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The Ups And Downs of Vancouver Real Estate Market

Past Scenario

Housing in Vancouver was one of the biggest stories of 2016. A year ago, the Vancouver real estate market was described as a hot and sizzling market. The housing prices in Vancouver took a great leap and mushroomed over the year. These high rates were considered to be a boon for some and bane for others since after the evaluation, the cost of properties increased by double digits; in a few cases, the costs were raised by 40%.

In March 2016, the yearly homelessness count in Vancouver showed the highest number of people sleeping outside in ten years. Further, in June, the value of single detached houses and condos shot up by 40 and 25 percent respectively. The Finance Minister, Mike de Jong made an announcement of imposing 15 percent tax on foreign nationals. Along with this tax, the Vancouver city was also introduced to empty homes tax and new policies concerning the rental markets. The drastic increase in real estate prices affected the rental market as well.

The Present Situation

In the words of Dan Morrison, Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) president, “It (2016) was an eventful year for real estate in Metro Vancouver. Escalating prices caused by low supply and strong home buyer demand brought more attention to the market than ever before.” Moreover, the Metro Vancouver real estate market experienced its third highest selling year on record in 2016, behind only 2015 and 2005.

Though, the recent updates have shown that the total number of houses vended in Greater Vancouver dropped more than 22 % in December in contrast with the preceding month. President Dan Morrison said that sales might have slowly risen, but the property costs have not dropped significantly.

According to the calculation, made by the real estate board, the benchmark price for apartments has escalated by 27 % from July 2015 to July 2016.  On the other hand, the price for townhomes has hiked by 29 percent, which is equal to the upper range from B.C. Assessment. Morrison said that it would take a little while for the market to familiarise with the changes that are taking place, and that the limited supply is the reason for a rise in the prices.

Future Forecast

According to Royal LePage, CEO Phil Soper and the latest predictions by real estate groups and financial institutions, the long-awaited corrections required in Vancouver’s inflamed housing market may be just around the corner. It has been forecasted that prices are headed for a double-digit decline in 2017 as the purchasers are dropping out of the housing market.

A report released last month by the B.C. Real Estate Association anticipated an 8.7% fall in housing costs in the area for 2017 with the average MLS value dipping from $1.03 million in 2016 to $940,000 next year. Similarly, in the month of October, the National Bank foretold a 20% drop in the rate of detached houses in Vancouver, a 9% drop for attached houses, and a 5 % decline in the prices of condos.

To these predictions, the economist at University of B.C., Tom Davidoff stated that ‘There’s no question the market is getting buffeted by headwinds.’ He also said that these mid-range conjectures are targeting on a modest correction after months of sinking sales in the Greater Vancouver market.

Besides, for Davidoff, Canada will always remain a prized destination and haven in a tumultuous world. “Having a stable democracy with a beautiful environment, over time, is going to be a real strength of Vancouver,” he said.

 

December Vancouver Real Estate pricing
December Vancouver Real Estate pricing. Source: REBGV

 

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Most Expensive Cities to Live In 2016

All are aware of the fact that the sun rises in the east and night falls in the west. Now, whichever part of the world you live in, this fact doesn’t change, but the aura, taste and stories of every city differ all over the world. Hence, every city has its own philosophy and certainly different ways of philosophizing.

Now, to look at the pragmatic side of the picture, the cost of living in a particular city has divided the cities into various segments. The most expensive cities to live in 2016 will be explored here.

According to the latest annual Cost of Living survey, conducted by the investment consultancy firm Mercer, the below-listed cities are the world’s most expensive cities.

1. Singapore

Marina Barrage in Singapore
Marina Barrage in Singapore. Credit to Jason Goh

With beautiful locations and the largest business centre in the world, Singapore, the only island city-state has become one of the most expensive cities in the world to live. With high-rise price tags,

With beautiful locations and the largest business centre in the world, Singapore, the only island city-state has become one of the most expensive cities in the world to live. With high-rise price tags, the cost per square metre of buying an apartment in Singapore is about 23,426.05 S$.

