A gradual downward trend in the Penticton real estate market continued in the first half of the year, while the value of planned construction projects took a much steeper dive.
During the first six months of 2019, the average single-family home in the city sold for $537,000 after 75 days on the market, according to fresh data from the South Okanagan Real Estate Board. That compared to an average selling price of $582,000 after 59 days on the market in the year-ago period.
All told, properties worth $200.3 million changed hands in Penticton during the first half of 2019, down from $270.5 million in 2018.
SOREB president Dori Lionello confirmed the market is still “levelling out” as a result of multiple factors, such as price corrections in larger centres and stiffer lending rules.
“People are still getting good prices,” she added, noting bidding wars are still occurring on reasonably priced properties.
“I found myself in (a bidding war) last weekend,” said Lionello, a realtor for Royal LePage. “It was around the mid-$600,000 price point, a well-priced property, and I was one of three offers.”
Falling prices have been spurred in part by increasing inventory, with 483 residential properties on the market in Penticton at end of June 2019, compared to 369 a year earlier.
“We’ve got a good amount for buyers to choose from, so they’re still being cautious,” Lionello said.
Across the South Okanagan, first-half residential property sales totalled $358.7 million, down from $476 million last year.
At the other end of the market, staff at Penticton City Hall in June issued building permits for work valued at $4.9 million, well off the $16.8 million recorded a year earlier.
The actual number of permits issued remained steady at 63 though, and the total value of permits issued in the first half of 2019 stood at $111.4 million, compared to $89.1 million a year ago.
More than half of this year’s total is attributable to multi-family projects, with 246 new units worth $59 million having been permitted to date.
“We will see these projects under construction through 2019 and early 2020,” Anthony Haddad, the city’s director of development services, said in an email.
“Single-family home development is certainly slower than the same time last year, however, as we’ve seen over the past four to five years, the majority of Penticton’s housing growth has been in the smaller more affordable housing types,” he continued.
“Over the remainder of 2019, we will continue to expect to see many smaller projects moving forward, but not the larger projects we’ve seen in 2018 and early 2019, given the supply that is out there.”