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March 2018 Sales and Listing Report for Metro Vancouver

Attached are the Sales and Listings Stats updated to the end of March 2018. With the government distractions thrust into the market the numbers are not surprising. With mortgage rule changes that increased the financial requirement for conventional mortgages, new housing tax policy and changes involving the Foreign Buyer Tax and Property Transfer Tax and a “Speculation Tax” and “School Tax”, it’s not surprising that the first quarter of 2018 in Metro Vancouver real estate showed less than average numbers.

 

Recapping, the Foreign Buyer Tax was increased to 20 per cent and extending to other regions in the province, an increase in the Property Transfer Tax to 5 per cent from 3 per cent on the value above $3 Million, an increased school tax on values above $3 Million and an annual Speculation Tax starting at 0.5 per cent of assessed value in 2018 and 2 percent in 2019 and going forward annually. The Speculation Tax received much push back and a result was changes to the areas covered and amount of tax paid starting in 2019. With British Columbia residents only responsible to pay 0.5 per cent for applicable properties, Canadians and permanent residents of Canada not paying income tax in B.C. having to pay 1 per cent and any non-residents of Canada responsible to pay 2 per cent on any applicable properties. But it has left questions and concerns still, which has translated into a hesitation in the real estate market.

 

There were 2,551 homes sold in Greater Vancouver in March this year compared with 3,632 sales in a March last year and a record 5,301 homes sold in March 2016. This was 22 per cent below the 10 year average for March. Detached Houses continue to lag in sales with there being 727 sold in March 2018, 1,156 in March 2017 and 2,148 in March 2016. This was most pronounced in Vancouver’s West Side with there being 53 Detached House sales in March 2018 matching February, 95 sales in March 2017 and 219 sales in March 2016. West Vancouver continues to see low numbers with 26 Detached Houses sold in March 2018, 59 sold in March 2017 and 146 in March 2016. The implementation of the Foreign Buyer Tax in 2016 and more so the increase in the Property Transfer Tax on values above $2 Million in early 2016 put a drag on the higher end of the market which carried through and certainly already dampening that market prior to further measures enacted with the provincial budget in February. It could be argued that demand has been pushed to the lower end and apartment market, a segment already with strong demand and starving for product. Thereby making affordability even more of an issue for buyers as prices rise and there being significant multiple offer activity.

 

As for supply in the market, there were 4,577 new listings in March in Greater Vancouver, down 6 per cent from March last year and down from 29 per cent from March 2016. The amount of new listings in March 2018 were 22 per cent below the 10 year average for March. It was the lowest for the month of March since 2009 and 4th lowest since 1991.The Detached House market for the higher end remains in Buyer’s Market territory while in areas moving east we are seeing it shift towards a Buyer’s Market bordering on balanced. Lower price points are where there is greater activity. The apartment market continues to be extremely low on supply with there being 1 to 2 months of inventory in all areas of Metro Vancouver. It’s worth noting that in Toronto, Detached House sales in March were 50 per cent less than Detached Home sales for March 2017. With the higher end of their market experiencing similar declines in sales volumes as we are seeing here, notably West Vancouver and Vancouver’s West Side.

 

“We saw less demand from buyers and fewer homes listed for sale in our region in the first quarter of the year,” Phil Moore, Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver president said. “High prices, new tax announcements, rising interest rates, and stricter mortgage requirements are among the factors affecting home buyer and seller activity today.”

 

“Even with lower demand, upward pressure on prices will continue as long as the supply of homes for sale remains low,” Moore said. “Last month was the quietest March for new home listings since 2009 and the total inventory, particularly in the condo and townhome segments, of homes for sale remains well below historical norms.”