2. Zürich , Switzerland

Zürich , Switzerland
Zürich , Switzerland. source: Tourist Destinations

Zurich is a global city that has the world’s largest banks and financial institutes. According to the survey, Zurich has the best standard of living life. The current price to afford an apartment in City Centre, Zurich is 13,071.43 Fr. per square metre.

 

3. Hong Kong, China

Hong Kong Skyline
Hong Kong Skyline. Credit to Unsplash

Hong Kong is officially known as a special administrative region of the People’s Republic of China. The city boasts of modern architecture. Hong Kong has sky-high prices to match the sky-high setting. In Hong Kong, the present price of an apartment per square metre is 185,282.05 HK$.

4. Geneva, Switzerland

Geneva,Switzerland
Geneva, Switzerland. Credit to http://www.iises.net/current-conferences/academic/32nd-international-academic-conference-genevaIISES

For living in Geneva, you have to spend some extravagant prices for entertainment and pleasure, yet a falling currency has compensated its cost of living for emigrants. To buy an apartment in Geneva, the price you will have to pay is 12,500.00 Fr. per square metre.

5. New York, U.S.A.

New York, USA
New York, USA. Credit to A.H.


Economic Intelligence Unit stated in its report that
“a stronger dollar and localised inflation mean that New York continues to become more expensive relative to its global peers”. 13, 131.47 $ per square metre is the price that you will have to pay to purchase a property in City Centre, New York.

There are other cities including Los Angeles, Tokyo, Shanghai, Seoul, Copenhagen, and Vancouver with the exorbitant rise in prices that have also made it to the list of world’s most expensive cities.

Have you already started dreaming of living in one of these cities? Hope your bank balance is deep enough to fulfill your grand dreams.

Factors That Led These Cities to be on Top of the List

The survey was based on a comparison between product prices to conclude the world’s most expensive cities. The assessed products included food, drinks, transport, clothing, housing, housing goods and recreation. Further, New York City costs were used as a relative baseline and US dollar as the relative currency.

Before the survey was released, it was preconceived that the western countries will hold the maximum places on the list, but the south-east Asian and African countries have surprisingly hit the top positions on the list.

On the other hand, the US dollar has fairly risen in comparison to the Canadian dollar. The rank of cities in Canada has persistently dropped because of the feeble Canadian dollar. Canada’s highest-ranked city, Vancouver clearly hacked down 23 positions lower. Since the cost of living in Vancouver has dropped, people’s hopes for living in this city have awakened once again. After all, the city has always been ranked amongst the top livable cities in the world.

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B.C. First-Time Home Buyers Program: A Boon or Curse?

vancouverbc-december-15-2016-b-c-premier-christy-clark
Premier Christy Clark announces a new program in Surrey on December 15th. Source: Vancouver Sun

Good news for those who have always wanted to buy a house, but could only fulfil their desire in a dream. Excited to know the entire talk, who wouldn’t be? After all, it’s about your new home that you are going to own and not the one that will be rented! The program will take head from Jan, 16 as the B.C. government offer down payment loans to the first time home buyers.  

Showers of opinions in the form of another real estate debate are attracting tremendous views on air as soon as the news hit the Vancouver housing market. Read the entire discussion worded here:

Highlights of the Program

The first time home buyers plan called the B.C. Home Owner Mortgage and Equity Partnership program has listed different eligibility criteria to provide its benefits to particular people in need. Given below is the checklist that your documents and potentials should match:

  • The 25-year loan is free from interest until first five years and will cover up to a maximum of $37,500. This means you have to pay interest on the current rate after five years.
  • Your down payment amount should be equal to the loan amount.
  • You should be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident for five years and have never previously owned property.
  • You should have lived in B.C. for at least one year.
  • You should be free from any legalities of owning an interest in the residential property at any point in time and in anywhere in the world.  
  • The value of the house you want to purchase should be less than $750,000.
  • Your document credentials should help you in qualifying an insured high-ratio first mortgage for at least 80 percent of the acquisition of prices.  
  • Combined gross household income of you and your home partner should not be more than $150,000.

