Saturday December 4, 2010


Cold November Chills Local Home Sales

Good deals available as sellers upgrade and renovate homes in response to lagging market

Craig Hill/Voice


ome sales are cool, but REALTORS R hearts are warm as they reach out to the community during the Christmas season.


Just concluding their annual Blanket Drive, the Chilliwack and District Real Estate Board (CADREB) is looking forward to hosting its annual Seniors Bus Tour of Lights December 16th and 17th.


There will be two separate tours this year - one in Chilliwack and one in Sardis, This popular event has been an enormous hit with the seniors in the community, so reservations are required. Admission is by donation of non-perishable food items. For reservations, please call 604-792-0912.

The unseasonably cold weather in November may have been inspirational for getting Christmas lights up, but it put a definite chill on home sales. In fact, with only 123 sales last month, Chilliwack and area led the way in showing the largest drop in sales last month. Sales were down considerably from November of 2009 (195 sales), and down 11% on a seasonally adjusted rate.

Take heart, advises the CADREB President, Kyle Hislop, as slow and steady wins the race when it comes to real estate.

"The average home price locally only declined by one percent, a clear indication that the market is sound and not over-inflated," he explained. "Falling prices can create a serious drag on economic growth, but instead it looks as though we can look forward to a period of stability and steady growth after Christmas".

What does this mean for interest rates over the coming months? According to Mr. Hislop, when the Bank of Canada worried earlier this year that there was too much consumer debt, there were hints of moving towards higher rates.

"With the emergence of a moderate pace of home sales and stable prices, this has relieved concerns somewhat of the market over-heating and becoming falsely inflated".

However, he cautions that the current low interest rates will not be able to be sustained for a long period of time, so potential buyers are encouraged to take advantage of the current buyers market.

"We're seeing some fantastic buys out there," said the CADREB President. "Sales are slow, so owners are investing in renovations, upgrades and new appliances to make their home stand out. It is an optimum time to buy a home."

Season's Greetings from the 293 members of the Chilliwack and District Real Estate Board.


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