Real Estate on Salt Spring Island, BC is my passion...
Total real estate sales on Salt Spring Island* in 2019 were down from 2018 levels, a decrease that largely reflects an extremely low inventory of homes and land for sale throughout the year. If your shelves are bare, it's pretty hard to sell anything. In various categories, prices were either on a par with 2018, or a few percentage points above or below the previous year.
The market definitely held to a slower pace than 2017 and 2018, both of which saw double digit average % price increases. Total real estate sales on the island in 2019 accounted for 162 transactions, and a total value of just under $115 million, compared to 222 sales and $152 million in sales the previous year.
Non-waterfront single family dwellings accounted for 105 sales, having an average price of just under $778,000 and a median price of $700,000.
I believe market demand will remain pretty robust in 2020, as buyers who were unable to find their home in 2019 will return this year as inventory increases. As is always the case, properties need to be priced right to sell, which is not always what a seller wants or needs.
When buyers see prices on current listings fall, it's not so much a sign that the market is softening, but rather that the property was priced too high to begin with. Pricing property on Salt Spring remains one of a realtor's most difficult tasks, as comparables are hard to find, and our market is small. Experienced realtors who are most active in the market provide the best guidance to sellers on price.
Salt Spring continues to attract many city dwellers who are seeking a kinder gentler lifestyle and a community that embraces diversity, arts, music, and a love of nature. We are an amazing community of people; the island is full of the most lively, literate, artistic and articulate brainy people you'll ever want to meet. Its rainforests, arbutus trees, split rail fences, vineyards, grazing sheep, homemade jams and breads, organic veggies and cheeses, not to mention the spectacular ocean and pastoral vistas — well, just about the whole thing — can take your breath away.
And it's easy to find kindred spirits and your own place in the community if you are new to the island. Join the Forum (for interesting and prominent guest speakers), take in a performance at ArtSpring, join the golf or tennis club, the potters or artists guilds, the weavers and spinners, the hiking club. Learn to play pickleball, take up a new craft, visit our multiple galleries and openings. It's all here.
*These reflect MLS sales executed through the Victoria RE Board and the Greater Vancouver RE Board.