Vancouver, BC – October 11, 2018.


The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that a total of 5,573 residential unit sales were recorded by the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) across the province in September, a 33.2 per cent decrease from the same month last year. The average MLS® residential price in BC was $685,749, down 1.1 per cent from September 2017. Total sales dollar volume was $3.8 billion, a 34 per cent decline from September 2017.


“BC home sales continue at a slower pace compared to last year,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. “The impact on affordability and purchasing power caused by the mortgage stress test and moderately higher interest rates are negating the effect of the extraordinarily strong performance of BC’s economy over the last five years.”


Year-to-date, BC residential sales dollar volume was down 21.3 per cent to $45 billion, compared with the same period in 2017. Residential unit sales decreased 22.5 per cent to 63,251 units, while the average MLS® residential price was up 1.5 per cent to $716,096.

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Courtesy BCREA 


BC Housing Starts - October 9, 2018



It was a volatile month for new home construction in BC. Total housing starts fell 43 per cent on a monthly basis to 25,611 units SAAR and were down 31 per cent year-over-year. On a monthly basis, starts of multiple units were down more than half from August to just 16,980 units SAAR while single detached fell 3 per cent to 8,631 units SAAR. Compared to September 2017, multiple units starts were down 37 per cent while single detached starts were 20 per cent lower.
 
Looking at census metropolitan areas (CMA) in BC: 

  • Total starts in the Vancouver CMA were down 42 per cent on a monthly basis to 14,390 units SAAR as multiple units starts dropped 50 per cent from August. Compared to this time last year, total starts in Vancouver were 21 per cent lower. September new home construction in Metro Vancouver was concentrated in Surrey which accounted for a quarter of all starts.
  • In the Victoria CMA, housing starts fell 56 per cent after a surge of new starts in August. Total housing starts were still on a 3,000 annual pace in September. That is well below the torrid pace of new home construction seen in Victoria over the past year, but still relatively strong.
  • In the Kelowna CMA, new home construction slowed substantially in September, falling to just 750 units SAAR from August's near 4,000 unit annual pace. On a year-over-year basis, total starts were down 84 per cent to just 67 total units.  Housing starts in Kelowna have fallen off of the record pace of 2017, but remain above the 10-year average for the city.
  • Housing starts in the Abbotsford-Mission CMA rose 23 per cent on a monthly basis, driven by a 44 per cent increase in multiple unit projects and strong single-detached starts. However, total housing starts were down 80 per cent compared to last September, which saw very strong multiple unit starts.
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Courtesy BCREA - October 4, 2018


Total Canadian employment increased by 62,000 jobs in September, reversing the similar sized decline from August. Part-time employment accounted for most of the gain, rising by 80,000 while full-time work declined.   The national unemployment rate declined 0.1 points to 5.9 per cent and total hours worked across the economy rose 0.6 per cent.  Total employment was up 1.2 per cent over this time last year.
 
In BC, employment rose for a third consecutive month as the economy added an astonishing 33,000 jobs in September (near the all-time record of 34,700 set in May 2015), including 26,000 full-time jobs. Employment in the third quarter was up 54,000 jobs after declining in the first half of the year.  On a year-over-year basis, employment was up 1.7 per cent and the provincial unemployment rate fell 1.1 points to 4.2 per cent, the lowest rate of unemployment in the province since June 2008.

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October 4, 2018

Courtesy REBGV


The supply of homes for sale continued to increase across the Metro Vancouver* housing market in September while home buyer demand remained below typical levels for this time of year.


The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in the region totalled 1,595 in September 2018, a 43.5 per cent decrease from the 2,821 sales recorded in September 2017, and a 17.3 per cent decrease compared to August 2018 when 1,929 homes sold.


Last month’s sales were 36.1 per cent below the 10-year September sales average.

“Fewer home sales are allowing listings to accumulate and prices to ease across the Metro Vancouver housing market,” Ashley Smith, REBGV president-elect said. “There’s more selection for home buyers to choose from today. Since spring, home listing totals have risen to levels we haven’t seen in our market in four years.”


There were 5,279 detached, attached and apartment properties newly listed for sale on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in Metro Vancouver in September 2018. This represents a 1.8 per cent decrease compared to the 5,375 homes listed in September 2017 and a 36 per cent increase compared to August 2018 when 3,881 homes were listed.


