North Okanagan home sales took a slight dip in June, down to 304 units sold compared to last year’s 344, a decrease of nearly 12 per cent. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

Okanagan home sales brisk

Despite fewer units moving, North Okanagan homes are selling faster and for more money.

North Okanagan home sales took a slight dip in June, down to 304 units sold compared to last year’s 344, a decrease of nearly 12 per cent, an Okanagan Mainline Real Estate Board (OMREB) report states.

“We are generally quite busy this time of year and, with continued upward pressure on the market due to a lack of inventory, sales activity is brisk,” said OMREB president and active Central Okanagan realtor Tanis Read.

However, for the OMREB region stretching from Peachland to Revelstoke, average pricing is eight per cent higher over last year and the average time to sell a home was 73 days in June, consistent with May, but shorter than last June’s 81 days.

A robust economy, rising employment and construction activity, and newcomers to the region are all contributing to the housing demand. However, a lack of homes for sale means supply is not keeping pace with demand, resulting in competition for available housing in many neighbourhoods and across most property types, resulting in a good seller’s market, the release states.

“Those wanting to capitalize on a seller’s market need to price carefully so as to not miss out,” Read said. “Likewise, managing multiple offers can be challenging and a professional’s assistance can be invaluable to ensure the best possible outcome while mitigating associated risks.”

For buyers, those moving to similar type properties continue to head the list at 22 per cent of the buying population, closely followed by first time buyers and those moving up, according to an OMREB May buyers survey.

Revenue property investors were 13 per cent of the total buyer group. Two-parent families comprise the largest group of buyers at 26 per cent, followed closely by couples without children and the retired population. Those living in the region continue to be the majority of buyers at 53 per cent, followed by those from Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island at 21 per cent, and Albertans at 10 per cent.

“Buyer profiles, month over month, continue to remain relatively constant, with no new trends emerging at this time,” Read said.