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Housing Demand to Ease but Remain Elevated in 2016

BCREA 2015 Fourth Quarter Housing Forecast

Vancouver, BCNovember 10, 2015. The British Columbia Real Estate Association (BCREA) released its 2015 Fourth Quarter Housing Forecast Update today.

Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) residential sales in the province are projected to surpass 100,000 units this year. This level of home sales will be the third strongest on record and mark the first year since 2007 that BC home sales exceed the ten year average.

After climbing 15 per cent in 2014 and nearly 20 per cent this year, BC MLS® residential sales are forecast to decline 7 per cent to 93,700 units in 2016.

“Less latent pent-up demand and gradual upward momentum of mortgage interest rates is expected to ease housing demand next year,” said Cameron Muir, BCREA Chief Economist.

“The inventory of homes for sale is now at its lowest level in nearly eight years,” added Muir. “Sellers’ market conditions are prevailing in many communities and causing home prices to be pushed higher.” The average MLS® residential price in the province is projected to increase 10.2 per cent to $626,000 this year and forecast to slow to a 2.2 per cent increase at $639,700.

Total housing starts in the province are projected to reach over 30,000 units this year, the highest level of production since 2008. Capacity constraints and an edging back of consumer demand is largely behind a forecast decline of BC housing starts, albeit just to 28,800 units in 2016.

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October 2015 – Vancouver Real Estate Statistics

Metro Vancouver home buyers push October sales above long-term averages

Home buyers remain active across Metro Vancouver despite a reduced supply of homes for sale.

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in *Metro Vancouver reached 3,646 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in October 2015. This represents a 19.3 per cent increase compared to the 3,057 sales recorded in October 2014, and a 9 per cent increase compared to the 3,345 sales in September 2015.

Last month’s sales were 36.2 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month.

“Home sales are more than one-third above what’s typical for this time of year yet the supply of homes for sale is the lowest we’ve seen in five years,” Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said. “This activity has created favourable market conditions for anyone considering selling their home today.”

New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 4,126 in October. This represents an 8 per cent decline compared to the 4,487 new listings reported in October 2014.

The total number of properties listed for sale on the real estate board’s MLS® is 9,569, a 30 per cent decline compared to October 2014 and an 11.4 per cent decline compared to September 2015.

This is the lowest active listing total in Metro Vancouver since December 2010.

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $736,000. This represents a 15.3 per cent increase compared to October 2014.

The sales-to-active-listings ratio in October was 38.1 per cent. Generally, analysts say that downward pressure on home prices occurs when the ratio declines below the 12 per cent mark, while home prices often experience upward pressure when it reaches 20 per cent, or higher, in a particular community for a sustained period of time.

Sales of detached properties in October 2015 reached 1,437, an increase of 13.1 per cent from the 1,271 detached sales recorded in October 2014, and a 34.7 per cent increase from the 1,067 units sold in October 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver increased 20.1 per cent from October 2014 to $1,197,600.

Sales of apartment properties reached 1,543 in October 2015, an increase of 21.7 per cent compared to the 1,268 sales in October 2014, and an increase of 40.5 per cent compared to the 1,098 sales in October 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 11.4 per cent from October 2014 to $425,800.

Attached property sales in October 2015 totalled 666, an increase of 28.6 per cent compared to the 518 sales in October 2014, and a 34.3 per cent increase from the 496 attached properties sold in October 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 9.3 per cent between October 2014 and 2015 to $526,700.

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Real Estate Statistics – Vancouver 2015 – Place Real Estate Team

Competition continues to drive Metro Vancouver’s housing market

Metro Vancouver home buyers spent the summer months searching for their next home. Between June and August, home sales were between 25 and 30 per cent above the ten-year sales average.

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in Metro Vancouver reached 3,362 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in August 2015. This represents a 21.3 per cent increase compared to the 2,771 sales recorded in August 2014, and a decrease of 15.5 per cent compared to the 3,978 sales in July 2015.

Last month’s sales were 27.9 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month.

“There was no summer lull in our market this year. Home buyers have been working with their REALTORS® throughout the summer months,” Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said. “They’re motivated, but they’re competing for a smaller supply of homes for sale than is typical for this time of year — that’s the dynamic driving our market right now.”

