Market Updates

March 2018 Housing Market Update - Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver




NEW STRESS TEST REGULATIONS PROMPT CANADIAN HOMEBUYERS TO INCREASE BUDGETS, RE-EVALUATE HOME FEATURES OR DELAY THEIR PURCHASE.


The average residential sale price in the Greater Toronto Area dropped to $753,747, down almost 10 per cent from $834,144 in January and February of 2017. With move-up buyers driving the market — many of whom are making their second or third transition — alongside a booming condominium market, prices are forecasted to soften throughout the year. Not all regions in Ontario are being affected like the GTA. In Ottawa, the average residential sale price in January and February was $388,289, up four per cent from the same period in 2017, and Kitchener-Waterloo saw a five per cent price increase year-over-year.

At the same time, the average residential sale price in Western Canada continues to increase. Greater Vancouver saw prices increase almost 11 per cent in January and February to $1,051,513, up from $950,184 during the same period in 2017. Despite reduced unit sales, prices are expected to continue rising. While Victoria is mostly a seller’s market compared to Greater Vancouver, it has also seen an increase in average residential sale price, which was $831,000 in January and February this year compared to $761,000 during the same period in 2017.

It is expected that government intervention and the stress test will continue to play a pivotal role in purchasing behaviour as we look to the months ahead. The Leger survey found that four in 10 buyers have had to compromise on their purchase, and almost one in three opted not to purchase altogether. One quarter of buyers compromised on the size of their home, while 18 per cent made concessions on the location of their home.

Despite these compromises, 55 per cent of homebuyers say they feel like they can purchase the type of home that suits their families’ needs compared to 46 per cent last year.

In Alberta, first-time homebuyers looking for affordability in Calgary and Edmonton continue to drive the market forward, with single Millennials and young couples gravitating toward the relatively stable condominium market. The average residential sale price increased 1.4 per cent in Calgary to $481,775 in January and February of this year, up from $475,288 during the same period in 2017. Meanwhile in Edmonton, a wide variety of inventory offers good opportunities for buyers, resulting in a small increase in activity and stable year-over-year prices to start 2018.

Interestingly, activity in Atlantic Canada experienced increased demand from first-time homebuyers, many of whom are young couples and families. At the same time, the condominium market is being driven by retirees who are looking to downsize. Prices continue to rise across most Atlantic markets, especially in Saint John where the average residential sale price in January and February this year was $201,328, compared to $168,956 during the same period in 2017.

New residential and commercial development projects in markets across the country are expected to fuel demand. Cities most impacted will include Edmonton, Kelowna, Victoria and Fraser Valley in the West and Windsor, London, Hamilton-Burlington, Barrie, Durham, Ottawa, Saint John and Halifax in Central and Eastern Canada.



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February 2018 Housing Market Update Video




Home buyers were less active in February


The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver (REBGV) reports that residential property sales in the region totalled 2,207 in February 2018, a nine per cent decrease from the 2,424 sales recorded in February 2017, and a 21.4 per cent increase compared to January 2018 when 1,818 homes sold.

Last month’s sales were 14.4 per cent below the 10-year February sales average. By property type, detached sales were down 39.4 per cent over the same period, attached sales were down 6.8 per cent, and apartment sales were 5.5 per cent above the 10-year February average.

“Rising interest rates and stricter mortgage requirements have reduced home buyers’ purchasing power, particularly for those at the entry level of our market,” Jill Oudil, REBGV president said. “Even still, the supply of apartment and townhome properties for sale today is unable to meet demand. On the other hand, our detached home market is beginning to enter buyers’ market territory.”

There were 4,223 detached, attached and apartment properties newly listed for sale on the Multiple Listing Service® (MLS®) in Metro Vancouver in February 2018. This represents a 15.2 per cent increase compared to the 3,666 homes listed in February 2017 and an 11.2 per cent increase compared to January 2018 when 3,796 homes were listed.

The total number of homes currently listed for sale on the MLS® system in Metro Vancouver is 7,822, a three per cent increase compared to February 2017 (7,594) and a 12.6 per cent increase compared to January 2018 (6,947).

“The spring is traditionally the busiest time for home buyers and sellers in our market. We’ll wait to see how they react to the taxes and other policy measures that our provincial and federal governments have introduced so far this year,” Oudil said. “To help you navigate these changes in today’s housing market, it’s important to work with your local REALTOR®.”

For all property types, the sales-to-active listings ratio for February 2018 is 28.2 per cent. By property type, the ratio is 13 per cent for detached homes, 37.6 per cent for townhomes, and 59.7 per cent for condominiums.

Generally, analysts say that downward pressure on home prices occurs when the ratio dips below the 12 per cent mark for a sustained period, while home prices often experience upward pressure when it surpasses 20 per cent over several months.

The MLS® Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $1,071,800. This represents a 16.9 per cent increase over February 2017 and a 1.4 per cent increase compared to January 2018.

Sales of detached properties in February 2018 reached 621, a 16.6 per cent decrease from the 745 detached sales recorded in February 2017. The benchmark price for detached properties is $1,602,000. This represents an 8.2 per cent increase from February 2017 and is virtually unchanged from January 2018.

Sales of apartment properties reached 1,185 in February 2018, a 7.1 per cent decrease compared to the 1,275 sales in February 2017. The benchmark price of an apartment property is $682,800. This represents a 27.2 per cent increase from February 2017 and a 2.6 per cent increase compared to January 2018.

Attached property sales in February 2018 totalled 401, a 0.7 per cent decrease compared to the 404 sales in February 2017. The benchmark price of an attached unit is $819,200. This represents an 18.1 per cent increase from February 2017 and a 1.9 per cent increase compared to January 2018.



January 2018 Housing Market Update Video




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