As I predicted in the last quarter of 2016, we saw a slight softening of the market in 2017.
However, that softening had a very unusual twist: the market slowed slightly because the demand was too high.
This is an anomaly.
The demand from buyers from the coastal areas of B.C. and Alberta was so high that the number of homes on the market dropped so much people could not find a suitable house to buy.
We heard from sellers that did not want to sell because there was nothing to buy; we heard from realtors that there was nothing to show their buyers. When they did find something, there were multiple other buyers going after the same house.
Despite these problems, prices rose in all three zones in 2017: up 11 per cent in the Central Okanagan, 12 per cent in the North Okanagan, and 10 per cent in the Shuswap.
The Central Okanagan experienced a slight softening in its market, but realistically that is like saying a Ferrari slowed down from triple the speed limit to a just double of the speed limit.
The market was still very strong.
As I mentioned last month, 2018 will not make headlines. This year will see a slight softening through all zones, but prices will continue to rise—probably around 5 or 6 per cent.
We can jump up and down and scream from the rooftops about bursting bubbles and crashing markets, and it will get us a lot more press if we do.
However, the reality is there is nothing in the Okanagan Shuswap statistics that predicts it and it is just not true.
Bill Hubbard is a real estate broker and the owner and broker of a four-office real estate firm in the Okanagan-Shuswap. He has been in real estate for 28 years and has been an owner and broker in Vernon for 20 years. At almost 60 years old he is just as passionate about real estate as the day he started.
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