An approximate figure of 42,000 B.C. residents has been expected to get benefits from the three-year program. Furthermore, the housing program will lessen the effects of the new mortgage rules and help first time home buyers to sustain competitively in the housing market.  

bc-first-time-home-buyers-program

 

All about the Demand and Supply

The market is growing higher and so do the pricing because of the unmatched fulfilment of demand and supply. As a result, sales of expensive single-family homes are falling.

However, as per the senior economist Bryan Yu with Central 1 Credit Union, trade of homes in the more affordable condominiums and town home segments of the market remains full of life. He also stated that the recent findings on program impact had thrown a considerable light on the improved local citizens’ home purchasing abilities than before in the condo and town home market. Nevertheless, the program is playing a significant role in heating further the B.C.’s real estate market which is already strong.

Concerns or Politics

Premier Christy Clark positively reviewed the program by stating that it will wipe out the stress of saving high down payments of the middle-class British Columbians.  The primary concern she raised revolves around the pocket weight and saving obstacles of an average home buyer.

Clark further said that for many first time home buyers, getting past that down payment and saving $25,000 or $50,000 to buy a new home is just impossible.

Tom Davidoff of the University of B.C.’s Sauder School of Business holds an entirely different opinion around the scheme. He settled the program as an amalgamation of bad economics and a step in the wrong direction.  He believed the program to be an attempt by the government to support the real estate market that holds a risk of severe disappointment by coming 2017.

New Democrat David Eby, the Opposition’s real estate critic, resolved a negative approach towards the initiative. He said that the plan increases the debt burden of the home buyers when the government should be constructing affordable accommodation on provincial land.

How people are taking it?

The current scenario hits positive responsiveness among developers, mortgage brokers, the real estate business and some housing forecasters in B.C. Especially, those with insufficient income and savings are looking forwards to getting enrolled in the first time home buyers program as soon as it takes ground. Furthermore, industry experts argued that the plan will help to speed up the entry into the real estate market of those who qualifies for the mortgage.  

The primary concern that is bothering all is whether the program will reveal out as a political stunt, caused only to attain public preference and favorability or will it be the “real thing”, and will the Vancouverites housing dreams come true just the way it’s been pictured by the program founders and the ruling politicians.

Until now, it seems that the first time home buyer scheme will be a boon and not a curse for the residents of B.C., yet only the future can decide the real outcome.

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2+ bedroom for Less than 250K in Greater Vancouver - Really?

In the past 10-Years, we have seen an unbelievable increase in the housing price and that makes this beautiful lower mainland unaffordable.  Vancouver is World’s 3rd Most-Unaffordable city  .

2-Bedroom is Standard

Minimum 2-bedroom suite becomes standard for people that lives in lower mainland. On an average, most people pay from $1200/month to $3500, based on the location and the condition of the suite.  We have discussed about  buying a home than renting one i  in the previous topic, and we would like to further emphasize that Vancouver is not unaffordable anymore.

Today, I am going to list out the homes that are 2-bedroom AND less than 250k, and yet convenient for majority of people. (NOT areas such as Maple Ridge, Pitt Meadow, Surrey, Langley).

 

There aren’t many, but here are the list  (Dec 19, 2016)

106 8040 Blundell Road, Richmond, British Columbia V6Y 1J8

$199,999.00

  • 15 minutes walk to the Skytrain station.
  •  Shops, gas stations etc are all nearby

property-17657696-largephoto-3 property-17657696-largephoto-10

 

306 8040 Ryan Road, Richmond, British Columbia V7A 2E5

$193,000.00

  • 3 bedrooms!
  • 1133 sqft!

property-17647319-largephoto-2 property-17647319-largephoto-8

 

103 9128 Capella Drive, Burnaby, British Columbia V3J 7K3

$239,900.00

  • 15 minutes walk to Burquitlam skytrain station

property-17598862-largephoto-1 property-17598862-largephoto-5

 

 

Looking for MUCH BIGGER space within 250k?

It’s definitely possible but you may need to look into mobile home.

