The number of new home listings continues to increase across apartment, townhouse and detached home categories, while buyer activity remains below historical averages for Metro Vancouver’s housing market.
The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential home sales have decreased by 39.3% from the sales recorded in January 2018, yet saw a 2.9% increase compared to December 2018.
Last month’s sales were 36.3% below the ten-year sales average; the lowest reported January-sales total since 2009. There was a 27.7% year-over-year increase in the number of homes listed in January 2019, and a staggering 244.6% increase in the number of homes listed compared to December 2018.
Despite the increase in open house attendance, prospective buyers are choosing to remain in a holding pattern for the time being.
Sales to Active Listings Ratio
In January 2019, the overall sales-to-active-listings ratio for all property types was 10.2%; with detached homes reporting a ratio of 6.8%, townhomes 11.9%, and condos 13.6%.
According to analysts, a downward pressure on average home prices occurs when the sales-to-active-listings ratio dips below the 12.0% mark for a sustained period; while home prices typically rise when the ratio surpasses 20.0% over several months.
Over the last seven months, home prices have edged down across all residential property types. The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential homes is currently sitting at $1,019,600; representing a 4.5% decrease year-over-year, and a 7.2% decrease over the past six months.
The benchmark price for a residential property type is determined by the housing price index – a set of criteria commonly found in other properties in the same area. While benchmark prices are considered to be the typical sales price for similar properties within the area, it does not take lower- or higher-end properties into account.
The benchmark price for detached homes in Metro Vancouver is currently $1,453,400; a decrease of 9.1% compared to January 2018, and an 8.3% decrease over the past six months.
Apartments are currently reporting benchmark prices of around $658,600. This represents a 1.7% decrease from January 2018, and a 6.6% decrease over the past six months.
The benchmark price for townhomes in Metro Vancouver is currently $800,600; a 0.5% decrease from January 2018, and a 6.2% decrease over the past six months.
Home Listings Increase While Buyers Remain in Holding Pattern
As the number of homes being listed increases, buyers will continue to follow the holding pattern we’ve seen in the last several months. While the delay in purchasing decisions means newly listed homes will likely remain on the market for longer, the strong attendance numbers at open houses is a promising indicator of prospective buyers’ sustained interest in Metro Vancouver’s housing market.
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