Strong economy fuels housing sales in B.C.: report

Economist says demand for houses is being supported by a large number of millennials entering the market

The British Columbia Real Estate Association says a strong economy has pushed up demand and prices for housing in the province compared with last year.

The association’s latest report says 7,731 sales were recorded by the Multiple Listing Service in November, a 20.4 per cent increase from November 2016.

The average price was $723,112, up 15.5 per cent from the same period last year.

READ: B.C. real estate group predicts dip in home sales, not in prices in 2018

Association chief economist Cameron Muir says demand for houses is being supported by a large number of millennials entering the market and some buyers completing purchases in advance of tighter mortgage rules in the new year.

Year to date, residential sales in value was down 6.8 per cent to $69.4 billion, compared with the same period last year.

The report also says employment in the province increased by 3.8 per cent over the last 12 months and average hourly wages were up by 5.7 per cent.

“Elevated consumer demand is being supported by strong employment growth, rising wages and favourable demographics,” Muir said in a news release.


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