2018 is a wrap and today, we bring you the December 2018 Metro Vancouver Housing Market Report. Overall, Metro Vancouver home sales last year were the lowest annual total in the region since 2000. The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that sales of detached, attached and apartment properties reached 24,619 on MLS® in 2018 which is 31.6% decrease from 2017 and a 38.4% decrease from 2016. The sales total in 2018 was 25% below the region's 10-year sales average.
Below is an infographic put out by the REBGV highlighting some key elements.
“This past year has been a transition period for the Metro Vancouver housing market away from the sellers’ market conditions we experienced in previous years,”Phil Moore, REBGV president said. “High home prices, rising interest rates and new mortgage requirements and taxes all contributed to the market conditions we saw in 2018.”
“The supply of homes for sale will be an important indicator to follow in 2019. We’ve had record building activity in recent years and many projects will complete soon. This will provide additional housing options for home buyers across the region,” Moore said.
The MLS® HPI composite benchmark price for all residential homes in Metro Vancouver ends the year at $1,032,400. This is a 2.7% decrease compared to December 2017.
Looking at residential home sales in the Greater Vancouver region, there was a 46.8% decrease in comparison to December 2017 from 2,016 sales to 1,072. This is 43.3% below the 10-year December sales average.
For a detailed look at the December 2018 statistics package, click here.
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The British Columbia government is reviewing the foreign buyers’ tax in the Vancouver area and the interest-free loan program to first-time homebuyers to determine whether they have helped improve affordability, BC's new housing minister says. A year ago, the Liberal government implemented a 15% tax on foreign nationals purchasing property in Metro Vancouver in an effort to cool skyrocketing house prices. This tax isn’t applied to commercial properties, only residential properties.
Selina Robinson and BC Finance Minister, Carole James, will review real estate transaction data to determine whether the 15% foreign tax should be kept, revised or scrapped altogether. The data will be analyzed in order to determine whether it has been beneficial in housing affordability.
“I don’t know that we have any plans to eliminate it,” Robinson said of the 15 per cent foreign buyers’ levy, nearly a year after the previous Liberal government introduced it for Metro Vancouver. “There’s certainly enough data that would help us to understand its value, and so, we have to look at that data.”
According to data from the B.C. Ministry of Finance, during the period of June 10 - August 1, 2016, 13.2% of all property transfer transactions in Metro Vancouver were involving foreign buyers. Once the foreign tax took effect, that figure fell to 2.6% during the period of August 2 - December 31, 2016. Figures recently released revealed that the government took in $102 million in revenue from the implementation of the foreign buyers' tax between August 2, 2016 to March 31, 2017.
In the months after the tax, there were signs of cooling in Vancouver’s housing market, with the number of transactions falling. However, there have been signs that the market may be rebounding, as prices continue to creep up. The Multiple Listing Service composite benchmark price for all properties in Metro Vancouver was $998,700 in June, an increase of 7.9% from the same month last year.
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In March, the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) recorded 9,826 residential unit sales which is a 21.8% decrease in comparison to the same period last year. The total sales dollar volume also saw a decrease of 30% bringing it to $6.79 Billion and the average MLS® residential price saw a decrease of 10.5% bringing it to $690,597 compared to March 2016.
"Consumer demand continues to normalize following blockbuster home sales in 2016," says Brendon Ogmundson, BCREA Economist. "However, the supply of homes available for sale has not recovered and is still declining in many markets around the province."
Although the average price in BC was down year-over-year due to a shift in the composition of sales, home prices in most markets are being pushed higher due to severe supply constraints. This is particularly true for the Victoria region, which currently has less than two months of inventory for sale, as well as for the apartment and townhouse market in the Lower Mainland.
Year-to-date, BC residential sales dollar volume was down 34.7 per cent to $14.1 billion, when compared with the same period in 2016. Residential unit sales declined 25.5 per cent to 20,893 units, while the average MLS® residential price was down 12.4 per cent to $674,856.
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Overall, we have seen a decrease in residential sales when comparing January 2017 to January 2016. Last month, there were 4,487 residential unit sales recorded by MLS® which is a 23% decrease in comparison to January 2017. For the total sales dollar volume, it was recorded at $2.79 Billion which is a 36.5% decrease from the same period last year. There has been a decrease of 17.5% in terms of the average MLS® residential price in BC bringing it to $621,093.
"Housing demand across the province returned to long-term average levels last month," said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. "However, regional variations persist, with Victoria posting above average performance and Vancouver falling below the average."