Here’s a mobile home that’s currently in the market, that is over 1500 sqft. Please keep in mind there’s a pad rent of couple hundred dollars per month (usually includes water, sewer, garbage and taxes). Also, you do not own the land of the property.

36 201 Cayer Street, Coquitlam, British Columbia V3K 5A9

property-17647366-largephoto-1property-17647366-largephoto-3

 

 

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Own a Home under $300K in City of Vancouver

Are you tired of renting but cannot afford to buy a place because of the crazy housing market in Vancouver? At the main time, you would also like to live by city center? The truth is that there are always SLIGHTLY REASONABLE homes out there as long as you have an OK job to get a mortgage, as well as updated information about the market.

Here are the reasons why you should probably thinking about OWNING A PLACE.

  • Housing price never go down in the long run, and your salary may not catch up with the increase in housing price.
  • You rents and never own a place. What about you pay the “rents” to the bank and you can actually own a place?
  • No landlord can kick you out.
  • Worse case scenario, sell the home if you really need some cash, and you can never do that when you rent.

 

How about $300k for a home in city of Vancouver ? Does that sound a little bit more reasonable?

You get 10% down payment and the rest you can mortgage.

mortgage
The mortgage rate is approximate based on the current 2-year variable rate. Please check with your bank or mortgage specialist for a more accurate rate. Calculation is completed with the Scotia Bank mortgage calculator.

Looks like you can own home with just a little bit over 1k. I am sure there are many people that pays 1k just for a single room, or for a tiny suite and old neighborhood.  What if I tell you that there are homes under 300k?

Here are the home under $300k that are available for sale in city of Vancouver (YES, it’s Vancouver Vancouver, not Barnaby, Richmond, Surrey…).  – as per December 15, 2016

109 2239 Kingsway, Vancouver, British Columbia V5N 0E5 (Built in 2011)

$253,000.00

property-17560857-largephoto-2 property-17560857-largephoto-4

 

202 930 E 7th Avenue,Vancouver, British Columbia V5T 1P6

$259,000.00

property-17641706-largephoto-1 property-17641706-largephoto-6

1003 3380 Vanness Avenue, Vancouver, British Columbia V5R 6B8

$285,000.00

property-17657701-largephoto-1property-17657701-largephoto-8

114 1149 W 11th Avenue, Vancouver, British Columbia V6H 1K4

$285,000.00

property-17527161-largephoto-6 property-17527161-largephoto-14

 

1003 3438 Vanness Avenue,Vancouver, British Columbia V5R 6E7

$299,000.00

property-17595833-largephoto-3 property-17595833-largephoto-6

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Vancouver Real Estate Market Update – December 2016

Vancouver’s High Housing Prices

This year too, Vancouver made it to the top on the list of high housing prices. In 2016, the average cost of a home in Canada climbed the peak in Metro Vancouver, at $864,556. This means that Canadian families who want to buy a home in that radius must earn nearly $140,000 per year.

According to the latest census, the median household income in Canada is $78,870. Those families who are obtaining the median income can have the wherewithal for a house priced between $460,000 and $490,000 – faintly exceeding bisection of the cost of the average housing price in Metro Vancouver.

canada-housing-price
Overview of average housing price in each major city in across Canada. Source: CTV News

Empty-Homes Tax – A Ray of Hope to Cool Off Housing Market

After public consultation, Mayor Gregor Robertson had revealed a proposal for a one percent tax on empty homes. Now, the proposal is approved by the city council, and thus, it has become the first of its kind in the country.

All non-principal houses and unoccupied residential land that are empty for the period of full six months of the year will be liable to pay one percent empty homes tax. All homeowners in the city will have to self-declare if a property is the typical place they call home, eligible for immunity or vacant.

Robertson said, “I just want to be really clear: Almost all Vancouverites will not pay the empty homes tax. This is only going to apply to those with second or third homes that are sitting empty most of the year.

Undergoing renovations, condos and townhouses that have restrictions on rentals, and homes whose owners are in medical or supportive care will be exempted from the tax.

Such a tax on empty homes can address the spinoff effects of a red hot housing market.

