Hope lies in a child’s heart         

Not yet turned to stone          

A mind free of prejudice        

A child not alone                     

If all children of the world         

Held each other’s hand      

They could do what we could not 

Make a Brotherhood of Man                                                                                     

             Maxine Kendall



November 3, 2014
Steady Growth and Lower Inventory Levels Placing Upward Pressure on Housing Prices



   NANAIMO, BC – Sales activity throughout the VIREB coverage area in October 2014 was down slightly from September, but still significantly higher than October of last year, resulting in our strongest October since 2009. Although the higher sales posted this October are encouraging, sales last fall were weak by comparison. As a result, balanced market conditions continue, which is good news for both buyers and sellers.
VIREB President Blair Herbert is encouraged by the numbers and reports that REALTORS® in the VIREB coverage area are consistently busy.
“October sales indicate that our market remains balanced,” says Herbert. “But as the year draws to a close, we’re seeing lower inventory levels and housing sales sitting at 15% higher than this time last year, which is beginning to place upward pressure on the market.”
   A total of 401 single-family homes sold on the MLS® system in October 2014. This represents a 1.25% decrease from the 406 sales recorded last month and a 15% increase from this time last year. Inventory levels are lower than last year, with active listings down approximately five per cent.
BCREA’s chief economist, Cameron Muir, reports that although job growth isn’t as strong as hoped, consumer spending is on the upswing, which indicates optimism regarding the economy and has a positive effect on home sales.
   “We’re seeing continued economic growth year over year, but do expect that rate of growth to relax somewhat in the coming months,” says Muir. “However, we nevertheless expect balanced market conditions in line with inflation to continue into 2015.”
In October 2014, the benchmark price of a single-family home in the VIREB coverage area was $317,900. Benchmark pricing tracks the value of a typical home in the reported area. The average price of a single-family home was $349,270, an increase of six per cent over this time last year.
   The benchmark price for a single-family home in the Campbell River area was $268,900, up 3.43% from October 2013; in the Comox Valley, the benchmark price was $315,500, which is nearly the same as a year ago; Duncan reports a benchmark price of $284,500, which is almost identical to last year; Nanaimo’s benchmark price was $341,200, up 4.81% from last year; Parksville/Qualicum has a benchmark price of $360,100, which is 3.70% higher than this time last year; and the price for a benchmark home in Port Alberni is listed at $185,900, a 3.97% decrease from October 2013.