METRO VANCOUVER

October an excellent time to explore the market; new listings up 30 per cent in one month

This is a beautiful time of the year, and I know some of my clients are enjoying scenic drives around Metro Vancouver with the colors of autumn decorating residential neighborhoods. Even better, last month saw a surge in new listings to almost 30 per cent over August, so there’s a great selection of homes available right now. With 4,866 new listings, the total inventory of detached homes, townhouses and condominiums rose to almost 13,439. If you’ve been looking but just haven’t found the right home yet, the current selection could hold that special place you’ve been waiting for. But let me point out another reason to do some serious shopping at this time. There were 2,333 residential sales in September, which was close to 50 per cent more than September one year ago, and almost 5 per cent more than sales in August this year. It’s becoming increasingly clear that much of the pent-up demand that formed over the past couple of years is now being released. Sales are increasing as both buyers and sellers regain their confidence in stable prices. One common metric is the ratio of sales-to-active listings.  That ratio is in a sweet spot right now between 12 and 20 per cent. When it drops below 12, we tend to see downward pressure on prices; and above 20, we tend to see upward pressure. With current prices within this range, it’s a comfortable time to make an offer, or to list your home. Let’s look at the trend for the past half a year.

The composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Greater Vancouver at the end of September was $990,600, a slight decrease of 0.3 per cent from the preceding month. The six-month change was a decline of 2.2 per cent which, of course, means $22,000 less on a $1-million listing. But keep in mind that this leaves ample room for some negotiating when making an offer. In an overall climate of price stability, a reasonably priced home will attract offers close to the listed price without a stampede of competing offers driving up the price. That’s why I encourage prospective buyers to get out and take advantage of the current price levels. Remember that the composite benchmark is still below the psychological threshold of $1-million. This situation can contribute to a dynamic market where sales and listings remain in good balance. Take s look at the monthly comparisons I have selected for you below. Whatever your choice of property type and residential area, it’s a good time to find a property with a price that can once again be historically typical for Greater Vancouver.

Detached Homes

The benchmark price for a single-family detached home in Greater Vancouver at the end of September was $1,406,200, no change from the preceding month. The extremities of this average were Vancouver West (not West Vancouver) at $2,894,400 and Sunshine Coast at $594,900. (Note I include the Sunshine Coast only as a factor in the average, but do not report on housing prices in this area because it is to far away for my clients).The three municipalities closest to the benchmark on the higher side of the average were: Port Moody at $1,047,900 a decrease of 0.9 per cent from the preceding month; Burnaby South at $1,458,500, a decrease of 0.6 per cent from the preceding month; and North Vancouver at $1,463,200 a decrease of 0.8 per cent from the preceding month. The three municipalities closest to the benchmark on the lower side of the average were:  Vancouver East at $1,358,700 an increase of 0.9  per cent from the preceding month; Burnaby North at $1,345,000 a decrease of 2.2 per cent from the preceding month; and Coquitlam at $1,157,100, no change from the preceding month.

Townhouses

The benchmark price for a townhouse in Greater Vancouver at the end of September was $767,500, a decrease of 0.6 per cent from the preceding month. The extremities of this average were Vancouver West (not West Vancouver) at $1,098,900 and Pit Meadows at $595,300. The three municipalities closest to the benchmark on the higher side of the average were: Vancouver East at $843,400, an increase of 0.4 per cent from the preceding month; North Vancouver at $937,100, a decrease of 2.4 per cent from the preceding month; and Vancouver West (not West Vancouver) at $1,098,900, a decrease of 1.5 per cent from the preceding month. The three municipalities closest to the benchmark on the lower side of the average were: Richmond at $$767,300, a decrease of 1.0 per cent from the preceding month; Burnaby South at $767,100, a decrease of 1.3 per cent from the preceding month; and Burnaby North at $729,500 an increase of 1.1 per cent from the preceding month.

Condominiums

The benchmark price for a condominium in Greater Vancouver at the end of September was $651,500, a decrease of 0.4 per cent from the preceding month. The extremities of the average were West Vancouver at $1,021,200 and Maple Ridge at $348,500. The three municipalities closest to the benchmark on the higher side of the average were: Burnaby South at $654,500, an increase of 0.9 per cent from the preceding month; Vancouver West at $754,800, a decrease of 0.2 per cent from the preceding month; and West Vancouver at $1,021,200, a decrease of 3.8 per cent from the preceding month. The three municipalities closest to the benchmark on the lower side of the average were: Richmond at 627,100, an increase of 0.1 per cent from the preceding month; Port Moody at $627,000, an increase of 0.8 pre cent from the preceding month; and Vancouver East at $548,300 a decrease of 0.7 per cent from the preceding month.

I can help

Please don’t hesitate to call me for whatever you need in Real Estate advice. I am always happy to provide you with detailed information on the property type and neighborhood you may be interested in. And if you are contemplating listing your property for sale, I can provide you with information on comparable homes sold in your area. In some cases, prospective sellers may want to do some renovations before listing; I can advise on what will make for the most optimal return on your investment. I also refer you to reliable tradespeople who do quality work at reasonable rates.