The decrease in the average MLS® residential price is largely attributed to there being more residential sales made in areas outside of the Lower Mainland. Vancouver residential sales fell from 43% of provincial transactions to 35%. In addition, Vancouver detached home sales have seen a decrease relative to multi-family units as they have skewed the average price statistic down. The MLS® Residential Benchmark Price in the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver area has seen a 3.7% decrease over the past six months, but is up 15.6% from January 2016.
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Another month has come and gone which means we have more monthly statistics to bring you! Looking at the residential property sales, October saw a total of 2,233 units sold which is a 38.8% decrease compared to October 2015 and a 0.9% decrease compared to September 2016. Sales last month were 15% below the 10-year October sales average.
“Changing market conditions compounded by a series of government interventions this year have put home buyers and sellers in a holding pattern,” Dan Morrison, Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) president said. “Potential buyers and sellers are taking a wait-and-see approach to try and better understand what these changes mean for them.”
New listings for Metro Vancouver detached, attached and apartment properties saw a decrease of 3.5% compared to October 2015 (from 4,126 down to 3,981 units) and a decrease of 17% from last month's 4,799 listed properties. There was a 4.5% decrease in total number of current properties in Metro Vancouver listed for sale on MLS® compared to October 2015 (from 9,569 to 9,143) and a 2.3% decrease from last month's 9,354 units.
“While sales are down across the different property types, it’s the detached market that’s seen the largest reduction in home buyer demand in recent months,” Morrison said. “It’s important to work with your local REALTOR® to help you navigate today’s changing trends.”
The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $919,300. This represents a 24.8% increase compared to October 2015 and a 0.8% decline compared to September 2016.
Residential sales in the Metro Vancouver area has seen a decrease of 32.6% in September 2016 compared to the same month last year (from 3,345 down to 2,253) and a decrease of 9.5% compared to August 2016. Sales from last month were 9.6% below the 10-year sales average for the month.
“Supply and demand conditions differ today depending on property type,” Dan Morrison, REBGV president said. “We’re seeing more demand for condominiums and townhomes today than in the detached home market.”
There was a total of 4,799 new listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver for September 2016 which is a 1% decrease from the 4,846 units listed in September 2015. On the other hand, it was an 11.8% increase compared to August 2016 (4,293 listings). Current homes listed for sale on MLS® in the Metro Vancouver area has seen a 13.4% decrease (9,354 listings) compared to September 2015 and a 10% increase (8,506 listings) compared to August 2016. The sales-to-active listings ratio has been the lowest since February 2015 with a ratio of 24.1%.
“Changing market conditions are easing upward pressure on home prices in our region,” Morrison said. “There’s uncertainty in the market at the moment and home buyers and sellers are having difficulty establishing price as a result. To help you understand the factors affecting prices, it’s important to talk with a REALTOR®.”
The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $931,900. This represents a 28.9 per cent increase compared to September 2015 and a 0.1 per cent decline compared to August 2016. As for specific statistics on detached homes, apartments and townhouses from last month, you can refer to the image above. Detached property sales saw a decrease of 47.6% compared to September 2015 while their benchmark price increased by 33.7%. Sales for apartments saw a decrease of 20.3% and benchmark price increased by 23.5% in contrast to September 2015. Lastly, attached properties sales decreased by 32.2% and their benchmark price increased by 29.1% compared to September 2015.
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Vancouver has seen slower home sales in August but there has been an overall strong housing demand across most regions within BC. There were 8,945 residential units recorded by the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) last month which is an increase of 1.5% compared to the same month last year. As for the total sales dollar volume, it has seen a decrease of 6.7% compared to last year with a total of $5.1 Billion in sales. The average MLS® price has also seen a deline of 8.1% compared to the same month last year which brings it to $569,393.
"The newly introduced 15 per cent foreign buyer tax combined with the 3 per cent property transfer tax on homes over $2 million brought in earlier this year, slowed demand at the top end of the market in Vancouver last month." - Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist.
"The decline in the average home price was due to a change in the composition and location of homes sold in the province," added Muir. "Fewer sales of high priced detached homes relative to all other homes sales in Vancouver as well as fewer Vancouver home sales relative to the rest of the province has caused the average price statistic to decline."
Year-to-date, the BC residential sales dollar increased to $61.6 Billion (39.1% increase) when compared to the same period in 2015. As for the unit sales, it has also increased to 86,206 units (22.1% increase) whereas the average MLS® residential price totaled $714,400 (13.9%). 2016 was off to a good start with record-breaking sales while July and August saw more historically normal activity.
