The Vancouver Island real estate market continues to experience a shortage of homes for sale.
The latest report from the Vancouver Island Real Estate Board indicates that demand continues to outstrip supply. Inventory of single-family homes fell 39% in January, compared to 2021 statistics for the same period. But it was 15% higher than December 2021, especially condos (up 49%) and townhouses (up 18%).
The benchmark price for a single-family home continues to soar over the year. In the Parksville Qualicum Beach area, the benchmark price rose from $903,300 to $952,900.
The council-wide benchmark price for a single-family home hit $804,500 in January, up 36% year-on-year. In the apartment category, the benchmark price hit $409,100 last month, a 29% increase from January 2021. The townhouse benchmark price rose 35% to $620,400 in January.
In other areas, the benchmark price for a single-family home in Campbell River reached $682,800 in January, up 29% from a year earlier. In the Comox Valley, the year-over-year benchmark price rose 32% to $814,500.
Cowichan Valley reported a benchmark price of $782,900, a 29% increase from January 2021. Nanaimo’s benchmark price rose 36% to $822,600. In Port Alberni, the benchmark price reached $553,900, a 52% year-over-year increase.
The benchmark single-family home price for the North Island rose 52% to $434,400.
By category, 220 single-family homes sold on the MLS system in January, down 22% from a year ago. There were 91 condo sales last month, down from 87 a year ago and 75 the previous month. In the row/townhouse category, 61 units sold in January compared to 77 a year ago and 50 in December 2021.
In its recent Market Intelligence Report, the British Columbia Real Estate Association states that with such unbalanced markets, it will take a substantial drop in demand to bring active listings back to a healthy state.
Erica Kavanaugh, President of VIREB 2022, echoes repeated calls from the real estate industry for new measures to increase the housing stock.
“Unless demand drops significantly or more inventory comes online through new construction, VIREB’s inventory situation is unlikely to improve,” Kavanaugh says. “The supply problem is not new to British Columbia, but the lack of inventory we are experiencing has been compounded by the pandemic and decades of insufficient planning.
— NEWS staff, submitted
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