There have been two big talking points in Kelowna this month. In Real Estate it is the effect the proposed Speculation Tax may have on Real Estate in Kelowna and West Kelowna.
People are also talking about the weather, as we continue to experience snow flurries and a heavy rainstorm just over a week ago that caused landslides and flooding. This has reminded people of the flooding we experienced in the Valley last year and the Cities and Municipalities are working hard to make sure we are not 'caught out' again.
On the plus side, Golf Courses are beginning to Open and most should be open by the end of this week.
Update on the Speculation Tax
I attended a Town Hall style meeting in Kelowna during March, where members of the General Public asked questions of a Lawyer, Accountant, Developer and Members of the Lib Dem Party, including their Leader.
While the opposition Parties are committed to lobbying against this Tax, in our area, it became very clear that it needs to be Members of the General Public who share their thoughts, fears and the potential consequences to them, if this Tax goes forward as it stands.
That means please like you and I need to be writing to the Mayor, your local MLA and to the Provincial Government to give a message loud and clear of your concerns. I've sent my letter!
We all support the need for more affordable housing, but there has to be a lot more dialogue and thought put into this before the Fall when it is due to come into force.
Our local Real Estate Board had a meeting with various 'Key Influencers' in the City last week, and they are now putting together a collective action plan, designed to be 'one voice' with a powerful message.
Last week, the Provincial Government did come out with some additional information, clarifying how it would affect BC Residents, but there has to be a lot more information that comes out before people can make a clear and informed decision on what to do.
I have already spoken with a number of Clients, wondering whether they should sell, but so far most of them are waiting to hear about the finer details of the proposal.
So what has the Real Estate Market been like during March?
Central Okanagan Real Estate Sales March 2018
|Single Family Homes||
Summary of numbers -:
Clearly, we are a long way from the sales numbers we were seeing this time last year!
Total sales up 24.3% on last month, and down 31.8% on last year.
Single Family Home sales up 28.9% on last month and down 27% on last year.
Strata sales up 30.6% on last month & down 19.7% on last year.
The change to the mortgage rules are definitely having an effect on Buyers Borrowing Power, we are also seeing a number of Buyers 'sitting on the fence' waiting to see what the market is going to do, and I have a number of Buyers who just can't find what they are looking for and are waiting, hoping that spring will bring more inventory.
A quick look at the Central Okanagan inventory shows 727 Single Family Home listings - up 10%; 413 Condos Listed - up 21% and 241 Townhomes listed - up 20%.
Taking all this information, you would expect to see the Kelowna Real Estate Market balancing out, but in certain sectors, we are still Multiple Offers and rising prices.
So what is causing this, I hear you ask! Well, the BC Economy is continuing to do well and people still do want to move to Kelowna and the Okanagan Valley, as it remains much more affordable than the Lower Mainland.
Interestingly, I was reading an article last week, from Centre 1 Credit Union. They are forecasting that the various Government enforced Home and Borrowing measures are predicted to have some 'drag' effect on the BC Economy, but overall it will continue to grow. The biggest effect being on higher-priced homes, but they feel there will still be demand for Condos and Town Homes in the Metro areas. To read the full report https://www.central1.com/sites/default/files/uploads/files/analysis_report/report_file/ea%202018_01%20BC.pdf
Well, that's it for this months report! As always if you have any specific questions about your area of the market, please feel free to email or call me direct!
Tel 250 864 1707