The new foreign tax implemented appears to be a factor in the downward residential sales within the Metro Vancouver area. It has reduced foreign buyer activity within the residential market and has caused some uncertainty amongst local home buyers and sellers. It may be a little early to see the true impact of this new tax but in a few months time, we would be able to analyze foreign buyer data more closely. As September comes to an end, stay tuned in the next few weeks for stats on this month. For all your real estate needs, contact the WeSellVancouver team at email@example.com or alternatively at 604-801-6654.
Source: British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA)
Up until the end of June, we've seen an ongoing trend of residential sales going through the roof. However, it's a different story for July! When comparing July 2016 residential property sales to July 2015 figures, we see a decrease of 18.9% (3,226 vs. 3,978 sales) and a decrease of 26.7% from last month. For the first half of the year, home sales have registered at over 4,000 units per month. July was the first time this year that home sales did not hit the 4,000 mark.
“After several months of record-breaking sales activity, home buyer demand returned to more historically normal levels in July,” Dan Morrison, REBGV president said. “Home sale activity showed some moderating signs in late June and this carried into July,” Morrison said. “We’ll wait and watch over the next few months to see if this marks the return of more normal market trends.”
In July 2016, new listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver have seen an increase of 2.5% totalling 5,241 units in comparison to the same month last year and a 10.8 decrease in comparison to last month. There has been a 27.4% decline in total number of properties currently listed for sale on MLS® compared to July 2015 and a 6.9% increase compared to June 2016.
Take a look below at the comparables in the MLS® HPI Composite Benchmark Price from July 2015 to July 2016.
Click on the photo below to enlarge it for better viewing. For a more detailed look at the MLS® Sales Facts, click here.
For all your real estate needs, contact the WeSellVancouver team at firstname.lastname@example.org or alternatively at 604-801-6654.
With the booming real estate market in Vancouver, it is no doubt that prices have appreciated due to the high demand. What's interesting is the asymmetrical price appreciation seen in the housing market. More expensive properties are seeing prices rise at a faster rate than those of their less expensive counterparts. Price gaps seen between houses, condominiums and detached homes are beginning to widen with Vancouver leading the biggest home price gap increases within Canada. This could be the result of foreign investment activity in Vancouver, especially within the luxury market segment. Housing priced in the higher end of the spectrum are more vulnerable to price adjustments.
The asymmetrical price appreciation has been evident in Vancouver for the past ten years which is predominantly caused by the rapid price increase of luxury homes. Housing prices have seen an overall increase, however, luxury home prices are leading the pack with the rate of increase nearly quadrupling the rates of those in the lower end of the spectrum. Homeowners within the move up market are primarily affected by this asymmetry. This phenomenon is limiting the ability for homeowners to "move up" into a bigger home and is even affecting first-time homeowners as well.
As a result of the inability to move up, homeowners are beginning to invest more in renovations as it is seen to be a more cost effective measure. Stay tuned for our next blog which tackles the issue of how to renovate your home while remaining on budget. For all your real estate needs, contact Amalia Liapis at email@example.com or alternatively at 604-618-7000.
Today's blog will look at the tax implications of constructing a laneway house. First things first, what IS a laneway house? It is a small detached residential infill house that typically fronts on the lane of a larger principal house and is generally located where the garage would normally go on a single-family lot. A laneway house can be built on any lot 32 feet or wider in any RS single family zone. Within Metro Vancouver, this type of housing unit is gaining popularity as it increases the value of one's home. However, a few things to note is that it could potentially affect the eligibility of claiming a Home Owner Grant, may result in higher property taxes and may affect the capital gains principal residence exemption for tax purposes.
The City of Vancouver sets out a step-by-step guide to help with the planning process which can be found here. Check out the guidelines here and the regulations here.
Remember, it is advised to know the tax and legal implications of having a laneway house. Speak to a knowledged real estate agent or legal representative in regards to this matter. For all your real estate needs, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or alternatively at 604-801-6654.
Our last blog took a look at 2014 statistics in the realm of commercial real estate. Today we'll be exploring statistics for 2015 thus far. As noted in our last blog, commercial land sales have driven sales activity for the first quarter. It has been an upward trend for the past four years in terms of dollar value in land sales.
“It was the most active first quarter we’ve seen in our commercial market over the last five years,” Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said. “This activity reflects the growth we’re seeing in related sectors within our economy such as retail and manufacturing.”