Solution to the Rental Housing Crisis

Vancouver is hopeful that empty homes tax will boost the city’s scanty supply of rental stock. Presently, the rental vacancy rate is 0.6 percent – ensuing in some of the maximum rents in Canada. City data puts forward that more than 10,800 homes are unoccupied and another 10,000 are left vacant for an extended span of time.

Robertson quoted, “Vancouver is in a rental-housing crisis.” “The city won’t sit on the sidelines while over 20,000 empty and under-occupied properties hold back homes from renters struggling to find an affordable and secure place to live,” he exclaimed further.

The city is of the view that the rental vacancy rate would upsurge to 3.5 percent with an upturn of 2,000 rental properties.

The empty homes tax will come into effect at the beginning of 2017. It will be based on the assessed value of the property. This means – the person owning a $1-million home would pay an extra $10,000 a year in taxes.

Vancouver Homes Selling For Less than Purchase Price

Often, Vancouver real estate is acclaimed for exceptional returns. However, recently, this blooming road took a new turn when three single family detached homes bought were listed for less than the owners paid for them. At times, benchmark prices slump due to the distribution of prices, but this isn’t the situation here since these homes were purchased just 8 months before, that owners are selling at a subordinate price.

Surely, the inflated housing market of Vancouver isn’t crashing but isn’t exactly the booming market of the previous years. Does this mean that in Vancouver real estate market, affordability is setting in? Fingers crossed! With British Columbia’s new 15% property transfer surtax on foreign nationals and foreign-controlled corporations, the house sales have become sluggish, and that, in turn, will hopefully lead to moderating prices.

November 2016 Real Estate

vancouver-real-estate-nov-2016
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Planning to buy your Dream House in Yaletown? Trust the experts!

The Present Scenario

Vancouver’s real estate market is heating up, with its recent highest annual price increase recorded at 23.4 per cent. The high real estate prices secure the finances of present-day homeowners but are frustrating for the potential first-time buyers.

According to the recent updates, the Canadian real estate crisis has jerked up parallel to the warning signs of danger. The ability to afford a house in the Canadian city of Vancouver has become a difficult process. The chief economist of Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) also stated in a news release that today the cost of buying a property is higher than the level of personal disposable income and population growth.

For the first time ever CMHC, the federal agency will be issuing a “red alert” warning for the entire real estate market. The agency believes that the housing market is in need of significant price correction because the cost of homes and debts are on a continuous path of growth.

 

New Mortgage Rules – A bane for first-time buyers

The recent additions to the mortgage rules are real hindrances, particularly for the first-time home buyer. According to the new mortgage rules, a potential buyer with insured mortgages will have to go for a stress test. The stress test is to ensure the financial stability of the borrower in case the rate of interest rises. But the key positive factor in this situation is to secure house owners from taking on excessive debts. It is good news for the fence sitters, who have been waiting for real estate market to soften; now they can buy the house they always wanted too.

Though the people of Vancouver are overwhelmed by the high housing prices, the new move by British Columbia of charging an additional 15 per cent tax on foreign house buyers is highly supported by the residents, especially those in Yaletown.

cmhc-new-10-down-payment-chart2

Yaletown – Still a Ray of Hope for younger Vancouverites

Yaletown is a stylish, historical region of Vancouver, BC. It has a sophisticated and cosmopolitan ambiance that makes it an attractive place to buy a new house. But the housing in Vancouver, BC is out of control. The hike in real estate costs is majorly affecting the young people of the city. For the young natives of Yaletown, housing has become a luxury item and the government is taking a lot of time in arbitrating this crisis.

The contemporary scene of the housing market is frustrating for an average Vancouverite. The young natives in the city have to save more than past times for even a 20 per cent down payment. They are trying to squeeze themselves into the place where they were born and had invested in for so long.

According to Paul Kershaw, founder of Generation Squeeze, the Vancouver’s housing crisis has hit “code red.” The city might lose its people belonging to the younger generation who are the real assets.

