A recent report has ranked Terrace as one of Canada’s top 100 neighbourhoods for real estate investment – a position that may not come as a surprise for homeowners who have been watching their equity climb over the past few years.
The report, compiled by Canadian Real Estate Wealth Magazine with support from the Verico Network of Mortgage Brokers and Re/Max of Western Canada lists the Top 100 Neighbourhoods for investment in Canada, what they call the “list of the top micro markets set to lead the country in growth.”
In BC, Terrace ranks as one of the top eight locations.
The average price of a home in Terrace for 2012 was $208,180. In 2013, that number jumped to $240,580, an increase of 15.56 per cent. The average rent, according to the report, is $850.
For Re/Max realtor John Evans, who has been selling real estate in Terrace for 27 years, the distinction makes sense with what he’s seen on the ground.
“It’s been happening for a couple of years now, we’ve been seeing steady increases in our average price. Doing a little bit better than one per cent per month, we’re running about 12-15 per cent per year,” he said.
It’s a simple matter of supply and demand, he explained.
“Demand is much greater – as we have more jobs and opportunities, we have more people to Terrace needing houses,” he said, noting that even a slight increase in the housing supply lately isn’t enough to keep up with the demand.
“When you take a look at these billion dollar projects that are in the area, and we’ve been a very soft market basically for the previous 10 years, it’s not a real big surprise that we would be on that list and be one of the communities in Canada showing the most investment growth in the next few years.”
It’s a positive shift in a market that had been at a lull for years, he said.
“People homeowners, like to see equity in their homes, and people that own homes or are just buying homes, they’re going to see equity and growth in their investment in their home,” he said. “For a number of years in Terrace it was the opposite, your home was actually losing value, and it’s nice as a homeowner to have that continued growth in their equity.”
And he doesn’t see the trend stopping anytime soon.
“When we’re trying to predict what the market’s doing we have to take a look at what has happened in recent months and recent years, and for the past two years the market has continued to improve,” he said.
“So if that’s the trend today, and that trend continues, prices are going to continue to rise.”
If the 12-15 per cent increase per year market trend continues, that means waiting two years to enter the housing market could mean looking at a price point of 30 per cent or more, he said.
“It’s a very comfortable time to buy when the market is on the rise, it’s just like the stock market – people are always eager to jump into the stock market when it’s rising, not when it’s falling,” he said.
Terrace’s neighbour, Kitimat, noting price growth of 29.41 per cent – $171,600 in 2012 to $222,070 in 2013 – also makes the list. The largest jump in real estate value can be found in Rothesay, Manitoba – house values there went from $193,480 in 2012 to $318,230, an increase of 64.48 per cent.