Below you will find a comparison chart of Quarter 1 commercial real estate activity by category for the years 2014 and 2015. As you can see, the number of sales has seen an increase from 2014 to 2015 whereas the dollar value for each respective category has increased in some categories and decreased in others.
Land - Includes properties that are holding properties, farmland, garden centres, redevelopment sites, land assembly sites, vineyards, etc.
Office and Retail - These properties are defined by the zoning according to each municipality and must have a building on the site. This includes office, office condo, retail, retail condo, shopping centre, gas station, car dealerships, banks, community centres, daycares, educational facility, institutional, golf courses, movie threatre, hotel, churches, restaurants, truck stops, etc.
Industrial - These are defined by the zoning according to each municipality and must have a building on the site. This includes warehouses, warehouse bays and multi-bay warehouses.
Multi-Family - These include nursing homes, high rises, low rises and any condo or townhome properties containing four or more units with at least one zoned for commercial use.
The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) provides us with an easy-to-understand video that depicts the specific insider trends in the housing market. Demand continues to outpace supply across Metro Vancouver resulting in seller market conditions.
In order to stay competitive in the marketplace, get connected with a knowledgeable realtor. With over 25 years in the industry, WeSellVancouver can provide advice on:
» Strategies for pricing » What to include in the contract » How to safeguard yourself
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Looking back at the housing statistics of Metro Vancouver, there has been a steady increase in demand in the month of March. According to the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV), residential property sales in Greater Vancouver topped out at 4,060 just last month. In comparison to the same month last year, there has been a 53.7% increase in unit sales and a 32.6% increase in comparison to February 2015. It has been noted that there has been strong competition amongst home buyers as there have been multiple offer situations and there has been some upward pressure on home prices.
5,968 new listings in March for detached, attached and apartment properties within the Metro Vancouver area were recorded. In contrast to March 2014 totals, this represents a 13% increase. However, the total number of properties actively listed for sale on the Multiple Listing Service has moved in the opposite direction with a 14.5% decline in comparison to March 2015 listings.
According to the REBGV president, Darcy McLeod, "[t]he number of homes for sale today is below what's typical for this time of year. If you've been considering putting your property on the market, these market conditions indicate that now may be a good time to list".
The Metro Vancouver residential properties benchmark price is currently sitting at $660,700. The sales-to-active-listings ratio is at an all-time high since July 2007 with a ratio of 32.8%.
For all your real estate needs, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or alternatively at 604-801-6654.
In today's time and age, location is definitely key, especially in Metro Vancouver. Choosing where to live includes various factors and we'll shed light on some ways to save money by being environmentally conscious about your choice of location.
First off, situate yourself in "green" neighbourhoods. What we mean by that is, look at properties that are in close proximity to work, school, shopping, community centres and other services. In doing so, the commute to these areas take up less fuel and subsequently, are easier on your wallet and the environment.
Another suggestion is to situate yourself in a transit-oriented area. Nowadays, many neighbourhoods are being built with transit as their focus. There is a shift towards shared driving or utilizing Car2Go as there has been a reduction in car ownership in Vancouver.
Choosing a walkable neighbourhood will offer health, environmental , financial and community benefits. Take a look at WALKSCORE to calculate the walkability score of your neighbourhood.
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Metro Vancouver's real estate prices are steadily increasing, making the housing costs less affordable. Despite the decline in fixed mortgage rates, housing affordability in Metro Vancouver is slowly diminishing. The increase in real estate prices is not isolated to Vancouver only as affordability for homes has decreased for the province as a whole. On a more positive note, the market seems to be back on track due to the increase in real estate prices. Not only is it back on track, it appears to be the strongest it's ever been in the past 3 years. While this is great news for the market, it isn't for home buyers. There has been a recent increase in home buyer demand which puts Greater Vancouver in the upper reaches of a balanced housing market.
The graph below shows ownership costs as a percentage of household income. Essentially, it is the percentage of pre-tax income that the average Vancouverite needs to service the costs of owning a home. Condos are the only home type that are an anomaly in the increasing trend in housing prices in that it remains relatively stable in affordability. Owners are spending 39.9% of pre-tax income on condos which is a slight decrease in contrast to the previous quarter. Two-storey housing units are sitting at about 86.5% and bungalows are slightly lower at 82.4%. It is said that the average British Columbian must spend 68.4% of their income for housing.
*Source: RBC Housing Trends and Affordability
For more information on this quarter's current real estate market and economic factors that affect it, check out the Q1 State of the Market Report produced by Urban Analytics Inc.