If you compare it to the same time last year, Vancouver Island’s real estate market is in a slump.

Island-wide, sales of single-family homes in October dropped by 11 percent from 2018. 

Apartment and townhouse sales dipped by nine percent and 22 percent, respectively. 

Last month, 343 single-family homes sold on MLS compared to 345 the previous month and 384 in October 2018. 

In the apartment category, 88 units sold last month, while 42 townhouses changed hands.

But flagging sales isn’t slowing down a rise in prices in the central island.

The benchmark price of a single-family home in the Campbell River area last month was $446,300, up six percent from October 2018. 

In the Comox Valley, the benchmark price hit $531,400, marking a five percent increase from one year ago.

Trend-wise, the Vancouver Island Real Estate Board says that the housing market is balanced in most areas, with home sales and listing activity at typical levels for the region. 

Board president Kaye Broens said this is a more comfortable market for people on both sides of the real estate transaction

“But correctly pricing your home is the key to a quick sale and may even result in multiple offers,” she added. 

“Overpriced properties tend to linger, and that risk increases in a balanced market.”

Locally, VIREB incoming president Kevin Reid said the Comox Valley is the exception to the rule.

“We are up in average home sale price and we are also up in number homes that got sold in October.”

Reid added that the Campbell River market also had a reasonably strong month in terms of sales.

At the same time, Reid said these are more challenging times for buyers.

“What’s happening for buyers is they’re having to save more money for their downpayment and they’re having to qualify for mortgages at higher rates, even though they don’t have to pay the higher rates, so that’s part of the B20 mortgage rules, commonly known as the stress test.”