Connie McGinley

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Happy New Year 2018 - Greater Vancouver Sales and Listings Report for 2017

Happy New Year!

All the best for a Healthy, Happy and Prosperous 2018.

 

Attached are the yearend 2017 Sales and Listings Stats in Greater Vancouver. It certainly was the year of the strata home!  Condos lead the market, along with townhouses and detached houses lagging behind in terms of activity. Of the total sales in Greater Vancouver, 50 percent were condos (up from 46 per cent in 2016 and 42 per cent in 2015), 17 per cent were townhouses (up from 15 per cent in 2016 and the same at 17 per cent in 2015) and 32 percent where houses (down from 36 per cent in 2016 and 41 per cent in 2015). Clearly buyers are shifting towards condos and townhouses as the price of detached home prices continued to rise. All areas showed similar patterns albeit Vancouver’s Westside saw 73 per cent of sales being condos and only 16 per cent were detached houses. It’s evident the market in Vancouver was focussing on more less expensive homes with detached houses showing stronger activity going east throughout Metro Vancouver. New Westminster and North Vancouver continue at 2 Month’s Supply Inventory of all home types. While sales were less than 2016, for those two cities active listings did not increase to the same extent as other areas, specifically in the detached house category. Price gains were highest in the condo market, followed by the townhouse market with the detached market remaining static and with some declines. Market dynamics played out in very different ways depending on the area of Metro Vancouver being looked at.

 

In the Fraser Valley there were 22,338 sales in 2017, which was down 7.3 per cent from the record of 23,974 sales in 2016. Of the total sales, 28 per cent were condos, 23 per cent were townhouses and 54 per cent were detached houses. There were a total of 32,651 new listings in 2017, the third highest on record – with 2016 and 2008 being the highest. But inventory levels still remain at low levels making the challenge of finding a home difficult for buyers.

 

Some highlights in market areas during 2017:

 

  • ·         The number of sales of Detached Houses in West Vancouver declined from 1,075 in 2015 to 834 sales in 2016 to 496 sales in 2017
  • ·         The number of sales of Detached Houses on Vancouver’s West Side declined from 2,031 in 2015, to 1,591 in 2016 to 1,090 in 2017
  • ·         Total residential sales for Greater Vancouver in 2017 were 36,604 – down from 40,880 in 2016 and 43,155 in 2015 but they were 10 per cent above the average since 1997
  • ·         Total new listings for Greater Vancouver were 56,038 – right at the 20 year average but the lowest annual amount since 2009

 

There were many influences on our market in 2017. Federal mortgage rates increased for the first time since August 2010 which increased rates on variable rate mortgages and lines of credit. The discussion on affordability continued throughout the year with it being an influence on voters in the provincial election in May resulting in a change from the Liberal Party to the NDP Party being the ruling party. While there was an expectation that the government would act quickly to create policy to help ease affordability, they have said this will come in February with the release of the 2018 provincial budget. And what might we see? They have stated they do not have an appetite to ban foreign buyers, but the Foreign Buyer Tax will be reviewed – perhaps expanding the area applied to beyond Metro Vancouver? A speculation tax? That has been discussed, the details of which have not been released but certainly speculated. Ironic that a speculation tax would be subject to so much speculation itself! The City of Vancouver introduced an Empty Home Tax which begins this year based on the occupancy of homes in 2017. Any home vacant for more than 180 days will be subject to a tax of 1 per cent of the assessed value. The implementation of the tax is proving to be more complicated and creating liability for buyers and sellers in real estate transactions. So while many like to speak in general terms about the Metro Vancouver real estate market, it is very much a regional and product differentiated market.

 

So what will the real estate market bring in 2018 in Metro Vancouver? A lot of discussion! Not so much on where the market is going, but how it got to where it is. With Statistics Canada recently releasing numbers on the amount of foreign owners of real estate in Canada, they weren’t as high as many would have thought – 4.8 per cent in Vancouver’s residential market. The condo market showed a higher number at 7.8 per cent. Of course, the arguments ensued as to what makes a foreign owner and are all true foreign owners being accounted for. What’s true is that this is not a phenomenon unique to Metro Vancouver. As witnessed by Toronto’s introduction of a 15 per cent Foreign Buyer Tax, New Zealand in 2017 banning all foreign buyers of real estate and Australia’s previously instituted rule that foreign nationals could only buy new housing, not resale housing. And of course, the argument ensues, what’s really driving prices, the demand side of the equation or the supply side – the lack of it.  It’s interesting to note that in the United States, the housing market faced shortages of homes in the resale market and saw November be one of the strongest Novembers for sales on record.