Despite the dire situation, many experts believe that the real estate market in Yaletown and the rest of Vancouver will retain its healthy status in the near future. Expert economists in BC have cohesively predicted the same. This poses as a promising situation for youngsters who don’t have to save a lot to invest in a house.

 

Lifestyle Audits by CRA

The skyrocketing real estate market of Vancouver has highlighted individuals who have a luxurious lifestyle and an expensive house, but their earnings are of average category. The Canada Revenue Agency plans to investigate into the matter and their key area of inquiry would be “lifestyle audits.”

Lifestyle audits will include the examination of highly-priced homes, expensive cars, and assets, which will be compared to the income reported on tax returns. The audit will confront the culprits and with a committed execution, the resulting state of Vancouver’s real estate will bring back the brighter days of the city’s housing market.

In the current risky conditions, buying a house or any other property should be dealt with great care. At Yaletown Condo Listing, we customize a plan to meet and exceed our client’s needs. Get in touch with our realtors Tanya Jakubec when planning to buy a new house in Yaletown.

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Yaletown, Vancouver – A Real Estate Prospect Despite Current Situation

2016 – A Year of Ups & Downs for Vancouver Real Estate

At the start of 2016, Metro Vancouver had been a real estate Eldorado, witnessing record-smashing numbers in housing sales and listings. With every passing month since early spring, housing numbers continued the trend of dwarfing the preceding months’ and years’ records. Yaletown was no exception to this, being one of Metro Vancouver’s most desired locations to live in.

A significant contribution to this trend in Metro Vancouver was the investment by foreign buyers, both businessmen and immigrants, in one of Canada’s fastest-growing metros. 2016, particularly, saw a huge surge in the number of foreigners that were migrating to the city. The Metro Vancouver real estate was booming and was at its peak. But so were the prices of listings. Housing rates were at its all-time highest, and it was beginning to concern the city’s officials.

vancouver-supply-demand-real-estate
There’s been an increase in unit listed (supply) and huge drop on the unit sold (demand). This gives a strong signal of buyer’s market. Source: Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver

In August of this year, the City of Vancouver passed a new tax law on foreigners who wanted to buy into the city’s real estate market. The Foreign Buyers’ Tax was a 15 percent levy that was introduced to thwart off the increasing number of foreign buyers who were significantly responsible for the massive housing rates in Vancouver.

What followed was entirely unprecedented. As expected, the number of sales naturally dropped down drastically in the same month that the levy was implemented. But, in a surprising turn of events, the average housing rates did not budge at all. In fact, many areas including Yaletown, saw housing prices go up despite the fact that there was a lower demand.

The worrying situation failed to improve as September came around. The conditions reflected on a report released by UBS Switzerland on September 27th, declaring Metro Vancouver as the “World’s Highest Bubble Risk.”

Despite these rough waves that have been hitting Vancouver recently, many experts believe that Vancouver’s real estate will continue to remain healthy. A forecast by Central 1 Credit Union predicts B.C.’s hot real estate market will remain healthy for the next two years. Senior economist, Brian Yu believes that slower growth is healthier for the market because sky-rocketing Greater Vancouver prices seen during what he described as “spring fever” were unsustainable, in the early part of 2016.

A Healthier Future for Yaletown

At the hub of Metro Vancouver’s Downtown area, and situated in one of its prime locations, is Yaletown. Its distinct location makes Yaletown one of the most desirable places to live in the city. This automatically results in a higher demand for housing, and ultimately, makes the area one of Vancouver’s most expensive.

Given the recent fluctuating situation and rough sailing real estate boat of Metro Vancouver, Yaletown has been at the thick and thin of it all. With every crest and trough that the city has undergone, it has been directly reflected on Yaletown too.

As the number of listings continues to stack up, the number of housing sales has failed to show any signs of picking up pace anytime soon. Despite this, the rates of listings have not eased. On the contrary, it has gone up over the past couple of months.

Average housing prices currently, at an average, stands at $1,538,349, including detached and attached homes, and apartments. The highest price stands at over a staggering $8 million.

Despite all the inflation within Yaletown’s property prices, Yu’s prediction indicates a promising and healthy future for Yaletown. The popularity of the prime Vancouver region is expected to remain positive.

