Housing market stable heading into spring

Removal of the HST will have little impact on housing prices, according to the Chilliwack and District Real Estate Board.

Removal of the HST will have little impact on housing prices, according to the Chilliwack and District Real Estate Board. The Chilliwack housing market remains stable going into Spring, traditionally the strongest home sales season.

When the HST was in effect, the government provided buyers with a larger rebate, according to CADREB. With the tax gone, consumers will pay only GST on the realtor’s commission. The impact on housing sales will be minimal.

“The HST rebate was in fact very close to the GST rebate, so it never really significantly affected the total purchase price. It was largely a misconception by consumers that HST was bad for home purchases,” explained CADREB president Jesse Hildebrandt in a release.

There were 168 home sales in March, a decrease from 200 homes sold in March 2012. Average housing price was $303,868. Nearly half of residential sales were single family detached homes, with an average price of $371,559. These figures are only slightly higher than average prices this time last year, suggesting that Chilliwack is a great place to settle down, but not an ideal investment market.

There were 407 new listings in March, for a current inventory total of 1,594 properties.

Single family homes sold in March stood on the market for an average of two months. Townhouses stood for 71 days, condominiums 57 days, and mobile homes and acreages 100 days each.

Interest rates remain low, and Chilliwack is still a buyer’s market, according to CADREB. The stable housing market reflects a good inventory of homes, and there are homes to fit a variety of budgets.

akonevski@theprogress.com
twitter.com/alinakonevski