New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 4,281 in August. This represents an 8.7 per cent increase compared to the 3,940 new listings reported in August 2014.

The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the region’s MLS® is 10,897, a 26.2 per cent decline compared to August 2014 and a 5.3 per cent decline compared to July 2015.

“Those who have a sound buying strategy and an understanding of current price trends are having the most success in today’s market,” McLeod said.

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $708,500. This represents a 12 per cent increase compared to August 2014.

The sales-to-active-listings ratio in August was 30.9 per cent. This is the sixth consecutive month that this ratio has been above 30 per cent in Metro Vancouver.

Sales of detached properties in August 2015 reached 1,290, an increase of 11.4 per cent from the 1,158 detached sales recorded in August 2014, and a 22.6 per cent increase from the 1,052 units sold in August 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver increased 17.5 per cent from August 2014 to $1,159,600.

Sales of apartment properties reached 1,494 in August 2015, an increase of 32.7 per cent compared to the 1,126 sales in August 2014, and an increase of 46.8 per cent compared to the 1,018 sales in August 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 6.3 per cent from August 2014 to $405,400.

Attached property sales in August 2015 totalled 578, an increase of 18.7 per cent compared to the 487 sales in August 2014, and a 30.2 per cent increase from the 444 attached properties sold in August 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 7.3 per cent between August 2014 and 2015 to $511,500.

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July 2015 Vancouver Real Estate Statistics

Summer heat doesn’t slow home buyer activity

Metro Vancouver home sales were more than a third above the 10-year average in July, while the number of homes listed for sale continues to trend below recent years.

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in Metro Vancouver* reached 3,978 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in July 2015. This represents a 30 per cent increase compared to the 3,061 sales recorded in July 2014, and a decrease of 9.1 per cent compared to the 4,375 sales in June 2015.

Last month’s sales were 33.5 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month.

“Today’s activity continues to benefit sellers as home buyers compete for the homes available for sale,” Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said.

New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 5,112 in July. This represents a 3.8 per cent increase compared to the 4,925 new listings reported in July 2014.

The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the region’s MLS® is 11,505, a 26.3 per cent decline compared to July 2014 and a 5.5 per cent decline compared to June 2015.

“Much of today’s activity can be traced to strong consumer confidence, low interest rates, and a reduced supply of homes for sale.” McLeod said. “We have about 5,000 to 6,000 fewer homes for sale today than we’ve seen at this time of year over the last five to six years,”

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $700,500. This represents an 11.2 per cent increase compared to July 2014.

With the sales-to-active-listings ratio at 34.6 per cent, the region remains in seller’s market territory.

“Although there aren’t as many homes for sale today compared to recent years, home buyers continue to have a range of housing options, at different price points, to choose from across Metro Vancouver,” McLeod said. “The diversity of housing options is part of what’s driving today’s demand.”

Sales of detached properties in July 2015 reached 1,559, an increase of 17.9 per cent from the 1,322 detached sales recorded in July 2014, and a 24.8 per cent increase from the 1,249 units sold in July 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver increased 16.2 per cent from July 2014 to $1,141,800.

Sales of apartment properties reached 1,729 in July 2015, an increase of 42.7 per cent compared to the 1,212 sales in July 2014, and an increase of 42.9 per cent compared to the 1,210 sales in July 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 5.9 per cent from July 2014 to $400,900.

Attached property sales in July 2015 totalled 690, an increase of 30.9 per cent compared to the 527 sales in July 2014, and a 41.7 per cent increase from the 487 attached properties sold in July 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 7.8 per cent between July 2014 and 2015 to $511,500.

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Vancouver Real Estate Market Statistics – June 2015

Metro Vancouver home sales set record pace in June

Last month was the highest selling June, and the second highest overall monthly total, on record for the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV).

The REBGV reports that residential property sales in Metro Vancouver* reached 4,375 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in June 2015. This represents a 28.4 per cent increase compared to the 3,406 sales recorded in June 2014, and an increase of 7.9 per cent compared to the 4,056 sales in May 2015.

Last month’s sales were 29.1 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month. It’s the fourth straight month with over 4,000 sales, which is a first in the REBGV’s history. The previous highest number of residential home sales was 4,434, recorded in May 2005.

