Happy New Year! Welcome to a new decade and all the hopes and wishes that come along with it. There have been predictions of a new “Roaring 20s” and other expectations for the decade ahead. What do you think? Politics, economics and climate change will all be hot topics. Will it be a “Roaring 20s” or something else? One thing is certain, it will be interesting! It always is.
Here we are, at the beginning of January, and we have yet to see a significant snow fall or a period of plunging temperatures. Given both events can happen in early December, getting into the new year with such balmy conditions means our winter is already going to be shorter and easier weather-wise. Who knows, we may be planning our garden layouts and plantings in a month or so. Wouldn’t that be sweet? Less snow also bodes well for the start of real estate activity. If it’s not too cold or too white, listing homes, looking at homes and writing offers tends to happen soon after the New Year. Get ready!
So, how did the Kelowna real estate market end the year? Truth be told, 2019 was a mixed bag that stumbled early then showed steady improvement as the year progressed. Overall sales dropped significantly in the first quarter but improved after that to where by December 31st, sales YTD were down a mere 1.5% compared to 2018. Prices also took a hit early in the year, but an improving market resulted in a year-over-year drop of just 1.0% on the average price and the median prices were down just 1.6%. Days-on-Market rose from 55 days at year end 2018 to 64, on average, for 2019. Winter months always seem to stretch this number out a bit.
The real estate area where numbers are all over the place is in pricing categories. There is no real pattern here to give you a sense of things without a long, boring chart. Your best bet to get a handle on pricing and demand in your market segment is to talk with an experienced agent (a RE/MAX agent, of course) who can show you the numbers for your chosen neighbourhood. As we look at the sales numbers in various price points, some are up and others are down. Hopefully 2020 will be a little less volatile and we’ll see more predictability take hold.
While it is mild now, winter may yet make a significant appearance. Make sure you change your furnace filter, check your gutters for ice, check for air leaks at windows and doors and generally do what you can to stay warm and safe. We are looking forward to an exciting 2020, so from all of us at RE/MAX Kelowna and RE/MAX Kelowna-Westsite, Happy New Year to you and yours. Have a great year!
– Peter Kirk, Owner/Managing Broker