The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the MLS® system in Metro Vancouver is 13,084, a 38.2 per cent increase compared to September 2017 (9,466) and a 10.7 per cent increase compared to August 2018 (11,824).


For all property types, the sales-to-active listings ratio for September 2018 is 12.2 per cent. By property type, the ratio is 7.8 per cent for detached homes, 14 per cent for townhomes, and 17.6 per cent for condominiums.


Generally, analysts say that downward pressure on home prices occurs when the ratio dips below the 12 per cent mark for a sustained period, while home prices often experience upward pressure when it surpasses 20 per cent over several months.

“Metro Vancouver’s housing market has changed pace compared to the last few years. Our townhome and apartment markets are sitting in balanced market territory and our detached home market remains in a clear buyers’ market,” Smith said. “It’s important for both home buyers and sellers to work with their Realtor to understand what these trends means to them.”


The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $1,070,600. This represents a 2.2 per cent increase over September 2017 and a 3.1 per cent decrease over the last three months.


Sales of detached properties in September 2018 reached 508, a 40.4 per cent decrease from the 852 detached sales recorded in September 2017. The benchmark price for detached properties is $1,540,900. This represents a 4.5 per cent decrease from September 2017 and a 3.4 per cent decrease over the last three months.


Sales of apartment properties reached 812 in September 2018, a 44 per cent decrease compared to the 1,451 sales in September 2017. The benchmark price of an apartment property is $687,300. This represents a 7.4 per cent increase from September 2017 and a 3.1 per cent decrease over the last three months.


Attached property sales in September 2018 totalled 275, a 46.9 per cent decrease compared to the 518 sales in September 2017. The benchmark price of an attached unit is $837,600. This represents a 6.4 per cent increase from September 2017 and a two per cent decrease over the last three months.


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Sept 9, 2018


Courtesy Chris Seepe, REM Online


When this law is passed, it will further grant the right to not be arrested for growing up to four plants. Again, it doesn’t mean you have the right to grow it wherever you wish. My letter specifically states you can’t grow it anywhere in or on the property without the landlord’s written permission, which we universally don’t provide because of the significant health risk from the potential growth of mould, risk of fire and the significant damage caused by the high humidity requirements for growing such plants, including hydroponics.


The right to smoke in a rental property is not enshrined in any Canadian legislation, including the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and the Human Rights Code. In the 1998 case, McNeil vs. Ontario, a smoker claimed their rights under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (s.12) were infringed, that nicotine is addictive and deprivation of cigarettes resulted in physical, mental and psychological suffering. The court determined that a cigarette ban was not intended to be punishment but to improve the health of all citizens and, while withdrawal from an addiction to nicotine may be an unpleasant and difficult experience, it is nevertheless temporary, limited and does not require medical attention. Many people voluntarily overcome the addiction. The above case further cited an earlier case – Edwards v. Canada (1991): “The smoking habit is far from a legal or constitutional right to which the State must pander.”

Unlike alcohol consumption, for example, cannabis smoke doesn’t respect physical boundaries and it’s much stronger smelling than cigarette smoke.


Smokers will likely run into the fundamental tenet of the Residential Tenancies Act (RTA) – the right of quiet enjoyment. This phrase is a misnomer. It should state, “right of peaceful enjoyment”. A breach of this right can arise from any acts of or neglect by a tenant that results in the interference, interruption or disturbance of another tenant’s reasonable peace, comfort or privacy of their respective premises or the common areas of the property being interfered with, whether by liquids, gases, vapours, solids, odours, vibration, noise, abusive language, threats of any kind, unusual or dangerous hobbies and fires created, caused or implied by a tenant.


Two-thirds of all Canadians don’t smoke, while 14 per cent smoke daily. Children can be adversely affected by smoke and parents are likely to take very strong objection to cannabis smokers.


Ontario’s new Standard Lease Agreement (SLA) includes a section about smoking. This section empowers a landlord to use a breach of a no-smoking clause in a rental agreement as grounds for eviction.


