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Owned a home in the Thompson-Okanagan since January? You're $48K to $143K wealthier today

The value of an average single-family house in the Thompson-Okanagan region jumped by tens of thousands of dollars this year.

That means, if you just sat at home and did nothing, your net worth went up by $48,000 to $143,000, depending where you live in the region.

The value of the average single-family house in the South Okanagan rose to $774,543 in October from $726,141 in January, an increase of $48,402 in 10 months.

That was at the low end of the scale.

That average single-family home in the Central Okanagan jumped by $143,844 to just over $1 million during the same time period.

North Okanagan values went up by $74,474 to $635,000.

Those numbers are based on monthly statistics published by the Association of Interior Realtors.

Kamloops saw a $115,563 increase in average single-family house prices to $669,225, according to data from the Kamloops and District Real Estate Association.

When both organizations publish their data each month, they compare prices to the same month in the previous year, with recent increases often being in the 30% range.

READ MORE: House prices across Okanagan and Shuswap increase 30%

What does this increase in housing prices mean to the total net worth of homeowners in the Thompson-Okanagan region?

That’s not so easy to calculate since data on housing units from Statistics Canada is based on the 2016 census and isn’t broken down by housing type.

Stats Canada reports there were 88,374 housing units in the Kelowna Census Market Area (essentially the Central Okanagan) in 2016.

Some of those were condos, which only went up in value by about $100,000 this year.

But given that most homes are single-family and there are hundreds more of them in the Central Okanagan now than there were five years ago, we multiplied the 88,000 housing units by the $143,855 average price to come up with a total increase in net worth of about $18.5 billion.

We used the same logic to calculate increased value in the other large cities in the two regions.

Kamloops had about 39,000 housing units in 2016 so gained in value by about $5.1 billion. Vernon’s 22,000 units went up in value by $3.3 billion and Penticton’s 17,000 units by $0.8 billion.

That totals $27.7 billion.

Given that all the other houses in smaller communities aren’t included in these calculations, the value of the increase in prices likely exceeds $30 billion.

That number would be even higher if benchmark or median prices were used.

While the average price in the Central Okanagan went up by $143,855, the median went up by $158,550 and the benchmark by a whopping $208,700.

What does that mean to the average person trying to break into the market?

The RBC Mortgage Calculator shows, at an interest rate of 2.79%, for each $10,000 added to the mortgage, the monthly payment goes up by $46.25.

That means, a first-time home buyer in Penticton will have to come up with about $225 a month more in monthly payments than if they had bought in January.

In Vernon, that increased cost is about $345. In Kamloops it’s $535 and in Kelowna $665.

READ MORE: Average Kamloops home price surpasses $600K

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