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B.C. recreational property market rebounds

Lower Mainland, Fraser Valley residents cash out, head for the hills

B.C.’s recreational property market has bounced back after a dip caused by last year’s imposition of a foreign buyers’ tax on the Metro Vancouver market, according to a new report by real estate company Royal LePage.

The Lower Mainland real estate market has influenced pricing and sales of many of the province’s recreational markets, as prospective buyers consider “cashing out” their rapidly rising home equity and moving to a more relaxed location.

Metro Vancouver residents have traditionally looked to recreational properties in the Okanagan and Fraser Valley, but now it’s Fraser Valley residents and others who are selling and heading for Vancouver Island, the Cariboo, Kootenays, Gulf Islands and other locations around B.C.

“As price appreciation across Greater Vancouver resumes its previous pace from a year ago, and homeowners accumulate more wealth, many prospective buyers have decided to forgo upsizing within the highly competitive Vancouver marketplace, electing to instead push outwards in search of recreational property,” said Jim Morris, Royal LePage manager for Western Canada.

“We are back to where we were a year ago, seeing a significant increase in prices across all product types.”

With affordability of all kinds of real estate an issue, interest is picking up in fractional ownership and micro-condos in for those who can’t afford the price of a full property.

As of May 2017, the aggregate price of a recreational property in B.C. was $595,077, the report says. U.S. demand remains strong with the relatively low Canadian dollar.

The 2017 Royal LePage Canadian Recreational Housing Report contains regional breakdowns for locations including 100 Mile House, Comox Valley, Mount Washington, Cranbrook, Kimberly, the Okanagan, Gulf Islands and the Sunshine Coast.

The full report is available on the company’s website.

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