Less Sales, What About Prices? The RE-UP #003

Metro Vancouver Real Estate Market Update March 2017

So sales are down in real estate all over metro vancouver.  So what does that mean for prices? Have they dropped or have they not? 

Welcome to the RE-UP. If you do not already know, the RE_UP is a show where I update you on the real estate market and I basically go over the numbers of what took place in real estate last month.

Now before we get started I just want to point out that I mostly focus on the fraser valley, however a lot of what I have to say and a lot of the numbers really do apply to other parts of Metro Vancouver as well.

Although we are doing a bit better then them in terms of sales.

There is a lot of talk right now that the real estate market is slower then last year and yes thats true.

And really it is to be expected.

Last years market was…

absolutely nuts. I mean prices were going up on a weekly basis. Buyers had to make decisions on the spot otherwise they would potentially lose out on the home they wanted. And on top of that even if they did put an offer they could still get outbid by someone who either wanted it more or just had a bigger budget. It wasn’t healthy and it certainly was not sustainable.

We already know affordability sucks in Metro Vancouver and we cannot have year after year of 25% increases.

Now even though sales are down this year, we are still seeing some pretty good market activity. Especially in the condo and townhouse market. In metro Vancouver there are three main types of properties that people buy and sell. The first is the single family detached home.

Long ago people dreamt of owning a house,  with a yard and a white picket fence. Well for many that dream no longer exists, especially for the newer generation. Where the dream of owning ANY home is becoming challenging let alone owning a house.  Unless of course you are willing to move out of the big cities and go further away. Ive had clients sell their homes here in south surrey and buy a house in Chilliwack or Maple Ridge. Their lifestyle allowed for that and they are very happy with their purchase.

But for others, the dream of owning a home comes down to owning a townhouse or a condo. They just are more affordable to a larger group of people and really there is a bigger group of buyers that are interested in those types of properties. People downsizing, upsizing, first time home buyers, renters getting back into the market, investors.  What that means though,  is there is a lot of pressure on that segment of the market.

Especially when you consider that there has been very little inventory in the last few months. So we’re finding situations where many townhouses and condos, well especially condos  are finding themselves in multiple offer situations. Not as crazy as it was last year but it is still fairly common.

So how did we do last month, lets look at the numbers:

In February we had sales of just under 1400 properties. This was a 43% increase over January 2017 which is just above the 10 year average for February which is 1288 sales. Of those 1400 sales last month 369 were townhomes and 391 were condos.

The second figure I want to look at is the average days on market. This is how long on average it’s taking properties to sell. First let’s look at detached homes. In February 2017 it took on average 38 days to sell a single family home compared to 49 days in January. But this number is almost double what it took in February 2016 which was 22 days on average.

For townhomes and condos though we are seeing a completely different story. In February of this year it took on average 26 days to sell a townhouse or a condo which is 3 days less then it took in January.  But when you compare it to February 2016 it’s 11 days less than last year when it took on average 37 days to sell a townhouse or a condo.

So what has this done for the prices? I mean surely prices have decreased right? Well that’s not the case. And the reason for that, is due to the very little inventory we are seeing on the market.

So when you look at single family detached homes, we see that the benchmark price for February 2017 is $859,300 which is an increase of 0.4% over January and 20.4% over February 2016.

For townhomes the benchmark price is $422,400 which is a half percent increase over January and a 25.2% increase over February 2016.

Finally for condos the benchmark price is $267,000 a 1.8% increase over January and a 26.5% increase over February 2016.

So there you have it, those are the numbers for last month.

Now there is something. Ive been wanting to talk about for a while. Often in the news wether on TV or in print or on the Internet, you have people giving their predictions as to what will happen this year in the real estate market.  Well let me just tell you, nobody can with any sort of certanty say what will happen to the market.. No one has a crystal ball that they can look into the future.  And the fact is you have people on both sides of the coin, with some saying that the market is heading for a big correction and others are saying that it will continue being a fairly active market. And this happens every single year.

My opinion is, that I have no opinion on this matter. All I know is I can’t tell the future, neither can you and neither can the News anchors presenting these stories.

The reality is nobody knows. All that we have are the facts, the numbers of what’s actually taking place and this can change from one month to the next.

What these numbers tell me, coincides with what Im seeing on the streets with my buyers and my sellers.

Houses generally are taking longer to sell and especially those that are 2 million or above. There really aren’t a lot of buyers for that market.  Townhomes and condos are really on fire at the moment and in many cases there isn’t enough inventory for the buyers out there. We’ll wait and see what happens in March and throughout the rest of the year.

My name is Ahmed Raouf with WeSell.Properties. I hope you enjoyed this episode of the RE_UP.  If you enjoyed watching the show please go ahead and like the video, Share, subscribe to my YouTube channel and like my Facebook page. It helps me out as it lets me know that you guys are interested in this content and you will also then be notified as I put out new Videos

Thanks again for watching and have yourself a fantastic day.

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