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Housing market insights

Blog by June Conway | May 8th, 2019

Reduced demand and increased supply remain the trend across Metro Vancouver housing market.

REALTOR's registered 1,829 home sales on in April.  This is up +5.9% from last month but well below our historical averages, down -43.1% compared to 10 year average.

On the supply side we saw 5,742 homes added to the MLS® last month bringing total number of homes for sale to 13,357.  This the highest total we’ve seen since 2014.

Home prices in our market are driven by supply and demand.  We measure this activity by comparing the inventory of homes for sale with the number of sales in a month.  We call this the Sales-to-Active Listings Ratio.  Right now this ratio is continuing to trend towards a buyers’ market. 

What does this mean?

A buyer’s market favors buyers.  There’s more selection to choose from and sellers are motivated to price their home more competitively if they want to be successful.

The April 2019 benchmark price for all housing types in Metro Vancouver is 1,008,400 which is down -8.5% from April 2018.  In house types, declines are most pronounced in detached homes, $1,425,200 which is down-11.1%, condominiums $656,900 which is down-6.9% and townhomes $788,300 down -7.5% from April 2018.

Government policy continues to hinder home sale activity.  For example, federal government mortgage stress test has reduced buyer’s purchasing power by about 20%.  This is causing people at the entry level to struggle to secure financing.

Supressing housing activity through government policy not only reduces home sales, it harms the job market, economic growth and creates pent-up demand.  The need for housing won’t go away.  Delaying demand will only fuel disruptive cycles.

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