any real estate transaction, so contact Peter and Kathy today to begin your journey.