It remains for the courts to determine if a tenant’s right to smoke marijuana for medicinal purposes is greater than a neighbour’s right to not smell it, especially since there are alternative forms of medicinal marijuana including pills, capsules and oil.

My letter states that if mould develops in their rental unit, we will not remediate it and we will require a tenant to pay for any such remediation. An N8 notice for eviction could be issued for damage to property caused by an act or inaction by a tenant that is not completely and properly repaired by that tenant.


We estimated that growing four plants a year will consume an average $600-$800/year, and electrical circuits in older buildings (87 per cent of Ontario purpose-built rental buildings were constructed before 1979) that are already under heavy loads may increase the risk of fire. My letter states that a tenant may be held accountable for any fire started due to an overloaded circuit, and that we regularly record all electricity meter readings for all units. If a landlord includes electricity in the rent, then this could become a major financial issue. Your letter might say the landlord is not be responsible for any increase in electricity cost, although you may find that this will be hard to defend in court for existing tenants.


Our smoking policy then is: “Smoking, which includes tobacco and marijuana, any electronic versions and anything smoked for medicinal, recreational or remedial purposes, and growing plants of any type or quantity that require a room temperature above 22 C or which requires any form of moisture, excluding room-temperature liquid water directly applied to the plant’s soil, which includes marijuana, cannabis and hydroponics, are not permitted to be grown or cultivated anywhere in or on the premises, including common areas and the tenant’s rented unit.”

 
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September 5, 2018

Home buyer demand stays below historical averages in August

The Metro Vancouver* housing market continues to experience reduced demand across all housing types.


The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential home sales in the region totalled 1,929 in August 2018, a 36.6 per cent decrease from the 3,043 sales recorded in August 2017, and a 6.8 per cent decline compared to July 2018 when 2,070 homes sold.


Last month’s sales were 25.2 per cent below the 10-year August sales average.

“Home buyers have been less active in recent months and we’re beginning to see prices edge down for all housing types as a result,” Phil Moore, REBGV president said. “Buyers today have more listings to choose from and face less competition than we’ve seen in our market in recent years.”


There were 3,881 detached, attached and apartment homes newly listed for sale on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in Metro Vancouver in August 2018. This represents an 8.6 per cent decrease compared to the 4,245 homes listed in August 2017 and an 18.6 per cent decrease compared to July 2018 when 4,770 homes were listed.


The total number of homes currently listed for sale on the MLS® system in Metro Vancouver is 11,824, a 34.3 per cent increase compared to August 2017 (8,807) and a 2.6 per cent decrease compared to July 2018 (12,137).


The sales-to-active listings ratio for August 2018 is 16.3 per cent. By housing type, the ratio is 9.2 per cent for detached homes, 19.4 per cent for townhomes, and 26.6 per cent for apartments.

Generally, analysts say that downward pressure on home prices occurs when the ratio dips below the 12 per cent mark for a sustained period, while home prices often experience upward pressure when it surpasses 20 per cent over several months.


“With fewer buyers active in the market, benchmark prices across all three housing categories have declined for two consecutive months across the region,” Moore said.


The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $1,083,400. This represents a 4.1 per cent increase over August 2017 and a 1.9 per cent decrease since May 2018.

Sales of detached properties in August 2018 reached 567, a 37.1 per cent decrease from the 901 detached sales recorded in August 2017. The benchmark price for detached properties is $1,561,000. This represents a 3.1 per cent decrease from August 2017 and a 2.8 per cent decrease since May 2018.


Sales of apartment properties reached 1,025 in August 2018, 36.5 per cent decrease compared to the 1,613 sales in August 2017. The benchmark price of an apartment property is $695,500. This represents a 10.3 per cent increase from August 2017 and a 1.6 per cent decrease since May 2018.


Attached property sales in August 2018 totalled 337, a 36.3 per cent decrease compared to the 529 sales in August 2017. The benchmark price of an attached unit is $846,100. This represents a 7.9 per cent increase from August 2017 and a 0.8 per cent decrease since May 2018.

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September 6, 2018 - Courtesy of BCREA


The total value of Canadian building permits edged 0.1 per cent lower on a monthly basis in July. The decline was the result of lower construction intentions in BC.
 
