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Real estate sales and prices drop in Okanagan, Kamloops in December

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While housing sales have stalled with the increase in interest rates over the past few months, prices in most housing categories have held fairly steady in Kamloops and the Okanagan.

While there has been some fluctuations in the prices depending on whether it’s a single-family, townhouse or condo, and prices are all down compared to their peaks last spring, they have held fairly steadily through the fall.

That changed in December when there was a drop in prices in most categories compared to November.

The price of single-family homes fell between $45,000 and $93,000 in three of the four markets in the Thompson-Okanagan region from November to December, according to data released by the Association of Interior Realtors today, Jan. 6.

Hardest hit was the South Okanagan with a $92,944 drop in the average house price to $718,285.

Kelowna house prices were down $51,016 but still kept the average price just over the $1 million mark at $1,022,234. Kamloops house prices dropped $44,938 to $672,079.

The only exception was the North Okanagan where house prices rose $25,580 between November and December to $718,285.

Those are average prices. The Association prefers to use benchmark, or typical, prices.

Based on that, single-family housing prices throughout the regions it covers are only down slightly in December 2022 versus December 2021, which was before the price boom started.

The Association data also includes the Kootenays, Shuswap-Revelstoke and South Peace regions.

The benchmark price in all other housing categories saw minor to moderate increases year to year.

“After a very strong first half of 2022, we began to see market activity moderate amid consistently rising interest rates imposed by the Bank of Canada,” Association President Lyndi Cruickshank said in a news release. “Although inventory levels remain tight, the high interest rates will continue to subdue market activity in the coming months.”

The inventory of homes on the market plummeted last year as prices rose. However, the overall inventory increased by 93.5% in December 2022 versus December 2021 with 6,001 units currently on the market.

“Looking to 2023, we anticipate inventory will continue to accumulate, as compared to recent years, with all signs pointing to more balanced conditions with buyers and sellers benefitting equally,” Cruickshank wrote in the release.

There were 572 residential home sales throughout the region in December, a 42.8% decrease compared to “the unusually strong market” of December 2021.

On a month-to-month basis, prices for townhomes dropped between $33,000 and $125,000 in three of the four Thompson-Okanagan real estate regions.

The biggest hit was in the South Okanagan where the average townhome price fell by $125,530 to $506,810. There was a $53,212 drop in Kelowna to $723,784, and a $33,031 drop in Kamloops to $446,227.

Again, the North Okanagan was the exception with a $17,760 increase to $487,503.

The picture for condos was not quite as grim, month over month.

Condo prices in the North Okanagan fell $41,828 to $291,000. In Kelowna they dropped $11,284 to $525,740.

But condo prices rose in the other two markets, most notably in Kamloops where the average price jumped $61,879 to $428,090. In the South Okanagan condo prices gained $24,340 to $430,090.

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