Whistler Real Estate Buoyed by Vancouver Detached Home Sale Frenzy: Agent

Thursday, October 29th, 2015

Soaring single-family home prices and sales in the city are having a knock-on effect in ski town, says Whistler real estate agent

Joannah Connolly

The money being poured into single-family homes in Vancouver’s wealthiest areas is having an unexpected but beneficial effect on the previously struggling real estate market in Whistler, according to a luxury real estate agent in the ski resort town.

Shauna O’Callaghan, an agent with Macdonald Realty, told REW.ca that the “secondary” effect of detached homes in Greater Vancouver going for record prices is that some of the families selling those homes are moving out of the city, with the proceeds of the sale funding their new “dream” life in Whistler.

“Generally we are seeing an increased influx in families, whether younger or older families, in Whistler,” O’Callaghan told REW.ca. “They tend to be Canadian families who have previously spent their weekends in Whistler and have recently benefitted from the sale of their Vancouver home, which is enabling them to live the dream in Whistler on a full-time basis.

“A typical scenario might be a family with kids who sold a West Side home for $3 million, and buy a similar home in Whistler for $1.5 million. The proceeds are enabling the parents to maybe work a bit less and enjoy the Whistler lifestyle more.”

O’Callaghan added that Whistler real estate activity has increased by 10 per cent in the past couple of years, and that housing inventory was getting increasingly tight in the resort town after a slow period a few years ago.

“We’ve seen a lot of new families coming in to live here full-time, and school registrations are up,” she said.

Empty-nesters are another demographic that is seeing an increase in Whistler, as older and retiring couples with adult children downsize from their single-family city homes to a more affordable Whistler property, and boosting their retirement coffers with the proceeds, according to O’Callaghan.

© 2015 Real Estate Weekly

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