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BC Northern home sales slow in April amid COVID-19 public health measures

The number of homes sold through the MLS® System of the BC Northern Real Estate Board totaled 157 units in April 2020. This was a large decline of 56.6% from April 2019.

On a year-to-date basis, home sales totalled 802 units over the first four months of the year. This was down 27.3% from the same period in 2019.

“Home sales in April were about half of what they would normally be at this time of year,” said Shawna Kinsley, President of the BC Northern Real Estate Board. “There has been very little change to the market balance since the implementation of physical distancing restrictions because, sales and listings have been declining at a similar pace. Since market balance has remained steady, price trends have moved slightly higher.”

The average price of homes sold in April 2020 was $316,046, edging up 2.6% from April 2019.

The more comprehensive year-to-date average price was $301,709, this was little changed, up only 0.8% from the first four months of 2019.

The Board cautions that the average residential price is a useful figure only for establishing trends and comparisons over a period of time. It does not indicate an actual price for a home due to the wide selection of housing available over a vast geographic area (the Board serves an area covering over 600,000 square kilometers or 72% of the province).

The dollar value of all home sales in April 2020 was $49.6 million, declining by 55.5% from the same month in 2019.

There were 317 new residential listings in April 2020. This was a large decline of 58.4% on a year-over-year basis.

Active residential listings numbered 1,806 units at the end of April. This was a decrease of 12.4% from the end of April 2019.

Months of inventory numbered 11.5 at the end of April 2020, up from the 5.7 months recorded at the end of April 2019 but above the long-run average of 7 months for this time of year. The number of months of inventory is the number of months it would take to sell current inventories at the current rate of sales activity.

Sales of all property types numbered 189 units in April 2020; this was a decline of 53.8% from April 2019. The total value of all properties sold was $57 million, declining significantly by 59.1% from April 2019.

Important information

The BC Northern Real Estate Board is an association of about 390 REALTORS® that provides services to and sets standards for members.

The BC Northern Real Estate Board covers the northern part of British Columbia, including Bulkley Nechako, Cariboo, Fraser Fort George, Peace River/Fort Nelson, and Skeena/Queen Charlottes.