In BC, the total value of permits fell 11 per cent on a monthly basis to $1.4 billion.  Residential permits decreased 15.4 per cent from June and were down 3 per cent year-over-year, as a result of lower permit activity for multi-family units in Vancouver. Non-residential permits were up 6.7 per cent from June, but were 2 per cent lower year-over-year.
 
Construction intentions in July were down in three of BC's four census metropolitan areas (CMA):

  • Permits in the Abbotsford-Mission CMA fell 10 per cent on a monthly basis to $28.3 million. Year-over-year, permit values were down 28 per cent.
  • In the Victoria CMA, total construction intentions were down by half on a monthly basis to just $76.7 million, a 40 per cent decline over this time last year.
  • In the Kelowna CMA, permits values increased by 13.3 per cent on a monthly basis to $113.2 million, and were up 44 per cent year-over-year.
  • The Vancouver CMA recorded permit activity valued at 796.8 million, a 13.5 per cent decline from May and down 9 per cent year-over-year.
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August 5, 2018


Courtesy BCREA


The Bank of Canada maintained its target for the overnight rate at 1.50 per cent this morning. In the statement accompanying the decision, the Bank noted that the Canadian economy is evolving in line with its projections and that real GDP growth is expected to slow in the third quarter due to fluctuations in energy production and exports.


Inflation is anticipated to come down from the 7-year high of 3 per cent rate observed in July, falling back to 2 per cent in early 2019. The Bank further noted that housing markets are beginning to stabilize following the implementation of the mortgage stress test.


Overall, the Bank's assessment is that higher interest rates will be warranted to achieve the 2 per cent inflation target, but policymakers are closely monitoring NAFTA negotiations and their impact on the inflation outlook.
   
With the threat of significant trade disruption looming from NAFTA negotiations, the Bank chose to pause its rate tightening cycle. However, strong economic growth over the past year has pushed the Canadian economy beyond its full-employment level, creating upward pressure on inflation.


Rising inflation and an economy operating at capacity means that the Bank of Canada will continue on its rate tightening path, likely at it next meeting in October with an ultimate goal of the overnight rate returning to between 3 and 3.5 per cent over the next two years.

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Vancouver, BC – August 30, 2018.


The BCREA Commercial Leading Indicator (CLI) recovered in the second quarter following a rare first quarter decline. The index rose 1.9 points to an index level of 135.4. That increase represents a 1.4 per cent rise from the first quarter of 2018. The index is 2.7 per cent higher than this time one year ago.


“The CLI was propelled higher by strong manufacturing sales and employment growth,” says BCREA Deputy Chief Economist Brendon Ogmundson. “This suggests strong performance in the industrial sector through the balance of the year.”


The trend in the CLI has flattened somewhat over the past six months, which signals continued positive, if somewhat slower, growth in commercial real estate activity.

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Growth in the Canadian economy rebounded in the second quarter of 2018, with output expanding 2.9 per cent following just 1.4 per cent growth in the first quarter. Rising exports, an increase in household spending and a renovation spending driven rebound in housing investment were all major contributors to growth in the second quarter.

Very strong economic growth over the past year has pushed the Canadian economy beyond its full-employment level, creating upward pressure on inflation.


Consumer prices rose at a 3 per cent rate in July, the first time inflation has reached that level since 2011. Rising inflation and an economy operating beyond its capacity means that he Bank of Canada will continue on its rate tightening path.


The next rate hike could come as early as September though more likely in October once current NAFTA negotiations have concluded.


Courtesy BCREA

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Vancouver, BC – August 20, 2018.


The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) released its 2018 Third Quarter Housing Forecast Update today.

Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) residential sales in the province are forecast to decline 21 per cent to 82,000 units this year, after recording 103,768 residential sales in 2017. MLS® residential sales are forecast to increase 8 per cent to 88,700 units in 2019. The 10-year average for MLS® residential sales in the province is 84,800 units.


“The BC housing market is grappling with a sharp decline in affordability caused by tough B20 stress test rules for conventional mortgages,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. “While these rules have had a negative effect on housing demand across the country, the impact has been especially severe in BC’s large urban centres because of already strained housing affordability.”


