A strong wave of property sales through British Columbia's southern and coastal property markets in December should continue well into the new year.
According to the B.C. Real Estate Association, the sales boost should give markets enough momentum to push growth into the first part of 2010, or until rising prices start pushing more buyers out of the market.
The province saw 5,703 homes sold through the Multiple Listing Service in December, a 132-per-cent increase from the same month in 2008, the second highest number ever.
For the year, B.C. recorded 85,028 sales through MLS®, a 23-per-cent increase from all of 2008. The annualized average price of a home hit $465,725 in 2009, a two-per-cent increase from 2008.
While the association admits it is impossible to make pinpoint forecasts, it does suggest that as the momentum in strong property sales will carry through into the first quarter of 2010, the market will then begin to see signs of a drop.
The main reasons being that because most buyers who were lured into house hunting in 2009, because of low mortgage rates and reduced prices, will have already bought homes. Additionally. the advantages of lower home prices and rock-bottom interest rates are expected to start slipping away as 2010 wears on and the prospect of HST looms.