Dealing with the housing prices in Yaletown can be tricky but promising. Yaletown Condo Listing can help guide you if you want to buy a house in Yaletown, Vancouver.

Home Price Index for Greater Vancouver, Sep 2016 – Detached Home

Area Benchmark Price Index 1 Month +/- 6 Month +/- 1 Year +/- 3 Year +/- 5 Year +/-
Greater Vancouver $1,567,500 289.1 -0.6 16.8 32.7 69.5 66.3
Bowen Island $796,500 172.7 -0.2 21.9 23.8 38.0 31.9
Burnaby East $1,228,500 274.7 -2.6 12.4 29.7 64.5 70.8
Burnaby North $1,564,700 302.6 -2.0 15.1 29.2 66.3 72.3
Burnaby South $1,689,400 323.4 -0.6 21.1 36.5 73.9 75.0
Coquitlam $1,210,600 268.6 -1.5 15.7 34.2 71.7 75.9
Ladner $1,064,800 256.7 3.3 16.2 36.0 70.6 69.9
Lower Mainland $1,252,800 266.1 -0.9 17.1 33.9 65.2 65.2
Maple Ridge $717,400 204.4 0.7 19.1 36.5 55.8 55.1
New Westminster $1,086,000 269.4 -1.6 14.2 31.0 63.8 64.5
North Vancouver $1,663,500 264.8 -1.6 16.9 37.2 74.1 81.7
Pitt Meadows $793,200 223.5 1.2 19.8 34.9 56.7 62.2
Port Coquitlam $888,500 237.0 -2.1 10.4 27.8 61.8 61.7
Port Moody $1,381,900 255.2 -0.9 14.1 30.9 62.3 70.5
Richmond $1,684,800 337.9 -1.1 19.2 39.2 79.5 66.9
Squamish $788,300 209.6 -1.5 19.7 29.1 59.0 58.9
Sunshine Coast $479,800 168.1 0.9 16.7 25.4 40.8 26.4
Tsawwassen $1,269,700 273.4 1.8 14.3 36.6 77.8 78.2
Vancouver East $1,537,300 339.8 0.2 19.3 32.4 80.9 86.8
Vancouver West $3,623,300 372.0 0.2 17.9 32.1 73.2 62.0
West Vancouver $3,361,600 319.6 0.1 20.1 36.4 81.0 89.1
Whistler $1,301,800 180.2 -1.6 15.5 22.5 48.3 38.6
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Emerging Trend Not Obvious In Vancouver Real Estate Market Stats

While properties continue to sell in the Vancouver Real Estate Market, the totals from September 2016 was 9.6-percent lower than the sales average for the month over the past ten years. However, that does not reflect the increase in listings nor does it show the new trend in housing demands.

According to the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver, new listings in Metro Vancouver for detached, attached and apartment properties dipped marginally over the same period from 4,846 in September 2015 to 4,799 last month. That represents a decrease of one per cent.

Listing Numbers Show Increase

 However, compared to numbers from August 2016 there actually has been a bit of a burst of activity. There were 4,293 properties listed in the month which puts September at an increase of 11.8-per cent. According to REBGV President Dan Morrison there is a good reason for the overall ten year drop in listings and that it is not a negative sign.

He says the demand for housing has shifted away from detached, attached and apartment properties in recent years. Morrison explains that the current trend is built upon a larger demand for condominiums and townhouses. He says the supply and demand conditions are directly related to this trend which does not show in the overall sales numbers.

Historic Listings Numbers Drop But Recent Numbers Rise

His statement is verified by the Metro Vancouver totals of homes currently in the sales market through the MLS system. At the end of September 2016 the figure was 9,354 – down almost 13.5 per cent from a year ago but up 10-percent from August 2016.

The number of sales also speaks loudly about the trend. The sales-to-active listing ratio was 24.1 per cent for September 2016. That’s the lowest it has been since February 2015 which signals a time frame for the existing shift in the housing market conditions.

