As we head into 2011, this it the time of year when many people ask Jo-Ann and I what we think will happen to the Kelowna housing sector next year. Before predicting the future, let’s look back a decade. The 4th quarter of 2010 has produced 352 residential sales (with a week or so to go) with an average sale price of $534,500. Go back to the beginning of the decade when the 4th quarter of 2000 yielded 328 sales at an average sale price of $201,800. Pause, go back and read that again, now a quick toast to the tenacious Kelowna housing market that has survived fires, recessions, labour shortages and HST.
For years during the 1990’s houses were selling in the $140,000 – $160,000 range and I could appraise a home in my head walking from my car to the kitchen table (uh oh, starting to sound like an old guy). I remember the huge psychological difference when houses jumped over the $200,000 hurdle for the first time and they’ve never looked back. It will be interesting to guess where house prices will be in 2020 and judge which areas or neighborhoods will increase the most. The different neighborhoods in Kelowna have different advantages and a walk down to the city to see what is in the OCP could help in seeing what the city’s plan is for each area and what the anticipated growth will be.
The Canadian Real Estate Association predicts that Canadian house prices will fall less than 1% while Royal LePage predicts an increase of 1.6%.
I think prices will remain static until the out of town buyer finally reappears. Traditionally this is when we see significant increases and I don’t see it being any different this time.