Home sales across the north continue to buck the trend as the August figures from the BC Real Estate Association are now out.

The average home price for the region is about $292,000, while Prince George is a little higher at over $350,000.

“Home sales are still quite strong, in fact, the BC Northern Real Estate Board reported a 17% increase in sales during August compared to a year ago and that’s opposed to the 26% decline in the province overall,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist.

The economic outlook for the region also remains strong thanks to several gains made in the job sector leading to more disposable income for both families and residents.

“When we look at the north and Kamloops and even the Kootenays they tend to move more in tandem with the economy, we’re nearing full employment in all of the sectors as well as rising wages and all of those factors are really positive developments for the north.”

“You would expect to see an overall increase in consumer demand for a seasonal basis and in the north, it’s going to be relatively strong as long as our economy is firing on all cylinders.”

Muir adds it’s a seller’s market right now in the north as active listings fell by 13% last month when compared to the same period in 2017.

The main concern now for the BCREA is the frosty relationship between Canada and United States as NAFTA negotiations continue to be a nightmare north of the border.

However, Muir doesn’t anticipate as much of a fallout provincially as compared to the nation as a whole since nearly three-quarters of the country’s exports head south – that number is considerably less in BC.

“British Columbia less so as we have between 55 and 60% of our exports going to the United States so we’re a little bit more diversified but it would hurt nonetheless. My anticipation is that we’re not going to see any consequences on the trade war side and I think a lot of it is the bluster of negotiations but certainly that’s a risk to the housing market and economy of British Columbia.”

The average home price in BC is $670,000.