Metro Vancouver home sales fell 43% below 10-year average last month: report

May 3 2019, 3:08 am

The latest monthly market update by the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) provides yet another negative outlook for Metro Vancouver’s housing market.

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In April 2019, home sales volumes were 43.1% below the 10-year sales average for the month of April, with sales in the region totalling 1,829 units. This is also a 29.1% decrease from the 2,579 units sold in April 2018 and a 5.9% drop from the 1,727 homes sold in March 2019.

REBGV says the falling trend is due to the municipal and provincial government’s interventions on the housing market, as well as the federal government’s new mortgage stress test, which has reduced buyers’ purchasing power by about 20%.

During the month, a total of 5,742 properties were newly listed, representing a 1.3% uptick compared to the 5,820 homes listed in the same month last year. It was a 16% increase compared to March 2019.

Overall, the total number of homes listed for sale has grown by nearly half compared to April 2018; there were 14,357 properties on the market in April 2019, a 46.2% year-over-year increase and a 12.4% increase compared to March 2019.

The sales-to-active listings ratio for the month was 12.7%, with detached homes at 9.4%, townhomes at 15.4%, and apartments at 15.3%. Analysts say downward pressure on prices occurs when the ratio falls below 12% over a sustained period, whereas prices go upward when it hovers over 20% over several months.

“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,” said Ashley Smith, president of REBGV, in a statement. “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 composite benchmark price for all residential properties in the region is currently $1,008,400 — down 8.5% over April 2018 and down 0.3% over March 2019.

April 2019 home sales statistics

Detached homes

  • Number of units sold: 586 (-27.4% year-over-year)
  • Benchmark price: $1,425,200 (-11.1% year-over-year; -0.8% over March 2019)

Apartment homes

  • Number of units sold: 885 (-32.3% year-over-year)
  • Benchmark price: $656,900 (-6.9% year-over-year; unchanged from March 2019)

Townhouse sales

  • Number of units sold: 358 (-22.8% year-over-year)
  • Benchmark price: $783,300 (-7.5% year-over-year; changed from March 2019)
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