Metro Vancouver Winter Weather Is Not All That Cool but Our Real Estate Market Has Been…

February 2012 Metro Vancouver Market UpdateMarketUpdate

Is the market Hot or Not? Well, the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) headlines indicated in their Feb. 6, 2012 News Release that Selection broadens and demand eases to kick of 2012 Greater Vancouver housing market! (Not so warm feeling…)

Before we get all the way into 2012 there were just a few little tidbits left over from 2011. When reviewing 2011’s sales numbers it is interesting to note the impact of the real estate industry on our local economy. The real estate industry is a key economic driver in Metro Vancouver and in 2011, 32,390 homes changed ownership in the REBGV’s area, generating $1.36 billion in spin-off activity and 9,069 jobs according to the REBGV.

Metro Vancouver sellers were coming to the market faster than the buyers in January, 2012.  According to the REBGV’s news release, “Overall home prices, according to the new MLS® Home Price Index (MLS® HPI), continued to experience more stability and less fluctuation compared to the beginning of 2011.”

In January, 2012, residential property sales in Metro Vancouver reached 1,577 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) which was 4.9% less than the 1,658 sales recorded in December, 2011. Year over year there was a 13.3% decrease to the 1,819 sales in January, 2011 and an 18% drop from the 1,923 home sales in January, 2010. Moreover, January sales in Metro Vancouver were the second lowest January total in the region since 2002, (although 2012 was only 146 sales below the 10-year average).

Finally, Rosario Setticasi, the REBGV President commented on what we have been seeing in the residential real estate market for some time, stating “We’re seeing trends emerge in our market that favour buyers, such as increased selection and more stability in pricing compared to this time last year… Last month’s activity tells us that competition amongst home buyers was reduced in January, which means that individuals looking to purchase a home had more time to do their homework, consult with their REALTOR®, and make a decision.” Certain portions of the market have been leaning to a buyer’s market for some time now. Now is a great time to get in the market ahead of the busiest time of year…Spring. I would encourage you to consider contrarian thinking and deal now as a buyer instead of in the middle of spring when everyone else is looking for the same deal you are!

The total number of properties currently listed for sale on Metro Vancouver’s MLS® is 12,544, a 12.5% jump compared to December, 2011 and 20.2% significantly ahead of January, 2011!

The MLS® HPI benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $660,600. This is up 5.7% over January, 2011 but down 0.1% when compared to December, 2011.

Sales of detached properties in January, 2012 for Metro Vancouver:

– 659 units – ↓16.9% compared to 793 sales in January, 2011.

The benchmark price ↑ 11.3% from the year before to $1,034,700.

Sales of apartment/condo properties in January, 2012 for Metro Vancouver:

-657 units – ↓ 7.9% compared to 713 sales in January, 2011.

The benchmark price of an apartment property ↑ 2.4% from the year before to $371,500.


Sales of attached property/town homes in January, 2012 for Metro Vancouver:

-261 units – ↓ 16.6% compared to 313 sales in January, 2011.

The benchmark price of an attached property ↓ 0.5% from the year before to $468,000.

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