 

East of the Fraser River, the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board processed 1,664 sales of all property types on its Multiple Listing Service® in March, a decrease of 25 per cent compared to 2,213 sales in March of last year, and 20 per cent increase compared to the 1,385 sales in February 2018. Of the 1,664 sales processed last month 410 were townhouses and 460 were apartments, together representing 52 per cent of all transactions in March. “We continue to see demand capped-off due to an inadequate amount of supply,” said John Barbisan, Board President. “March is typically when we see our market kick into gear, but we need to see higher levels of new listings coming in and greater overall inventory if we want more homebuyers to find success in the Valley.”

 

Here’s a summary of the numbers:

 

Greater Vancouver: Total Units Sold in March 2018 was 2,551 – up from 2,241 (14%) in February 2018, down from 3,632 (30%) in March 2017, down from 5,301 (52%) in March 2016; Active Listings are at 9,037 compared to 8,211 at this time last year; New Listings in March 2018 were down 6% compared to March 2017 and down 29% compared to March 2016; Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is steady at 4 Month’s Supply (Balanced Market with Attached Acting Like a Seller’s Market) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 56% compared to 74% in March 2017.

 

Vancouver Westside Residential: Total Units Sold in March 2018 was 441 – up from 429 (3%) in February 2018, down from 616 (28%) in March 2017, down from 1,001 (56%) in March 2016; Active Listings are at 1,691 compared to 1,342 at this time last year; New Listings in March 2018 were up 8% compared to March 2017 and down 28% compared to March 2016; Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is steady at 4 Month’s Supply (Detached being a Buyer’s Market with Attached Acting Like a Seller’s Market) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 49% compared to 75% in March 2017.

 

Vancouver Eastside Residential: Total Units Sold in March 2018 was 284 – up from 244 (16%) in February 2018, down from 384 (26%) in March 2017, down from 476 (40%) in March 2016; Active Listings are at 1,043 compared to 984 at this time last year; New Listings in March 2018 were down 3% compared to March 2017 and down 11% compared to March 2016; Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is steady at 4 Month’s Supply (Balanced Market with Attached Acting Like a Seller’s Market) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 55% compared to 73% in March 2017.

 

North Vancouver Residential Total Units Sold in March 2018 was 216 – up from 166 (30%) in February 2018, down from 261 (17%) in March 2017, down from 407 (47%) in March 2016; Active Listings are at 516 compared to 413 at this time last year; New Listings in March 2018 were up 6% compared to March 2017 and down 18% compared to March 2016; Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is down to 2 Month’s Supply (Balanced Market with Attached Acting Like a Seller’s Market) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 60% compared to 76% in March 2017.

 

West Vancouver Houses: Total Units Sold in March 2018 was 42 – the same level as in February 2018, down from 97 (57%) in March 2017, down from 179 (76%) in March 2016; Active Listings are at 585 compared to 471 at this time last year; New Listings in March 2018 were down 26% compared to March 2017 and down 37% compared to March 2016; Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is steady at 14 Month’s Supply (Detached a strong Buyer’s Market with Attached Acting Like a Seller’s Market) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 27% compared to 46% in March 2017.

 

Richmond Residential: Total Units Sold in March 2018 was 306 – up from 262 (17%) in February 2018, down from 537 (23%) in March 2017, down from 663 (54%) in March 2016; Active Listings are at 1,379 compared to 1,154 at this time last year; New Listings in March 2018 were down 11% compared to March 2017 and down 35% compared to March 2016; Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is steady at 5 Month’s Supply (Detached being a Buyer’s Market with Attached Acting Like a Seller’s Market) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 50% compared to 79% in March 2017.

 

Burnaby East: Total Units Sold in March 2018 was 26 – down from 34 (24%) in February 2018, down from 53 (51%) in March 2017, down from 58 (55%) in March 2016; Active Listings are at 123 compared to 85 at this time last year; New Listings in March 2018 were down 35% compared to March 2017 and down 48% compared to March 2016; Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is up to 5 Month’s Supply (Detached being a Buyer’s Market with Attached Acting Like a Seller’s Market) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 63% compared to 83% in March 2017.

