Metro Vancouver home sales drop well below 10-year historical average

Feb 2 2023, 7:02 pm

The slowdown of Metro Vancouver’s housing market at the start of 2023 continued to be very apparent, based on new data from the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV).

The number of home sales in January 2023 reached 1,022 units, representing a 55% drop from the 2,285 sales recorded in the same month last year and a 21% decrease from the 1,295 sales in December 2022. Home sales for the month were 43% below the 10-year January sales average.

According to REBGV, home sales are typically slower in January, but this lower activity was more pronounced than usual this year.

“With mortgage rates having risen so rapidly over the last year, we anticipated sales this month would be among the lowest in recent history,” said Andrew Lis, the director of economics and data analytics for REBGV, in a statement.

“Looking forward, however, the Bank of Canada has said it will pause further rate increases as long as the incoming economic data supports this policy stance. This should provide more certainty for home buyers and sellers in the market.”

Throughout January 2023, there were 3,297 homes newly listed for sale, representing a 21% decrease compared to the 4,170 homes listed in the same month of 2022 and a 173% increase from December 2022, when 1,206 homes were listed.

REBGV’s jurisdiction covers Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster, Richmond, Pitt Meadows, Sunshine Coast, Whistler, and all of the Tri-Cities and North Shore. In addition, other areas such as Surrey, Langley, Delta, and White Rock are part of the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board.

Currently, there are 7,478 homes listed for sale within REBGV’s jurisdiction — a 32% increase from the 5,663 listings in January 2022 and a 1.3% increase from the 7,384 listings in December 2022.

As for other indicators, the sales-to-active listings ratio for the month was 13.7%, including 10.2% for single-family detached homes, 13.4% for townhomes, and 16.7% for apartments. A downward pressure on home prices occurs when this ratio dips below 12% for a sustained period, while home prices generally rise when it exceeds 20% over months.

Throughout 2023, REBGV is forecasting a continuation of the depressed home sales activity that found its footing in the last three quarters of 2022, but the pace of home price increases will be relatively modest compared to the increases experienced over the past two years.

The benchmark price for all home types within REBGV jurisdiction is currently hovering at $1.111 million, representing a 6.6% decrease over January 2022 and a 0.3% decrease from December 2022.

For the city of Vancouver specifically, the benchmark home price for all home types is $1.106 million in Vancouver East and $1.229 million in Vancouver West. Vancouver West benchmark prices are higher than Vancouver East by $138,000 for apartments, $358,000 for townhouses, and $1.355 million for single-family detached homes.

January 2023 home sales statistics: REBGV

  • Detached homes
    • Number of units sold: 295 (-53% over January 2022)
    • Active listings: 2,902
    • Benchmark price: $1,801,300 (-9.1% over January 2022; -1.2% over December 2022)
    • Average days on market: 51
  • Apartment homes
    • Number of units sold: 571 (-56.6% over January 2022)
    • Active listings: 1,167
    • Benchmark price: $1,020,400 (-1.1% over January 2022; +1.0% over December 2022)
    • Average days on market: 43
  • Townhomes
    • Number of units sold: 156 (-55.2% over January 2022)
    • Active listings: 1,167
    • Benchmark price: $1,020,400 (+3.0% over January 2022; +0.8% over December 2022)
    • Average days on market: 42
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