Property sales, prices soar compared to last year

Real estate market recovering from pandemic

Real estate in Houston

Real estate sales and the prices properties are fetching continue to rise in both Houston and Burns Lake, reports the BC Northern Real Estate Board of Multiple Listing Service (MLS) statistics for the first half of this year.

In Houston, 40 properties worth $9.5 million have changed hands from January to June, a dramatic increase over the 14 properties worth $2.5 million for the same period last year.

In Burns Lake, 68 properties worth $16.3 million sold through MLS from January to June compared to 17 properties worth $2.7 million for the same period last year.

Similiar increases in numbers of properties sold and the prices for properties are being reported elsewhere in the north, a partial reflection of far lower sales and prices last year when the COVID-19 pandemic severely reduced demand and activity.

But the real estate board also says large projects such as the LNG Canada plant underway in Kitimat and its accompanying Coastal GasLink natural gas pipeline have fueled employment numbers and incomes.

“This employment and spending continues to boost employment growth and housing demand in the north of the province,” it said in a release.

In Houston, 28 residential detached homes sold from January to June at an average price of $252,46 and large increase over the nine homes that sold for the first six months of 2020 and their average price of $197,482.

In Burns Lake, 21 residential detached homes at an average price of $162,095 sold in the first six months of this year. That’s compared to just four homes selling in the same time period last year with a higher average price of $197,500.

Across the north in 15 communities, Terrace had the highest average residential detached house price of $463,282 for the first six months of this year with Prince George in second at $455,842 and Prince Rupert third at $409,475.

Burns Lake’s average price of $162,095 was the lowest of the 15 communities.

“Total MLS unit sales in the region covered by the BC Northern Real Estate Board surged 101 per cent compared to this time last year when the onset of the pandemic depressed market activity,” the board reported.

“The combination of record sales and near record is driving continued price growth,” the board added of an average sales price increase of 5.5 per cent to $382,489 from the first quarter of this year to the second quarter.