“Demand in our detached home market continues to drive activity across Metro Vancouver,” Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said. “There were more detached home sales in the region last month than we’ve seen during the month of June in more than 10 years.”

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $694,000. This represents a 10.3 per cent increase compared to June 2014.

“Housing market activity comes in cycles; we’re in an up cycle right now that looks similar to the mid-2000s,” McLeod said. “It would be easy to point to one factor that’s causing this cycle, but the truth is that it’s a number of different factors.

“Conditions today are being driven by low interest rates, a declining supply of detached homes, a growing population, a provincial economy that’s outperforming the rest of Canada, pent-up demand from previous years and, perhaps most importantly, the fact that we live in a highly desirable region,” McLeod said.

New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 5,803 in June. This represents an 8.7 per cent increase compared to the 5,339 new listings reported in June 2014.

“We’re seeing a steady stream of new listings entering the market, but the overall number of homes for sale is not keeping up with buyer demand,” McLeod said.

The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the region’s MLS® is 12,181, a 23.9 per cent decline compared to June 2014 and a 1.3 per cent decline compared to May 2015. This is the lowest active listing total for June since 2006.

The sales-to-active-listings ratio in June was 35.9 per cent. This is the highest that this ratio has been in Metro Vancouver since June 2006. A seller’s market typically occurs when this ratio exceeds 20 per cent for a sustained period of time.

“The competition in today’s market means that buyers have less time to make decisions,” McLeod said. “Given this, it’s important to work with your REALTOR® to gain insight into the local market, to get quick access to new MLS® listings, to develop a buying strategy that meets your needs and risk appetite, and to receive other services and protections that come from having professional representation.”

Sales of detached properties in June 2015 reached 1,920, an increase of 31.3 per cent from the 1,462 detached sales recorded in June 2014, and a 74.2 per cent increase from the 1,102 units sold in June 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver increased 14.8 per cent from June 2014 to $1,123,900.

Sales of apartment properties reached 1,774 in June 2015, an increase of 35.6 per cent compared to the 1,308 sales in June 2014, and an increase of 66.1 per cent compared to the 1,068 sales in June 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 5.3 per cent from June 2014 to $400,200.

Attached property sales in June 2015 totalled 681, an increase of 7.1 per cent compared to the 636 sales in June 2014, and a 44.3 per cent increase from the 472 attached properties sold in June 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 7.1 per cent between June 2014 and 2015 to $506,900.

*Editor’s Note:  Areas covered by 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, New Westminster, Pitt Meadows, Maple Ridge, and South Delta.

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May 2015 – Vancouver Market Statistics

Metro Vancouver home sales surpass 4,000 for third consecutive month

It continues to be a competitive spring market for Metro Vancouver* home buyers. This competition continues to put upward pressure on home prices, particularly in the detached home market.

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in Metro Vancouver reached 4,056 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in May 2015. This represents a 23.4 per cent increase compared to the 3,286 sales recorded in May 2014, and a decrease of 2.9 per cent compared to the 4,179 sales in April 2015.

Last month’s sales were 16.7 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month.

“We continue to see strong competition for homes that are priced right for today’s market,” Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said. “It’s important to remember that real estate is hyper local, particularly in a seller’s market. This means that conditions and prices vary depending on property type, neighbourhood, and other factors.”

New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 5,641 in May. This represents a 5 per cent decrease compared to the 5,936 new listings reported in May 2014.

The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the region’s MLS® is 12,336, a 23.2 per cent decline compared to May 2014 and a 0.8 per cent decline compared to April 2015.

“While the supply of homes for sale remains below what’s typical for this time of year, our region continues to offer a diverse selection of housing options at different price points,” McLeod said. “This diversity within the housing stock is part of what’s driving today’s home sale activity.”

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $684,400. This represents a 9.4 per cent increase compared to May 2014.

The sales-to-active-listings ratio in May was 32.9 per cent. This is the highest that this ratio has been in Metro Vancouver since June 2007.

Sales of detached properties in May 2015 reached 1,723, an increase of 18.6 per cent from the 1,453 detached sales recorded in May 2014, and a 42.2 per cent increase from the 1,212 units sold in May 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver increased 14.1 per cent from May 2014 to $1,104,900.