In spite of the policy-driven downturn in housing demand, strong fundamentals continue to underpin the market. Demographics are highly favourable, especially the millennial generation who are now entering their household-forming years. In addition, low unemployment is leading to significant upward pressure on wages and, by extension, household wealth and confidence.


The pullback in BC home sales is helping alleviate a chronic shortage of supply. After trending at decade lows, active listings in the province were up nearly 20 per cent in July. The combination of slower housing demand and an increase in the inventory of homes for sale has trended most markets toward balanced conditions. This means more selection for home buyers, fewer multiple offer situations and less upward pressure on home prices.

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Vancouver, BC – August 13, 2018.


The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that a total of 7,055 residential unit sales were recorded by the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) across the province in July, a 23.9 per cent decrease from the same month last year. The average MLS® residential price in BC was $695,990, down 0.4 per cent from July 2017. Total sales dollar volume was $4.9 billion, a 24.2 per cent decline from July 2017.


“The BC housing market continues to grapple with the sharp decline in affordability caused by tough new mortgage qualification rules,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. “However, less frenetic housing demand has created more balanced market conditions in many regions, leading to fewer multiple offers and more choice for consumers.”


Year-to-date, BC residential sales dollar volume was down 18.9 per cent to $37 billion, compared with the same period in 2017. Residential unit sales decreased 20.6 per cent to 50,926 units, while the average MLS® residential price was up 2.1 per cent to $725,639.

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Canadian Building Permits - August 8, 2018 - BCREA


The total value of Canadian building permits declined 2.3 per cent on a monthly basis in June. The decline was the result of lower construction intentions for residential buildings after a strong May.

In BC, the total value of permits fell 1.8 per cent on a monthly basis with non-residential permits posting a 7.8 per cent decline while residential permits were essentially flat. Year-over-year, total permit values were up 6.6 per cent to $1.45 billion as residential permits rose nearly 14 per cent to $1.16 billion.

Construction intentions in June were down in three of BC's four census metropolitan areas (CMA):

  • Permits in the Abbotsford-Mission CMA fell 27 per cent on a monthly basis to $31.9 million. Year-over-year, permit values were down 26 per cent.
  • In the Victoria CMA, total construction intentions were up 9.2 per cent to $160.4 million, a nearly 30 per cent rise over this time last year.
  • In the Kelowna CMA, permits fell 12.3 per cent on a monthly basis, but were up 20.5 per cent year-over-year to $95.5 million.
  • The Vancouver CMA recorded permit activity valued at $832.6 million, a 2.6 per cent decline from May and roughly flat year-over-year.
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Vancouver, BC – June 15, 2018.


The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) reports that a total of 8,837 residential unit sales were recorded by the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) across the province in May, a 28.7 per cent decrease from the same month last year. The average MLS® residential price in BC was $739,783, down 1.7 per cent from May 2017. Total sales dollar volume was $6.54 billion, a 30 per cent decline from May 2017.


“BC home sales continued to slow in May because of more stringent qualifications for conventional borrowers,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. “The changes in mortgage policy are taking their toll on housing demand, not only in British Columbia, but across the country by reducing household purchasing power and housing affordability.”


While the decline in consumer demand has lifted the inventory of homes for sale, total active residential listings in the province are still relatively low by historical comparison.


Year-to-date, BC residential sales dollar volume was down 13.8 per cent to $26.4 billion, compared with the same period in 2017. Residential unit sales decreased 16.6 per cent to 35,976 units, while the average MLS® residential price was up 3.4 per cent to $733,616.

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Vancouver, BC – June 7, 2018.


The BCREA Commercial Leading Indicator (CLI) declined for the first time in three years, falling 1.5 points in the first quarter of 2018 to an index level of 134.2. That decrease represents a 1.1 per cent dip over the fourth quarter of 2017. The index is still 3.4 per cent higher than this time one year ago.

“The BC economy appears to be slowing following four years of remarkable growth,” says BCREA Deputy Chief Economist Brendon Ogmundson. “That slowdown likely means a slight drop-off in commercial real estate activity on the horizon.”


The underlying CLI trend, which smooths often noisy economic data, remains positive, reflecting several quarters of strong economic activity and employment growth. A still moderately rising trend signals continued, albeit slower, growth in commercial real estate activity.


