Pent-up demand drives up home prices in May

Kamloops real estate continues to be a seller’s market, with prices driven up by pent-up demand on the part of buyers.

Kamloops and District Real Estate Association president Wendy Runge said the number of listings were up slightly in May, though it was not enough to meet demand.

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“There’s buyers that are still waiting,” Runge said. “We’ve had historically low inventory for the last, well almost over a year now. The pent-up demand from buyers who are waiting for the right property. Specifically, there are certain price points that are busier than others. We have not caught up yet to have enough inventory to make it a balanced market. Still definitely on the seller’s side.”

As a result, home prices continue to rise. Runge said the highest average sale price for a single-family home on record was reported in May at $492,000. The highest demand is for homes in the $400,000 to $500,000 range, with homes in the $200,000 to $300,000 range second behind.

“I would say that’s kind of your entry-level home, single-family home,” Runge said. “You’re looking at the four to five mark.”

Runge said the association tracks the areas from which homebuyers are coming. Sixty-two per cent of buyers in May came from Kamloops and area, while 38 per cent came from “kind of all over the place,” Runge said. About eight per cent came from Greater Vancouver, with a few more per cent coming from elsewhere in the Lower Mainland area and some from Alberta.

“Kamloops is still pretty affordable,” Runge said, noting the city has been immune to speculation and vacancy taxes.

“I think that’s continued to help our market grow, where other areas of the province have seen increases.”

Runge said the amount of people moving to Kamloops from Vancouver has slowed due to a slowing market on the Coast. Runge said Vancouverites are not leaving as quickly as they were a year or two years ago, when it was easier for them to cash in on equity.

Areas of the city that saw the most sales in May were Sahali, Brock and Aberdeen.

Asked to make projections for the remainder of the year, Runge said the market is unlikely to change until inventory increases, meaning more listings.

“We’ll have to keep a watch on that,” she said. “As soon as we see supply increasing, increasing, increasing, I think you definitely start to see pressure on prices to go down, but no sign of any great changes there.”

Real estate by the numbers:

  • 327: The number of local residential sales last month, down nearly six per cent from last year
  • 1,223: The number of active residential listings in May, up three per cent from 2018
  • $492,000: The average price of homes sold in May in Kamloops
  • 62: Percentage of local homebuyers from the Kamloops area
© Kamloops This Week


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