Sales of apartment properties reached 1,600 in May 2015, an increase of 24.4 per cent compared to the 1,286 sales in May 2014, and an increase of 40.8 per cent compared to the 1,136 sales in May 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 4.6 per cent from May 2014 to $396,900.

Attached property sales in May 2015 totalled 733, an increase of 34 per cent compared to the 547 sales in May 2014, and a 37.3 per cent increase from the 534 attached properties sold in May 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 6.4 per cent between May 2014 and 2015 to $501,000.

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April 2015 – Vancouver Statistics

Home buyer demand outpacing supply across the Metro Vancouver housing market

Strong home buyer demand coupled with below average home listing activity has created seller’s market conditions within the Metro Vancouver* housing market.

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in Metro Vancouver reached 4,179 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in April 2015. This represents a 37 per cent increase compared to the 3,050 sales recorded in April 2014, and a 2.9 per cent increase compared to the 4,060 sales in March 2015.

Last month’s sales were 29.3 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month.

“The supply of homes for sale today in the region is not meeting the demand we’re seeing from home buyers. This is putting upward pressure on prices, particularly in the detached home market,” Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said.

New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 5,897 in April. This represents a 0.9 per cent decrease compared to the 5,950 new listings reported in April 2014.

The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the region’s MLS® is 12,436, a 19.8 per cent decline compared to April 2014 and an increase of 0.5 per cent compared to March 2015.

“It’s a competitive and fast-moving market today that is tilted in favour of home sellers. To be competitive, it’s important to connect with a local REALTOR® who can help you develop a strategy to meet your home buying or selling needs,” McLeod said.

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $673,000. This represents an 8.5 per cent increase compared to April 2014.

The sales-to-active-listings ratio in April was 33.6 per cent. This is the highest that this ratio has been in Metro Vancouver since June 2007.

Sales of detached properties in April 2015 reached 1,815, an increase of 35.9 per cent from the 1,336 detached sales recorded in April 2014, and a 70.6 per cent increase from the 1,064 units sold in April 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver increased 12.5 per cent from April 2014 to $1,078,900.

Sales of apartment properties reached 1,579 in April 2015, an increase of 34.7 per cent compared to the 1,172 sales in April 2014, and an increase of 50.1 per cent compared to the 1,052 sales in April 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 4.4 per cent from April 2014 to $394,200.

Attached property sales in April 2015 totalled 785, an increase of 44.8 per cent compared to the 542 sales in April 2014, and a 53.6 per cent increase from the 511 attached properties sold in April 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 5.7 per cent between April 2014 and 2015 to $493,300.

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Vancouver Real Estate Statistics – March 2015

Metro Vancouver home buyers out in force in March

Demand continued to rise across Metro Vancouver’s housing market in March.The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in Greater Vancouver reached 4,060 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in March 2015. This represents a 53.7 per cent increase compared to the 2,641 sales recorded in March 2014, and a 32.6 per cent increase compared to the 3,061 sales in February 2015.

Last month’s sales were 26.8 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month.

“We’re seeing strong competition amongst home buyers today. This is leading to more multiple offer situations and some upward pressure on home prices,” Darcy McLeod, REBGV president said. “For sellers, this means that it’s taking less time, on average, for your home to sell if you have it priced correctly for today’s market.”

New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 5,968 in March. This represents a 13 per cent increase compared to the 5,281 new listings reported in March 2014.

Last month’s new listing count was 4.7 per cent higher than the region’s 10-year new listing average for the month.

The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the REBGV MLS® is 12,376, a 14.5 per cent decline compared to March 2014 and a 4 per cent increase compared to February 2015.

“The number of homes for sale today is below what’s typical for this time of year,” McLeod said. “If you’ve been considering putting your property on the market, these market conditions indicate that now may be a good time to list.”

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $660,700. This represents a 7.2 per cent increase compared to March 2014.

The sales-to-active-listings ratio in March was 32.8 per cent. This is the highest that this ratio has been in Metro Vancouver since July 2007.

