Posted: Tuesday, August 2, 2016 9:40 pm | Updated: 9:42 pm, Tue Aug 2, 2016.
Steve MacNaull |
Well, that didn’t take long.
The 40 condominiums in the six-storey Sole Downtown building under construction at 1350 St. Paul St. sold out in only 40 days. In a play on the name, the development issued a self-congratulatory news release titled: We’re Soled Out.
The sellout is quite a feat considering Sole Kelowna, an identical building a block-and-a-half away at 1295 St. Paul St., took years to sell out. “The original Sole started to sell in 2010 and five or six condos were sold,” explained Mark West of Epic Real Estate Solutions, the firm handling sales.
“Then everything was put on hold for a while, and then the rest of the condos were sold between 2013 and when the building was finished in 2015. “I joke that it took five years to sell out that building.”
The real estate market from 2010 to 2015 is vastly different from the one today. Sole Kelowna was the first condominium project in the city after the 2008-09 recession. As such, people were reluctant to buy. In addition, Sole Kelowna was introducing micro-suites to the city. Some of the condos in the building measured only 389 square feet and cost $139,000. The same-size condo in the new building went for prices starting at $155,000. “There are so many factors that played into the quick sellout at Sole Downtown,” said West. “It’s a hot market where everything tends to be selling fast. But, buyers also liked seeing what the building will look like because Sole Kelowna is completed and fully occupied just up the street. “Edgecombe Builders is a local developer with a good reputation, and people like that. Plus, there’s been a paradigm shift downtown. Buyers are more accepting of smaller suites that are well-designed and close to all the amenities of downtown. “All these attributes also attract a diverse set of buyers, from first-time-buyer millennials to singles, couples, downsizers, retirees and investment buyers who will rent out the unit.
Not all the condos in Sole Kelowna and Sole Downtown were 389-square-feet studios. There are also small one-bedroom, one-bedroom with den and two-bedroom units at higher prices. Thirty-five of the 40 condos were priced under $300,000, which attracted a lot of attention from buyers because the average selling price of a condo in the current hot market is just over $300,000. Both Sole buildings are mixed use, meaning there are 16 commercial units in the bottom two floors and then 40 condos on floors two through six. Half of the commercial units have been sold in Sole Downtown. Construction on the building is underway, and the first residents will move in in the fall of 2017.
JUNE BUYER SURVEY SUMMARY
20.8% by Relocating and moving to similar property type (down from 22.1% in May)
20.0% by Move-Up Buyers (up from 16.6%)
18.6% by Buyers Downsizing (up from 14%)
13.6% buying Revenue/Investment Property (up from 13.2%)
11.9% by First Time Buyers (down from 15.5%)
7.9% moving from Single Family Home to Strata Unit (down from 8.5%)
3.6% buying Recreation Property (down from 3.8%)
3.0% moving from Strata Property to Single Family Home (down from 3.2%)
2.6% moving into Retirement Home/Seniors Community (up from 2.1%)
Buyer Type (Family Dynamic):
25% Two Parent Family/Children (down from 28.9% in May)
24.7% Couple without Children (up from 19.1%)
20.7% Empty Nester/Retired (down from 21.2%)
13.5% Single Female (up from 12.1%)
11.2% Single Male (up from 13.4%)
4.7% Single Parent with Children (down from 4.9%)
55.7% from Within OMREB Board Area (down from 57.9% in May)
18.2% from Lower Mainland/Vancouver Island (up from 16.6%)
11.2% from Alberta (down from 11.9%)
8% from Other Areas in BC (up from 6.1%)
3.1% from Eastern Canada/Maritimes (no change from 3.1%)
2.5% from Saskatchewan/Manitoba (down from 2.9%)
1.2% from Outside Canada (down from 1.5%)
0% from NWT/Yukon (no change from 0%)