Sales Figures Could Bring Prices Down

Actual sales of detached properties in September 2016 were 666, down 47.6 per cent from the previous year. Apartment sales experienced the same fate, down 20.3 per cent from last year at the same time with attached property sales falling 32.2 percent from September 2015.

Morrison says the change in the market conditions is providing a huge positive – it is taking away the upward pressure on pricing. Due to the level of uncertainty the REBGV President explains that price points are becoming more difficult to put in place for both buyers and sellers.

Additional Data

Other interesting facts from September 2016 in Metro Vancouver:

 

  • Detached properties spent an average of 37 days on the market and reached a benchmark price of $1,579,400
  • Apartment properties spent an average of 24 days on the market with a benchmark price of $511,800 recorded
  • Townhouse properties attained a benchmark price of $677,000 and were on the market an average of 21 days.

 

 

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Source: rebgv.org Monthly Statistical Reports

These stats verify the emerging trend on apartment and townhouse property sales with both selling faster than detached properties. Analysts say that the longer the sales-to-active listings ratio stays above 20 per cent, the more upward pressure housing prices will experience. Pricing will see downward pressure once the ratio dips below 12 percent

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Vancouver Real Estate Market Continues to be Active

 

There is something about Vancouver that attracts people like a magnet. It has a lot to do with the location on the west coast of British Columbia and the size. Vancouver is currently the eighth largest municipality in Canada and as such has several amenities, attractions, cultural diversities and as many assets as liabilities.

One of the many ways one can gauge progress in and around the city is by taking a closer look at the Vancouver real estate market. According to the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver there has been a shifting of sorts within the current market. While numbers pointed towards a record-setting pace in early 2016, in recent months dips have pushed figures back down to what local experts have termed “historically normal” levels.

 

Looking at the Numbers

According to the REBGV a total of 2,489 residential property sales were recorded in Metro Vancouver for August 2016. Compared to 3,362 sales in the same period in 2015 the numbers show a decrease of 26-percent. Going further back to August 2014 and there is a 10.2-percent decline (2,771 sales) and just a one percent difference from the 2,514 sales recorded in August 2013.

Compared to July 2016, August 2016 recorded a drop in property sales totaling 22.8-percent – that’s almost a quarter of total sales. While these decreases in overall sales can be a telltale sign about the state of the Vancouver real estate market, what it says to the REBGV is something else. The dip in the number of homes sold in the market also pushes down asking prices.

VW-APT
Currently there’s bit more supply over the demand. However, the price remains high.

Prices Are Not The Issue

Typically when property sales figures shift downwards it is an indication that prices are too high for buyers. The REBGV says the current trend is not entirely related to that at all. In fact, in August the sales-to-active listings ratio was 29.3-percent which is considered a seller’s market. What may have a greater impact on the numbers currently is the recently implemented Foreign Buyers Tax which appears to have reduced foreign buyer activity.

The 15-percent tax went into effect August 1, 2016 and it is still far too early to see what impact it has had on the Vancouver real estate market. It is easy to lay some of the blame of dropping sales figures in the first month the tax has been in place on this development however, traditionally property sales dip in the middle of summer.

 

Yaletown Condos are a Different Matter

The upside to the shifting in the real estate market in Metro Vancouver is that apartment properties have not seen as much of a dip as detached homes have over the years. For example, according to the REBGV apartment sales in August 2016 totaled 1,343, down just 10.1-percent from August 2015. Plus, the benchmark price of apartment properties has seen an increasing trend.

The benchmark price recorded in August 2016 of an apartment property was $514, 300 – an increase of 26.9-percent from August 2015 and an increase of 6.1-percent since May 2016. In comparison, the benchmark price of a detached home increased in the past year by 31.1-percent with sales dropping 25.4-percent over the same period.

What Does All of This Mean?

Although there is no shortage of movement within the real estate market in Greater Vancouver, what seems to be the most stable of the properties are apartment units such as Yaletown condos. While prices of both homes and apartments have increased, and sales have decreased, the margins are narrower with apartments and Yaletown condos than with detached homes. This makes investing in a condo a wise choice in today’s Vancouver real estate market.