 

Burnaby North: Total Units Sold in March 2018 was 131 – up from 89 (47%) in February 2018, down from 170 (33%) in March 2017, down from 265 (51%) in March 2016; Active Listings are at 314 compared to 341 at this time last year; New Listings in March 2018 were down 9% compared to March 2017 and down 29% compared to March 2016; Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is steady at 2 Month’s Supply (Detached being Balanced to a Seller’s Market with Attached Acting Like a Seller’s Market) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 61% compared to 71% in March 2017.

 

Burnaby South: Total Units Sold in March 2018 was 103 – down from 135 (26%) in February 2018, down from 167 (39%) in March 2017, down from 279 (60%) in March 2016; Active Listings are at 390 compared to 375 at this time last year; New Listings in March 2018 were down 13% compared to March 2017 and down 38% compared to March 2016; Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is up to 4 Month’s Supply (Detached being a Buyer’s Market with Attached Acting Like a Seller’s Market) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 53% compared to 74% in March 2017.

 

New Westminster: Total Units Sold in March 2018 was 149 – up from 103 (44%) in February 2018, down from 166 (10%) in March 2017, down from 192 (22%) in March 2016; Active Listings are at 224 compared to 238 at this time last year; New Listings in March 2018 were down 5% compared to March 2017 and down 27% compared to March 2016; Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is steady at 2 Month’s Supply (Detached being a Balanced Market with Attached Acting Like a Seller’s Market) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 77% compared to 81% in March 2017.

 

Coquitlam: Total Units Sold in March 2018 was 204 – up from 178 (15%) in February 2018, down from 303 (33%) in March 2017, down from 438 (53%) in March 2016; Active Listings are at 552 compared to 453 at this time last year; New Listings in March 2018 were down 14% compared to March 2017 and down 41% compared to March 2016; Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is steady at 3 Month’s Supply (Detached being a Balanced Market with Attached Acting Like a Seller’s Market) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 63% compared to 80% in March 2017.

 

Port Moody: Total Units Sold in March 2018 was 57 – up from 42 (36%) in February 2018, down from 83 (31%) in March 2017, down from 129 (56%) in March 2016; Active Listings are at 131 compared to 121 at this time last year; New Listings in March 2018 were down 18% compared to March 2017 and down 50% compared to March 2016; Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is steady at 2 Month’s Supply (Detached being a Balanced Market with Attached Acting Like a Seller’s Market) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 73% compared to 87% in March 2017.

 

Port Coquitlam: Total Units Sold in March 2018 was 103 – up from 84 (23%) in February 2018, down from 139 (26%) in March 2017, down from 225 (55%) in March 2016; Active Listings are at 160 compared to 185 at this time last year; New Listings in March 2018 were down 30% compared to March 2017 and down 55% compared to March 2016; Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is steady at 2 Month’s Supply (Detached being a Balanced Market with Attached Acting Like a Seller’s Market) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 82% compared to 78% in March 2017.

 

Ladner: Total Units Sold in March 2018 was 24 – up from 19 in February 2018, down from 45 (57%) in March 2017, down from 59 (59%) in March 2016; Active Listings are at 126 compared to 163 at this time last year; New Listings in March 2018 were down 22% compared to March 2017 and down 18% compared to March 2016; Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is steady at 6 Month’s Supply (Detached being a Buyer’s Market with Attached Acting Like a Seller’s Market) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 44% compared to 61% in March 2017.

 

Tsawwassen: Total Units Sold in March 2018 was 39 – up from 29 (34%) in February 2018, down from 58 (32%) in March 2017, down from 81 (52%) in March 2016; Active Listings are at 194 compared to 174 at this time last year; New Listings in March 2018 were up 19% compared to March 2017 and down 20% compared to March 2016; Month’s Supply of Total Residential Listings is down to 5 Month’s Supply (Detached being a Buyer’s Market with Attached Acting Like a Seller’s Market) and a Sales to Listings Ratio of 45% compared to 79% in March 2017.

 

 

Kevin Skipworth

Dexter Associates Realty

Partner/Broker

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