South Okanagan real estate sales increased by 12 per cent in March. However, insiders say the market is slowing down due to COVID-19. (File photo)

South Okanagan real estate market adjusting to ‘new normal’

Numbers are up in March; however, industry insiders say the market has cooled

Real estate sales in the South Okanagan increased by 12 per cent in March compared to sales in the same month last year, according to a report from the South Okanagan Real Estate Board (SOREB).

In total, 160 units were sold in the South Okanagan in March, up from 142 in 2019.

As for total active listings, the SOREB reported 1803 for March 2020, an increase of 5.3 per cent from last March’s 1713 listings.

READ MORE: Summerland winery sold for $5.2 million

Despite the increase in sales, SOREB President Lyndi Cruickshank said the market is slowing down — likely due to COVID-19.

“While the data may not fully capture it, local market activity has cooled ahead of what should have been a spring bloom in light of the pandemic,” stated Cruickshank in the SOREB’s report. “This will continue as we all adjust to a new normal, but in the meantime, the need to assist buyers and sellers who were in the middle of the home buying or selling process is still a very real reality.”

Cruickshank continued to say that SOREB members are doing everything they can to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 while continuing to serve clients.

“There are also those who are unable to wait out this situation and require the assistance of a real estate professional,” she said.

The SOREB is comprised of 304 realtors who are members of the Canadian Real Estate Association.

For more information on real estate listings, home buying and selling in Canada visit REALTOR.ca or for information specific to the South Okanagan visit soreb.org

READ MORE: COLUMN: Economic impact of COVID-19 will be enormous and difficult to estimate

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