Chilliwack real estate market’s desirability intensifies - analysis

Market is taking strong strides towards being a reliable investment hub

Chilliwack real estate market’s desirability intensifies - analysis
Amid the province’s generally steady rate of home price growth, a recent analysis pointed at a somewhat overlooked real estate market as the next big thing in British Columbia.

In a recent piece, commercial real estate investment publication Western Investor pointed at Chilliwack as a centre of stability and affordability, noting that the market is “ripe” for investment with its “affordable housing, high-paying jobs, green space and population growth.”

“Chilliwack is morphing from a farming community into B.C.’s version of Penturbia, the idealistic U.S.-born concept of suburban living,” the analysis noted.

Latest data has the average price of detached housing in the area standing at around $450,000, far less than half of the $1.2 million benchmark price in Metro Vancouver. Along with a 22 per cent year-over-year increase in housing starts in 2016 and average annual GDP increase of 6.2 per cent in the past few years (as reported by the Conference Board of Canada), Chilliwack is well on its way to becoming the next big real estate investment hub.

“Buoyed by a revitalization of its downtown, an increase in public-sector and employment, single family home construction and several big industrial park developments, Chilliwack’s trajectory is set to continue,” the analysis added.

“There’s a lot of positivity there. The numbers serve to break down the stereotype of Chilliwack as a small farming community,” Chilliwack Economic Partners Corporation president Brian Coombes said. “So it’s not so much that we’re morphing from a farming community, but rather that the Chilliwack economy is diversifying as it grows.”

In its latest round of data releases, CREA stated that as a whole, the B.C. market’s situation now appears to be gradually improving after a dramatic decline in the wake of the 15 per cent foreign buyers’ levy.

“After having dipped in the second half of last year, home prices in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia have been recovering, are up from levels one year ago, and are now at new heights or trending toward them (Greater Vancouver: +11.4% y-o-y; Fraser Valley: +18% y-o-y),” CREA said earlier this week.

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