A graph showing the numbers of days properties in Prince Rupert have been on the market. (Image: BC Northern Real Estate Board)

Homeownership put of reach for many young British Columbians

Prince Rupert home prices skyrocket

Homeownership in is a fading dream for many young British Columbians with soaring house prices, and tenants are also suffering from sky-rocketing rent, Ben Stewart, BC Liberal critic for housing stated in a media release on April 15.

The average house price in Prince Rupert has increased by $127,344 in just twelve months, with the average cost jumping from $302,818 as of March 31, 2020 to $430,162 in March 2021 the BC Northern Real Estate Board reports.

“In the face of record-breaking increases in housing prices, the NDP had the audacity to pat themselves on the back during their Throne Speech for apparently taking steps to improve housing affordability,” Ben Stewart stated.

“Now they are refusing to answer even the most basic questions about their failed housing plan. It’s clear that the NDP’s supposed solutions for affordability have had no meaningful effect on the housing market. Young British Columbians are still watching their dreams of homeownership fade away, while this government takes an undeserved victory lap.”

The average price of a home in B.C. increased by 20.4 per cent in March 2021 over the previous year.

BC Northern Real Estate Board website states that in Prince Rupert 69 properties were sold from the beginning of the year through the multi-listing service (MLS) as of April 9, totalling a worth of $26.9 million. Of the 69 sales, 43 were single-family residential homes and eight were parcels of vacant land.

“At the same time, active residential listings decreased by 24.4 per cent as housing supply remains at the lowest levels seen in decades,” the statement outlined. “This while the NDP sits on a report which outlines ways they could cut red tape and get more homes built.”

Renters are also suffering under the provincial NDP government, Stewart said.

“Rents have increased more than $2,000 a year since this government took office, yet they continue to say they have made life more affordable,” Stewart said. “The NDP also promised a $400 annual renters’ rebate in their first term and people are still waiting for that relief, even after the Premier promised it for a second time. It looks like the NDP has given up on improving housing affordability, and while facing the second wave of the housing crisis, people can’t afford this government.”

K-J Millar | Journalist
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