Sales of detached properties in March 2015 reached 1,711, an increase of 53.3 per cent from the 1,116 detached sales recorded in March 2014, and an 83.4 per cent increase from the 933 units sold in March 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver increased 11.2 per cent from March 2014 to $1,052,800.

Sales of apartment properties reached 1,627 in March 2015, an increase of 47.1 per cent compared to the 1,106 sales in March 2014, and an increase of 65.7 per cent compared to the 982 sales in March 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 3.3 per cent from March 2014 to $390,200.

Attached property sales in March 2015 totalled 722, an increase of 72.3 per cent compared to the 419 sales in March 2014, and a 67.1 per cent increase from the 432 attached properties sold in March 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 4.9 per cent between March 2014 and 2015 to $484,900.

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BoC Maintains Interest Rate – March 2015

Bank of Canada Interest Rate Announcement – March 4, 2015

The Bank of Canada announced this morning that it is maintaining its target for the overnight rate at 0.75 per cent. In the press release accompanying the decision, the Bank noted that total CPI inflation has fallen as expected given the significant drop in oil prices, but core inflation has been temporarily boosted by a lower Canadian dollar. Regarding economic growth, the Bank expects the negative impact of lower oil prices to appear in the first half of 2015 before the economy recovers in the second half of the year. Overall, the Bank judges risks to its inflation outlook as balanced and considers the current degree of monetary policy stimulus appropriate.

Stable oil prices and core inflation still trending above the Bank’s 2 per cent target seems to have persuaded policymakers that the “insurance” purchased with January’s surprise interest rate cut is enough for now. That said, the ultimate impact of lower oil prices has yet to be fully realized and we expect monetary policy to be highly data dependent in coming months. If the Canadian economy experiences significant labour weakness or core inflation starts to trend lower, the Bank may opt to reduce rates at its next meeting in April or possibly early in summer.

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February 2015 – Statistics

Home buyer and seller activity outpaces historical averages in February

Conditions within the Metro Vancouver housing market continued to strengthen in February as home sale and listing totals came in well above the region’s ten-year average for the month.

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in Greater Vancouver reached 3,061 on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in February 2015. This represents a 21 per cent increase compared to the 2,530 sales recorded in February 2014, and a 60 per cent increase compared to the 1,913 sales in January 2015.

Last month’s sales were 20.2 per cent above the 10-year sales average for the month.

“It’s an active and competitive marketplace today. Buyers are motivated and homes that are priced competitively are selling at a brisk pace right now,” Ray Harris, REBGV president, said.

New listings for detached, attached and apartment properties in Metro Vancouver totalled 5,425 in February. This represents a 15.4 per cent increase compared to the 4,700 new listings reported in February 2014.

Last month’s new listing count was 11.8 per cent higher than the region’s 10-year new listing average for the month.

The total number of properties currently listed for sale on the REBGV MLS® is 11,898, an 11.3 per cent decline compared to February 2014 and a 10.1 per cent increase compared to January 2015.

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $649,700. This represents a 6.4 per cent increase compared to February 2014.

The sales-to-active-listings ratio in February was 25.7 per cent. This is the highest that this ratio has been in Metro Vancouver since March 2011.

“We’re seeing more multiple offer situations and generally more traffic at open houses today,” Harris said. “In a market such as this, it’s important to do your homework and work with your local REALTOR® before embarking on your home buying and selling journey.”

Sales of detached properties in February 2015 reached 1,296, an increase of 25.6 per cent from the 1,032 detached sales recorded in February 2014, and an 84.1 per cent increase from the 704 units sold in February 2013. The benchmark price for a detached property in Metro Vancouver increased 9.7 per cent from February 2014 to $1,026,300.

Sales of apartment properties reached 1,244 in February 2015, an increase of 20.5 per cent compared to the 1,032 sales in February 2014, and an increase of 63.7 per cent compared to the 760 sales in February 2013. The benchmark price of an apartment property increased 3 per cent from February 2014 to $386,500.

Attached property sales in February 2015 totalled 521, an increase of 11.8 per cent compared to the 466 sales in February 2014, and a 56.5 per cent increase from the 333 attached properties sold in February 2013. The benchmark price of an attached unit increased 4.6 per cent between February 2014 and 2015 to $481,500.