To view the full BCREA Commercial Leading Indicator index, click here

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BCREA - June 6, 2018


The largest declines in permitting activity were posted in BC, which saw the total value of permits fall 22.6 per cent in April after posting a record high in March.  Year-over-year, total permits values were down only 1.9 per cent at $1.24 billion. Non-residential permits were down 31.8 per cent on a monthly basis  and were 28 per cent lower year-over-year. Residential permits fell 19.6 per cent on a monthly basis but were 10.1 per cent higher year-over-year.

 

Construction intentions in April were down in three of BC's four census metropolitan areas (CMA):

  • Permits in the Abbotsford-Mission CMA fell 26.7 per cent on a monthly basis to $23.8 million. Year-over-year, permit values were down more than half.
  • In the Victoria CMA, total construction intentions increased 16.4 per cent to $109.1 million , a 5.6  per cent rise over this time lats year.
  • In the Kelowna CMA, permits tumbled 30.6 per cent monthly basis, and were down 37.7 per cent year-over-year to $60 million.
  • The Vancouver CMA recorded permit activity valued at $755.9 million, falling 27.3 per cent from the over $1 billion in total permits registered in March. Year-over-year, permits were up 11.9 per cent.
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Home sales down, listings up across Metro Vancouver

The Metro Vancouver* housing market saw fewer home buyers and more home sellers in April.

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in the region totalled 2,579 in April 2018, a 27.4 per cent decrease from the 3,553 sales recorded in April 2017, and a 2.5 per cent increase compared to March 2018 when 2,517 homes sold.


Last month’s sales were 22.5 per cent below the 10-year April sales average.

“Market conditions are changing. Home sales declined in our region last month to a 17-year April low and home sellers have become more active than we’ve seen in the past three years,” Phil Moore, REBGV president said. “The mortgage requirements that the federal government implemented this year have, among other factors, diminished home buyers’ purchasing power and they’re being felt on the buyer side today.”


There were 5,820 detached, attached and apartment properties newly listed for sale on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in Metro Vancouver in April 2018. This represents an 18.6 per cent increase compared to the 4,907 homes listed in April 2017 and a 30.8 per cent increase compared to March 2018 when 4,450 homes were listed.

The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the MLS® system in Metro Vancouver is 9,822, a 25.7 per cent increase compared to April 2017 (7,813) and a 17.2 per cent increase compared to March 2018 (8,380).

“Home buyers have more breathing room this spring. They have more selection to choose from and less demand to compete against,” Moore said.


For all property types, the sales-to-active listings ratio for April 2018 is 26.3 per cent. By property type, the ratio is 14.1 per cent for detached homes, 36.1 per cent for townhomes, and 46.7 per cent for condominiums.

Generally, analysts say that downward pressure on home prices occurs when the ratio dips below the 12 per cent mark for a sustained period, while home prices often experience upward pressure when it surpasses 20 per cent over several months.


The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $1,092,000. This represents a 14.3 per cent increase over April 2017 and a 0.7 per cent increase compared to March 2018.

Sales of detached properties in April 2018 reached 807, a 33.4 per cent decrease from the 1,211 detached sales recorded in April 2017. The benchmark price for detached properties is $1,605,800. This represents a 5.1 per cent increase from April 2017 and a 0.2 per cent decrease compared to March 2018.

Sales of apartment properties reached 1,308 in April 2018, a 24 per cent decrease from the 1,722 sales in April 2017. The benchmark price of an apartment property is $701,000. This represents a 23.7 per cent increase from April 2017 and a 1.1 per cent increase compared to March 2018.

Attached property sales in April 2018 totalled 464, a 25.2 per cent decrease compared to the 620 sales in April 2017. The benchmark price of an attached unit is $854,200. This represents a 17.7 per cent increase from April 2017 and a 2.3 per cent increase compared to March 2018.   

*Editor’s Note

Areas covered by the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver include: Whistler, Sunshine Coast, Squamish, West Vancouver, North Vancouver, Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster, Richmond, Port Moody, Port Coquitlam, Coquitlam, Pitt Meadows, Maple Ridge, and South Delta.


