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Terrace home sales increase while average price drop

Slight decline in sales expected during pandemic

Terrace realtors through the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) sold more properties in the first three months of this year than for the equivalent period in 2019.

Fifty-eight properties worth $18.9 million were sold compared to 53 properties worth $16.9 million.

Of that total for January to March this year, 29 sales were single family residential, five were manufactured homes in parks and two were manufactured homes on land.

That single family home total was three more than the 26 sold for the first three months of 2019.

But if single family sales increased, the average price dropped — from $376,626 for the first three months of 2019 to $346,886 this year.

Still, the average prices so far this year and in 2019 were substantially higher than the 2018 average price of $284,393 as that was before LNG Canada announced it would proceed with its multi-billion liquefied natural gas facility in Kitimat.

Kitimat market

In Kitimat, 18 properties were sold in the first quarter of this year worth $6.2 million compared to 19 properties worth $6.7 million for the equivalent period in 2019.

Of those properties, 11 were single family homes, three were half-duplexes and two were townhouses.

The selling price of a Kitimat single family home dipped slightly this year to $356,853 compared to $358,9500 in 2019 when 12 single family homes were sold.

And like Terrace, average prices for 2020 and 2019 were substantially higher than the $256,333 for the first quarter of 2018.

Northern market

Across the north the BC Northern Real Estate Board noted a 13 per cent fall of properties sold for the first three months of this year compared to the first quarter of 2019.

The drop to 753 sales worth $217.389 million compared to 876 sales worth $257.043 million was attributed to declines in the forestry, mining and oil sectors.

Generally speaking, however, sales activity was higher along Hwy16 in the northwest than in other regions such as the northeast and down into the Cariboo.

But there was also a decline in active listings and as a result, an overall increase of one per cent in sale prices to $298,811, the board added in a release the first week of April.

Impacts of COVID-19

Looking ahead in gauging the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the board is predicting a continued decline.

“We expect MLS sales to continue to decline in the second quarter of 2020 due to the economic standstill brought on by COVID-19, which will likely also lead to significant investment projects such as LNG and BC Hydro to scale back,” the board stated.

“The COVID-19 pandemic continues to cause significant challenges to everyone in our society,” said BC Northern Real Estate Board president Shawna Kinsley in the release.

“Our members are committed to doing their part to ensure communities stay safe. Real estate is an essential service. Realtors are following all orders and guidance from the public health authority.

That includes stopping open houses.