Vancouver’s Real Estate Markets Are Stable For Now But Where Are They Going??

Metro Vancouver’s June 2012 Market Update

MarketUpdateA slow Metro Vancouver spring market continues to turn in the buyers favour despite the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver’s (REBG’s) headline of “Spring activity remains balanced in the Greater Vancouver housing market” in their June 4, 2012 new release. When one looks at the number of properties listed for sale continuing to increase in May and the number of sales continue to decrease (compared to the same time a year before) it is hard not to think that the market is turning in the buyers favour. (If you have a property to sell I would suggest pricing it right and doing it sooner than later or holding off for now.) As well, for context it is worth noting that May was consistent with the last few months pace so we are not seeing any drastic changes which is good for the health of the market (with 2,874 sales in March, 2,799 sales in April and 2,853 in May).

When comparing the May 2012 sales numbers (again 2,853), to May 2011 (which saw 3,377 sales) there was a 15.5% drop. Moreover, the number of sales in Metro Vancouver this May was the lowest total for the month since 2001 which was 21.1% under the 10-year average of 3,617. The fewer sales we see the more the sellers tend to get motivated, so while there is a great selection of homes and rates are low a buyer is in a pretty good place to start make a good deal for themselves.

Eugen Klein, the REBGV president stated, “Home sellers have outpaced buyers in recent months, however, there continues to be an overall balance between supply and demand in our marketplace…Our sales-to-active-listing ratio sits at 16 per cent, which is indicative of balanced market conditions…As a result of this stability, home prices at the regional level have seen little fluctuation over the last six month.” Just to explain what that means a balance market is generally considered with a sales-to-active-listing ratio between 15% and 20% and a buyers market is considered 14% or less. As you can see we are technically balanced but moving closer and closer to the buyer’s end of that spectrum.

When looking at numbers for new listings in May 2012 for detached, town homes and condo properties in Metro Vancouver there were 6,927 listings. This was up 16.8% over May 2011 when 5,931 homes were listed for sale and a 14.4% rise over the previous month of April 2012 when 6,056 homes were listed for sale on the MLS® in Metro Vancouver. Last month’s new listing total were 15.3% above the 10-year average for listings in Metro Vancouver for May.

At 17,835, the total number of homes listed for sale on the MLS® in Metro Vancouver area moved up 7.9% in May compared to April and jumped 21% per cent from this time last year.

When evaluating the MLS® HPI benchmark price* (a broad indicator used over all Metro Vancouver homes) it sits at $625,100 and has edged up 3.3% when compared to a year before and up 2.4% when compared to the last three months. So we are still seeing slow but steady growth.

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

– 1,180 units – ↓24.8% compared to 1,570 sales in May, 2011.

The benchmark price ↑ 5.1 % from the year before to $967,500.

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

-1,156 units – ↓ 5.9% compared to 1,228 sales in May, 2011.

The benchmark price of an apartment property ↑ 1.7% from the year before to $379,700.


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

-517 units – ↓ 10.7% compared to 579 sales in May, 2011.

The benchmark price of an attached property ↑ 0.9% from the year before to $470,000.

Download the complete stats package by clicking here.

Source: Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver’s June 4, 2012 New Release

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