Commonly, we can make statistics do whatever we want, they can drive a headline in the media and that is a lot of what I have been seeing recently.
A few weeks ago, in my column I stated that absorption rates had increased a little last year and we had seen a slight lift in values. Since then, I have read numerous articles that have the headline “Prices declined in 2012”. Well, forget the headlines, let us take a look at the real numbers.
Single family home sales drive the industry in the Okanagan. While we do have an inventory of condo/strata units, we still see most activity in the family or move-up market. That being said, the following chart would not indicate that house prices fell in 2012.
It would indicate a variability in the median price of the sale each month, but it indicates a great deal more stability and even a slight lift than it does a “LOSS” which is a very exciting headline to run.
If I look at other data available to me as a REALTOR® it would indicate similar variability which comes form the fact the volume of sales is lower than we were seeing several years ago.
Overall I would suggest it is erroneous to suggest that housing prices fell in the Okanagan in 2012 and perhaps more realistic to reference that stability and housing is on par overall with 2012 pricing. That would be a much more accurate start to the New Year with less media induced drama that we have been living with for far too long now.
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The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet presents its columns "as is" and does not warrant the contents.
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