Sun Peaks Property Values are Slightly Down While Most Of Kamloops Property Values are Up According to 2011 BC Assessment

This article appeared in Kamloops This Week on January 27th, 2011 and was written by Jeremy Deutsch.

Sun Peaks Golf Course KamloopsAs homeowners in much of the province, including Kamloops, saw their property values rise in 2010, there is at least one real-estate sector that wasn’t quite as fortunate. Many recreational properties were down in value last year — and Sun Peaks Resort was not spared.

According to BC Assessment, residential properties in the resort municipality dropped in value by an average of 2.5 per cent. Whistler, the only other resort municipality in B.C., also saw similar decreases in residential-property values.

Graham Held, a deputy assessor with BC Assessment, noted the values are based on the market and incorporation wouldn’t have had any effect on assessments. “It’s just what the sales are telling us,” he said. There are 1,600 properties at Sun Peaks on BC Assessment’s rolls, including 425 single-family homes.

The resort became a municipality last summer and 2010 marks the first year it is on the tax rolls as a municipality. But the drop in value is neither a surprise nor major concern for Sun Peaks Mayor Al Raine. He feels the two per cent decline isn’t unreasonable considering the economic environment.

Raine noted recreational properties tend to take a bigger hit in value than residential properties when there is a downturn in the economy, adding some units in the village were sold for very low prices.

He also suggested a couple of other factors for the decline, including the harmonized sales tax, in which an HST credit isn’t offered on recreational properties, and that units were being built faster in the resort than the demand supported. “Quite frankly, I’m happy with stable prices for these days,” Raine said. He said real-estate agents have told him they expect demand to pick up in the spring. Raine said he still considers Sun Peaks “a good place to invest and live.”

Last year, a home in Sun Peaks sold for $2.2 million, besting the previous most-expensive house by $700,000. Another home was recently listed for $4.3 million, which will be a new record if sold. For the second year in a row, the majority of Kamloops homeowners saw a modest increase in their property assessments.

According to BC Assessment, the property owner of an average single-family dwelling — assessed at $309,000 — likely noticed their property value increase by 4.7 per cent.