The real estate industry is a key economic driver in British Columbia. In 2017, 35,993 homes changed ownership in the Board’s area, generating $2.4 billion in economic spin-off activity and an estimated 17,600 jobs. The total dollar value of residential sales transacted through the MLS® system in Greater Vancouver totalled $37 billion in 2017.

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Vancouver, BC – May 31, 2018. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) released its 2018 Second Quarter Housing Forecast today.


Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) residential sales in the province are forecast to decline 9 per cent to 94,200 units this year, after posting 103,700 unit sales in 2017. MLS® residential sales are forecast to remain relatively unchanged in 2019, albeit down 0.2 per cent to 94,000 units.


Housing demand is expected to remain above the 10-year average of 84,800 units into 2020.

“The housing market continues to be supported by a strong economy,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist. “However, slower economic growth is expected over the next two years as the economy is nearing full employment and consumers have stepped back from their 2017 spending spree.

 

“Demographics will play a key role in the housing market over the next few years,” added Muir, “as growth in the adult-aged population is bolstered by immigration and the massive millennial generation enters its household forming years.”


Muir notes there are, however, significant headwinds in the housing market. “Rising mortgage interest rates will further erode affordability and purchasing power, with the effect being exacerbated by an already high price level. The legacy of tougher mortgage qualifications for conventional mortgagors will be a reduction of their purchasing power by up to 20 per cent, and the provincial government’s expansion of the foreign buyer tax and several other policies aimed at taxing wealth is sending a negative signal to the market and likely diverting investment elsewhere.”


The combination of slowing housing demand and rising new home completions is expected to trend most BC markets toward balanced conditions this year, and lead to less upward pressure on home prices.


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BCREA ECONOMICS NOW


Bank of Canada Interest Rate Announcement - May 30, 2018

The Bank of Canada decided to leave the target for the overnight policy rate unchanged at 1.25 per cent this morning. In the statement accompanying the decision, the Bank noted that inflation has been close to its two per cent target and will likely be higher in the near term than was previously forecast due to higher gasoline prices. Economic growth in the first quarter was stronger than expected due to rising exports and business investment, which helped to offset a B20 induced softening in housing activity.  Overall, the Bank's view is that higher interest rates will be warranted to keep inflation near its target.
   
Although the Bank held steady today, with inflation rising to the Bank's two per cent target and the Canadian economy operating at or near capacity, interest rates are very likely headed higher,  perhaps at the Bank's next meeting in July.  That will translate to higher mortgage rates which, combined with the erosion of purchasing power from the mortgage stress test, will continue to temper housing demand in 2018.

For more information, please contact: 

Cameron Muir

Brendon Ogmundson

Chief Economist

Deputy Chief Economist

Direct: 604.742.2780

Direct: 604.742.2796

Mobile: 778.229.1884

Mobile: 604.505.6793

Email: cmuir@bcrea.bc.ca

Email: bogmundson@bcrea.bc.ca



The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) is the professional association for more than 20,000 REALTORS® in BC, focusing on provincial issues that impact real estate. Working with the province’s 11 real estate boards, BCREA provides continuing professional education, advocacy, economic research and standard forms to help REALTORS® provide value for their clients.


Real estate boards, real estate associations and REALTORS® may reprint this content, provided that credit is given to BCREA by including the following statement: “Copyright British Columbia Real Estate Association. Reprinted with permission.” BCREA makes no guarantees as to the accuracy or completeness of this information.

 

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Please visit our Open House at 206 2588 ALDER ST in Vancouver.

Open House on Friday, May 25, 2018 5:00PM - 6:00PM

Welcome Home to Bollert Place which boasts Heritage status. Its many special features look and feel like a character home. 96 Walkscore, steps to transportation, shops, restaurants, theatre, VGH, Granville Island and the seawall. Located in desirable Fairview/S. Granville neighbourhood. This bright corner one bedroom & den is in move in condition – freshly painted, new fridge, stove, microwave, kitchen cabinet doors & hinges. This charming suite features laminate floors, cozy gas f/p and boasts windows on three sides. The south facing den could be a second bedroom & overlooks the garden. Common courtyard for bbq. 2 pets welcomed. Underground parking, locker and bike storage. Pro-active strata. OPEN May 25th 5-6pm & 26th 1:30-3:30.

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