 

Similar to last year at this time, home inventory is low and the likelihood of significant increases is something that won’t change in the near term. Completions of new product will occur at a greater level this year, but how many will come to market? Not enough to change listing amounts and impact prices. Strata properties will continue to be in short supply and high demand and detached homes will continue to see demand at a lower level and prices affected by this. And the conversations on real estate will continue at a feverish pace!

 

Here is a summary of the numbers:

 

Greater Vancouver: Total Units Sold in December 2017 was 2,069 – down from 2,831 in November 2017; up from 1,743 in December 2016 and down from 2,905 in December 2015. Total Active Listings were at 7540 at month end, up from 6,944 at the end of December 2016, Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 4 Months (Seller’s Market) compared to 4 Months Supply at the end of 2016 and Sales to Listings Ratio was 106% in December 2017 compared to 129% in December 2016. Benchmark Price is up 15.9% since January 2017 but only up 1.3% over the last 3 months.

 

Vancouver Westside: Total Units Sold in December 2017 was 315 – down from 505 in November 2017; down from 324 in December 2016 and down from 512 in December 2015. Total Active Listings were at 1,284 at month end, up from 1,071 at the end of December 2016, Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 4 Months (Seller’s Market for Condo/Townhouses and Buyer’s Market for Houses) compared to 3 Months Supply at the end of 2016 and Sales to Listings Ratio was 97% in December 2017 compared to 140% in December 2016. Benchmark Price is up 12.6% since January 2017 but down 1.7% over the last 3 months.

 

Vancouver Eastside: Total Units Sold in December 2017 was 239 – down from 315 in November 2017; up from 183 in December 2016 and down from 264 in December 2015. Total Active Listings were at 927 at month end, up from 815 at the end of December 2016, Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 4 Months (Seller’s Market for Condo/Townhouses and Buyer’s Market for Houses) compared to 4 Months Supply at the end of 2016 and Sales to Listings Ratio was 115% in December 2017 compared to 117% in December 2016. Benchmark Price is up 14.5% since January 2017 but flat over the last 3 months.

 

North Vancouver: Total Units Sold in December 2017 was 172 – down from 250 in November 2017; up from 138 in December 2016 and down from 210 in December 2015. Total Active Listings were at 393 at month end, up from 296 at the end of December 2016, Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 2 Months (Seller’s Market, more so for Condo/Townhouses) compared to 2 Months Supply at the end of 2016 and Sales to Listings Ratio was 142% in December 2017 compared to 197% in December 2016. Benchmark Price is up 12.1% since January 2017 but down 0.9% over the last 3 months.

 

West Vancouver: Total Units Sold in December 2017 was 42 – down from 57 in November 2017; up down 44 in December 2016 and down from 86 in December 2015. Total Active Listings were at 510 at month end, up from 356 at the end of December 2016, Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 12 Months (Buyer’s Market) compared to 8 Months Supply at the end of 2016 and Sales to Listings Ratio was 81% in December 2017 compared to 80% in December 2016. Benchmark Price is up 5.8% since January 2017 but down 1.1% over the last 3 months.

 

Richmond: Total Units Sold in December 2017 was 287 – down from 350 in November 2017; up from 235 in December 2016 and down from 424 in December 2015. Total Active Listings were at 1,184 at month end, up from 1,040 at the end of December 2016, Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 4 Months (Seller’s Market for Condo/Townhouses and Buyer’s Market for Houses) compared to 4 Months Supply at the end of 2016 and Sales to Listings Ratio was 95% in December 2017 compared to 104% in December 2016. Benchmark Price is up 15.4% since January 2017 but only up 2.1% over the last 3 months.

 

Burnaby East: Total Units Sold in December 2017 was 28 – up from 30 in November 2017; up from 20 in December 2016 and down from 35 in December 2015. Total Active Listings were at 106 at month end, up from 73 at the end of December 2016, Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 4 Months (Seller’s Market for Condo/Townhouses and Buyer’s Market for Houses) compared to 4 Months Supply at the end of 2016 and Sales to Listings Ratio was 112% in December 2017 compared to 154% in December 2016. Benchmark Price is up 15.2% since January 2017 but only up 1.1% over the last 3 months.

