May, 2019 Real Estate Market Update

There are two conversations that come up more than any other in Vancouver: the weather and the real estate market. The weather has been an easy one the past few weeks with mostly warm sunny weather, but the real estate market has been less straightforward. Overall, we’ve seen less demand and increased supply remaining as the key trends in Vancouver’s market. Buyers are willing to be more patient and less likely to compete for properties. That being said, we’ve seen a significant uptick in sales and market activity over the last 3 weeks. Time will tell if this is a Spring fever blip or simply that we’ve found a bottom and are starting to climb back. Here are few factors that I think are contributing to the recent increase in sales and buyer activity:
  • Buyers and Sellers need to move on with their lives. People are having babies, changing jobs, getting married and joining homes, and all of the other things that life throws at us.
  • Fixed interest rates are the lowest they’ve been in some time. You can now lock in 5 year fixed mortgages at around 3%. This is very attractive to buyers who are looking for peace of mind.
  • The recent changes in government policies and increased taxes have become the new normal. It’s been over a year now since significant taxes were introduced to our market and homeowners now see this as a cost of doing business and it no longer has the same shock value that it did initially.
  • Buyers and Sellers have now come together with expectations of value as the new prices have actualized over the last 12-24 months. Sellers no longer expect peak market prices and buyers are recognizing the value and seeing signs of price stabilization.
  • Homeowners are seeing this as an opportune time to upgrade from condos and townhomes into the detached market. For example, the delta between selling a condos or towmhome in order to purchase a detached property is as attractive as it’s been in over a decade.
There are more homes for sale in our market today than we’ve seen since October 2014. This trend is more about reduced demand than increased supply. The number of new listings coming on the market each month are consistent with our long-term averages. It’s the reduced sales activity that’s allowing listings to accumulate. The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential home sales in the region totalled 1,829 in April 2019, a 29.1% decrease from the 2,579 sales recorded in April 2018, and a 5.9 % increase from the 1,727 homes sold in March 2019. Last month’s sales were 43.1% below the 10-year April sales average. We have sold over 20 homes year to date and continue to help navigate our clients through this dynamic, and often challenging and unpredictable market. If you are interested in getting an up to date market evaluation or discussing opportunities available in the current market, don’t hesitate to give me a call. Kind regards, Patrick