This month the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) bulletin stated, “Home sales remain steady in Greater Vancouver.” The numbers do support this because home sales in Metro Vancouver have held the line over the past four months. Furthermore, the Board said, “With the MLS® sales-to-active listing inventory ratio indicating a buyers’ market, properties appropriately priced are selling.” I’ve witnessed this in my own business, with buyers snatching up desirable listings more quickly than before.
When looking at the MLSLink® Housing Price Index (HPI), the benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver over the last year shows an increased 4.6% to $579,349 in October 2010 from $553,702 in October 2009. Interestingly, since June 2010, residential home prices in Metro Vancouver have remained virtually unchanged, declining a mere 0.2%.
“We’ve seen a lot more consistency and less volatility in recent months when it comes to both number of sales and pricing, although it’s important to remember that conditions often vary between communities and neighbourhoods,” says Jake Moldowan, REBG president. The market saw a late push this fall as transaction volume for residential property sales in Metro Vancouver totaled 2,337 in October 2010. That is a 5.3% increase compared to volumes a month earlier.
“As we enter the final two months of the year, buyer demand is in closer alignment with supply than we’ve seen for most of 2010,” Moldowan said. “Those buying today recognize that they still have a chance to enter the market with near-record low interest rates, while gradual reductions in inventory have eased downward pressure on prices.” With less downward pressure on pricing, buyers do know the market well, and so sellers have to be priced appropriately for transactions to connect.
Let’s look at the numbers
Total active listings on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in Metro Vancouver currently sit at 14,075, an 8.6% drop from last month and a 16.4% rise from October 2009. New listings (or new construction) for detached, attached and apartment properties declined 25.7% to 3,698 in October 2010 compared to October 2009 when 4,977 new units were listed.
Sales of detached properties in October 2010 reached 976, a decrease of 34.4% from the 1,487 detached sales recorded in October 2009, and a 98% increase from the 493 units sold in October 2008. The benchmark price for detached properties increased 6.3% from last year to $796,883.
Sales of apartment properties reached 984 in October 2010, a turn down of 38.8% compared to the 1,607 sales in October 2009, and raised 52.1% compared to the 647 sales in October 2008.The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 2.4% from October 2009 to $390,074.
Attached property sales in October 2010 totaled 377, a decline of 38.2% compared to the 610 sales in October 2009, and a 68.3% rise from the 224 attached properties sold in October 2008. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 4 per cent between October 2009 and 2010 to $487,530.
Source REBGV News Release November 2, 2010