 

Burnaby North: Total Units Sold in December 2017 was 99 – down from 144 in November 2017; up from 85 in December 2016 and down from 149 in December 2015. Total Active Listings were at 266 at month end, up from 237 at the end of December 2016, Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 3 Months (Seller’s Market for Condo/Townhouses and Buyer’s Market for Houses) compared to 3 Months Supply at the end of 2016 and Sales to Listings Ratio was 99% in December 2017 compared to 149% in December 2016. Benchmark Price is up 16.8% since January 2017 but only up 1.1% over the last 3 months.

 

Burnaby South: Total Units Sold in December 2017 was 109 – down from 148 in November 2017; up from 73 in December 2016 and down from 203 in December 2015. Total Active Listings were at 370 at month end, up from 340 at the end of December 2016, Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 3 Months (Seller’s Market for Condo/Townhouses and Buyer’s Market for Houses) compared to 5 Months Supply at the end of 2016 and Sales to Listings Ratio was 96% in December 2017 compared to 111% in December 2016. Benchmark Price is up 16.3% since January 2017 but only up 0.9% over the last 3 months.

 

New Westminster: Total Units Sold in December 2017 was 117 – down from 167 in November 2017; up from 84 in December 2016 and up from 103 in December 2015. Total Active Listings were at 187 at month end, up from 182 at the end of December 2016, Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 2 Months (Seller’s Market) compared to 2 Months Supply at the end of 2016 and Sales to Listings Ratio was 95% in December 2017 compared to 104% in December 2016. Benchmark Price is up 25.4% since January 2017 but only up 1.8% over the last 3 months.

 

Coquitlam: Total Units Sold in December 2017 was 162 – down from 228 in November 2017; up from 128 in December 2016 and down from 243 in December 2015. Total Active Listings were at 487 at month end, up from 393 at the end of December 2016, Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 3 Months (Seller’s Market for Condo/Townhouses and Balanced Market for Houses) compared to 3 Months Supply at the end of 2016 and Sales to Listings Ratio was 98% in December 2017 compared to 152% in December 2016. Benchmark Price is up 21.6% since January 2017 but only up 0.8% over the last 3 months.

 

Port Moody: Total Units Sold in December 2017 was 38 – down from 73 in November 2017; down from 41 in December 2016 and down from 51 in December 2015. Total Active Listings were at 106 at month end, down from 113 at the end of December 2016, Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 3 Months (Seller’s Market for Condo/Townhouses and Balanced Market for Houses) compared to 3 Months Supply at the end of 2016 and Sales to Listings Ratio was 106% in December 2017 compared to 141% in December 2016. Benchmark Price is up 20.7% since January 2017 but only up 1.0% over the last 3 months.

 

Port Coquitlam: Total Units Sold in December 2017 was 71 – down from 94 in November 2017; up from 59 in December 2016 and down from 98 in December 2015. Total Active Listings were at 135 at month end, down from 148 at the end of December 2016, Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 2 Months (Seller’s Market) compared to 3 Months Supply at the end of 2016 and Sales to Listings Ratio was 109% in December 2017 compared to 140% in December 2016. Benchmark Price is up 23.9% since January 2017 but only up 0.3% over the last 3 months.

 

Ladner: Total Units Sold in December 2017 was 26 – the same for November 2017; up from 21 in December 2016 and up from 22 in December 2015. Total Active Listings were at 92 at month end, down from 135 at the end of December 2016, Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 4 Months (Seller’s Market for Condo/Townhouses and Buyer’s Market for Houses) compared to 6 Months Supply at the end of 2016 and Sales to Listings Ratio was 162% in December 2017 compared to 111% in December 2016. Benchmark Price is up 9.9% since January 2017 but only up 0.4% over the last 3 months.

 

Tsawwassen: Total Units Sold in December 2017 was 13 – down from 24 in November 2017; down from 15 in December 2016 and down from 50 in December 2015. Total Active Listings were at 141 at month end, down from 143 at the end of December 2016, Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is at 11 Months (Seller’s Market for Condo/Townhouses and Buyer’s Market for Houses) compared to 10 Months Supply at the end of 2016 and Sales to Listings Ratio was 100% in December 2017 compared to 68% in December 2016. Benchmark Price is up 9.3% since January 2017 and down 0.3% over the last 3 months.

 

Have a great 2018!

 

Kevin Skipworth

Dexter Associates Realty

Partner/Broker

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