It's been quite the month for BC Real Estate! I take a holiday and come back to the Provincial Government having announced major tax changes which will definitely affect the Central Okanagan Real Estate Market and the BC Superintendent of Real Estate announced that he has delayed the changes to Real Estate Consumer Protection until June 15th 2018.
Central Okanagan Real Estate Sales February 2018
|Single Family Homes||
Summary of numbers -:
Total sales up 4.8% on last month, and down 6.8% on last year.
Single Family Home sales down 1.8% on last month and down 25% on last year.
Strata sales up 15.6% on last month & up 13.3% on last year.
It remains to be seen whether this is a trend, which could be caused by the change in the Mortgage qualification rules, affecting Buyers affordability, and some Buyers now purchasing Townhomes rather than Single Family Homes.
Inventory has risen a little and homes seem to be taking slightly longer to sell, but some of that could be put down to the unusually snowy weather we saw in Kelowna in February.
The Effects of the February 2018 BC Budget on Central Okanagan Real Estate
During the last month, the BC Provincial Government announced some changes which they hope will ease Housing Affordability in the Province.
These changes include a Speculation Tax, Additions to the Property Transfer Tax and Increasing the Foreign Buyers Tax both in terms of amount and to the areas of the Province it effects.
To read the full 30 Point Plan click on the attached link http://bcbudget.gov.bc.ca/2018/homesbc/2018_Homes_For_BC.pdf
The Central Okanagan is one of the areas affected by these Taxes, and while the Government has 'outlined' its plan, it is not clear exactly who will be impacted and what exemptions there will be.
These taxes will have a significant impact on some Buyers and existing Owners, and so it is essential to keep in touch with your Real Estate Agent, Lawyer and Accountant if you think you might be affected.
The feedback I have received from some clients, so far, is that they are seriously concerned about the additional costs to them, and this may lead to them selling.
While we do not have a high proportion of Foreign Buyers in the Central Okanagan, we do have higher than average numbers of Owners who own their Okanagan Property as a 2nd home, or have purchased ready for retirement and don't rent them out.
In the short term, this has, at the very least, created uncertainty in the market, and in the long term, this may lead to an above average number of Sellers, resulting in an increase in inventory and a softening in prices.
It is quite possible that we will see parts of the market 'stall' during the next month, while Buyers work out what the effects of these changes will be.
If you have any specific questions about your own Real Estate circumstances, please feel free to call or email me.
Tel 250 864 1707