Times Colonist

Up-Island house prices drop in several areas

But the region’s yearly average price rose nine per cent from May 2007

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Sales numbers are sliding and average house prices dropping in several areas of Vancouver Island north of the Malahat.

Month-over-month, the average price held steady for the area tracked by the Vancouver Island Real Estate Board.

May’s average price for a single-family house was $359,070, virtually the same as April’s average of $359,152.

The region’s yearly average price rose by nine per cent from $328,530 in May of 2007, the board said.

Last month, average prices rose in Campbell River, to $338,105 from $320,148 in April, and in the Comox Valley, to $379,081 in May from $351,631 in April, the board said yesterday.

However, the average price declined in May from April in the Cowichan Valley, Nanaimo, Parksville-Qualicum, and Port Alberni/West area.

“We remain cautiously optimistic about continuing singledigi­t increases through the rest of the year,” board president Subhadra Ghose said, citing consumer confidence in B.C. and low interest rates, along with employment growth.

Overall sales for singlefami­ly homes in that region dropped to 451 last month, down from 511 in April, and lower than the 685 seen in May of last year.

“For sellers, proper pricing is vital. For buyers, they can relax now a bit and take their time because there is a lot to choose from. It’s a balanced market,” Ghose said.

Island results reflect what’s happening in Greater Victoria, where total sales and average house prices decreased last month and inventory rose.

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