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$22 million land sale sets record in Kelowna

The sale of 190 acres of residential development land is the largest MLS transaction in central Okanagan history
190 acres of hilltop above Kelowna slated for development. |Century-21

A Manitoba buyer has made history with the $22 million purchase of a 190-acre residential development site in the hills above Kelowna in the central Okanagan.

The land is in the Kirschner Mountain Development and part of a 640-acre project that started in 2003. The Kirschner family has since completed the first four phases of single-family lots. The remainder of the property is slated for residential and commercial mixed-use development.

George Greenwood, CEO of the Kelowna-based Association of Interior Realtors (AIR)  said the sale was the largest MLS sale in central Okanagan history.

Mark Boppre, a long-time real estate agent in the Okanagan and Max Carbone, owner of Century 21 Assurance Realty Ltd., co-listed the property in late 2019. They marketed the site across the country during COVID-19 and attracted several out-of-province buyers, including the actual buyer from Manitoba, Carbone said.

Citing confidentiality, Carbone did not release the name of the buyer.

The recent transaction pencils to approximately $115,000 per acre. Recent land sales in Kelowna were smaller parcels of less than two acres in the city that sold for much higher prices per acre. Of the three largest residential parcels that sold in in the year ending in the third quarter of 2020 the average price-per-acre was close to $2 million, according to a survey by HM Commercial Group of Kelowna.

Of three single-family subdivisions currently selling in the Kelowna area, the lot values range from approximately $350,000 to $600,000, though some lots at the lakefront community of McKinley Beach are priced at more than $1 million.

The BC Real Estate Association reports that the current average home price in the Okanagan is $581,188 but it is expected to increase to 8.8 per cent this year to $640,000. The association also forecasts that residential sales through the AIR will increase nearly 10 per cent in 2021, compared to a year earlier, to 12,500 units.